Saturday, May 30, 2009

Epitaph [Florida] - Demos (1991, 1992)

The story of Floridian Death Metal band Epitaph is known by few, aside from the band members themselves, and perhaps some of those active in the 90's Tampa Bay-Area Death Metal scene. I came to learn of it only after talking to their bassist Mark Good, a pleasant and very down to earth fellow, over Soulseek one evening some weeks ago. He told me the band had released two demos, one in '91 with Jim Morris at Morrisound Studios, and another in '92 with famed (but, according to Mark overrated) death metal producer Scott Burns. They used these to shop around for record labels, but were ultimately unsuccessful in getting signed- the one label to take interest in them, Massacre Records, being turned down by the drummer as "not good enough for the band" before consulting the rest of them. Eventually, they decided to call it quits.

Some of the band members went on to other bands- the bassist and drummer playing in Ressurrection for a brief period, and notably guitarist/vocalist Tony Teegarden going on to play for Cynic, but of this band we are only left with these demos, and the frustration any music-fanatic faces when he runs across a band that should've made it, but didn't.

As for the music itself, imagine a sound along the lines of Mid-Period Death, the Cynic Demos, and early Obituary (with John Tardy actually performing backing vocals on the '91 demo song "I Endeavor"); the second demo being more technical than the first (and featuring a new lead-guitarist), but both featuring good musicianship (listen to that exceptional bass!) and solid songwriting.

As they ultimately didn't make any money off of them, Mark gave me the leave to spread these demos around if I wished, so get them HERE

And, if you like the demos and care to talk to him, drop into soulseek and look him up- he goes by "mmetalmark"

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Leukemia - Love [advance promo] (1997)

Genre - Death Metal, Melodic Death Metal

Now, as I both have not listened to this album nearly enough to justify a full review, and am not in a particular mood to write one, I will but give a brief rundown of this release for fans. "Love" is/was slated to be Swedish Death Metal band Leukemia's third release. It was mastered in the mid 90's by Dan Swanö at Unisound Studios, but even after over ten years, a name change, and a reawakening of the band, has yet to see the light of day in the form of a proper release. Some time ago it was let known by the band that they intend to finally bring it to the masses sometime in 2008. As the year closed, it was pushed to 2009. Why? I don't know. The band is obscure as all hell.

Anyway, I ran across this interesting tape-rip of what I think is a '97 "advance-promo" of the album a day or so ago, and knowing that there are still some fans in the death metal underground who would care to give this a listen, I thought I'd post it.

The sound, as I had expected, is more melodic than their previous releases, and Dan Swanö himself pops in more than a few times to give his help in the form of his awesome growl or powerful baritone, possibly a key section or two too.

Now, I don't know if this is the same form this album will be released as this year (if it's released at all), but this is all we have for now.

Give it a shot-


Sunday, May 10, 2009

Master's Hammer - Ritual (1991)

Genre - Black Metal
This in my book is THE PERFECT BLACK METAL album(Not that I have heard a lot, But i HAVE listened to most of the so called classics).

Seriously this is the greatest BM album that no one cares about. Czech had some really obscure and awesome BM scene going on and to expect an album of such high quality as Ritual way back in early 90s from them is really asking for too much. But Boy,Oh Boy! Do they kick some ass? They certainly do. The whole album is a journey. Its as if sitting in an opera with black metal riffs being played in the background, Yes it has that classical music feel around it. Unique vocals and the riffs remind of some of the 80s heavy metal bands. I actually wanted to check if Master's hammer were a One Hit wonder,so I went on to check some of their early demos and guess what they were nearly as awesome as Ritual only the production was a bit poor.

I have never recommended any band more, THIS IS SOMETHING YOU JUST CANT IGNORE.


Stolen Babies - There Be Squabbles Ahead (2006)

Genre - Avant-Garde, Experimental

Weird is the word, May be most of you already know them, but for those who dont, you absolutely should. May I'm not the best person to be recommending an avant-garde stuff but I do know what I like and what I dont. This one's a gem of an album. Some of you may complain about the weird female vocals(dont expect the usual symponic shit, there's a reason why I said "weird"), so dont say that I didnt warn you. I have been listening to this album since last year and it never gets old.


Rippikoulu - Musta Seremonia (1993)

Genre - Death/Doom

Hailing from Finland, they are probably the finest death/doom band that didnt go on to release a full-length. While their first demo "Mutaation Aiheuttama Sisäinen Mätäneminen " released in 1992 was an ameteurish effort than this one, also the profuction was so horrible that songs were almost inaudible. But this one is a huge improvement over the last one. They play sick dark death/doom mixed with mid paced death metal. And it does have that filthy and raw old school finnish death sound. SO its a must for any fan of Convulse, Runemagick etc! Prepare to get assaulted by 31 minutes of mega dose of heavy riffs.