Wednesday, September 28, 2011

from Ventura, California

 Some bands are just the pure fucking embodiement of what real metal is all about. I'm not one to champion the orthodox virtues of "true metal", but I do feel an endearing sense of pride when a band just speaks to me almost telepathically via this base connection we all have with the essentials of the music genre on which everything we love rests. A band like Lair Of The Minotaur do that for me, for instance, and so does The Fucking Wrath. It's not even a question of genre, as this bunch throw in their coarse mixture scraps of drunken, swaggering rock'n'roll, filthy sludge and even a bit of a loose punk vibe, but man, it's that feeling, the rudeness and the looseness with which every song is delivered. Hey, it's the fucking wrath. That bandname wasn't given by chance. I mean, just look at those dudes. How could they not kick ass? It's that fucking wrath that makes every song a blast.

Luckily, then, that just yesterday we got a whole new batch of them with the release of their new album, 'Valley Of The Serpent's Soul', a beast that some of us had been eagerly anticipating for quite a while. So now, adding to the many great tunes on the awesome 2007 debut 'Season Of Evil' and last year's stop-gap EP 'Terra Fire', there's the bluesy riffage of 'Swan Song Of A Mad Man', the fist-raising heaviness of 'Rebellious Axe' and slower, pounding numbers like 'The Neurodyssey' among the disc's many highlights. And don't these bands always have the coolest record covers?

They're on the perfect label, too. Tee Pee Records have given us a wonderfully balanced mix between ragers and rockers with bands like Quest For Fire, Elks, Earthless or Teeth Of The Hydra among many others, so this pack of rabid riffmeisters feels right at home. Be sure to pick up the new album on their website. This fucking wrathful video should remove any last lingering doubts you might have.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

It's not the first time I indulge in this sort of word-nerding (this and this are good examples), but as I thought about this example, encouraged by the kickass new Hot Graves album, I was surprised at the unreal amount of examples. Top 10 bands with the word "Grave" in their name, and Sepultura don't count:

01. Grave (duh)
02. Graves At Sea
03. Grave Miasma
04. Early Graves
05. Graveyard (the Swedish ones)
06. Grave Upheaval
07. Hot Graves
08. Gravetemple
09. Graveyard Dirt
10. Grave Digger

Friday, September 23, 2011

quoting critters: prayer of transformation

New feature powered by the good people at Go!Animate. From time to time, my critters will get deeply inspired by song lyrics, quotations and other texts, and they shall recite them for your pleasure. Today, they've been listening to Wolves In The Throne Room.

Yeah, yeah, everyone's a cynic and everyone's always suspicious of all the shady motivations behind most comebacks and reunions. But stop being a buzzkill just for a while. Some are really cool and besides, so what if it's for the money? As long as they kick ass while they're on stage and do great records, I don't give two shits if they need an extra buck to snort a little more coke from a whore's buttcrack or to put their kids through college or whatever. So, within the realm of possibility (we'd all like the Ramones to get back together, yes, but shut up), and since my very first top 10 here on the long way home. was related to reunions, here's the top 10 bands that should get back together:

01. In The Woods...
02. Kiss It Goodbye
03. December Wolves
04. Babylon Whores
05. His Hero Is Gone
06. Cop Shoot Cop
07. Cobra Noir
08. Floodgate
09. Cursed
10. Graves At Sea

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

from Drachten, Holland

So I'm a bit of a fanboy. There's no harm in that when you're a fanboy of someone who only does awesome stuff. I remain unbiased, I'll be the first to strike Mories down with the might of my, erm, keyboard whenever he does something that sucks. But the fact that Gnaw Their Tongues is one of my favourite projects/bands of the past decade, and that Aderlating and De Magia Veterum (there's a review on that link, check it out) follow close behind with their own individual personality oozing through as well, it's becoming clearer and clearer that the man is seemingly uncapable of suckage.

So now, as if there isn't enough abject horror spewing forth from his mind, Mories has decided to revive his ancient Ophiuchus demon, dormant since the late 90s (although the stuff was only released in 2009 and 2010), give it a new name and a fresh coat of torture paint. The result is Cloak Of Altering, of which he is as usual the sole member, and its debut album 'The Night Comes Illuminated With Death'. Look at the shiny cover.

