Descend – The Deviant

Descend – The Deviant
Aftermath Music
Release Date: 26/06/2020
Running Time:55:53
Review by Beth Jones
6/10

I’ve been pretty spoilt recently, as far as music is concerned! The sheer volume of excellent new releases is staggering, especially in the current climate, and getting the chance to pen some thoughts about them has been great. Next up for me is Swedish Progressive Death Metal quintet, Descend.

These guys have been around a good few years now, originally starting out as a Thrash band in 2003. However, through line-up changes and new musical influences creeping in, their style has morphed into what they now offer. Their first album, “Through The Eyes Of The Burdened” was released in 2011, and in 2014 they released a second album, “Wither”. Since then, the line-up has changed somewhat again, with the addition of Raul Vicente (bass) and Emil Nissilä (drums).

Recorded at Wing Studios, Stockholm, with Sverker Widgren (Diabolical) as producer, their third studio album, and latest release, “The Deviant” is being billed as their ‘milestone’ album. So, what does it sound like?

Well, the first thing that strikes you is power. The opening track, ‘Avalin’ hits you with a catchy riff and melody from the beginning. This is less of a track, and more of an intro/walk on piece, and at only 1 minute 40 in length, would be just about enough time to get the band on stage, let the crowd go wild, and do a quick line check.

This progresses swiftly into track 2, ‘Blood Moon’, which starts with a riff that is pure classic Thrash. It quickly drops off into a quiet mid-section, with clean vocals and acoustic sounds being the driver, then pumps back up for the chorus to guttural screams and growls, skilful wandering bass, and a hint of a blast beat, as well as some dark and overdriven down tuned guitar riffage.

The album continues on in this way, through four more tracks which all appear to be going for some sort of record in length. ‘Standard for prog!’ I hear you cry. Well, yes, but I do have an issue with this. Musically, this album is definitely Death, Melodic Death in places, with a good few nods to classic Thrash sounds. However, in my opinion it is lacking a little in the prog department. Don’t get me wrong, it has elements, but sometimes they feel a little forced, almost like afterthoughts to make it ‘fit in’ with the genre. The inclusion of a tenor sax solo in the penultimate track, “Wallow”, is interesting, but again feels like it’s been done purely ‘to prog it up’. And, dare I say, the extended length of the tracks has a tendency to be a little boring, as they’re not extended in order to introduce new variations around a theme, or explore different elements in instrumentation, they are just there to make the songs longer.

The only exception to this comes halfway through the album in the form of track 4, ‘Lily’. This track does do what it says on the tin, it’s Melodic Death in the heavy sections, and does successfully bring it down to indulge in some exploration in the middle. If the rest of the album was the same calibre as this song, it would be much more pleasing.

These guys are, without question, very talented technical musicians. The album is peppered with some extremely good guitar solos, precision drumming at impressive tempos, and bass lines that explore a decent range. And the ability of singer Nima Farhadian Langroundi to go from clean vocals to guttural roars and tortured scream is very impressive. But I’m not getting the important connection, that comes from the soul, when I listen to this album. I think this is a band who have the potential to do great things, but I think they really need to focus on what they actually want to be, and let themselves really feel the music rather than getting hung up on the technical detail.

Production wise, it’s pretty good, although I do find that sometimes the vocals are a little further back in the mix than I would like. It’s a very guitar driven sound though, so this is probably intentional. And if I’ve said this once, I’ve said it a thousand time. STOP BLOODY FADING TRACKS OUT BECAUSE YOU CAN’T WORK OUT HOW TO FINISH THEM!!! As a musician, and a huge fan of live music, it infuriates me! You can’t achieve that level of fade live, so why do it on a recording? Yet again, we see it here, with the final track on the album. It’s disappointing.

So, to sum up; Has it got some interesting elements? Yes. Is it technically very good? Yes. Did I like it?… it’s ok. It’s not terrible, but nor is it ground-breaking.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Avalin
02. Blood Moon
03. The Purest One
04. Lily
05. Wallow
06. The Deviant

LINE-UP:
Andreas Lindström – guitars
Alexander Wijkman – guitars
Nima Farhadian Langroudi – vocals
Raul Vicente – bass
Emil Nissilä – drums

LINKS:
www.facebook.com/DescendOfficial/
www.instagram.com/descendofficial/
www.descend.bandcamp.com/
www.youtube.com/channel/UCfWjdGm10-b7E4Y51eYnCMA
www.open.spotify.com/artist/33EUSEyZ6PyFhsFrXIfsjb

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with DEATH PLAGUE

EMQ’s with DEATH PLAGUE

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Queensland, Australian based Extreme Black/Death Metal band, Death Plague. Huge thanks to vocalist, Dam Kel for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Dam Kel, I’m the vocalist of extreme metal band Death Plague, from the Sunshine coast of Australia. The band formed in 2017 and we’re a 5-piece act. In these early years we have already done a demo/EP called “Smear Your Blood”, we have a new album coming out this year, and we have played many shows and mini fests , as well as organising and running our own shows and mini fest.

How did you come up with your band name?

