Granada – Sistema Nervioso EP

Sistema Nervioso EP Cover Art

Granada – Sistema Nervioso EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 20/07/2021
Running Time: 18:56
Review by Victor Augusto
9/10

Mis hermanos del Granada! Excuse my bad Spanish calling my friends as brothers. It is what I like to call these amazing guys from this killer Thrash Metal band from Argentina. Once again, they are one more incredible example of how music can connect people from all around the world, no matter their culture or how far they live from you. As a South American citizen, it is even easier for me to feel connected to everything the band want to express in their music, because we share the same anger and the same feeling after decades seeing our beautiful countries, full of cultural richness, being devastated by misfortune and chaos.

Their previous EP “Amarre” really touched me with the dense subject around the music and the lyrics. I felt that release was so phenomenal that we even did a video interview, here at Ever Metal, to understand more about what they wanted to express. Now, we have another EP full of anger. As the title suggests passion and anger are still key (Nervous system is the title in English that could be related to the human body but also about a political system that kills thousands of people with all its bad management), but things have changed a bit on this EP. The band have returned to a cleaner record production and now they have a bass player. The sound overall is still Thrash Metal with strong Hardcore/Crust influences, but the spirit of the release shows more criticism to politics with the lyrics rather than the sonority.

They still offer a thunderous punch to the face, not only with their heavy music, but also how they manage to open our eyes to see all the issues that surround us. The main change, for me, is that they do not sound as dark as on the previous EP, because they are not so focused on personal problems that hit families, within their homes, but the problems we deal with in a more overall way. At least, I guess, that this is the main change. “Amarre” is still my favorite Granada release, but the sound that you will hear from the band on this EP is, for sure, more representative of their identity.

‘Teatro de Sangre’ opens proceedings with all the pure Thrash Metal you could ask for. Fast and straight in your face. It is cool how Marcos Edwards puts some new elements, like his interesting double kicks, onto his versatile way of playing the drums. New guitarist Lucas Simcic offers amazing solos that are very well structured for the songs. Marcos Colombi makes the sound even heavier with his work on bass and brings new ideas as the intro of ‘Tiempo Muerto’ shows. By the way, this song shows how singer/guitarist Guille Estévez is exploring more clean and melodic vocal lines for this EP.

‘Los Celos del Fantasma’ also brings something heavier, even with some Classic Heavy Metal elements, but ‘En Nombre de Los Condenados’ rescues the Punk Rock/Hardcore/Crust spirit of the band. This spirit is also present on ‘Enterrate, Eliminarte, Renovarte’ until the amazing version of ‘Dig Up Her Bones’ which is a bit heavier than the original track from Misfits.

My final impression is that Granada has found the perfect match between Thrash and Crust/Hardcore influences. Maybe you will listen and have a completely different vision of what I felt, and I am happy with that. This is the magic of music and I love to see everyone’s different reactions. However, there are two things that I can assure for you. You will always have something new with each Granada release and you will always have compositions that come with strong feelings and from the heart. Maybe this is the reason that I am such a huge fan of these guys!

Aguante Granada!

“Sistema Nervioso” (Full EP Visualiser)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Teatro de Sangre
02. Tiempo Muerto
03. Los Celos del Fantasma
04. En Nombre de Los Condenados
05. Enterrate, Eliminarte, Renovarte
06. Dig Up Her Bones (Misfits Cover)

LINE-UP:
Guille Estévez – Vocals, Guitars
Marcos Edwards – Drums
Lucas Simcic – Guitars
Marcos Colombi – Bass

LINKS:

Granada 2021 Promo Pic

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.

Foivos – Distorted EP

Distorted EP Cover Art

Foivos – Distorted EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 04/12/2020
Running Time: 28:00
Review by Rick Tilley
9/10

The instrumental EP “Distorted” is the first release from Greek guitarist extraordinaire Foivos Zacharopoulos, a man with over 20 years of experience as a guitarist, composer and session musician, with the six compositions contained within proving his exceptionally high level as a guitarist. His musical style is basically Metal but includes a myriad of other genres!

Foivos is influenced by many established guitarists, but this definitely does not prevent him from creating his personal style, giving a thoroughly unique character to each track on “Distorted”. This personality has been created by the various combinations of musical genres he has managed to bring to various parts of this musical work and his previous experience guaranteed that the final result would turn out an enchanting experience. You only have to listen to his magnificent version of The Beatles classic ‘Eleanor Rigby’ to understand the talent we are dealing with here, a talent, however, who never forgets that composition is king!