Ain't it pretty? If you don't stare at it long enough to notice the skulls you might consider it so. However, beneath that deceptively colourful exterior, beats the heart of a malignant, merciless beast. Much has been made of the Arcturus or DHG comparisons, but this is far beyond that. Sure, the usage of synths is grandiose and a big part of the album is wash with orchestration and even warped electronic beats and sounds, but this grandiloquence only serves to accentuate the underlying horror. The frenzied, subterranean black metal guitars, with its feverish tremolo picking, the hideous surges just when you can pick up a hint of beauty shrapnel like on 'The Lustful Façade Of The Madrigals', and above all, the devastating shrieks and agonizing screams that bring down any hint of pleasantness you might have thought you've heard. Not even the early-Emperor tag does it justice, unless they get back together and re-record the demos with Ihsahn lashed to a breaking wheel. If anything, this is the corpse of Arcturus after the executioner, the rats, the cockroaches and finally the worms have gone through it, lying broken, dead and raped (in that order) on the floor of a filthy underground dungeon while Wagner's 'Der Ring des Nibelungen' resonates somewhere above the surface.

Having said that, this collection of razorblade epics is probably one of the best entry points you can have into the vast work of this remarkable musician and artist (yeah, did you know his artwork is amazing? Here, here, here and here is some evidence) - while harsh and unforgiving, there's at least hints, like pieces of flesh still hanging from a bone, of structure and musicality, unlike the formless white bone that is Gnaw Their Tongues. In any case, it's not for the squeamish. Let those listen to all the harmless crap that's out there.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

(click on the page to see the readable large version)

Published: Terrorizer #172, July 2008
Interviewee: Steven Rathbone (vocals/guitar)
Random facts:
- Last From The Vault I posted was also a feature taken from Terrorizer #172. Kickass issue!
- If my case for Lair Of The Minotaur as the most metal band in the world wasn't airtight enough at this time, the band made my arguing even easier with their follow-up to 'War Metal Battle Master', called 'Evil Power'. There's a song called 'Let's Kill These Motherfuckers' on that one.
- I have a mix CD in permanent residence in my car with my favourite Lair Of The Minotaur songs from all their albums. Not many bands achieve that status with me.
- Lair Of The Minotaur have one of the ultimate distinctions a metal band can have these days - their own burger at Kuma's Corner. It looks awesome.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

analysing the long way home.

Bless web analytics tools. While most people use them for serious business and as a basis for endless tech, marketing and communication meetings, I like to look for all the silly bits. Here are a few random pieces of data relating to this blog, during the period between January 1st and today, that I thought would be fun to share with you.

- The biggest day
July 13th was by far and away the day the long way home received more visits. It's such a peak that it looks like an erect penis on the page visit graph for the whole year, actually. Funnily enough, it was the day I published the recap of my unforgettable Iceland trip. I guess I need to go back soon, just to have another popular day.

- Search engine keywords that led to this blog

This is by far the best source of random awesomeness in these tools. What did people google for that led them to this place? In between a lot of records - the last Virus album in particular generated a shitload of desperate visits just because of a little post where I said I was going to listen to it, at a time when it hadn't come out yet - being looked for by the downloading mob, who must all hate me by now, there's a lot of funny, creepy or just downright puzzling stuff. Check it out:

extortion loose screws starkweather this sheltering night
"deathspell omega" stargazer ("great work of ages" or "scream that tore") 
The first person has some seriously good taste. Not satisfied with looking for a kickass album, (s)he looked for two at the same time! I'm sure this is one of the only places where they have ever been mentioned within the same list, so I hope you stayed as a regular. As for the second searcher, great combined taste there too, although it's unclear why Deathspell Omega were shoved into the beginning of a StarGazer search.

horny milfs
painful anal surprise 
3 layer climax
google skinny dipping 
hot horny milfs getting fucked hard and painfully
These people, especially the first two searches, probably had to go through half the internet to get to my poor little blog. I expect some twenty-three million sites show up ahead of mine when it comes to horny milfs, don't you? That's some serious desperation there. As for a 3 layer climax, I don't know what it is, but it sounds like something I wouldn't mind trying. Also, who writes google as a keyword in a search that has nothing to do with it? Scary. Not as scary as the last one, though. Very specific tastes there. However, not as specific as...