At the time we wrote our first lot of songs, we felt plagued by our own creation. And for myself personally, the band had become my reason to die, so if this is the last project I do then I’m taking it to the end. Death Plague is who we are, it’s our way of life and we are in it until the end.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We are Australian based band and Brisbane is the main city near us. The scene is ok but can be fairly hard to judge as to how gigs will plan out. There is a solid following, but with the way the restrictions are with licenced venues it makes it very hard to get people motivated to come out and make a night of it.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

So, the last release we did, the ‘Parasitic Homicide’ music video, was a while ago, however, stay tuned for our upcoming tracks. It’s heavier then before and really showcases us as a full-on machine.

Who have been your greatest influences?

My greatest influences have been Wednesday 13 (not just the music but the amount of work he puts in, the guys a freak) Satyricon, Soulfly, Psyclon Nine, basically anything that’s creative and catchy.

What first got you into music?

Oh man, just the feeling of being able to express yourself on that kind of a platform! It’s absolutely awesome being able to make a connection with people live or even through recording.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Locally (Australia underground wise) I’m currently collaborating with members of both Awful Noise and Terra Mortem. I think international it’s a massive playing field and hopefully we can collaborate with many different bands out there.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Definitely would have to say Wacken. I know, reach for the sky’s, but that place is just a freak of the best talent the world has to offer in metal, it’s my Graceland.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

A hug (laugh) ok back story… At a show, some member of the crowd went to knuckles me, I did and said into the mic “is that how humans connect?” then another member from down the back ran up and said “no this is how we connect!” and gave me a hug. Very weird moment but hey, if that’s not metal…. I don’t know what is!!

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Album is almost finished, not too much longer! We will be seeing you all very soon and the party will be massive!

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

I don’t think I’d bring one back to be honest… they would be cranky, pissed off and smell really fucking bad. I think we should let their legacy live on. They were who they were and that’s what makes them special in almost every way.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

I love being creative and connecting with people and crowds. I don’t think I hate anything… oh… I stand corrected, I hate having to wait for our own stuff to be ready to showcase. I just wanna get it out there and have some fun.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Downloads. All the way, they should not be allowed. Yes, it’s convenience but it’s worth nothing to the eyes on the computer screen. The physical copy always has cool designs and a booklet and is just… so much more worth it. Can’t sign a computer screen for someone. Think about it…

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Soulfly “Dark Ages”. So many great tracks, never gets boring.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

Yea… I’d say CDs, unless it’s great vinyl. Cassette tape was never really a great idea. I think it was good for the time but yet it was never timeless.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

By far it would be an interstate show in a place called Newcastle! Best crowd, shot them beers (like a whole fucking keg), it was incredible just how much love we got from that place.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

I think Marketing. I’m creative and always trying to do some weird stuff with posters and designs and how to reach people. It’s all really fun to me.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

My band members, they are the best mates and the strongest team I’ve ever had in my life.

What’s next for the band?

Studio time, upcoming shows, and focusing on where we go next and how we achieve that. It’s always good to have goals and accomplish them.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

www.facebook.com/pg/deathplagueww

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

They are clearly biscuits, although, maybe we are wrong about that as well. Maybe the are not either cake or biscuits, one of those questions that will keep you up at night that’s for sure.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Stay tuned, some awesome stuff coming, support your local scene and help the bands make your life a little bit less sucky It’s ok to escape and shut off the world while listening to music. Stay safe.

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with NUCLEAR WINTER

EMQ’s with NUCLEAR WINTER

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Harare, Zimbabwe based Melodic Industrial Death Metal project, Nuclear Winter. Huge thanks to Gary Stautmeister for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

I’m Gary Stautmeister and I started Nuclear Winter in 2013 – After all the years of playing guitar and having nothing to show for it, I finally decided I needed to start recording my own stuff and work on my own ideas. So Nuclear Winter became my solo project where I could experiment and record my own thing.

How did you come up with your band name?

When I worked on the ideas for my first album, where the lyrics dealt a lot with the extremes from things like love/hate etc and the fine line that separates them, I thought Nuclear Winter worked well with that – as being the extremes of heat and cold but is a devastating thing within itself.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

I’m from Harare, Zimbabwe. The rock/metal scene here is almost non-existent. Apart from a few metal heads and Zim’s only other metal band Dividing the Element, are about all we have here.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

My latest release is “Night Shift” which came out end of last year, but I have an EP called “StormScapes” which will be out on 15th July.

Who have been your greatest influences?

Wintersun and Devin Townsend. Although I don’t do anything that really sounds like DT – it’s just what he does in his songs is really impressive to me. There’s a way he manages to pack so many things into a mix and have it all working together well that I find very impressive.

What first got you into music?

As a kid when I first heard Bon Jovi and Def Leppard, I thought wow – I gotta have an electric guitar! I just loved the sound and energy of it. Then came Nirvana and they were a huge influence for me. At least as a young guitarist – their songs were fun and easier to play than most other bands. Down the line someone introduced me to Paradise Lost and I was amazed – they were heavy and melodic, and they are one’s that got me into melodic death metal – with Dark Tranquillity being my next favourite band then.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Either Devin Townsend or Jari Mäenpää- both musical geniuses’ way beyond my level but they would be really interesting to work with and to learn stuff from, I think.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

I don’t have a preference really. I think any of the big ones like Download or Bloodstock etc would be cool.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

My fan base is still small, so I haven’t received any gifts.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Just a big thanks to anyone who is supporting the music I make.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Kurt Cobain. Nirvana was my favourite band in high school and the biggest influence for me as a teenager learning the guitar.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