Undoubtedly, “Distorted” is a set of inspiring musical themes that highlight the Greek guitarist as one of the most remarkable artists of this genre and he has nothing to envy from anyone.

His first release is outstanding and I cannot wait to listen to the next one, whether that is another instrumental EP/Album or with his participation in a full band.

“Distorted” (Full EP Audio)

‘Schumann Resonance’ (Home Edition Playthrough)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Schumann Resonance
02. Menage Sedition
03. Roadshow
04. Eleanor Rigby (Beatles Cover)
05. Distorted
06. Alleviation

LINKS:

Foivos Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rick Tilley 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.

Ditch The Demon – Ditch The Demon EP

Ditch The Demon EP Cover

Ditch The Demon – Ditch The Demon EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 18/12/2020
Running Time: 08:54
Review by Chris Galea
8/10

Ditch The Demon originate from Hastings, a seaside town in the South of England. To my knowledge this EP is the band’s only recording to date.

Despite what the front artwork may suggest, Ditch The Demon are not Metal or even demonic. The band itself suggest they play a contemporary-sounding Psychedelic Rock…which is pretty much correct. I’d add to that and say they don’t sound very dissimilar to Blackmore’s Night…or to a Rock-leaning Renaissance.

‘Sigil’ and ‘Time Machine’, the two songs we have in this EP, make it clear that Ditch The Demon is primarily interested in writing great songs, at which the band seems quite adept. So, there’s no technical aggrandizement but you get the feeling that everyone is doing what he and she is supposed to be doing on these tracks.

Two songs are hard to judge a band by but at least they’ve got my attention. Check them out, you won’t regret it.

‘Time Machine’(Slideshow)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Sigil
02. Time Machine

LINE-UP:
Dr Amanda Brooks-Byron (aka Mandie. B) – Lead Vocals, Percussion
Vicky Tawamana – Vocals, Percussion
Karl Mee – Guitar
Terry Keen – Keyboards
Steph Bennion – Bass
Jay Maplesden – Drums

LINKS:

Ditch The Demon Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea 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.

Endust – Cycle EP

Cycle EP Cover Art

Endust – Cycle EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 05/03/2021
Running Time: 18:51
Review by Victor Augusto
9/10

Life goes in cycles. Yes, I’m beginning my review with this cliché. By the way, in my new cycle of trying to be a very polite and human person, I often ask how you all are and wish you are all well and safe (and I am being honest). However, I have a good reason to mention cycles. Endust are not a new band to me. I first met them in São Paulo, a city far from mine, when I was travelling there to meet my friends (reviewers at that time) as well as Glauco Rezende (guitarist/new singer) and Fernando Arouche (drummer). What impressed me most, on this first meeting with them, was that they had travelled from their city Jundiaí, which is about one hour distant, on a Saturday morning, in person, to deliver their physical CD’s to one of the most important CD stores in Brazil.

After this great first impression, I bought a copy and, to my surprise, I was in front of one of the best Thrash Metal bands from Brazil. At that time, they had Leandro Caçoilo as their singer and Leandro is very famous for being a part of important Power Metal bands in Brazil, but his vocal versatility fitted pretty well on Endust’s powerful music. Time passed and they decided to take different paths in a very friendly way, so we just have to say thanks to Leandro for what he left the band.

What changed? First, let’s understand Endust’s music. I clearly remember, in my first review about them, I mentioned how Glauco was the “spine” of the band. He is a master of riffs and he creates incredible arrangements. We (reviewers, musicians and myself) used to call him ‘the Jeff Loomis from Jundiaí’ and you just need to hear the opening, and title, track ‘Cycle’ to understand that. His new position as vocalist is something totally different from how Leandro approached the music. He sings very aggressively, but it is incredibly clear and different from the typical creepy guttural vocals, that many bands use, which are annoying and can often be hard to understand.

His partner in crime, Fernando Arouche, is even more killer on this EP. He is a machine gun; more about heavy punch than the speed, but the fast beats are amazing as well, with double kick suddenly appearing in the middle of the songs like a sonic blast. The synergy among them both is something that is very hard to describe, considering they have been working together since the embryonic age of the band, about ten years ago. If Glauco is the spine then Fernando is also something pretty important in this biological connection. However, I cannot think of a good reference/word to describe it, due to my lack of intelligence. (Absolutely not true Victor, it’s a language thing. Having listened to this fantastic EP, I will use the phrase ‘he adds muscle to the bones’ – Rick)

Musically, they still play strong Thrash Metal, full of groove and technicality, but for this EP, there is also a highly explicit Death Metal vein. It is not only in the vocals which have changed from melodic to guttural, but also in the heaviness of the guitars and drums. Maybe the track ‘Giving Up’ is the best option to understand and describe the new face of Endust. If you’ve already heard them on their “All Ends In Dust” album (2019) and want to compare that with this new release, then check out ‘Only One Will Stand’. which is a re-recorded song from their last album.