hwat is the name of the book about the baltimore teenage girls who accidently killed the baby that they found
This also shows that there are people who talk to google as if it was a person sitting next to them. I'm surprised it doesn't start with a hey, how are you doing?.

how lng does dislocated ankel takes to get healed
Probably less than it would take for you to write correct English. And I have a feeling this one is your fault, Jaime.

extreme weiners
Hey, whatever floats your boat. I won't judge.

vomiting owl 
As I said, if that's what works for you...

fuck me i'm portuguese
fuck on the way home 
I wonder if this was the same guy on both, trying to get a different angle on the situation?

"metal flows in my veins"
Alright! \m/ This one makes me rather proud.

bruce dickinson and his wife
bruce dickinson children
bruce dickinson ex-wife
bruce dickinson funny
bruce dickinson house
bruce dickinson raar
bruce dickinson santiago
bruce dickinson wearing black
bruce dickinson young
jared leto bruce dickinson
who is bruce dickinson married to
This is what happens when you're a public figure. Think of that before you aim for rock stardom. All of this because I have a little pic and a mention of Bruce on the interview with my buddy Neil. Now that I  actually wrote all this, I'll probably get a million hits a day. Speaking of Neil...

neil grant obituary tattoo drugs "neil grant" 
This inspires a world of questions, mate.

who is the unhealthy guy in motley crue?
Good question! I'd rephrase it to Who isn't, though. Lord knows how that made him land here, too.

why does everyone like the scottish
You clearly never met a Scot.
This person needs to attend a few lessons on how to use the internet.

for a glory of all evil spirits
celtic frost ugh
Best google searches EVER.

black sheep and kissing cousins stone main pooint 
Huh? (I'm aware it's a book, but I still wonder how it led here. Maybe the misspelling of point confused google)

I think this person was in a bad mood. And a bad speller too.

bobb trimble female voice
I know, I know, I was confused too at first. But I figured it out, and now you did too, if you read the post.

slayer sauth of heaven album
I think I can see where the problem was.

- Around the world
Kinda like José's top 10s, here are the countries from where I get the most visits:

01. United States
02. Portugal
03. Brazil
04. United Kingdom
05. Iceland
06. Germany
07. Canada
08. Sweden
09. Australia
10. Greece

The presence of tiny Iceland there makes me very happy, especially with the number that it is, roughly around 8.000 visits. One day, I will have more visits than the total population of Iceland. Further down the list, there are visits from apparently unlikely places such as Pakistan, Trinidad and Tobago, Vietnam, Kenya or Cambodia. Whoever you people are, it's nice to have you! Well, unless one of you is...

- The creepy stalker

This isn't a particularly spellbinding place. Not many have it in them to nerd out about weird music on a daily basis like I do, and much less read other people doing it. So I never thought I'd attract obsessive followers. But it says here that someone has accessed this blog 887 times since January 1st (seriously), always from the same place, almost every day, almost always at the same time, using one of those bypass services (, this one) that people use to access blocked sites at schools and offices and stuff.

So, are you just someone who happens to have the long way home. on your daily bookmarks and for some reason it's blocked by your office's IT department (reason enough to fire the lot, I'd say) when you log on it every fucking day during your coffee break, or will you start mailing me pictures of my underwear drying on the clothesline anytime soon?

Friday, September 16, 2011

If you don't know it already, let a bit of shame creep over you and then go check out the previous two volumes of the .Falling Down compilation (and check the webzine while you're at it). If at the very least half of those bands don't tingle your hearing buds just the right way, then you seriously need to revise your record collection.

Let's face it, compilations were always a bit of a lame concept, at least as a commercial product, even all those years ago when we had to go through the delightfully rewarding but cumbersome and time-consuming process of putting together a mixtape. Which were usually either meant for long road trips or as a gift to an attractive member of the opposite sex anyway. I made thematic mixtapes for myself too, but I'm a huge reclusive nerd. Anyway, in the age of .mp3 portability, a compilation makes even less sense, on paper, unless you do it like Yann and Thibaut have done it. By picking fucking amazing, cutting edge underground bands, the list of which sometimes reads like a possible Roadburn line-up, and getting mostly unreleased tracks from them to feature on the compilation, they've single-handedly made the compilation cool again. Or cool tout court, actually.