The main thing for me is the creative freedom to do what I like. There’s not anything particular I don’t like. I find I struggle a bit with self-promotion. Also, one thing I find really tedious to record is the bass guitar. I find it very boring. I think I need to get EZBass so the bass can just be automated lol.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

To be honest I don’t know enough about the music industry so I can’t really offer any suggestions.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Strapping Young Lad – “City”. That was an immense album.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

I think downloads. Just more convenient. I used to enjoy getting CD’s though years ago but digital is the way forward, I think.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

As a one-man band recording my stuff at home, I’ve not performed any of my music live yet unfortunately.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

My main job is doing 3D design, so music is actually a secondary thing for me. I would prefer to just focus on music though seeing as I’m quite bored of doing graphics work now.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

I think this list would be very interesting Morgan Freeman, Ricky Gervais, Jessica Lang, Kathy Bates, Jordan Peterson.

What’s next for the band?

I’m starting to work on some new songs for a new album. But that will probably only be out mid to end of next year hopefully.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

I just use the usual ones – Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp, Soundcloud etc
www.facebook.com/NuclearWinterZim/
www.twitter.com/NWStauty
www.nuclearwinterzim.bandcamp.com/
www.soundcloud.com/nuclearwinterzim

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

I was a kid when I last had one of those and to me, they were closer to a pie. But between those two I’d choose a cake.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Sure, and thanks for the interview. Nothing to add really.

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQs with BLACK RABBIT

EMQs with BLACK RABBIT

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Apeldoorn, Netherlands based Thrash/Death Metal band, Black Rabbit. Huge thanks to drummer, Max Hendriks for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Max Hendriks – Drums

Black Rabbit started back in 2014, when Jelle and Hidde started playing guitar together. They found their own riffs and started to get the hang of it more and more. They figured it would be nice to have a complete band and teamed up with a bassist and after some time a drummer as well. After some time, a vocalist was added too, and we started playing our first few gigs. After some line-up changes, I joined the band as their drummer. Since I have a big influence on the Dutch metal-scene, I gave them the input they’d wanted all this time. Black Rabbit finally took off, and now we are starting to make a name for ourselves.

How did you come up with your band name?

Well I didn’t but Jelle and Hidde did. The band name already existed before the band. During a barbeque, Jelle and Hidde were making parodies on famous metal band. When they bumped on Black Sabbath, it immediately became Black Rabbit. The whole idea of ‘rabbit’ comes from the fact that Jelle had a black rabbit as a pet. They kept the name as a sort of screw you to the people who think that metal bands should always have brutal names.

What country are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

Netherlands, and the scene is alive, but let’s say that the average Dutch metalhead is static. We have a small scene with lovely people. Like everywhere, the big shows are always busy, but the small bands do not get the venue full.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single or Video)

“Warren of Necrosis” EP, January 9th, 2020

Who have been your greatest influences?

Kreator and Carcass

What first got you into music?

My parents. They made music before I was born.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Randy Blythe of Lamb of God, Mille Petrozza of Kreator or Chuck Billy of Testament

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Definitely Hellfest. If you love music, you go to Hellfest. They never disappoint in their line-up and give opportunities to smaller bands.

What is the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

An Alice Cooper Funko

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Thank you so much for your support, I know its a cliché, but I play my music because I love it and it is always amazing to see other people like it.

If you could bring one Metal/Rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

The Rev of Avenged Sevenfold

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

Being free and doing the stuff you love. I hate setting up the whole drums!

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Make CD’s more important again and improve the pay rate on digital streams.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

“The Outer Ones” – Revocation

What is best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s, or Downloads?

CD

What is the best gig that you have played to date?

Our release show in Gigant on 9th of January 2020

If you were not a musician, what else would you be doing?

Probably something with making instruments!

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Chuck Billy
Chris Adler
Gary Holt
Steve Harris
James Hetfield

What is next for the band?

We are aiming to release a single before the end of October, and somewhere in the middle of next year, our debut album!

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

www.blackrabbitofficial.com/
www.facebook.com/OfficialBlackRabbit/
www.instagram.com/officialblackrabbit/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/2VFnjeYaBg8qSDzXglJRfZ
www.youtube.com/channel/UCmjDJctQdxbDxIIAcHyMgWg
www.blackrabbitnl.bandcamp.com/releases

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

It says cake, so I would say biscuit because it is too obvious!

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you for the interview, check us out to those who do not know us, and check out our Spotify playlist with our friends!

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Bloodyard – Orchard Of Corpses

Bloodyard – Orchard Of Corpses
Self-Released
Release Date: 01/05/2020
Running Time: 42.27
Review by Dark Juan
8/10

