EMQ’s With ExpiatoriA

ExpiatoriA Logo

EMQ’s With ExpiatoriA

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Italian Heavy/ Thrash Metal band, ExpiatoriA. Huge thanks to their vocalist, David Krieg, for taking part.

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

My name Is David Krieg, and I’m the singer of ExpiatoriA. The band was formed at the behest of the brothers Massimo and GB Malachina (lead guitar & bass) between the end of the 80’s and the first half of the 90’s. The line-up was led by the charismatic figure of singer Massimo Cottica (a prominent figure in the Genoese underground at the time). Two demo tapes were recorded: “Tribute To Death” and “Symphonies Of Decomposed Human Flesh”. The band also participated in the compilation “Nightpieces” with the track “Sufferin’ Days”. In those years ExpiatoriA played an aggressive mix of techno thrash and obscure metal, and the band built a solid reputation thanks to the excellent reviews and live performances. Unfortunately, however, there is a setback when Max Cottica leaves the band to move to Ireland. The group was no longer able to continue with a new singer in the years to come and in the end broke up. 

In 2010 ExpiatoriA returned to the scene involving Max Cottica again, at least at the beginning. After numerous other vicissitudes and a decisive turn towards doom sounds (as was in the original intentions), the line-up reaches its current and more stable stage, with myself (David Krieg) on vocals, Edoardo Napoli on guitar, Fulvio Flux Parisi on keyboards, and Enrico Meloni on drums, as well as the Malachina brothers, of course, a.k.a. the initiators of the project.

How did you come up with your band name?

ExpiatoriA is the ancient Latin concept of “scapegoat” in the liturgical meaning of the Catholic religion. We have chosen this moniker by overturning its destination: we are no longer the freaks, the outcasts, the strange, the unwanted, and we have no sin to atone for (except those for which we accept responsibility as reasonable beings); in a sort of new inquisition, it is now WE who point the finger at the TRUE sinners and demand their atonement.

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

We come from Genoa, Italy. The local rock / metal scene is always in turmoil and is capable of producing remarkable and even historical realities: two essential names above all, Necrodeath and Sadist. 

The problem of Genoa is the excessive provincialism of the experts who find it hard to believe in REALLY alternative productions, as well as a certain “laziness” of a part of the public who prefers to complain about the absence of important events, only to sin of guilty absenteeism when such events are finally organised. Not to mention that a large section of the public is controlled by the dominant media and totally ignores the real rock scene. 

Despite this scourge, there are brave pioneers who get involved, and among a thousand ups and downs, they manage to organise remarkable evenings or events (see the recent Metal Valley Fest with Voivod headlining, in which we also participated). In addition to this, it must be recognized that there is no shortage of valid bands. I’ll mention a few names, but there are so many: Abysmal Grief, Segno del Comando, Loculo, Winternius, Malombra, Tenebre, Stramonia, et … There are still many out there, and they are all valid.

What is your latest release?

“Shadows” is Expiatoria’s full length debut. It represents the culmination of a long and troubled journey that began in 1987. After several demo tapes, multiple line-up changes and forced breaks, the band finally freed itself from all those negative factors that have always held back its growth, and now it is ready to stay and leave an important trace in the scene.

“Shadows” will be released on November 4 2022 via Black Widow Records and Diamonds Prod. The album contains 6 tracks of doom, gothic, obscure and atmospheric heavy metal. Pre-orders are open on our Bandcamp page: https://linktr.ee/expiatoria 

“Shadows” features the contribution of some outstanding musicians within the Italian rock and metal scene: Diego Banchero (founder and bassist of label-mates, the dark prog band Il Segno del Comando) in “Asylum of the Damned”, Edmondo Romano (wind instruments for countless projects and bands) in “Asylum of the Damned”, Raffaella Càngero (voice of heavy-prog-folk band La Janara) in “Ombra – Tenebra Part 2”, and Freddy Delirio (keyboards in Italian cult horror metallers Death SS) in “7 Chairs and a Portrait”.

The song writing process has often been hindered by the pandemic and the rules to contain it, but this adversity has only strengthened our determination to pursue the goal of making a work that has been postponed for too long. We thought like a family, supporting each other, and the result is a deeply felt album, aimed at those people who don’t just listen to music superficially.