The third volume, .Falling Down IIV, will hit us in 2012, with a line-up that is so far absolutely dreamy, and it features 100% unreleased tracks. Keep your eyes peeled, and let Y. and T., a true yin/yang pair of dudes, guide you through everything you need to know about .Falling Down.

1. Before Volume I, how did the idea first arise of doing a compilation like this?
Y: This idea came to me in late 2007. My former editor in chief had released several BM tape compilations, and since we had begun to establish some great contacts in the scene, we thought it would be cool also to release a compilation. The idea was full of modesty: the objective was to bring together a dozen bands, if possible have one or two unpublished songs, and release it on a single CD. Obviously, we had no experience in this shit, but it allowed us to spice up our dull and boring daily lives. This project was supposed to last a matter of weeks... but no, finally, we decided to transgress the limits. There is no business in there. We don't want to establish contracts: we trust our bands, and the guys trust us. We are still young - we are students, we began this project when we were 19 years old - and it's a totally independent work, done by passionates for passionates. We invest our own money for the pressing, the rights, the promotion, and everything else. I love the proximity with the artists, it's just an amazing pleasure to know, personally, the guys that I admire the most in the world. Many musicians have become our friends, and just for that, these compilations are really one of the biggest successes of our lives.

2. Since most of the compilation consists of unreleased material, has it been hard to get it from bands, or is everyone always eager to chip in?
Y: Yeah, most of the time, it's really hard. Particularly on the first and second volumes. We were young, nobody knew us, no experience, we were not (and we are not) bilingual and, last but not least, we're poor. We basically sent out emails to our favourite bands saying like "Hey there, we love you! We're two totally unknown Frenchies and we would like that you send us an unreleased track for our comp, do you agree? No? But WHY?! Come on!", haha.

But there are a lot of possibilities: if the band already has an unreleased track recorded (like it has happened with Kylesa, Time To Burn, Year Of No Light, Gnaw Their Tongues, Kongh and others), it's easier for us. If the track is already composed, but not recorded, it's more complicated with the costs of the studio and mixing/mastering, but fortunately not impossible (it was like that with Knut, Cortez, Kehlvin, Amenra and some others). And if the band has to write and record especially for us, well, we must be really.. clever? Fortunate?! This situation is really the hardest. But we had the chance to collaborate with amazing people, very passionate, and it was a huge honour to have their trust and their interest to our modest project, people like Ufomammut, The Ocean, Jucifer, Omega Massif, The Poisoned Glass (a fucking great new project with the legends Stuart Dahlquist and Edgy59) and a few others.

On this third volume, things seem tp have been easier: our comps are beginning to be more known and we've currently a biggest experience. This is why we decided to have a new challenge: only unreleased tracks. No compromise.

T.: It's so HARD in most cases... but we can't thank enough those who have/will record a track especially for .Falling Down. Interest, confidence and passion, shared through this project... it's a great honour, rare but deeply felt.

3. The line-ups are invariably amazing, it’s almost too much awesome for one single compilation, every time. When you start thinking of a new volume, how do you guys choose? Do you all have a meeting and start throwing names of bands you love?
Y: Thanks man for your kind words! And yeah, we regularly have meetings, in our moutains in Savoie, lost in our woods. But we're also regularly (always?) so stoned that we have to have a web discussion the next day.
[my kinda people.]
Thibaut is my best friend: I know his tastes and he knows my tastes. Globally, we love the same bands, and this is really important: we have the same connection, the same approach to the music. I think that we are open-minded enough so that if he wants to get in touch with a band that I don't like particularly, there are no worries... and vice versa.

T.: I have a thing for heartfelt, deep emotions. I want to get high thinking. We agree in the same way, to the highest levels at the dark bowels of the earth, and even if some details differ, this also increases our potential depth of mind. It's always without any fuss. We come out with an ideal, which is then submitted to the various problems and possibilities.

