Sunday, 25 November 2018

IEATHEARTATTACKS

BandIEATHEARTATTACKS
GenresPunk / Hardcore / Emo / Screamo / Skramz / Sass
Related artists?.
CountryVinstra NORWAY
Years Active2012-present
Song: "Refuge Tropicana (demo)"
Album: "You Don't Need Oxygen to Walk On This Fake Moon"
Year: 2013
For fans of: Transistor Transistor, Logs, Wolverines, The Blood BrothersSnöras, Kaospilot, Prize The Doubt, Desiderata, Dangers!, Warsaw Was Raw, Council Of Rats, The Spectacle, Wolves, Daniel Striped Tiger, Short Hair, Campaign Committee, Desperado, Scowler, The Jonbenét, Campbell Trio, Bravo Fucking Bravo, Marat, Parents and JR Ewing aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Self Released / Fysisk Format
This post's artist is from the November 2018 Mix. This is track #3.
You can download: the November 2018 Mix#11 right here or get the new December 2018 Mix#12 here.

IEATHEARTATTACKS are from Norway, started as a sibling two-piece in 2012 and recently expanded to a three-piece prior to their 2017 LP. They play a sassy, groovy, playful yet heavy version of hardcore that was more or less prevalent in the late 2000s, and they do it very, very well.

Their debut EP '...And Pianos Become the Teeth' sounds very little like the band by the same name, instead opting for screamy, dancey hardcore in the vein of Transistor Transistor, JR Ewing and The Blood Brothers. Opener and title track "...And Pianos Become the Teeth" is a rompin' good time with fantastic screaming and some serious grooves. The second, closing song "Set This City (On Fire)" is definitely gonna get yer ass shakin', and with those call-and-response vocals you'll find yourself screaming along with "Set this city on fire, fire!". The similarity to early Transistor Transistor with some Blood Brothers vocal placement comparisons seem quite obvious, but you'd best check the song to be sure.

The following year the band upped their game and then some, releasing 'You Don't Need Oxygen to Walk On This Fake Moon' (lyrics from the quintessential "Refuge Tropicana") and settling into the sound that has stayed with the band for the past five years. The primary difference here is the harnessing of their most positive attributes, mainly those infectious grooves, airtight drums, discordant, driving and dense guitar/bass as well as those aforementioned screams and excellent vocal patterns. Here we got a first taste of the songs "Black Hearts", "Refuge Tropicana" and "Two-Step Paranoia", all of which were rerecorded for their 2017 debut LP. I jammed these early versions so many times that transitioning to the new versions has been difficult, as these are all excellent demos, if I must call them that. These versions are a tad slower, fixate on a primarily single-vocalist delivery and lack the depth of the later renditions, most likely because the band added a member. I can't forget to include the only exclusive song on here, "E.l.l.E.", which is a sick song relying on drum syncopation and a guitar progression that will lull you in quickly and then trap you forever. Hell, it even closes with a panic-chord breakdown. Fuck yes. I have yet another thing to mention, and that is the demo version of "Refuge Tropicana", which is the track that gave me my first, addictive taste of IEATHEARTATTACKS and I haven't looked back since. More on that song soon.

In 2015 they released a digital three-song EP that I really, really wish was downloadable, for I hate streaming-only. I loved the songs so much I created mp3s from the damn bandcamp streams for there is no option to buy/download. Anyhoos, enough ranting - this EP is fucking awesome. It takes the catchiness of the 2013 release and adds aggression, as well as a few more subtle layers to accentuate their already great sound. 'Hello Cole Porter' opens with "Desperation", a sassy, sarcastic and romping track that is the first of the band's shorter tunes, as it doesn't even reach the two-minute mark, whilst most previous tracks were two to four minutes in length. "Deadpool" is next, throwing a whirlwind of intense, screamy hardcore that might see some similarities reflecting in the Dangers! mirror. The third and final song is also the title track, and it is quite possibly the best song on here. Dipping in that sweet, seductive, danceable hardcore as well as a deeper, subtle, metalcore approach (I'm hearing a bit of Von Wolfe), IEATHEARTATTACKS concoct a perfect song with the reintroduction of their sassy dual screaming.