In this sense, “Krieg (My Last Song)” is an example of emotional identification.

Who have been your greatest influences?

Above all, the mighty King Diamond (both as a soloist and with Mercyful Fate). Then I could say Candlemass (and the Doom scene in general), the most obscure NWOBHM and also a pinch of dark prog. In some aspects, I could say that due to the harmonic construction of the songs and dramatic theatricality, we have some affinities with Type O Negative.

What first got you into music?

The will to create by myself what I like most to listen to. In a way it’s about giving life to your favourite music, the one that no band has ever produced in a single form: I’ve always liked the idea of taking the elements I prefer from my favourite artists and combining them in a single style. Which eventually becomes “mine”.

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

I would have liked to collaborate with Antonius Rex very much, but unfortunately, his departure makes this desire impossible. I generally like to establish artistic and human relationships with other musicians, and I consider it an honour in equal measure to work with big names as well as with emerging bands. So, point blank, I’d tell you I’d like to sing on a Void of Silence album.

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

I’ll give you an unusual answer, considering the kind of music we offer, but I’d really love to play at the Obscene Extreme Festival if the latter weren’t exclusively dedicated to death-grind-brutal: because it has to be really fun and crazy. But it would damage our dark image, haha!

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

Not a real gift (intended as an object), but a personal fan of mine (who has become a real friend over time) travelled several km to visit me at my home and get to know me.

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

Go to live gigs as often as you can: the scene, whether it’s ExpiatoriA or any other band, must be supported in order to continue to exist. And if you are part of a band, too, don’t wage stupid wars among the poor: we are all in the same boat. It is the most banal, but also the most sincere message that I can send.

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

All those who left too soon and who could have given much more to the music. Unfair to mention only one.

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

Considering myself an interpreter even before a musician, I take on the burden of an experience that is at the basis of every aspect related to making music, be it compositional, interpretative, management in life or more generally professional. 

In this sense, even the most pleasant aspect (which can be expressing oneself creatively) hides the other side of the coin: the spasmodic search for a catharsis which not only can also leave you in pieces, but which is not always replicable with the same intensity every time. This makes me feel the responsibility of reaching a compromise between the sincerity of my artistic expression and the duty to always maintain a high level of professionalism. In this dichotomy reside both the things I love and hate most about being a musician.

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

I would reform the whole record industry all over again, including the perception that people have of it, including those musicians who don’t know how to relate to it in a reasonable and productive way.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Aaarrghh!!! Too many to mention. So point blank, I say “Don’t Break the Oath” by Mercyful Fate.

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

Vinyl Forever!!! I benefit from all the aforementioned supports because I am not a caveman incapable of evolution, but the vinyl remains the best way to enjoy music, artwork and various details.

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

The next One, I hope. Our goal is to improve from time to time.

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

I really don’t know… for sure, always something related to artistic expression: Given my propensity to tell stories by playing with images and words, perhaps a writer or a film-maker.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

King Diamond, Lemmy (back from the dead), the wrestler Undertaker, Jim Carrey and Julian Assange.

What’s next for the band?

Play live wherever possible: starting on November 5th, we will begin a mini Autumn tour in northern Italy, after which we will record a split with our friends Segno del Comando based on the same idea, some sort of concept album. The creation of a video clip is also in the works. The car has started, and there is a lot of gasoline.

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

We’re on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Bandcamp: https://linktr.ee/expiatoria 

Time for a very British question now. As an alternative to the humble sandwich, is the correct name for a round piece of bread common in the UK either a Bap, a Barm (or Barm Cake), a Batch, a Bun a Cob, a Muffin, a Roll or a Tea Cake?

Muffin.

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

Embrace the Shadows and join us in this journey through the dark. 

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

EMQ’s With Furi Helium

Furi Helium Logo

EMQ’s With Furi Helium

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Spanish Heavy Metal/ Thash band, Furi Helium. Huge thanks to them for taking part. 

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

We are Furi Helium, a Thrash / Heavy Metal band from Barcelona. We have been playing since 2012, when 5 Metal guys gathered to play some covers. Then we started to create our own songs and defining our own style, which has been build up from the many different influences of all five members.

How did you come up with your band name?

Pretty uncommon name… We are often misspelled as Fury Hellium, but our actual name is Furi Helium (means Black Sun in Latin). 