A new cycle? The EP title does represent what Endust is living through at the present time. They are almost the same band, but a restructured band. “Cycle” not only shows a new era for them, but it also represents the essence of what they have created throughout their career, but with a serious addition of aggression.

‘Cycle’ (Visualiser)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Cycle
02. Seller Of Illusions
03. Giving Up
04. You Made Your Choice
05. Only One Will Stand (Re-recorded)

LINE-UP:
Glauco Rezende – Vocals, Guitars, Bass
Fernando Arouche – Drums

LINKS:

Endust Promo Pic

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.

Bring To Bear – Light And Shadow EP

Light And Shadow EP Cover Art

Bring To Bear – Light And Shadow EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 08/10/2021
Running Time: 11:58
Review by Beth Jones
7/10

Good evening my fellow humans, how the hell are you? I hope this review finds you well, in good spirits, and in the mood for some more METALLLLLL! If the answer is yes, and you happen to like a bit of Symphonic Folk Metal, then you’re in the right place, as tonight’s review subject are a fledgling band, in that genre, from right here in the UK. When I say fledgling, I mean that they are very, very new. Having formed with, nearly their full line-up in January this year, only adding final member, bassist Richard Knight in July and this is their debut release. And, in fairness, it’s a pretty accomplished three track EP.

Opening with ‘The Shadow Ruse’, we’re launched straight away into a tempestuous Viking jaunt. Powerful rhythms and rumbling bass lines are topped by pacey guitar riffs, synth strings, and interspersed with clean and growl vocals, which cement the idea of the contrast and relationship between light and dark. It’s got a really catchy hook to it as well. A good opening track, although I think there is more to give. It’s a little tentative. But it is the debut song on the debut release from a band who’ve only been working together for 10 months, so I’ll let them off.

“What better way is there to infinitely improve a Queens Of The Stone Age track than to Accordion Metal it up?” is a question I ‘ve often asked, but until now have never had answered. As if by some telepathic masterstroke, that is exactly what Bring To Bear have done with ‘No One Knows’. Now, I’m not usually a fan of cover versions, but this one’s flipping mega! Again, thunderous, symphonic, and pacey, but with added accordion! They have completely made it their own.

…But, my favourite track by far, is the final one, ‘From The Abyss’. The other two are good, but this steps it up a level. It’s fuller and more powerful than its predecessors, and full of great riffing, and tribal battle cries. Bring on the war, release the ships, and drive forward to command and conquer! This is proper meaty, folky, symphonicy stuff. More of this please!

Aside from the actual sound, this is a well-constructed brief introduction to a band who I think could make a big name for themselves. It’s recorded, mixed, and produced well, and makes you sit up and listen. I look forward to more of this from Bring To Bear in the future!

TRACKLISTING:
01. The Shadow Ruse
02. No One Knows (Queens Of The Stone Age Cover)
03. From the Abyss

LINE-UP:
Izabela Smyt – Lead Vocals
Ian Tarboton – Accordion, Keyboard & Growls
Hristo Nikolov – Guitar
Nikiforos Rotas – Guitar
Richard Knight – Bass
Simon Jones – Drums

LINKS:

Bring To Bear Promo Pic Photo by Nikiforos Rotas
Photo by Nikiforos Rotas

BRING TO BEAR ‘No One Knows’ Exclusive Video Premier:

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.

Voidgazer – Dance Of The Undesirables EP

Dance Of The Undesirables EP Cover Art

Voidgazer – Dance Of The Undesirables EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 27/08/2021
Running Time: 30:04
Review by Dark Juan
9/10

Salutations, dear comrades of the army of metal! It is I, Dark Juan, who is fucking wired on hyper strength coffee and having trouble typing this as the words are moving in my head too fast to get them through the appallingly slow method of my inept two fingered typing to the keyboard. This is compounded by the fact that I have spent TWO FUCKING DAYS trying to get money into my French bank account to pay my taxe fonciere (yeah, French speakers will note that there should be accents over at least one of the e’s, but a) I am too cross to care and b) I don’t have a fucking clue how to do it anyway with my lovely QWERTY keyboard, instead of the strange AZERTY setup the French use) and my bank will not recognize my SWIFT number even after lots of threats to burn down a church…sorry, to burn down their headquarters and kick the arses of every single one of their IT department personally, whilst wearing hobnailed German paratrooper boots. That are on fire.