4. Come on, promotion time – what’s great about IIV, and why should everyone get it?
Y: Like I said, this IIV volume is a new step for us: only unpublished tracks. We don't want to be "pretentious" or whatever.. but, honestly, this compilation is starting to get more and more crazy: Karma To Burn, Rosetta, Julie Christmas, Mouth Of The Architect and a special collaboration between Year Of No Light/Mars Red Sky and Terra Tenebrosa (who feature members of Breach!) have given rise to awesome feedback so far. And, on the other hand, we have some a-ma-zing bands, less notorious but really talented: Ahkmed, Hopewell, Black Sun, Ayahuasca Dark Trip, Rorcal, Ocoai (for the third time!) and others...

We're working on the next and final announcement: if we manage to fulfil  all that we want to, I'll be the happiest man in the universe. You won't be disappointed, believe me! I can't say much more for the moment but a special collector's version will be also available, only on pre-order. We want to thank all the people who support our project since the beginning. Stay tuned, as it will be very limited, and it won't be repressed.

T.: We don't like to sell ourselves, we aren't whores, we diffuse our project at best, an entity that we like personally. And I think that .Falling Down IIV will be, it must be, a satisfaction, an ecstasy, like walking on air. We let the business whores in this sad world, not in our hearts/minds. I can only say we already have some tracks, and damn... amazing ! I want to say thank you, awesome, I dive in!

5. I particularly like how there’s always a few layers – from the widely known bands to some bands that are still beginning or very underground. Especially in these last ones, do you feel you’ve helped some of them to get their music to a wider audience they wouldn’t have otherwise?
Y: It's difficult to say... we can just hope so. All these bands give me a lot of energy and help me daily. I travel with their sound, so, if we can help them to promote their music, our project will be a huge success. I can't selfishly consume their work, I need to interact with them. I buy an LP or a shirt, I go to their shows, I do an interview or write a review... or I produce a compilation. But in every cases, I need to help them... they are so important in my life. So yeah, when we have some feedback by people who thank us for a discovery, or if they want to have a contact for writing a review, or just a great comment on a facebook page with an allusion to .Falling Down, this is a fucking pleasure.

T.: I don't think that will change the feelings of this world. This is indeed unfortunate...
as Yann said, we can just hope. For a few isolated individuals, for some underground bands from here and elsewhere, showing their beautiful feelings, the darkest and most delicious, in seamless and endless melancholy.

6. Is there a band you’d dream of having on the compilation that you haven’t yet?
Y: We have already the limitless pleasure to work with many of our favorite bands... a lot, but not all. I'll able to answer your question when the final tracklist will be announced, until then, we'll do our best.

T.: Maybe Jus Oborn will pass through here... for now, his cloud seems too far from ours to get along. The wind may blow...

7. You’ve mentioned to me that you like to push the limits as far as you can – so all the way through this third volume, do you think you’ve branched out as far as you can in terms of music genres? Or can you still go further in future volumes?
Y: I don't know... all our choices are, when it comes down to it, really natural. It does seem that our project is becoming more and more "eclectic". Like I said, we were extremely young when we were starting to get in touch with the first bands and our musical culture was... limited. There is no accounting for taste, they say. Okay. But, as far as I'm concerned, I think that tastes must change. I can't understand that some people listen the same 5 bands for 15 years. The sentiments are endless... and I'm convinced that about each sentiment, each moment of your life, there is a track, a perfect track, perfectly adequate. When the music corresponds with reality, you can presume to be in osmosis.
So far, I've been satisfied only with the extreme music. All my sentiments are extreme. Extreme music for extreme people, I assume. But I'm changing, absolutely, so... yeah, perhaps one day, .Falling Down will work with some jazz artists or in the world of the classical music, this is not impossible. Perhaps one day my definition of "extreme music" will also change. Time will tell...

T.: Basically, this isn't merely about the music itself but also about the feelings and interpretations from the universe of bands and sounds. An alliance of what emerges, what is perceived, according to our thoughts, expectations, philosophies... .Falling Down unites the escape and reality, music and spirit, the real musing, reflection, which is beyond compliance decreed. Push ever further, in every way. From a purely musical point, the limits should be bound only to what individuals can radiate, carry through in this world.