After dropping a teaser single in 2016, they came back hard in 2017 with a phenomenal full length record titled 'Please Just Dance Death'. Without a doubt the band's crowning achievement, all 9 tracks (including the rerecorded songs) are certified bangers. It begins with the venomous "Liar", which sounds like it should have been released on Vitriol Records, if that makes any sense to you. Besides being abrasive as fuck, it is more punk/hardcore oriented than most of the tunes and it is also the first song where we hear a noticeable difference in the backup vocalist's screams, that is to say that they are much higher pitched. "The Six" continues the Vitriol sound, coming off like Ghostlimb with a bit more experimentation and vocal variance, with everything after 1:10 just ruining me. The new version of "Refuge Tropicana" is next, and although I still think this is a ballin' track, I think I like the solo vocals from the demo more than the dual screams. Wait...what? That doesn't sound like me at all. I prefer a single screaming vocalist? Holy shit, apparently so. That being said, the song itself is bursting at the seams with excellent production, phenomenal drumming and all dem dope screams. The playful, dreamy guitar riffs will hook you from the get-go, while the lyrics and vocal placements on this tune are just jaw-dropping, and everything else is just icing on the cake. "M.I.A." is much slower, mature and rooted in post-hardcore, but those last 40 seconds sound pretty dang evil. "Two-Step Paranoia" shows up again here, but is titled "Two Step" and it lays down a ton of dual screaming and driving instrumentals, sounding more like fellow Norwegians JR Ewing than ever before. The previously released single "Drowning is My New Favourite Thing" was chosen as a single for a reason...it's dank as fuck. Once that chorus hits with those Snack Truck space guitars and a flurry of screams (not unlike later Bravo Fucking Bravo material) I'm generally soaked in my own saliva. Usually their title track is one of the best on the release, and "Please Just Dance Death" is no different. This time focusing on the perfect concoction of heaving breakdowns and jarring, disjointed sections, the song is a wonder to behold, and will knock you on your ass with that final breakdown. "You Will Try to Escape" is massive, as it opens with a monolithic riff and breakneck drums that transition to a jagged and catchy-as-fuck section that bares resemblance to Every Time I Die. After the 30-second mark the band removes (for the most part) the guitar and bass and instead opts for verses driven almost solely by both vocalists and the drums, making the song quite eclectic indeed. Closer "Black Hearts" is the third rerecorded tune and like "Two Step" the song definitely gets the royal treatment. Those drums, hot damn, those drums are so good. And the vocals, oh my, the vocals. Also, that tremolo guitar...jesus fuck christ I'm in heaven. There's also that hyperactive midsection from 1:20 that showcases that unreal drummer that I keep complimenting.

So there's that, the current IEATHEARTATTACKS discography, and I'm in love with all of it. I am seriously beyond stoked for anything this band does next, and you should be to. Or...you're a dumbass. 😉

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DISCOGRAPHY
Click )==>here<==( to download the band's complete discography in mp3 form.

2012 - ...And Pianos Become the Teeth digitalEP (stream/download here)

2013 - You Don't Oxygen to Walk On This Fake Moon digitalEP (stream/download here)

2015 - Hello Cole Porter digitalEP (stream here)

2017 - Please Just Dance Death cd/12"LP (stream/buy here)

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(2017) IEATHEARTATTACKS - "Refuge Tropicana" (from 'Please Just Dance Death')

(2017) IEATHEARTATTACKS - "Please Just Dance Death" (from 'Please Just Dance Death')

(2017) IEATHEARTATTACKS - "You Will Try to Escape" (from 'Please Just Dance Death')

(2015) IEATHEARTATTACKS - "Hello Cole Porter" (from 'Hello Cole Porter')

(2015) IEATHEARTATTACKS - "Desperation" (from 'Hello Cole Porter')

(2013) IEATHEARTATTACKS - "E.l.l.E." (from 'You Don't Need Oxygen to Walk On This Fake Moon')

(2013) IEATHEARTATTACKS - "Two-Step Paranoia" (from 'You Don't Need Oxygen to Walk On This Fake Moon')

(2012) IEATHEARTATTACKS - "Set This City (On Fire)" (from '...And Pianos Become the Teeth')

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IEATHEARTATTACKS additional links

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Wednesday, 21 November 2018

***QUIETUS exclusive interview***

BandQUIETUS
GenresPunk / Hardcore / Post-Hardcore / Post-Metal / Emo / Screamo / Skramz / Ambient
Related artistsOld SoulNiboowin, Sight Beyond Sight, Shatner Mask, Capacitor and Dahkma.
CountryMichigan U.S.A.
Years Active2010
Song: "if you didn't care the first time, then it was useless by the second."
Album: "Disconnected From Place"
Year: 2010
For fans ofForstella Ford, Old Soul, Crowning, Bury Me Standing, Dakhma, Envy, Since By Man, Captain, Your Ship Is Sinking, Adaje, Carrion Spring, Cold Craving, Ghostlimb, Minerva Superduty, Remote, New Ruins, and Circle Takes The Square aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Self Released
This post's artist is from the November 2018 Mix. This is track #10.
You can download: the November 2018 Mix#11 right here or get the new December 2018 Mix#12 here.

This is a pretty big tie-in post, starting with the QUIETUS review, followed by Jimmy's interview about the shortlived project and ending with a few words about the new Niboowin 12"LPs that arrived at my door last week. If you'd like to grab one we have them in the Canada/International store here or the U.S.A. store here.