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

We are from Barcelona (Catalonia). Here the most influential band are Crisix and Angelus Apatrida, but apart from them, the Metal scene is getting absorbed sometimes by Punk and Hardcore scenes.

What is your latest release? 

Our latest release is the first single (The Inherent Fate) of our upcoming album “Far From Sanity”. This song talks about the Fermi Paradox and how humans are destroying our planet because of our insatiable behaviours.

Who have been your greatest influences?

At the very beginning we were influenced by Iron Maiden, Hammerfall… but as long as we evolved, and our music did too, we were more influenced by Thrash Metal bands such as Slayer, Testament, Exodus, Lamb of God…

What first got you into music?

We did get into metal music because of both: our families and our close friends. Each member of the band had different experiences to explain that.

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

We’d like to collaborate with our national bands like Crisix, which are bringing their music abroad, lately. This will be very interesting for us!

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

Talking about Festivals, we could not avoid talking about Wacken Open Air in Germany or even Hellfest in France. Attending and playing in both would be pretty amazing. In addition, we would like to play in Resurrection Fest in Galiza.

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

Something that cannot be told…. 

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

We are prepared to make a step forward to bring our music to levels we had never thought of about before.

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

We do really think that he would be Jeff Hanneman or Dimebag Darrell. Two of the most influential character for us.

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

We do love, more than creating, designing and experiencing new music instead. We also love playing in front of our fans. We hate getting upset and frustrated if thinks don’t go as planned.

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

We think one of the worst things in the current music industry is the eagerness of other music styles / artist to influence our own style and scene. 

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

“Reign in Blood” by Slayer, probably.

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

They are pretty different in their own way. It’s difficult to answer because each person in the world prefers something different from our perspective. 

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

We have played in a festival in front of +2000 people, more or less.

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

Each one of us have our own jobs aside from the music, so, we are professionals of our jobs. 

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Dave Lombardo, Brice Dickinson, André Olbrich, Chuck Billy and Josh Wilbur.

What’s next for the band?

Touring to show our new upcoming album to our fans.

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

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/furihelium/ 
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/FuriHelium 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FuriHelium/ 
Bandcamp: https://www.furihelium.bandcamp.com 

Time for a very British question now. As an alternative to the humble sandwich, is the correct name for a round piece of bread common in the UK either a Bap, a Barm (or Barm Cake), a Batch, a Bun a Cob, a Muffin, a Roll or a Tea Cake?

Maybe Bread Roll? In Spanish is called Pan de Leche.

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

Thank you so much to give voice to unlabelled and underground bands. 

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

Defleshed – Grind Over Matter

Grind Over Matter Album Cover Art

Defleshed – Grind Over Matter
Metal Blade Records
Release Date: 28/10/2022
Running Time – 34:00
Review by Richard Oliver
8/10

Some albums you listen to and you can immediately see the circle pits swirling in your head and heads and masses of hair being thrown around without care or caution. Grind Over Matter is one such album and it also heralds the welcome return of Swedish Death-Thrashing bastards Defleshed after an absence of seventeen years.

Grind Over Matter sees the power trio of Gustaf Jorde (vocals and bass), Hell Y. Hansen (guitars) and Matte Modin (drums) reunite for a long awaited sixth album of Death Metal filth. Originally intended only to be a few songs for a vinyl box set, the band hit inspiration and just kept going. The end result is eleven songs of Thrash driven Death Metal which is very no frills in its attitude and delivery but just exactly the sort of audial bitch slap that the band delivers so well. It is impossible not to bang your head furiously with a maniacal grin when you get delicious nuggets of filth such as ‘Heavy Haul’, ‘Staring Blind’ and the title track. It is very much an Old School Death Metal style with nods to Grindcore at times in the delivery and definitely a huge Thrash influence, especially in the riffing style. The songs have plenty of groove as well as being relentlessly furious which comes to the fore in the absolute carnage of ‘Blastbeast’. This is an album that barely pauses for breath with only ‘Behind Dead Eyes’ slowing the pace a tad, but retains all of the intensity that the rest of the album holds.