Fantasies of hoofing computer nerds up the jacksey with the flaming military footwear of vengeance aside, the Mighty Gothikpanzer still has no wipers that are functional and the Leichtes Gothikpanzer I have borrowed is that fucking awful to drive I’d rather walk. Still at least the Smellhounds are pleased because Mrs. Dark Juan has returned unscathed from her sojourn looking after her grandkids. Hodgson Biological-Warfare has glued himself to her side and has refused to move for the past three hours… In the meantime, I have escaped the attentions of the hairy bastards and run off downstairs to write about Voidgazer, being a (it sez ‘ere) a biker prog band from St. Louis, Missouri. In case you’re hopeless at geography, that’s in the United States of America. I’m not being a twat, I promise. I once asked one of my young gentlemen to point out where China was on a map. He pointed at Australia. I mocked him and beat him soundly for his ignorance.

DISCLAIMER: I didn’t beat him. That would be illegal and WRONG. We try to leave no obvious bruising.

This is a very strange record indeed. Vocals that would not be out of place on a Black Dahlia Murder album plumb sepulchral, guttural depths where you’d only expect to find lesser demons and stratospheric, banshee howling, overlay music that is scuzzy biker rock and roll, heavy fucking metal and extreme levels of proggy fretboard wankery. Even more surprisingly, it works and works very well indeed. Omar Olivares II (I expect the II is important, to Omar anyway) has a superb voice for metal, and it sounds like his range is effortless. I am jealous. The production job is top notch too, with more bottom end than a dry-docked aircraft carrier, and meaty as fuck guitars. Even the drums are heavy and punchy. The song arrangements are actually pretty fucking splendid too. You wouldn’t expect pretty straight-ahead metal parts to segue quite so seamlessly into the blues and prog, but there we go. Voidgazer do it with ease, and it is actually the prog parts that lift the record from merely enjoyable into something a bit special. ‘Blast Equalizer’ shows this with considerable aplomb – A song that changes into several gears, but never sounds disjointed, even when using nonstandard time signatures and experimental chord progressions. EP opener ‘Jesus Take The Needle’ owes lots and lots to “Dimension Hatross” era Voivod, but is exciting and refreshingly different, mainly due to the harsh growls of Omar (II) and some superb instrumentation. Every member of this band is a magnificent musician and once more I am reduced to bitter tears of jealously and rage, mainly because I’m too fucking lazy to practice guitar. Although as an aside, I found a Squier Jagmaster I’d forgotten I had in the attic the other day. ‘Sexual Sadist Serial Slasher’ (is this just copied from the curriculum vitae I had to send Field-Marshal Sir Richard “Alright, I’ll Take You On, But Woe Betide Your Lily-White Ass If You So Much As Put One Foot Wrong This Time, You Absolute Wankpuffin” Tilley when I asked whether I could write for him?) is rather less prog and all about speed and power. It’s a hell of a closer, breakneck and violent and absolutely fucking brilliant.

Which pretty much sums up the whole EP, really. It’s pretty unique, what with the combination of oily, dirty-fingernailed rock, leather and denim clad metal, lager-fuelled thrash, smoky blues and silk suited, strangely attired prog. With added roaring. What a fucking combination. I’m a big fan!

Voidgazer describe themselves as “Scary music to fuck to”. Yeah, I’d be scared that the fuck I would be having would be over in about thirteen seconds if I was having to keep to the tempos this bunch of American miscreants do. I will leave the last word to the hairy arsed bastards themselves:

“A hearty riff stew chock full of razors and carburettor parts, everything a growing biker needs to go out and sow terror within the hearts of the unhip.

Warning: listening to this record increases your chances of exposure to biker violence, demonic automobile possession, and goblin infestation.”

Pretty much sums it up for me, man. Even if I am tragically unhip because I ride trikes.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System awards Voidgazer a full-throated, V-twin powered 9/10 for a record that manages to flit between genres effortlessly, yet still retains the kind of heaviness that is only found in the centre of black holes. Excellent work, colonial (and traitorous) cousins. Excellent work indeed.