I was first introduced to QUIETUS when my friend Jimmy from Old Soul came over before their final European tour to drop off his car before going to the airport. We talked a bunch, and even did some podcasts (linked here), during which he mentioned that I should check out his old band QUIETUS that predated Old Soul. About a year later I finally got around to jamming it consistently and instantly slapped my head in remorse at waiting such a long time. The six songs on their only EP are moody, dark, brooding, screamy hardcore with a lot of post-hardcore vibes. It begins with "an utterance therapeutic", a song that builds for over four minutes and ends in a chaotic, stop/start screaming climax. Those vocals at the end, in particular, are fantastic. Screamed from the heart with enough passion to shred your ears, exactly what I want from my screaming. "artlessness" is pretty goddamn grooving once 1:19 hits, boasting a monolithic drive that will either get your head bobbing or crush you under its weight. About a minute later the song takes it up another notch with numerous vocalists taking stabs at volatile screaming over very panicked instrumentals. The title track "disconnected from place" is third, and envelops the listener in soaring post-hardcore littered with screams. And then...holy shit, "if you didn't care the first time, then it was useless by the second." This song is utterly amazing, and without a doubt the band's crowning achievement. Seriously this shit gives Old Soul and Niboowin a run for their money at some points. The opening is rooted in chaotic hardcore and reminds me a bit of a heavier Greyskull, with the first transition hitting hard at 30 seconds. This builds to 56 seconds when my life begins to fall apart. The guitars incorporate a stop/start German emo-violence thing with syncopated vocals that slide into higher, spacey riffing with throat shredding screams. This pattern repeats four times and climaxes at 1:25, leaving me fucking spent. The song takes a much deserved breather and floats around for another minute or two before building back to the close. "geographic dissonance" follows and is heavy and fast enough to remind me of Orchid although it definitely hits some spacey post-hardcore as well as pummeling chaotic hardcore in the vein of Crowning. Closer "we cant remember the name of this song...really." is fitting and lengthy, sounding the most like an Old Soul song as it includes a lot of atmosphere not generally found in screamo and hardcore.

In regards to the physical release, Jimmy told me that they made a bunch of cds, but only 10 copies are in existence as they were lost early on in their only tour. If you have one count yourself lucky as fuck.

The following is a brief retrospective of QUIETUS by Jimmy attempting to remember details from nearly a decade ago,

       Quietus literally translates to “Noun: death or something that causes death, regarded as a release from life.” We were our name, Quietus was a formation of the end of Sight beyond Sight. Casey and Mike approached me after a previous project Adrien and I were in called Shatner Mask had disbanded. After joining the tail end of SBS, Mike soon decided to not continue with the project. Casey and I decided to ask Adrian to join on drums. With such a vast change to the sound and dynamics, a name change was necessary. I had recently watched the movie Children of men and the suicide drug used in the film was called Quietus. Thus the birth of the name and only line up.

       We gelled instantly over our mutual screamo influences and quickly had an album's worth of material. Soon after we went to our good friend Kevin Kitchels studio in Lansing. Thus recording the album Disconnected from Place. It was an embodiment of the unsettling feeling of being a stranger to your own home. Our dear Friend Trevor Grabill brought the concept to life with the cover art. Music was our cathartic outlet, or as the album says “this is my therapy.” We all lived in a small city called Mt. Pleasant. Which is a conundrum of a place that I still live in. Being Comprised of 50% university students and massive casino. There is nearly nothing to do with the exception of hanging out with friends. The DIY scene had also recently taken a hit when the Wesley Foundation closed their doors to shows.

       The existence of Quietus was short lived, we only played a handful of shows and went on one weekend tour with Cloud Rat, whom we shared a practice space in a basement with. Interesting side note Dillion from Niboowin’s first DIY show was to see Quietus and Capacitor play at Adrien’s mom’s daycare, Capacitor later became Old Soul after a couple lineup changes. After Casey moved to Marquette we seldom saw each other. We would reconnect from time to time, here or there, depending where any of us were living at the moment. In the next passing years, there was only a few times we got together to play again. We all started to pursue different projects and new avenues in life.

       In 2016 Casey was involved in a fatal car accident on his way home from a show. It nearly goes without saying but the passing of such a young person never goes without devastating shock to those who were close to them. Old Soul was only a couple weeks away from leaving on our final tour, to those who have watched the final COTO video, we dedicated the tour to him and his memory. The music lives on as a added testament to his legacy.

       There is one thing that always crosses my mind when I think of Quietus. Tell your family and friends you love them. Life is short as fuck.

Much Love,
Jimmy

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DISCOGRAPHY

2010 - Disconnected From Place cdrEP (stream/donate/download here)

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(2010) QUIETUS - "if you didn't care the first time, then it was useless by the second." (from 'Disconnected From Place')

(2010) QUIETUS - "geographic dissonance" (from 'Disconnected From Place')

(2010) QUIETUS - "artlessness" (from 'Disconnected From Place')

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QUIETUS additional links

Monday, 19 November 2018

***KODOS exclusive premiere***

"Kodos"
exclusive album premiere
For fans ofEd Gein, The Locust, DaughtersAmygdalaYuri, Welcome The Plague Year and Plague Walker

Did you hear that? No? That was the entire stream of the new KODOS album! You looked away for a sec and it was gone. Okay let's try again. This is the exclusive premiere for the new KODOS cassette EP. The band is an offshoot of Thisismenotthinkingofyou, Moss Rose and Yuri, but boasts the fastest, shriekiest and most furious style of the bunch. It's a mishmash of hardcore, screamo, emo-violence, false grind,  sludge and sass but in the end I would call this genre annihilation-core, cuz after you commit yourself to the LP, your future is dust. I don't really feel like I can give much of a direct band comparison, but if you were to throw Ed Gein, Amygdala, Yuri, Plague Walker and Welcome The Plague Year into a grinder it might occasionally resemble KODOS.