Defleshed have always been a band sat in the underground with some of their prior releases seen as cult classics. It appears the seventeen-year break has worked wonders for the band as “Grind Over Matter” is a fantastic album. With their own lives and obligations outside of the band, Defleshed will only remain a part-time thing for the trio and there are currently no plans for the band to tour but it is damn good to have these guys back and judging from the songs on “Grind Over Matter”, Defleshed are pleased to be back as well.

‘Grind Over Matter’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Bent Out Of Shape
02. Grind Over Matter
03. One Grave To Fit Them All
04. Heavy Haul
05. Dear Devil
06. Staring Blind
07. Blood Well Spent
08. Unburdened By Genius
09. Behind Dead Eyes
10. Blastbeast
11. Last Nail In The Coffin

LINE-UP:
Gustaf Jorde – Vocals, Bass
Hell Y. Hansen – Guitars
Matte Modin – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Richard Oliver 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.

Algebra – Chiroptera

Chiroptera Album Cover Art

Algebra – Chiroptera
Unspeakable Axe Records
Release Date: 19/09/2022
Running Time: 42:42
Review by Victor Augusto 
8/10

Sometimes I catch myself thinking if I really know about music or if I’ve done right when I decided to start on this beautiful journey of music reviews. The reason for these strange thoughts is because I have Thrash Metal as my favourite musical style, not only to review, but also for listening at home or during my long runs on streets. I guess the music structure and the guitar sound offers a good adrenaline, but considering how much I love this style, I still feel that I don’t know it deeply.

When I got Swiss band Algebra to review, my first impression was that they offered amazing material and at the same time I thought how I could describe them, but not only using the basic adjectives like “They are heavy, brutal fast and pure Thrash”. If you already know them (sadly I’d never heard of them before this review) you are probably tired of hearing these words, considering you all know they are good. So let me try to give my overall view of their new material.

I felt that they tried to keep their roots in the European way of playing Thrash, like their compatriots of Coroner do. It means a sound that flees from that Bay Area formula even though they have different elements depending on which country the band is from in Europe. A small example of that is how British Thrash tends to bring few classical elements for their music and maybe bands from other countries bring things from that scenario. Well, it is an impression I have, considering my lack of knowledge about it and I am not sure if Algebra tried to do the same. 

Despite all the gibberish I said, Algebra tries to navigate over everything I mentioned. Ok, I said they are more to the Swiss elements that I know from Coroner, but you still have that pure classic Thrash as the first song ‘Resuscitation’ (after the intro ‘The Fallen’). Another example is the beautiful wall of guitars allied with a fast double bass, like in ‘Kleptomaniac’, that reminded me of the musical structure of Exodus, for example. A killer track, by the way. Probably the one that I most enjoyed. 

Another interesting detail is how fearless they are to explore things that even the most loyal fan could complain about. It starts smooth and early on the album, right on ‘Constricted’ with a few clean voices which is an escape from the heavy sound so far. This freedom to not be chained only to brutality. ‘Eternal Sleep’ also shows a more ‘laid-back’ approach that even gives a small sensation of a good Punk Rock or Hardcore moment, diluted among all the heaviness. 

Overall, I loved the addition of all elements of a good Thrash band, no matter from which part of the world these influences came from. All the sonority apart from their main style just came to make it even more creative. “Chiroptera” is a mature album from a band that have been releasing materials in a good frequency throughout the last decade. Probably their experience of being on road helps to increase the amazing results.

‘Kleptomaniac’ Official Audio 

TRACKLISTING:
01. The Fallen
02. Resuscitation 
03. Kleptomaniac 
04. Constricted 
05. Accomplice 
06. Chiroptera
07. Suspect 
08. Eternal Sleep 
09. Losing Touch 
10. Burn the Bridge
11. The Great Deception

LINE-UP:
Ed Nicod – Vocals and Guitars
Nick Abery – Guitars
Victor Brandt – Bass
Florent Duployer – Drums

LINKS:

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.

Hydra Vein – Unlamented

Unlamented Album Cover Art

Hydra Vein – Unlamented
Back on Black Records
Release Date: 21/10/22
Running Time: 39:00
Review by Paul Hutchings
7/10

Turn the clock back to 1987 and Brighton saw the arrival of Hydra Vein on the Thrash scene. “Rather Death Than False of Faith” in 1988 and its follow up “After the Dream” the following year. They split the year after, and it wasn’t until 2019 that Hydra Vein re-emerged. Today they have a much-changed line-up, with guitarist Danny Ranger the sole survivor. The band have relocated to the Netherlands, joined forces with new members and now are set to release Unlamented on the Thrash world. 