Before any of you start, I’m joking about the traitorous bit. I’m British, after all, and there was some unpleasantness in the past as the US rid itself of the colonial yoke. I have to put this in here because someone, somewhere will be getting their panties all up in a big knot and thinking I’m a horrible racist, as it appears satire and humour are dying arts nowadays. I’m even wearing a Sisters Of Mercy t-shirt depicting a swastika being smashed by a fist and bearing the legend “Gegen Nazis”. Which is German for “Against Nazis”. Now that we have cleared that up…

‘Jesus Take The Needle’ (Official Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Jesus Take The Needle
02. Expectations Management
03. Dance Of The Undesirables (Surely the Ever-Metal.com theme tune…)
04. Blast Equalizer (The urge to spell this correctly is driving me insane but Rick has told me to leave the spelling alone, heh)
05. Sexual Sadist Serial Slasher (The new official theme tune of Dark Juan)

LINKS:

Voidgazer Promo Pic

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.

Sodom – Bombenhagel EP

Bombenhagel EP Cover Art

Sodom – Bombenhagel EP
Steamhammer/SPV
Release Date: 20/08/2021
Running Time: 14:47
Review by Dark Juan
8/10

Greetings, my sybaritic sycophants! It is I, Dark Juan, sometime Satanist, wannabe psychopomp and all round generally poor judge of character, and I have returned from a sojourn to France to drag my record collection, other possessions and Mrs. Dark Juan’s ridiculously colossal library back to jolly old Blighty, the plague island. Already I am objecting to the price of alcohol in the UK, when in France I could pick up a splendid bottle of red for the princely sum of 1.91EUR. In the company of my lovely friends over there and more especially my travel and work buddy Tony (whom Mrs. Dark Juan has now christened my ginger wife, for reasons best known only to herself) many bottles were sunk (although Tony was afraid of my favourite French tipple, Demon biere blonde, at a mere 12% strength) and the work was completed, which now means that the Smellhounds and their human servants are now living in a jungle of cardboard boxes and Dark Juan Terrace resembles a combination of an insane taxidermy studio, a moving company’s warehouse and a particularly grotty record shop. Which were always the best kind, as far as I am concerned. Also, books are fucking heavy. Twenty fucking eight boxes of books we lugged back between us… You’d expect me to look like Charles fucking Atlas after loading and unloading those bastards. I don’t. (More like Charles Dance 😂 – Rick)

I look like a tired old man who has overexerted himself with his twenty something girlfriend after a massive cocaine binge.

On that happy image, I’ll stop telling you about myself and instead let you know that I am listening to German thrashmeisters Sodom and their latest EP “Bombenhagel”. This is a three tracker, with the title track being a re-recorded version of the song originally released on the classic “Persecution Mania” album, way back when, in 1987. Fuck, I’m old. I remember that record being released. Anyway, Sodom have wisely not moved a single inch from their classic Eurothrash blueprint, which is a great thing from my point of view, because I have been able to indulge in a teenage nostalgiafest, remembering the first time I heard “Agent Orange” and reminiscing about the sheer excitement that thrash metal produced in me as a young, impressionable lad for whom Iron Maiden wasn’t cutting it anymore. Before I discovered Morbid Angel, anyway. ‘Bombenhagel’ doesn’t actually sound that different from the original version, the main difference being the twin guitar attack of Yorck Segatz and Frank Blackfire, as opposed to the single guitar lines of yore. Harris Johns also contributes a solo. There’s even a sneaky bit of the Stars And Stripes snuck into the end of the tune!!! It’s a decent version of a classic song though.

After ‘Bombenhagel’ we are into the realms of new material – ‘Coup De Grace’ being a paean to the depravity of the human race and the fact we are administering the coup de grace to ourselves as a species, what with the climate emergency going on around us and the absolute disregard the capitalist classes are paying to it, and ‘Pestiferous Posse’ being written about the cowboys, the outlaws and the gunfight at the OK Corral, and how it references to modern events, such as the storming of the US Capitol by a bunch of deluded dickheads who wished to overthrow democracy.

Musically, we are in classic thrash metal territory. Serrated, pistoning riffing and blistering solos and whammy bar dives are the order of the day, underpinned with snot nosed punk attitude and high-speed double bass drumming. Tom Angelripper’s mid pitched growl sounds as vibrant, snappy and snarly as ever and his distorted punk influenced bass punches through the guitar work with menace. The production on the EP is also the ultraclassic Eurothrash sound, rhythm guitars and bass slightly soupy sounding, with the drumming sitting proud, clean and kinglike above the rest of the music, and clear, clarion cymbals ringing arctically through it all.