Hello, my mischievous little munchkins and pixies. I trust you have all been cavorting around ancient forests like the good little misanthropic spirits you are and terrifying small children? Capital, my pernicious little piskies, capital. It seems that you are now allowed to go and get a haircut, but you aren’t yet allowed to adorn your skin with art. Because tattoo studios aren’t some of the most hygienic places in the world are they? I normally avoid politics because it’s a) Boring as fuck for you lot to read, b) I’m right and you’re wrong (TRUST ME ON THIS!) and c) the art of debate appears to have died a grisly and unpleasant death because we are all apparently snowflakes repeating fake news, regardless of which point of view we have. Suffice it to say that the current parasite inhabiting Number 10 appears to be hell bent on killing off our entire scene and I AM NOT HAPPY ABOUT IT! Apparently the choleric Mrs. Phillips from number 42, Saddleworth Road can now toddle off and get her fucking blue rinse sorted out and gossip with her equally unhealthy friends at a 1 metre distance in a hair salon full of hair clippings but we can’t get fucking tattoos or piercings and go and watch some heavy fucking metal played live in a sweaty, salty club somewhere. Even the mop topped fuckwits have their beloved fucking football back. It is not right and Boris is a right pigfucking cunt.  I’d like to curse the entire planet but that would leave me no virgins to defile and that would not be a good thing. I get testy when I am not able to perpetrate horrors on the wildly resisting bodies of nubile young victims. I’d like to say that that is my rant over but it probably is only the beginning… For the record, Dark Juan does not like football – if I want to shout myself hoarse for 90 minutes at people who aren’t listening and don’t give a fuck anyway I’ll just go to work as normal and I don’t have to pay investment groups gajillions of pounds for a season ticket to go and be wet, poor, cold and deafened.

Well, this is thrilling. I have, clenched in my sweaty and considerably sexually aroused hands the debut album from Lancaster death metal speedsters Bloodyard. Led by Amazonian, and not in the least bit frightening, frontwoman Donna Hurd, who appears to have been doing unspeakable things with acid, broken glass and large amounts of gravel to her voice, they have unleashed a record that would have done a very well established act justice. This is an excellent debut. My arousal only increases. You lucky things. I must note that it appears, from my past couple of reviews, the UK is undergoing a rather splendid wave of British death metal at the moment. And especially fronted by the fairer sex. This is not me being misogynist (although the darker ideas I have about ladies absolutely are…) this is me commenting that I find it gratifying that women are standing up in a genre that has not been historically populated by women and making it their own. Both Basement Torture Killings’ Beryl and Bloodyard’s Donna are as good as the classic male vocalists of the genre and actually better than the David Vincents of the world. I’m conflicted about the past couple of sentences because I’m not trying to draw comparisons. I’m all about equal rights (rites?) and I am a feminist, and to my sensibilities I have just been tremendously sexist, where all I was trying to say was that Donna is a great DM vocalist. Fuck’s sake. Being woke is hard sometimes. It’s staying in the review because I do think it a great thing that more extreme genres are starting to be populated by women and I believe in being honest with all you good folk out there. Extreme metal has been a sausage fest for too long.

Let’s move to less deep water where I can’t get myself in trouble any more, shall we? The music is excellent. The guitar sound is rather more crisp and legible than most death metal and there is an undercurrent of more traditional metal underpinning Bloodyard’s sound that proves to be an advantage, as it manages to break the unrelenting brutality up and makes “Orchard Of Corpses” something greater than the sum of its parts. There are also little thrash touches – on “Antithesis” especially there is an extremely Slayerish moment… I’ll let you all find out what that is. The fact that the band hail from the Historic County Palatine of Lancashire is another point in their favour considering your favourite Satanic shock rock hack is a Lancastrian boy too (apart from Donna, who is very obviously Scottish, but she does count as Northern and therefore brilliant!) The drumming on the record is tighter than a gnat’s chuff, the bass happily vibrates your nethers into a state of priapic excitement, the guitar work incisive and sharp, and the vocals facemeltingly intense. What’s not to love?

There are a couple of negative points I’ll quickly address because they are minor and don’t really impact on my enjoyment of the record – there is a slight case of musical schizophrenia as Bloodyard do appear to have moments of being unsure as to whether they want to be full bore death metal or add some groove in there, and a couple of the songs do feel to be a bit overlong, “Antithesis” (that song again!) could comfortably have had a minute shaved off the end of it and no one would have been the wiser. But, and this is a BIG FUCKING BUT, it is a debut album and a very, very good one. Everyone has to start somewhere and hopefully quality control will become better as Bloodyard continue their hopefully meteoric rise.

Standout tracks are “All Hail The Crimson King” which is just meaty as fuck, “Antithesis” which combines death, groove and thrash in a fashion that can only be described as sexual and the title track, which is old school DM of the highest calibre. Hopefully we are seeing a NWOBDM forming with Bloodyard in the vanguard.

To summarise – Bloodyard’s battlewagon is combat ready and devastatingly lethal, but the engine is missing a beat or two. Otherwise it’s a matt black, lead belching death machine razing everything, and butchering everyone around it. Just the kind of thing that gets my lust murdering tendencies fired up. Well done, you beautiful bunch of axe murdering bastards.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System awards Bloodyard a blistering 8/10 for a first class debut. Can’t wait to make them the soundtrack to my own personal apocalypse.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Blood Begets Blood
02. Mortem
03. Rupture The Mask
04. Orchard Of Corpses
05. All Hail The Crimson King
06. Stack The Pyre
07. Choke
08. Purge The Rot
09. Antithesis

LINE-UP:
Donna Hurd – Vocals
Nick Adamson – Guitar
Dave Cowley – Bass (Proof of my theory that all bands have a hidden Dave! There is ALWAYS A DAVE!)
Matty Lee – Drums

LINKS:
www.bloodyard.uk/
www.facebook.com/bloodyard666/
www.twitter.com/Bloodyard
www.instagram.com/bloodyard666/
www.soundcloud.com/nick-adamson-4
www.youtube.com/user/bloodyard1

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of ‘Dark Juan’ and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with DYSTOPIA A.D.