The amount of shit going on in addition to both vocalists venomously slinging poison on a consistent basis makes the entire ordeal a dense, volatile mindfuck - in the best possible way, of course. Now, I'm not even going to bother with a track-by-track review as each song is so short with so much to unpack that it would take you five times as long to read it then listen to the entire record. So instead, watch that acid-trip of a music video and then focus your ears for a mere 9:17 lest you miss one hell of a record.

(2018) KODOS - "HxC Dancing is just Assault to a Soundtrack" (from 'Kodos') official music video

(2018) KODOS - 'Kodos' full stream

Saturday, 17 November 2018

COUGAR DEN

BandCOUGAR DEN
GenresPunk / Hardcore / Emo / Screamo / Skramz / Experimental
Related artistsGallery Night, House Noises, Slow Walker, Centipedes, youthcrush and Call Me Lightning.
CountryMilwaukee, Wisconsin U.S.A.
Years Active2006-2009
Song: "Ash Not Dust"
Album: "Keepondrifter"
Year: 2009
For fans ofDawn Treader, Gillian CarterForstella Ford, Sinaloa, For Want Of, The Fall Of Troy, Terry Green, La Dispute, Nouveau, Hot Cross, Gaff, MANS, Lion Of The North, Cloud Mouth, Bravo Fucking Bravo, Pyramids, Matsuri, L'Antietam, Daniel Striped Tiger and Wow, Owls! aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Self Released / Init Records / Ice Age Records
This post's artist is from the November 2018 Mix. This is track #5.
You can download: the November 2018 Mix#11 right here or get the new December 2018 Mix#12 here.

COUGAR DEN are a band I don't know much about and have only recently got into, most likely because I had a 'Keepondrifter' sealed cd for sale and no one bought it, so I tore that shit open (as it was released on Init, an incredible label) and jammed it in my car one day. And then the next. And again...you get the idea. As this is a review I should make the most obvious comparison first, as I think this sounds like a newer version of the almighty Dawn Treader. It's not as heavy nor as serene as the Baltimore band managed to swing, but the technicality, musicianship, song structures, instrumentals and even vocals are really not very different. Basically, COUGAR DEN played mathy, emo-driven hardcore that we could probably just say is mathy screamo.

The band released their self titled debut 'Cougar Den' on cd back in 2006 all by themselves. It's a very good debut that showcases some of the ridiculousness that shows up on the 2009 full length, none being more obvious than the stellar opener "New Kids On the Block". This shit is intense, driving and intricate as fuck, with your typical COUGAR DEN vocals, that is to say they are half-yelled/half-screamed. There's a speed up at about 1:25 combined with the vocal line of, "Three hearts that beat the same!" that is hashed out and repeated in full climax form come 2:05, which is probably the highlight of the entire record for me. "Suburban Conditioning" is an instrumental mindfuck right from the get-go, "When the Going Gets Tough" has a bit more of an emo feel while retaining the intensity, "State Named Disaster" has some nice gang vocals over top of a sole guitar progression during the intro, "Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow" opens with a pretty goddamn epic sounding riff and transitions wonderfully into the most progressive and sprawling closer "I'll Take the Side of Reason" that is most indicative of their future material.

In 2008 they released what I consider to be their best material, the sensational 'Keepondrifter'. This thing is a fucking banger, good lord. Opening with one of (if not, my) favourite COUGAR DEN songs, "Ash Not Dust" is a trip. You spend the first 40 seconds in typical band land, but at 50 seconds the song explodes with sick tapping and screaming, only to have it taken a step further at 1:02 when all the instruments crash together and lead to an absolutely devastating section at 1:20. This part is heaven for me, a booming bass (reminds of Nouveau) acts as the vessel for some extremely spacey and intense guitars that carry the rest of the song. That bass, though, holy shit. Duuuh duh, doo do, Duuuh duh, doo do...gets me moving every time, and there's also an awesome solo for most of the third minute. "Burn the Vatican" is very playful in a Hot Cross kind of way, and even includes the first dual vocals that the band tests out, and realizes how awesome it is, as you'll find it on a number of songs here. "Between Long Lines" rides a lazerbeam of a guitar riff that cuts through everything, making the song reminiscent of The Fall Of Troy for sure. "Short Bus Front Flip" is a cathartic jam that reminds me of Bravo Fucking Bravo thanks to an incredibly speedy vocal tradeoff that begins at 2:15 and, for me, is the cornerstone of the song. The first minute of "9.04.06" follows a similar trajectory, but instead of trading off vocals the two just scream over top of one another...but it's still amazing. The midsection has such a spacey feel to it that I almost forget that this isn't Cave In and the end has so much going incredible shit on that your nose might start to bleed. "It Is the Flash Which Appears" may be the most thought-out, flowing, mature and complete song that the band ever wrote. The opening minute is a plethora of striking, bright, guitars acting as shooting stars as the night sky unfolds, the midsection finds footing and starts the ascent, reaching the summit with a thunderous close from about 2:20 onward. Hot damn that is epic! Speaking of thunder, the next track is titled "The Thunderbolt Will Follow" and it literally follows with the bass riff from the preceding song, and as it begins to blossom the petals definitely resemble those of Dawn Treader. "Party Awesome" boasts some pretty bodacious guitar licks after the 30-second mark, followed by a tubular stop/start and cowabungalicious breakdown. Lol what the fuck was that? Ah well, "East'll Meet West Anyway" closes up this fantastic LP and does so in a whopping 6:30, condensing all of the great stuff the band can do into one final track.