All in all, the “Bombenhagel” EP is a jolly fine listen, a sub-15-minute thrash metal blast that doesn’t bring anything new to the table but proving that thrash metal done right will never die. With recent releases from Sacred Reich and Thrasherwolf and the like, thrash is undergoing something of a renaissance in the underground.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System (Das patentierte Dark Juan Blutspritzer-Bewertungssystem – I fucking LOVE German! Everything sounds better in German) awards these Teutonic thrash titans 8/10 for a fine EP, lacking only in bringing anything avant-garde to the music.

‘Bombenhagel 2021’ (Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Bombenhagel
02. Coup De Grace
03. Pestiferous Posse

LINE-UP:
Tom Angelripper – Vocals, Bass
Yorck Segatz – Guitars
Frank Blackfire – Guitars
Toni Merkel – Drums

LINKS:

Sodom Promo Pic

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.

Motorhammer – Round 35 EP

Round 35 EP Cover Art

Motorhammer – Round 35 EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 03/06/2021
Running Time: 21:47
Review by Victor Augusto
9/10

“Greetings, metal maniacs”. Have you already heard these words in many radio shows? Maybe some of you that read my reviews have already heard it from the great DJ Dave Softee on his amazing show called Metal Meltdown. I remember when he interviewed the Brazilian Thrash Metal band Machinage and that day I discovered the awesome radio station called Metal Messiah Radio. This station has been promoting many Brazilian bands for years, also great metal bands from all around the world. I’ve lost count of how many bands I have introduced to them after that, also how many Brazilian bands I have discovered, just by their DJs promoting them.

Now, the radio has a special Brazilian member, the amazing Isaura La Cour. She joined forces with Matthew Szablewicz (DJ Szab), from the NYC Metal Scene show to offer a proper space for the Brazilian scene. As a result of this incredible work by Matthew, Isaura and their crew; I have been lucky to discover another amazing band who are the subject of this review! The Brazilian Thrash Metal band, with less than one year of existence, Motorhammer!

Ok! I am using my Charles Xavier telepathic powers to read your thoughts and I know you are thinking that a band who have been around for less than a year cannot offer anything, so astonishing, to justify the positive impression I have had. You would be wrong! Motorhammer are new but all the members involved are very experienced in the Brazilian scene. The vocalist/drummer/founder Edson Graseffi, for example, has more than 30 years experience and he has been a part of many important bands in Brazil, so this EP was born to celebrate Edson’s career with material that he composed or helped to compose throughout the decades. To make it possible, he invited guitarist (also producer) Renato Haboriny and bassist (a long-time friend of Edson as well) Daniel Corvo; two respected musicians in Brazil.

The album is a compilation of four old compositions that Edson was part of (plus a cover) that have been re-recorded, with better production values. By the way, this was the first thing that made me love the band on first listen. What a killer record production. It’s similar to what legendary bands like Destruction or Exodus can extract from the studio or what producers like Andy Sneap can offer. Maybe you think this isn’t relevant considering many big bands do it, but the prices to have the proper studio time and equipment in Brazil, to reach this level of production, are very high, so I must highlight it.

Musically, the songs have a similar sonority in terms of composition, even though they come from different bands that Edson was a part of. The opening track ‘Fighting Against The Walls’ (originally from Edson’s band called Punch but that was used regularly by his band that came right after them, called Panzer) has pure Exodus heaviness & spirit where they opt for cadenced music, amazing drum fills and groove. ‘Warning Hell’ (originally from another of Edson’s band called Reviolence) is a bit faster and it reminded me of the brutal style from Germany’s Destruction. ‘Rage Over Rage’ (originally from the band Chasing Fear) also explores cadenced rhythms and leaves space open for great riff work. Edson also shows a different vocal style on this track, exploring parts with cleaner singing alongside good melodies. The last two songs have amazing dancing bass following excellent percussion on drums.

‘The Metal Church’ (Also from Reviolence) is like a heavy ballad. For this one, try to imagine a divine performance from Ronnie James Dio fronting a Thrash Metal band. Ironically, you could mention the band Metal Church as one of the influences here as well? It is an amazing song. The closing track ‘Allied Forces‘ is a cover song from Canadian band Triumph that showcases Classic Metal from the 1980’s but, once again, dressed in a Thrash Metal style.

“Round 35” is an amazing EP that shows the Thrash Metal veins within Edson, together with all the great musicians that were (or still are) partners of him on his path. Trust me; to make Heavy Metal for such a long time in Brazil is not an easy task. 35 years/rounds is an anniversary very much worth celebrating and I wish many new rounds for Motorhammer. For now, we have a show of riffs and solos from Renato Haboriny, strong bass from Daniel Corvo and amazing drum/vocal work from Edson. The three of them together are able to kick some serious ass.