EMQ’s with DYSTOPIA A.D.

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with West Windsor, New Jersey based Modern Death Metal band Dystopia A.D. Huge thanks to Chris Whitby & Aki Shishido for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

CW: Dystopia A.D. is an American two-man modern death metal band consisting of lead guitarist Aki Shishido and myself (vocalist/bassist/guitarist Chris Whitby). Our signature blend of death metal, thrash, and progressive rock features blistering shred guitar solos and a variety of vocal styles.

In 2018, we released our debut album “Designing Ruin”, which included guest appearances from numerous musicians in the underground metal/progressive rock scene, including Justin Greczyn of Swashbuckle and John Tuohy of Mile Marker Zero.

How did you come up with your band name?

CW: It’s a reflection of the constant turmoil the world faces. I think the word ‘dystopia’ conjures images of a distant, unpleasant future, but, in some respects, we’re already living in one.

There’s an influential punk band called Dystopia. The name ‘Dystopia A.D.’ sounds like we’re a reformed version of the band (a la Entombed A.D.), but there’s no connection. They kind of called us out on Twitter and said that Dystopia A.D. is ‘just a new band without Google.’ I can’t really argue with that!

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

CW: I live in the United States just outside of New York City where the metal underground is going strong.

AS: Chris and I both grew up in New Jersey and there was a raging metal and hardcore scene when we first started making metal. I now live in Baltimore and prior to COVID there was a great death metal scene.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

CW: Our latest album, “Rise of the Merciless”, will be released in July 2020 and pushes our sound to new limits in terms of technicality, musicianship, and songwriting complexity. The album was partially recorded from Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan where Aki was deployed as a Major in the U.S. Army.

Who have been your greatest influences?

CW: Musically? Probably the same stuff we were listening to when we were kids. Sepultura, Death, Blind Guardian, and In Flames come to mind. I also listen to modern bands like Revocation, Cattle Decapitation, and Pig Destroyer, and I think the influence of these bands shows in our songwriting. Non-musically, I think I just need a nihilistic outlet where I can unleash unbridled brutality while still expressing emotion and passion.

AS: I started out with the classics: Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, and evolved into the melodic death metal scene with bands like In Flames and Dark Tranquility. Blind Guardian is my favourite band, but really the only power metal band I can listen to with any regularity. Now, in my old age, I find myself listening to a ton of Testament and Death. Non-musically, I am influenced by science, justice, patriotism, and beer.

What first got you into music?

CW: I grew up in the 90’s, and the raw aggression of grunge music that was popular at the time started my journey into heavy music.

AS: I actually got into metal through soundtracks. The first 2 CD’s I bought as a kid were “The Last Action Hero” and “Mortal Kombat” movie soundtracks. The Last Action Hero is loaded with gems from AC/DC, Megadeth, Anthrax, Alice in Chains and Cypress Hill while Mortal Kombat had Napalm Death, Fear Factory and Type O Neg.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

CW: I’m a big fan of Andrew Lee (of one-man death metal band Ripped to Shreds). His music has that nostalgic OSDM aesthetic while still sounding fresh/modern. He’s a skilled songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, and I have the chance to connect and work with him in the future.

AS: I would love to work with Frederick Thordendal. His guitar playing absolutely blows my mind because he’s just wired so differently, and it’d be an immense challenge for me to play with him. He’s also apparently a pretty interesting guy and I’d love to watch a UFC fight with him.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

CW: Wacken! Is there any other answer?

AS: Agreed.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

CW: Evil Chuck! I feel like he was at the top of his game with “The Sound of Perseverance” and “The Fragile Art of Existence” when he died.

AS: Damn, Chuck would have been mine too. So instead I’ll have to go with Randy Rhodes. I’m biased with guitar players here, but he was damn good one. The first solo I ever learned was Crazy Train.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

CW: I enjoy being able to continue to grow as a musician. There is limitless scope for learning new theory, technique, etc. I think that “Rise of the Merciless” displays significant progress for us as musicians and songwriters, and I hope to continue that evolution on future albums.

AS: Music is the one thing that I have that is a combination of raw emotion and technical complexity. It engages my soul and my brain, and in the case of metal, my physical endurance and dexterity as well. It is never boring, and will match my mood whether I feel like laying low and relaxing or I feel like punching someone in the face. As far as what I hate…Outside of a few significant exceptions (e.g. the latest Testament album, among others) a lot of the top metal acts featured on the iTunes metal playlists are very uninspiring. There is so much awesome new metal out there and it is not recognized on the largest platforms. I understand that there is definitely pride in staying underground – but damnit why is all this garbage so popular?

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

CW: “The Gathering” by Testament. Every song is masterful – the performances are polished without losing that raw thrash metal aesthetic. The album is masterfully composed and, for me, is the best answer to the question, “what is metal?”