Their swan song came on a 7" split with Cloud Mouth on Ice Age Records in 2009. On it is a single COUGAR DEN song spanning nearly seven minutes of jangly, disjointed, yelly/screamy hardcore. I feel like this song doesn't root itself often and instead floats around, dabbling in light and subtle textures without really committing to any sort of primary, intense groove, which I find a bit uninteresting at times. It's still a cool song, but the opening tracks off each LP are my kinda COUGAR DEN tunes. Their final show was on June 18th, 2010 and then they called it a day, citing the obvious fact that they all lived much further away than when the band had started.

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DISCOGRAPHY

2006 - Cougar Den cdLP (stream/donate/download here)

2008 - Keepondrifter cdLP (stream/donate/download here)

2009 - Cloud Mouth split 7"EP (stream/donate/download here)

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(2008) COUGAR DEN - "Ash Not Dust" (from 'Keepondrifter')

(2008) COUGAR DEN - "It Is the Flash Which Appears" (from 'Keepondrifter')

(2008) COUGAR DEN - "Short Bus Front Flip" (from 'Keepondrifter')

(2009) COUGAR DEN - "What Ever Happened to the Home Phone?" (from 'Cloud Mouth' split)

(2006) COUGAR DEN - "New Kids On the Block" (from 'Cougar Den')

(2006) COUGAR DEN - "Suburban Conditioning" (from 'Cougar Den')

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COUGAR DEN additional links
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Thursday, 15 November 2018

'Residue' by: BLIND GIRLS

Song: "3am"
Year: 2018 via Zegema Beach Records
This post's artist is from the November 2018 Mix. This is track #1.
You can download: the November 2018 Mix#11 right here or get the new December 2018 Mix#12 here.



Review by David Norman:

Well shit, I remember when I started this blog back in 2013. After a few months I started getting decent submissions from bands around the world, and was pretty goddamned pumped when the Gold Coast's BLIND GIRLS sent me an email from Australia following the release of their 2014 EP 'Efflorescence'. I have been following the band avidly since that review (which you can read here) and in December of 2017 I visited Australia and thought, hey, I wonder if BLIND GIRLS want to hang out. And then we did. We stayed in touch and guitarist/mastering guru Liam Kriz sent me songs every few months, which I purposely never delved too heavily into. In October of 2018 Liam sent me the final BLIND GIRLS masters for 'Residue' and I've been foaming at the mouth ever since. The band had 150 black 12" vinyl records made, of which Zegema Beach Records helped release, while Zegema Beach made 66 tapes in Canada with help from the band. In the off chance you missed the giant order links above...well, they are above!

'Residue' is not background music. It's not relaxing. Listening to it is not easy in the traditional sense of letting a song wash over you. These songs do nothing of the sort. If anything, they lull you to a cliff, push you over and into an ocean of gasoline and then set it ablaze. It's 11 tracks in a mere 21 minutes and things get pretty f'n real right off the bat, as the feedback intro of "Breaths" explodes at 9 seconds in a whirlwind screams, frantic strumming and lightspeed drumming, all of which is over by 1:05.

"3am" is one hell of a song, as it flies through its initial section in typical, older BLIND GIRLS fashion before the feedback soaked stop at 20 seconds. This acts as a beacon for the phenomenal guitar-work that follows and the subsequent breakdown that is repeated a second time with a flurry of poisonous shrieks. Good lord that shit is next level.

Expect it to go downhill from there? Fuck you. Not happening. Cuz they pull out a diverse, flushed out and very complete third track with "Loss Forms a Sequence", which nearly reaches the three-minute mark. It rides in on a nearly 30-second wave of ambient guitar, transitions to the first onslaught which you might think is heavy, only to crash down upon the listener with such intensity and force after the 46-second mark that you'll think you're drowning off in the gold screamo coast. The dual vocal attack here is utterly punishing as Sharni and Mark exchange feral screams that make the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. At 1:17 the song doubles back for another round of ridiculousness, led by a dangerously sharp guitar hook and more phenomenal screaming which eventually meets up with that ambient intro.

"Exertion" brings us back to the unrelenting emo-violence attack found throughout the entirety of the first two songs but includes a fantastical swing after the first 50 seconds that reminds me of a cross between Loma Prieta and Commuovere.

"Visitant" is primarily an interlude of brief drumming and distant, crawling guitars and leads beautifully into the sixth track.

Said sixth track is titled "The Ghost In My Eye" and it's, yep, you guessed it, amazing. The entire song dips in and out of extremes much like the third track, creating an unstable and impossible to anticipate path saturated with remarkable surprises. The most significant to note on this windy, treacherous journey is that unbelievable tornado of mathy screamo that tosses the listener around from 1:46 to its 2:30 conclusion. Goddamn I'm still so smitten with this.