8. Speaking of future volumes… do you have a long/medium term limit for how many you are going to do?
Y: It's difficult for me to plan my projects on a long/medium term... my main problem is that I hate the new technologies more and more, particularly the internet. This shit is our new drug, our new dependance and I don't like that... this absence of freedom. I'm convinced that, in the future, many people will reject this virtual world: it's destroying our critical mind, our amical relations, our memory, the notion of effort, our patience, our curiosity, and so on. I'm convinced that many people who listen to these music genres are really smarter than the average, more critic, and they are going to understand that this shit is destroying one of our biggest passions: the music. I'm convinced that the future of this scene will be more marginal, more underground, more secret, almost private. I fucking love this idea! If it does, I gotta see this and I will contribute to it. If people continue to want to share their music, their discoveries, their tastes to all the people around the world, there won't be other compilations. I don't want to be part to this nightmare... I prefer that my projects be appreciated and respected by 200 guys than to be downloaded by 10000 unknown dudes. To properly judge progress, we must also take account of what it deprives us of.

T.: It's already extremely hard to plan this next compilation, so... I'll have to stay alive until then, too.
It's so seedy and pitiful here below. See the sleepwalkers of the orderliness, of the machinery, see these squalid souls... I feel like a void of horror, really, I don't know, if the pure desire persists and that evil doesn't burn down too, doesn't stain too. Anything is possible.
[remember Yann said they're regularly stoned.]

9. Wouldn’t it be cool to organize a little festival with at least a few of the bands on the compilation?
Y: Yeah, absolutely! Since the beginning, we have wanted to organize a festival. A special festival, not a boring night in a club with 5 bands. A special event, a mix between the Roadburn Festival and the Dunajam... something in the mountains, into the wild, something private, a psychedelic experience with a lot of substances, a vacuum, in another world, immune from what is already happening and what is yet to come in the big cities. We have a lot of ideas: we have to concretize them now.

T.: We imagine perfectly... The realization, however, isn't still entirely clear, probably a lot (too many?) of practical problems, for the moment.

10. Last question is list question: list five bands that you like, personally, that would never fit on the .Falling Down compilation.
Y: If we like them, we contact them. By the way, I have to get in touch with Clint Mansell!
Thanks man for your interest and your support! We really appreciate it! We need it... and it's always a fucking pleasure to meet some new passionates like you. I would like also to send out special thanks to our friend Julius Kleipool: he made our trailers... he's really talented, no doubt! If someone is interested in his work or if a band wants to collaborate with him, don't hesitate! Get in touch directly or drop us a message, you won't be disappointed.
[Yann still apologized for his English, but that was just him being all modest. I wish all English-speaking bands could speak and/or write as correctly as he did.]

T.: As with all detailed responses, I think that the moment in space-time has a significant role.
As there are no limits to contact according to our desires, tastes... I can quote Wipers, The Jesus & Mary Chain, Loop, the classics artists like Chopin, Nirvana, particularly live.
And thanks for understanding our voice.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

from Canberra, Australia

facebook - website - myspace
(internet presence is for pussies - contact the band if you want the music)

Religion diverts us from the causes of evils, and from the remedies which nature prescribes, far from curing, it only aggravates, multiplies, and perpetuates them.
-- Baron D'Holback

CD-R is the new tape. Now that tapes have become all cute and quirky and collector's item-y, a format on which it's cool to own stuff again, nothing says demo like a memorex CD-R with a number written with blue felt pen, which is how I got 'Demiurge', Mammon's first demo. Mine is #136, because this Australian bunch saw it fit to send me their very first release, and I'm glad they did. They obviously know what pushes my buttons, and those other 135 guys are people of fine taste indeed.