AS: Agree with Testament’s “The Gathering”. If an Alien asked me what metal sounded like, I’d play it “The Gathering”.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

CW: I understand the appeal of vinyl but can’t rationalize stockpiling physical media in this day and age. Streaming services that offer music in lossless format (like Bandcamp) are my preference.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

CW: As much as I love the thrill of performing for a live crowd, the physical distance between us and our demanding personal lives mean that we’re strictly a studio band. for the time being. For what it’s worth, I think that our recordings illustrate our raw passion and intensity and how seriously we take being musicians.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

CW: Aki and I both have demanding day jobs. Aki is a U.S. Army veteran and doctor of infectious diseases. My resume pales in comparison – I work at a prominent FinTech company. Our music has been an important outlet for me emotionally and creatively. The band isn’t and won’t ever be a source of significant income, but that helps us keep our music untainted creatively.

What’s next for the band?

CW: We’re currently promoting Rise of the Merciless and hope to connect with fans that will feel the same exhilarating rage and joy when listening to Dystopia A.D.’s music that we did while writing and performing it. Afterwards I’ll likely take some time to reflect and expand my repertoire as a songwriter by studying more music theory, listening to different genres of music, etc. before starting to write our next album.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

You can pre-order Rise of the Merciless here:
www.dystopiaad.bandcamp.com/.

The entire album will be available for streaming on Spotify after it releases on July 31st:
www.open.spotify.com/artist/6cl9TYbCxaL2O9UcaeHtGY

You can follow us here:
www.facebook.com/DystopiaAD/

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

CW: I don’t think I’ve ever had one, but they sure look like biscuits to me.

AS: In America we’d call these cookies which per Google (see, learning here) is based on the Dutch word meaning “a small cake.”

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

CW: Thanks to Ever Metal and all of its readers for supporting the metal underground!

AS: Thank you – stay safe – stay Metal.

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Serenity Defiled – Dead Earth Syndicate

Serenity Defiled – Dead Earth Syndicate
Dominus Records
Release Date: 20/03/2020
Running Time: 33:48
Review by Tammy Lomax
8/10

Well hello again you beautiful people. I do hope everyone is safe, doing well and especially enjoying the marvellous weather recently. Beats the normal British weather we endure sometimes.

So, I have had the lovely privilege of reviewing Serenity Defiled’s latest album “Dead Earth Syndicate” And my oh my, what an absolute corker.

Serenity Defiled rose from the ashes of Australian band ‘Fury’ in 2011. Since then, Mick O’Neil departed and Lord Tim (Lord) joined officially as lead guitarist and vocalist plus did bass duties on the album. It’s essentially a studio project because everyone is spread across the country, and that makes the logistics kind of challenging.

Okay Tammy, so get your bum comfy and press play.

Album opener ‘Dead Earth Syndicate’ confused me a little, don’t get me wrong, I am not nitpicking! I do like the track, and it intrigued me, however, it seemed all over the place. You have an emotional intro and there’s a tech sort of vibe, then Lord Tim’s vocals arrive and I just felt a bit underwhelmed Despite this feeling, next track, ‘Purified In Flame” arched in and my skull literally split in half and blew up. Lord Tim’s vocals are literally bursting out of everything at 90mph!! Now I no longer feel confused, now I get it, quite frankly kicking myself a little. Time to get my bum comfy and REALLY get listening.

‘Pariah’ well, it’s a really imaginative track. There are some really good nasty and dirty dark riffs. It is decidedly death metal and very raw, now I am floating comfortably in my musical bubble boat. Brutal death metal is my place of home and there is a lot to digest, but I can manage big mouthfuls and I do tend to keep up. I am delighted and bouncing for more. As I got to half-way through “Dead Earth Syndicate”, I physically ran out of breath. I got more and more excited and I envisioned myself sitting in a chair, in the centre of my front room. watching these guys on stage.

So, I am a tad torn between my favourite tracks, just because there is some diverse playing throughout the entire album and not every track is the same. ‘Pariah’ and ‘Another Life’ would be the ones that really attenuate me. The level of music produced on this album is of a high standard, it is hard to believe that it’s just a studio project. In all fairness I feel these guys deserve more than that. Of course, as previously mentioned, it can be difficult with regards to logistics, but I would genuinely love to see them make the transition to a full live band.

This album is far more aggressive, and the intensity higher compared to their previous releases. Even the artwork on “Dead Earth Syndicate” is far better. You really do get a feel of ‘Mad Max’. To be honest, the timing couldn’t be more on point either.

Serenity Defiled have evolved my view of death metal in a positive light. They mix some thrash in, here and there, and have the awesome Tim Hinton slaughtering the drums! I mean this fella runs the whole sound, from my perspective. They have come a long way since the band ‘Fury’, and they are genuinely bloody cool.

This band have broken me, I am head frazzled, messy mayhem! All in this is amazing work guys. I am definitely looking forward to repairing my brain, but I cannot wait to see what Serenity Defiled come up with in the future.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Dead Earth Syndicate
02. Purified In Flame
03. Pariah
04. Blueprint In Suicide
05. Distorted Arts Of Disfigurement
06. Cleanse The Blood
07. Conjure The Darkness
08. Another Life
09. Contaminated
10. Into The Soil

LINE-UP:
Ricky Boon – Rhythm Guitars.
Tim Hinton – Drums
Lord Tim – Vocals, Lead Guitars.