"Dormant" is much more disjointed then the first half of the record, which is to say it takes its time with an awkward and angular approach until 42 seconds when a lazer riff blows the song up like a goddamned death star.

I wonder if "Cherish" was initially dubbed "Chill song" because although it's screamo and hardcore and all that, it is noticeably slower than everything else on the record save the "Visitant" interlude. It's a very cool song that bears more in resemblance to Canadian bands I Hate Sex and La Luna than the scorching and extremely dense Lord Snow-esque chaos brought by the rest of the record.

"Discarded Pictures" is another of my favourites for a multitude of reasons. First, that opening is frighteningly intense...and it doesn't even have vocals! Second, when the vocals do come in they are insanely fierce, pack one helluva punch and are accentuated nicely by more backup screaming. Third, the transition that builds from 1:13 is exceptional and leads to a short, faux-climax and instead opts for a simplistic, quiet outro.

"Nightshade" is another song rooted in twisted, dark and unrelenting screamy hardcore on speed with so many twists and turns that trying to unpack it all here would be too time consuming. Just take 2:33 out of your day and ride that rollercoaster.

The conclusion to this album of the year contender is "Burial", a three-minute representation of all of the incredible things that BLIND GIRLS have accomplished with this record. It takes all of the anger, aggression, sadness and frustration found in the band's music and buries it in your brain. Good luck completing this album and not wanting to do it all over again right away. It's that kind of album, as not many bands can boast similar magnetism and intensity that allures screamo fans for repeat listens.

A quick info session about the BLIND GIRLS tapes as I made and released them. There turned out to be 66 transparent red tapes, with a sparkle A-side sticker and download code. Regarding the covers, there are a few variants:
2 on sparkle silver
10 on sparkle red
12 on white silver
42 on champagne pearl

Lastly, until November 25th, 2018 we will have the "feel like you're really there" Japanese tour package which includes the newest tape releases from BLIND GIRLS, Sans Visage and Komusō. It's only $15CAD (less than $12US) for all three tapes and will be pulled the day the tour ends. Speaking of which, if you are in Japan and don't go to one of these shows...a pox on thee. Grab a tour tape package here.

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(2018) BLIND GIRLS - "3am" (from 'Residue')

(2018) BLIND GIRLS - "Loss Forms A Sequence" (from 'Residue')

(2018) BLIND GIRLS - "Discarded Pictures" (from 'Residue')

(2018) 'Residue' trailer (by Dave Cullen)

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Monday, 12 November 2018

ØØØ

BandØØØ
GenresPunk / Post-Rock / Post-Hardcore / Emo / Screamo / Skramz / Ambient
Related artists?.
CountryGothenburg SWEDEN
Years Active2018-present
Song: "II"
Album: "Sorger Och Behag"
Year: 2018
For fans ofThey Sleep We Live, Yarostan, Vi Som Älskade Varandra Så Mycket, Mira, Döda Löv, Careless, Pettersson, Suis La Lune, 124C41+Øjne, Trachimbrod, Ephemera, Chuck Bass, DaïtroAu Bout De Mes Lèvres, Descubriendo A Mr. Mime, La Ciencia, Desidia, We Had A Deal and And Always aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Self Released
This post's artist is from the November 2018 Mix. This is track #8.
You can download: the November 2018 Mix#11 right here or get the new December 2018 Mix#12 here.

Review by THOMAS SCHLATTER:

At first impression ØØØ carries many characteristics of what I've come to associate with Italian or French screamo bands like Raein, La Quiete, etc. The guitars are very low gain with a bright high end emphasis. The song writing is melodic and mostly in a traditional major key. Vocals are screamed but still retain a more shouted delivery rather than throaty growled chaos. One thing of note for music/recording nerds; the drums on this release are very dry and have no reverb. Typically I think this would sound sterile, but it seems to work in conjunction with everything else. This release has three tracks and tops out around 12 minutes.

Aptly named "I", "II", and "III" we get a really a nice representation of what ØØØ is all about.  Each song takes you on a great journey of great dynamics, textured guitars and dual vocal delivery. "I" starts with that subdued aggression which is executed when chaotic drums wale away beneath jangly guitars. The band then launches into a fast, melodic race before taking it down a notch to show how they can build up a nice introspective canvas of sound.

"II" starts out showcasing some picked guitar chords and trading off vocals that match every now and then for emphasis. When the strumming starts about 50 seconds in, the intensity picks up.  They repeat this pattern before taking it even further down to a relaxed place of sparse guitar sprinkled over distant screaming. Like a bear coming out of hibernation, the band slowly wakes up and gives you a beautiful fit of chaotic drums and melodic chords.

The band closes things out with "III", the shortest and most aggressive track on the release. It's fast paced and doesn't allow for any rest. Things end tight with a barrage of drum rolls, closing out their presentation nice and clean.