‘Fighting Against The Walls’ (Audio)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Fighting Against The Walls
02. Warning Hell
03. Rage Over Rage
04. The Metal Church
05. Allied Forces (Triumph Cover)

LINE-UP:
Edson Graseffi – Vocals, Drums
Renato Haboriny – Guitars
Daniel Corvo – Bass

LINKS:

Motorhammer Promo Pic

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.

healthyliving – until/below EP

until-below Single-EP Cover

healthyliving – until/below EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 25/06/2021
Running Time: 07:34
Review by Steven Hooke
8/10

It’s staggering how many post-rock, shoegaze, gloom-adjacent bands have broken through over the past few years. Maybe it’s got something to do with economic and near-societal collapse, the waves of finding out our childhood heroes are nonces and wrong uns, a globally-mishandled pandemic, or a sharp decline in human compassion in lieu of greed and selfishness. But who knows? I just review music on the internet.

Today’s offering of void-core comes in the form of cross-Europe trio healthyliving with their debut release consisting of two songs ‘until’ and ‘below’. The band consists of Madrid-born singer Amaya López-C, who also operates an experimental folk/jazz project called Maud The Moth, plucker of strings Scott McLean from Scotland who also performs with post-rock-turned-drone metal act Falloch and German stoner rock outfit Lasse Reinstroem, and Stefan Pötzsch, a German session drummer who has also worked with Lasse Reinstroem, as well as Luc Stargazer and Boozoo Bajou. The band have offered a little taste of their musical output as they work towards their debut album, currently expected sometime in 2022.

‘until’ feels like the stronger of the two tracks, a deep, bass-heavy shoegaze stomper with tinges of psychedelia and stoner rock. López-C’s voice floats over its depressing surroundings in a similar vibe to Oathbreaker’s Caro Tanghe during the quiet moments of ‘Needles In Your Skin’ and ‘Stay Here/Accroche-Moi’, creating an ethereal hold on the listener, with subtle discordancy broken up by proper gurn-face choruses.

‘below’ is a more subdued track, a gentle, rolling guitar line once again swimming along the current of those hypnotising vocals. This almost, idyllic setting created in the first half of the song makes the droning guitars of the second half feel all the more terrifying. A sudden progression of musical anxiety as a muddy guitar sound evolves into softly-backed vocals in a style similar to Myrkur’s folk outings, estranged harmonics, and a cold, imposing drum beat.

healthyliving are certainly worth your attention. Shoegaze that knows how to be heavy without treading on drone and doom’s toes, and tell a bigger story with a minimalist output. Stefan and Scott deserve full credit for such, with McLean worthy of another mention owing to his production handling of Amaya’s vocals. A soft and delicate delivery is turned into anguish and uncertainty, which could prove to have some amazing potential. BBC Introducing and Roadburn certainly seem to think so.

‘until’ (Official Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. until
02. below

LINE-UP:
Amaya López-C – Vocals
Scott McLean – Guitars, Bass
Stefan Pötzsch – Drums

LINKS:

healthyliving Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Steven Hooke 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.

IN Veil – Lunatic EP

Lunatic EP Cover Art

IN Veil – Lunatic EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 06/08/2021
Running Time: 20:27
Review by Dark Juan
10/10

Greetings from a subdued Dark Juan, ladies and germs. I am subdued for several reasons – absinthe consumption has left me in doubt of my own sanity, Air Vice Marshal Sir Zeusington Zeus VC, KCVG, MM, DFC and Bar has been shitting through the eye of a needle (generally indoors) for two weeks, on the hour, every hour (it is a running joke in my household that Zeus periodically has the “70 quid shit” and then is reet for another 4 months), Mrs. Dark Juan continues to scare the living shit out of me and any visitors to Dark Juan Terrace with her creations (although she has been to chosen to EXHIBIT the damned things at the North Lincolnshire Museum in October with a commendable (or shocking, depending on your point of view) lack of foresight or restraint from the authorities there) and the wipers on the Mighty Gothikpanzer have packed up so I have to drive it when it’s dry. If you have ever experienced a British summer, you’ll immediately understand why this is somewhat annoying. Especially as I am running out of alcohol. However, in a classic case of swings and roundabouts, I found Cluedo for £2.50 and Mrs. Dark Juan has been conveyed to IKEA in Leeds with her daughter, so I am at liberty to bring to you my thoughts about the considerably unhinged In Veil, and their EP, “Lunatic”.