LINKS:
www.facebook.com/serenitydefiled/
www.serenitydefiled.bandcamp.com/
www.youtube.com/user/serenitydefiled

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Tammy Lomax and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Antipope – Apostle Of Infinite Joy

Antipope – Apostle Of Infinite Joy
Fertile Crescent Productions
Release Date: 21/02/2020
Running Time: 44:46
Review by Victor Augusto
9/10

Once again, I have decided to navigate through unknown seas, this time going deeper into the world of Gothic music. As I used to say before writing something about a genre that I don’t listen to often, my apologies to the band and fans if I’ve written something wrong, but I’ll do my best to express how amazing I have found the Finnish band, Antipope.

My first impression on hearing this album for the first time was that it was like travelling back in time to 1995 and listen to “The Gallery” by Dark Tranquillity. I could feel some influences from them, especially on a few of the guitar harmonies of Antti J. Karjalainen. However, Antipope’s music goes further than Melodic Death Metal sonority, making it just an (good) Influence, not a carbon copy. The atmosphere created by the band along the melodies is really paradoxical, because the music is a mix of dark and depressive sounds, but the melodies bring happiness to it. Maybe it’s got me confused, but it is what I felt.

The opening track, ‘Harbinger Of Dawn’, demonstrates what I am saying – with clean notes before all the heaviness appears. The great drum lines of Tuska E. help to give a good cadence. At this point, it was simply Melodic Death Metal that came to my mind. But then, ‘Natural Born Heretic’ appears, exploring speed and fast tempos, but you’d be mistaken for thinking that all the melodies and technique would be left behind because of this. They weren’t. And what a great solo from Antti J. Karjalainen in this song, too.

My second impression of Antipope appeared in ‘Intoxicating Darkness’. After a great bass intro from Joni Tauriainen, I felt some Doom influence in the way Mikko Myllykangas sings. This Doom Influence increases with the title track, throughout its seven-minute track time, displaying many variations. Maybe some Blackened Death influences are present in this song too. What I can assure is that even though it’s 7 minutes long, this song is so amazing that you won’t realize the time flying.

The violent side of Antipope returns in ‘Red Goddess’ and ‘Venereal Ritual For Dispersion And Reintegration Of The Soul’ even though the last one has a few slow parts. ‘Serpent Of Old’ is not as fast, but it’s definitely heavy with a good focus on riffing. The closing song ‘0=2’ is a kind of mix of everything you’ve heard so far from Antipope’s music.

As I said before, I am not the most knowledgeable person to talk about the genres I mentioned, but my impression was that Antipope don’t get stuck in only one style. “Apostle Of Infinite Joy” is a lesson in technique and has brilliant compositions. Antipope put in the best of all the styles that have influenced them, and offer a good balance between heaviness and dense atmosphere. The final result is nothing less than an amazing record. For sure, it is one of the best releases of 2020.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Harbinger of Dawn
02. Natural Born Heretic
03. Intoxicating Darkness
04. Apostle Of Infinite Joy
05. Red Goddess
06. Venereal Ritual for Dispersion and Reintegration of the Soul
07. Serpent of Old
08. 0=2

LINE-UP:
Mikko Myllykangas – Vocals
Joni Tauriainen – Bass
Antti J. Karjalainen – Guitars
Tuska E. – Drums

LINKS:
www.antipope.info
www.facebook.com/Antipope/
www.twitter.com/antipope_band
www.instagram.com/antipope_band/
www.spotify.com/album/45X0a6O6ELJNZl0aAt0WJI
www.youtube.com/channel/UCwjQceSCS0gQJZrHeDVBmkQ

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Victor Augusto and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Bombs Of Hades – Phantom Bell EP

Bombs Of Hades – Phantom Bell EP
Black Lodge Records
Release Date:17/04/2020
Running Time: 15:37
Review by Tammy Lomax
9/10

Hello everyone, I hope you all are keeping well during the on-going lockdown and hats off to our NHS. Amazing people.

I am incredibly lucky to have music to keep me occupied. Doesn’t mean I cannot share though, as sharing is caring after all. Let me introduce you to Swedish death metal band Bombs Of Hades and their four track EP “Phantom Bell” released on 17/04/2020.

Firstly, a little background.

Back in 2002 bass player Anders Ekman and Guitarist/vocalist Jonas Stålhammar would crank it up, letting off some steam in a rehearsal studio Influenced by Slayer, Autopsy, Entombed etc.

Countless beers later, some serious thoughts and discussions took place and they then approached Po Söderback and Magnus Forsburg. Now completely united, their discussions became actions and their dreams became a reality Their first E.P “Carnivores” was released by Blood Harvest Records in 2010 creating some buzz within the scene. After more successful years, three more albums, many EP’s and loads of gigs, Ekman departed and along came Roger Iderman who filled his place in 2016.

Now to new EP “Phantom Bell”. There may only be four tracks, but it is still really great! I can be greedy though! If my ears appreciate it then I always want more!

Just in my pants (it was a warm day!!), I submersed myself in my headphones, maxed out the volume and drifted off in my perfect music bubble. Throughout the EP you get some blinding guitar solos. They are rustic and original, slow, and sexy as hell and it takes me to a place of ecstasy. As I listened to the lyrics, they came alive. I found myself understanding and relating to them. Jonas Stålhammar’s vocals throughout are tight, in your face and destroy. I was really enjoying this. There was only one way forward from here …repeat play and repeat…

My favourite track here must be ‘Bridge Of Sighs’ although, if I am honest, it was quite a difficult choice as I love ‘Lungs’ too. I was lured in from the moment it started. They hit you hard, the repeated riff gets you rolling, sounding doomlike, all deep and cosmic. Then the vocals glide in with zero mess, matching and meeting the rhythm perfectly. It is juicy, weighty and your ears beg for more. POW! Then, that guitar solo…oh my days! When the final note hits, it’s a pinnacle for me! And now, I am a dribbling mess!! It is a complete release. #flushedtam!