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DISCOGRAPHY

2018 - Sorger Och Behag cassetteEP (stream/donate/download here)

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(2018) ØØØ - "II" (from 'Sorger Och Behag')

(2018) ØØØ - "III" (from 'Sorger Och Behag')

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ØØØ additional links
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Saturday, 10 November 2018

***TASHARAH exclusive interview***

BandTASHARAH
GenresPunk / Hardcore / Emo / Screamo / Skramz
Related artistsA Days Refrain, Takaru, Burial Year, Instil, You And I, The Assistant, This Ship Will Sink, In First Person, Wrong Day To Quit, Black Kites, Scavengers, Hell Mary, Less Life, Capacities, NY In 64, Hundreds Of AU, Metastic and What Of Us.
CountryNew Jersey U.S.A.
Years Active2001-2002
Song: "What Is The Primary Function Of P"
Album: "Tasharah"
Year:2002
For fans of: Rats Into Robots, In First Person, Hundreds Of AU, This Ship Will Sink, Capacities, What Of Us, Takaru, Tempano, Never Better, You And I, Trainwreck and The Assistant aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Self Released / Alone Records
This post's artist is from the November 2018 Mix. This is track #9.
You can download: the November 2018 Mix#11 right here or get the new December 2018 Mix#12 here.

I thought I was pretty good at following some of my favourite musicans' paths. I mean, c'mon, I've been obsessed with any music Schlatter related since I first heard You And I, The Assistant and This Ship Will Sink in the early 2000s. Then how, may I ask, did I miss TASHARAH for almost 15 years? Damn, obscure for a Tom Schlatter related project was something unknown to me. So when I delved into the band's only release I couldn't for the life of me understand why it was so buried in time, as it is vintage Schlatter kicking ass with Sean from A Days Refrain, Takaru and Burial Year back in 2002.

Most necessary information for anyone wanting to know about TASHARAH is located in an exclusive interview I did with Tom under this review. But I'll quickly run through the tracks on their one and only demo 'Tasharah' cdEP. It opens with "The Arrangement", a dual-vocal screamfest with many-a-nod to metallic hardcore, and sounding very much like The Assistant on speed, so you know it's ace. This song, as with all of the songs recorded, include movie samples which really help accentuate the music...cinemaskramz? Nah. The blown-out, chaotic and extremely dense made by just two people is astounding, and shows no sign of slowing down on the second track "What Is The Primary Function Of P", which includes a zany amount of stop/starts, sick riffs and mathy timing. "Sleeping With The Enemy" is the lengthiest TASHARAH song, which seems surprising after the first 30 seconds because it's such a blistering, unrelenting slap in the face. But around the one-minute mark everything slows down and slowly picks up in emo/screamo fashion with some warbly, clean singing (which is very You And I) layered over screaming that lasts until the song's midsection when the song goes all out for the remainder of its tenure. "Where To Begin" is a dense, violent and almost danceable track, as the band somehow manages to weave melodies into the chaos, "Where To Live" is similar in that it is incredibly savage and heavy, but this one also begins with some singing instead of vicious screaming. Strangely enough, "If You Were A Pentium, You'd Be A" begins with a Jar Jar Binks sample before ripping shit up This Ship Will Sink style, with the section from 1:45 onward being utterly devastating. Closer "Doing Favors For Criminals" might just be my favourite TASHARAH song, as it boasts the thickest of screams, prodigious guitars and rides a wave of intensity all the way through, imploding before the two-minute mark with a deathly breakdown.

Alrighty, on to the interview! Many thanks to Tom for taking time once again to recount his days in past bands playing amazing music. You can catch him currently in NY In 64, Capacities, Hundreds Of AU and What Of Us...and probably some more. 💗


An Interview with
THOMAS SCHLATTER
regarding his time in
TASHARAH

When and how did Tasharah form?
Around 2001 or so I was living in an apartment with my roommate, Sean. At the time, Sean was playing guitar for a band called A Days Refrain and I was playing guitar in a band called The Assistant. Our bands would play shows together on a regular basis, though we would routinely talk about how we wished both of our bands were playing more shows or doing more.

We started to write some songs in the apartment and decided to try them out. Rob (who later would play guitar for Capacities) played bass and did most of the vocals at first. I played drums and Sean played guitar while doing some supplemental vocals. Rob ended up joining The Assistant as our bass player later that year and stopped showing up for Tasharah practice. At that point Sean and I started mapping out a scheme to use effects pedals to make up for the lack of a bass player (I would later adapt this to three other bands in the future).

As a 2 piece band we were able to write music a lot faster and the songs started really coming together the way we initially pictured them.

Do you remember the first song you wrote together?
We wrote some of the songs with a bass player and then later re-worked them to accommodate the 2 piece configuration. If I remember correctly "The Arrangement" was the first full to write from scratch as a 2 piece.

What was your first recording session?
Our first and only recording session was with Steve Roche some time in the winter of 2002.

What was the experience like? Were you happy with how the songs turned out? And where did they end up, release-wise?
We recorded the whole thing in 14 hours without stopping. Sean did a second track of guitar to thicken it up, but besides that the rest was done live. We were pretty delirious by the end of the session. Despite the overnight session, we were both very happy with how the songs came out. Steve did a great job with the mix. This would be the first time of many that I would ask him to record a guitar being played through a bass amp. That week Sean took the songs and the samples to a studio in NJ called Clearcut Recording to have it mastered and have the samples put into place. By the time we recorded, Sean was already planning on moving to San Francisco. As a result, Tasharah would not last much longer. We burned a bunch of cds and did some quick color layouts on a friend's office copier for free. Alone Records took some to distro through their website, so we slapped the Alone logo on it. I don't know the exact figures, but I'd say there's probably 100 or so of them that were made.