A preamble under three hundred words. Magnificent. Which is also a term perfectly suited to describe the madness of In Veil, being a duo composed of a Transylvanian and a Cuban, who met in the underbelly of Toronto, Canada and subsequently married. One can only imagine the devastation at the reception. Synth-heavy gothic industrial rock is the order of the day here, and you’ll notice that the previous sentence contained two of my favourite genres, so In Veil had better be worth my time, because I am feeling rather misanthropic and am likely to be quite rude if I don’t like them. “Lunatic” is In Veil’s debut EP…

…And rather splendid it is too! Opening tune “Salome” sets the tone for an album that is equal parts Zombie Girl, KMFDM, Rob Zombie and Snake River Conspiracy. Haysi Veil’s vocal performance reminds this half-drunk Northern herbert of a very engaging mix of ZG’s Renee Cooper and Tobey Torres, being seductive tones wedded to blank-eyed little girl squeals and the kind of random nonsense you’d imagine Harley Quinn babbling while she bashed your brains out. If you could imagine the sense of humour of Dead Coyote, Zombie Girl and Talking Heads with a rather more dangerous, gothic edge you’re getting the idea of just what kind of beautiful monster I’m trying to describe.

The whole record has a palpable, throbbing sense of brightly lit, technicolour peril running through it. It’s a carnival of brightly coloured tents with smiling, beautiful faces inviting you to come inside. As you pass them, you see the greying, diseased skin beneath the greasepaint and makeup, and the grins take on a slightly vulpine aspect and you glimpse sharpened incisors as the wildly gyrating lights and overpoweringly loud and speedy calliopes playing carnival music entice you further within. Within, to a hall of mirrors surrounding a chamber of horrors of eviscerated townspeople, grinning, clown-faced lunatics, whirling blades, spraying arterial blood and severed limbs with a soundtrack of screaming, giggling and carnival music. In short, fucking ideal party music for the more extreme music fan.

In Veil are not going to win any awards for power, speed or heaviness, rather more relying on that rarest of things to convey themselves – atmosphere. ‘Daddy’ is particularly schizophrenic, crunchy guitars underpinning simple piano lines that change into swirly gothic keyboards and merry go round music and a vocal that switches from school girlishly excited to ominous warning several times in the same song. ‘Slow Lane’ carries an obvious hip-hop vibe throughout the whole song, but somehow, mixing an almost-rap vocal style with Rob Zombie-lite music just fucking WORKS and I have no idea how Haysi and Ady have made this happen. All I can say is that this album is pretty much the soundtrack to what the inside of my head looks like – all grimdark, bleak horror, depersonalisation and dismemberment but easily distracted by multi-coloured neon and flashing lights and suffused with the kind of peculiar joy that only comes from discovering something wonderful.

In Veil are something wonderful. Again (and I appear to say this a lot these days), purists are going to fucking hate them, but the combination of deranged electronic fuckery, heavy metal guitars, dark lyrics and the kind of madness that normally earns you a lifelong stay at Rampton Hospital makes for a super fun listening experience. Album closer ‘Spider’ is the standout tune on the album – keyboards that would normally underpin a scene of a brave (or foolhardy) adventurer entering a mad bastard’s laboratory are ably assisted by growling bass, serrated guitar and Haysi singing about you getting in her bed and her cutting off your head while simultaneously chanting “Chick-a chick chick, chicka-chicka boom boom!” in a very strange register indeed. I’d still get in her bed though.

Did I actually say that out loud? Clearly decapitation holds no fear for me and dangerous, and possibly homicidal girls make life interesting.

There is a massive problem with this record though. And that is that it is only six songs long and that is entirely unacceptable considering how much of a rabid In Veil fan I have become over the past twenty-odd minutes or so. I am unhappy about this. It needs three more songs to slake my thirst!

I am ready to render my judgement using The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System. It’s a full on 10/10. It’s fucking claret everywhere. It’s ten-foot-tall displays of arterial spray on the walls of a killing room. It’s pools of congealing blood around raggedly detached limbs. Cheered me right up, that record has. I fucking love In Veil!

‘Lunatic’ feat. Sam Astaroth (Official Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Salome
02. Lunatic (featuring Sam Astaroth)
03. Daddy
04. Slow Lane
05. Whatcha Got I Want
06. Spider

LINE-UP:
Haysi Veil – Vocals
Ady Cernea – Instruments

LINKS:

In Veil Promo Pic

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.