The tracks on ‘Phantom Bell’ are so good, I just need more to satisfy me. As I said, I can be greedy. Bombs Of Hades, guys, this is excellent, and I cannot wait to see what else you deliver in the future. Do, more…lots more.

Keep safe everyone.

TRACKLISTING:
01 Phantom Bell
02 Bridge Of Sighs
03 Kamikaze
04 Lungs

LINE-UP:
Magnus Forsburg – Drums
Roger Iderman – Bass and Effects
Jonas Stålhammar – Guitars, Vocals and Mellotron
Po Söderback – Guitars

LINKS:
www.facebook.com/bombsofhades
www.instagram.com/bombsofhadesofficial/
www.bombs-of-hades.bandcamp.com/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/1VuGF7wNcFIb8xk5q3fcmc#_=_
www.youtube.com/channel/UCnwtEJxV7wL8HC4XlhluNzw


Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Tammy Lomax and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with BANE

EMQ’s with BANE

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Black/Death Metal band Bane, originally from Serbia. Huge thanks to vocalist/guitarist Branislav for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Hello! My name is Branislav, I am the vocalist/guitarist of Blackened Death Metal band BANE. Pretty standard as far as band history goes – I started this band as a teenager based on my love for blast beats and Extreme Metal. Here we are, almost 15 years later…well, nothing’s changed!

How did you come up with your band name?

BANE, by definition is a source of harm, ruin or death. It somewhat defines the music we play, at least to a certain extent.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

Originally the band was formed in Serbia, a Slavic country in the Balkans (Europe). The scene is rather small, but there are a few hidden gems that make up for it. It’s a shame Serbian bands do not get any spotlight on the scene, as it’s impossible to compete with bigger markets such as the USA, or Germany for example.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

We released our third full-length album called “Esoteric Formulae” on CD/Digital in November of 2018. The following year, Vinyl and Tape versions of the album were released, and just recently we re-released the CD version since the first press was sold out. You can stream the album at this location:

https://baneband.bandcamp.com/album/esoteric-formulae

Who have been your greatest influences?

Dissection, Rotting Christ, Dark Funeral and just about any other Metal band that does not suck.

What first got you into music?

From an early age I’ve developed an interest for guitar-driven music. It’s tough to remember exactly what band or song did so more specifically, but anything that had a ”Rock & Roll” attitude would intrigue me, regardless if it was Rock, Heavy Metal or Hardcore/Punk.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Probably Bjork or Jonas Renkse.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

I’ll go with Exit Fest, which is located in my hometown – Novi Sad, Serbia. We’ve actually already played that Festival twice but would definitely go at it again! It’s just a fun Festival to be at.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Hmmm…I don’t remember at the moment if I’ve ever received something weird enough worth mentioning.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Don’t do drugs.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Wow, that’s a tough one. A five-way tie between Dimebag Darrell, Jon Nodtveidt, Chuck Schuldiner, Peter Steele and Ronnie James Dio.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

The journey and the people involved in it is what makes it all worth it. Be it in Oklahoma or Macedonia, Metal heads are really some of the most amazing people one can ever meet. What I hate about it – the financial instability. The ‘gambling’ and risks you have to take in order to make all of this happen can be very stressful.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

I’d cut out all that streaming bullshit and bring back record sales. It used to be so cool to read stories about Heavy Metal artists being able to afford buying houses after they’ve had a successful album and touring cycle. Unfortunately, that ain’t coming back.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Oh man, can’t decide between Whitesnake’s “1987” album and Skid Row’s “Slave To The Grind”.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

I actually like and collect all of them, each for their own reasons. From a more objective point of view, I’d say Vinyl is the best (both for audio quality and visually). Personally, I’ll typically opt for a CD because it’s more compact and affordable, although Tapes will always have a special place in my heart. However, Digital downloads are perhaps the most convenient now days.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

One of my favourites was opening for Malevolent Creation in Bulgaria back in 2011, with Brett Hoffmann on vocals. So many good memories from that entire trip!

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Not entirely sure, but definitely something that would involve helping animals on a more pro-active level. Either dogs or sloths. Or both.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

The band members of Metallica and Dave Mustaine, to witness the pinnacle of awkwardness. Would probably get a nice laugh out of that one.

What’s next for the band?

A 4th full-length album, at some point.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Bandcamp, Facebook and Youtube.

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Man, I love Jaffa Cakes. Definitely a biscuit though if you ask me.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thanks for the support! Feel free to follow our Facebook page for semi-regular updates: https://www.facebook.com/baneband/

HAIL CHAOS!

Branislav / BANE

BANE

(Black/Death Metal)

www.vk.com/baneband
www.twitter.com/baneband
www.youtube.com/baneband
www.facebook.com/baneband
www.soundcloud.com/baneband
www.reverbnation.com/baneband
www.baneband.bandcamp.com

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.