'Demiurge' is a three track affair that lasts 20 minutes, but the raw weight and the underlying complexity of the three songs, 'I', 'II' and 'III', is such that it feels like much longer. I'm happily spinning this daily and it's just like a full album, which is very promising for a band just starting off. Raw and complex sound like two terms that would start to slap each other if left together on the same sentence, but not in this case. A bit like The Ghost Dance Movement, with whom I hope Mammon won't share the let's-record-four-of-the-coolest-songs-ever-and-never-do-anything-else-afterwards syndrome, throat-destroying screams and quasi-crusty aggression happily cohabit with intricate, almost post-rock-ish guitarwork often, a fragile balance of beauty and beastdom that is frequently shattered by a massively overweight riff that enters when you least expect it. There's a lot more still buried in this unholy tryptich of songs, like the blazing black metal in the beginning of 'II' or the shoegazy bit that anticipates one of the decisive lines at the end of 'III', where the vocalist (I will assume it's David, he'll surely email me and tell me he's not if I'm wrong) spits forth "Look not to the stars, / Our lives are here, / We need not this serpentine cult to guide us".

That's the most appealing and promising thing about this band. The concept is very well thought through and presented, and it seems to be deeply tied within the essence of the band itself. I'm sure you all know what the terms Mammon and Demiurge mean, at least after a bit of Wikipediaing you do, and that serpent enveloping the burning church of the cover isn't your average childish SATAN DESCENDS UPON THE EARTH! kind of depiction. Not only was it made by a proper artist, Jacob O. Rolfe, but its meaning is perfectly described throughout the lyrics, which declare a vehement, intelligent and nearly poetic opposition to any kind of religion. So before you rush off and google for the album title, do drop the guys in the band a line to get a proper version of the demo with the lyrics included. It's important. Any album that starts with a sample off There Will Be Blood is.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

30 day song challenge - day 14 - a song no one would expect you to love

Day 14 - A song no one would expect you to love
Travis - The Cage

I skipped two daysof this thing because they were dumb. Day 12 was a song from a band I hate, but I've already done something similar on day 02 and I really, really don't feel like polluting the blog with stuff I don't like, again. Day 13 was a song that is a guilty pleasure, and that is a concept I don't have - if I like something I'll admit it loudly, happily and guiltlessly, regardless of the opinion of the rest of the world. I do realize the interest in that question, yes, but that's perfectly covered by this next day of the list. If I had any guilty pleasures, they would be something no one would expect me to love, right? So here you go, Travis. I guess that fits the bill nicely, but you'll have to confirm that yourselves. Would you expect me to like Travis?

Maybe it's the fact they're from Glasgow and I seem to have a tendency to like everything that comes from there (Glasvegas as well, anyone?), but I've always found this band to be miles ahead of any other mushy britpop band you can compare them to. Good melodies, a certain cynical/heartbroken outlook and lyrics that actually seem to have some thought and some feeling behind them. I have a huge love especially for the 'The Man Who' and the 'The Invisible Band' albums, and this one, here on beautiful live rendition in their hometown, is from the latter of those. I like the quieter, pained ones better, so 'Dear Diary', 'Afterglow', 'The Humpty Dumpty Love Song', 'The Fear' or 'Driftwood' could easily be here as well.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

live shots: sólstafir

I've heavily addicted to Sólstafir's fabulous new double-album 'Svartir Sandar', but instead of bragging about a record that's not even out yet, I'll just signal my current obsession with a few shots from both occasions - Music Box in Lisboa and as a part of Eistnaflug in Neskaupstaður - where I've been lucky enough to witness the Icelandic dudes in stage action, where they kick as much ass as they do on disc. In the meanwhile, while you wait for 'Svartir Sandar' to screw with your head as much as it has done with mine, spin 'Í Blóði og Anda', 'Masterpiece Of Bitterness' and 'Köld' a few times, I've recently revisited them all in one long full-discography session and they're still awesome.

Lisboa, December 14th 2010

Neskaupstaður, July 7th 2011

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

from San Diego, probably

Today I feel like writing as much as the dudes in Retox probably feel like pleasing you. Look, my last post was a band of the week too and it had three in them, go read that again if you feel like words. This doesn't need a damn essay written about it either. I don't care how many stupid hipster fans who think they like this shit Justin Pearson and Gabe Serbian brought with them from The Locust or how over-intellectualized a 13 minute long powerviolence album called 'Ugly Animals' will be in the forthcoming months. This is like The Locust reduced to their barebones core, grinding, screeching and spazzing its way until it's over and you go do whatever it is you do when you're not pretending to be cool, like listening to Dream Theater or something. If you feel like proper info go to their website if it's not just a black page, which it probably is. Whatever.