What were your lyrics usually about?
Tasharah lyrics were all over the place. Personal, political, social observations, etc, we pretty much didn't adhere to a specific theme or plan.

In retrospect, what did Tasharah do well?
As a band, Tasharah worked efficiently since there were only 2 of us and we lived in the same apartment. At the time we were both playing in other bands that had multiple members. Juggling work schedules, getting people to learn/remember songs was very frustrating sometimes.

Is there anything you look/listen back to now that makes you smile or excited?
When I look back on it, and listen to it, I really think Steve Roche did a great job recording this. He'd probably disagree with me, but I really think the blown out/over the top sound is really fitting for the music.

What do you wish the band could have done differently?
The only thing I wish we could have done was play some more shows and really get more experience doing these songs live. The band came together about a year before Sean moved to California, so our window was pretty short.

Closing thoughts; I still like this material a lot. It's an angry representation of an unstable time of my life.

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DISCOGRAPHY

2002 - Tasharah cdEP (download here)

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(2002) TASHARAH - "The Arrangement" (from 'Tasharah')

(2002) TASHARAH - "If You Were A Pentium, You'd Be A" (from 'Tasharah')

(2002) TASHARAH - "Doing Favors For Criminals" (from 'Tasharah')

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TASHARAH out of print mp3 discography download

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Thursday, 8 November 2018

***CURTAINS / NEW RUINS exclusive split premiere***

'haliXkaliV2 Split'
exclusive album premiere
For fans ofKid Feral, Beau Navire, Cape Light, Cassus, Majority Rule, The Fall Of Troy, Prize The DoubtLyed, Pianos Become The Teeth and Secret Arms


pre-order cassette/75 from Zegema Beach Records:

U.S.A store

Canada / International store

Following in the wake of the first haliXkali split between Ghost Spirit and Frail Hands, this 'haliXkaliV2' split cassette houses each bands' younger siblings. California's CURTAINS released a shattering three-song demo EP cassette on Middle Man Records earlier this year (order here) while Halifax's NEW RUINS digitally dropped a five-song EP a few months back. Each band takes their sound further, exploring what makes them great. You'll notice the CURTAINS tracks are scorching, with the band having members of Ghost Spirit, Nuvolascura (formerly Vril), Letters To Catalonia and SeeYouSpaceCowboy. NEW RUINS get much more diverse and dabble in new sounds (quite effectively, I must add) and features members of Frail Hands, Heisse, Rinoa, Wax, Grief and Open Border. You can physical copies from Zegema Beach Records in the U.S. (linked here) and in Canada/Internationally (linked here) out of 75 on smoky grey-blue tinted tapes with metallic liners. The bands will have copies by the end of the year. Enough information, on to the split!

(2018) CURTAINS side (from 'haliXkaliV2' split)
Holy shit this is just straight-up fire. Wasting zero seconds pummeling you into the ground, "Dampe" goes full tilt for 20 seconds before erecting a monolith only to shred it to pieces with those devastating shrieks. "Your Angels" is but 30 seconds but manages to lay waste in a fashion not unlike Loma Prieta's 'IV'. "Ark" is the first trek into two-minute territory and rides some very intense waves of emo-violence with a ridiculous amount of stuff going on, bringing Kid Feral and Cassus to mind, as well as a tranquil close. "Burnt" brings things back to lightning speed and beats the listener to a pulp in a mere 41 seconds. Finale "Since Shadowed" shows the band's love for Beau Navire at the forefront, slowing everything down enough to weave beautifully with a beam-of-light that appears in the form of a single guitar, being leader for the majority of the songs intense-but-melodic 3:26 conclusion.

(2018) NEW RUINS side (from 'haliXkaliV2' split)
Bandcamp
Facebook
NEW RUINS play a very different game, relying on carefully planted seeds that grow into fruition and pay dividends. These two jams are much longer in length, incorporating enough styles that I am legitimately lost as to what to label as, so screamy post-hardcore will do, but it's very limiting after listening. "Never Knows Best" ebbs and flows for over two minutes, injecting rock, post-rock and some intoxicating guitar progressions before the backdraft blows the door open at 2:18. At 3:15 the song climaxes and bleeds out, one note at a time, until it suffocates itself. Their second and final track is titled "We Could Have Had It All" and is quite the opus. Clocking in at 5:03, it takes much less time going for the jugular, as the serene intro is abandoned come one minute. Then at 2:36 there's a swing that clobbers me every time but is gone by the time I realize what's happening, giving it similarity to Fall Of Troy and Secret Arms in both sound and style. One last note is the truly epic conclusion that uses additional strings as reinforcement from about 3:40 and a subsequent, taxingly timed, breakdown session.

Stream the entire split via Souncloud


ADDITIONAL LINKS & WHATNOT