With a range of diverse subjects in their cross hairs, the band bring a sharp on their subject matter, including the title track which covers missing children who are preyed upon across the world. Yes, Hydra Vein don’t shy away from the big topics, and they rightly don’t give a fuck who knows it. 

“Unlamented” is a very solid Thrash album. It sits very much in the Solitary, Virus, Helgrind and Xentrix style of UK thrash, retaining the old school style but adding bits of sludge into a couple of the tracks. It’s fiery stuff, opening track ‘Does the End Justify the Means?’ rages violently, snarling vocals, intense guitar work and pummelling drumming combine to provide a visceral beast of an opener (ignoring the intro of course). 

The title track, with its chilling social message is another driving beast, Damon Maddison’s throbbing bass lines and more razor-sharp guitar work stands out as one of the best tracks here. ‘Age of the Plague’ is no doubt a reflection of the past couple of years, and it moves at a rampaging pace, ironic given its subject matter but I like the lyrical theme of man’s hubris towards nature and the arrogance that consumes us all as a so-called superior being. 

Manley-Bird’s vocals are impressive throughout. A deep-soaked gravelled roar that fits in with the onslaught that the triple guitar attack brings. The music is tight, ferocious, and fast. Tracks like ‘Blood Eagle Dawn’ and ‘Blue Lamp’ are muscular, powerful songs and the whole album knit together well. The only challenge which faces Hydra Vein, as is the case with many bands of the new Thrash genre, is to bring something to the table that is a little bit special. For whilst it is solid, “Unlamented” doesn’t really present anything that hundreds of bands are already doing. If you like listening to the same style of thrash repeatedly, then this album will slot in nicely. If you fancy something a little more challenging and progressive, then you may not find it here. 

‘Age Of Plaque’ Official Lyric Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Khuylo
02 Does the End Justify the Means?
03. Unlamented
04. Eradication Zone
05. Age of Plague
06. Blood Eagle Dawn
07. Blue lamp
08. Mano a Mano
09. Twighlight

LINE-UP:
Danny Ranger – Guitar
James Manley-Bird – Vocals
Damon Maddison – Bass
Jonas Voorspoels – Guitar
Henry Pol – Guitar
John den Buitelaar – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Hutchings 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.

Headshot – Eyes of the Guardian

Eyes of the Guardian Album Cover Art

Headshot – Eyes of the Guardian
MDD Records
Release Date: 14/10/22
Running Time: 42:18 
Review by Paul Hutchings
6/10

Sometimes you’ll get an album that wows you. Sometimes you’ll get an album that you detest. Both inspire a passion which is hard to ignore. You’ll either want to play it again and again or throw the damn thing in the bin. Disappointingly, German Thrashers Headshot stir neither reaction, the result being an average album that is solidly produced and delivered but sadly lacking in anything that fires the emotions. 

Having formed in 1993, the band changed singers in 2008 with Daniela Karrer taking over the microphone. It’s been over a decade since their last album, 2011’s “Synchronicity”, but one wonders if this is worth the wait. 

Let’s get it clear. This isn’t a bad album. It just doesn’t bring anything new to the table. The Thrash style of song like ‘Burned’, the title track and ‘Veins of the Earth’ add little to the sound of a million other bands, whilst the forays into slightly heavier styles on tracks like ‘Ground Zero’ just aren’t cohesive, the song sounding like a poor Arch Enemy cover band. Throw in a random 1:32 instrumental called ‘Tentacular (Part 1)’ that does nothing apart from demonstrate the band’s undoubted technical prowess and you have an album that just doesn’t fire any excitement.

Headshot are undoubtedly influenced by the Bay Area scene of the 1980’s, alongside some of their own countrymen, in particular Kreator. The challenge for them is to produce something that is a little different from the standard Thrash blueprint. Sadly, they don’t get there. Despite the intensity of the shredding guitar work, the impact of songs like ‘Under a Blood Red Sky’ is limited. It’s well delivered, yet cliched and Karrer’s vocals are testing. At times they flow neatly, but at others they are a real struggle. ‘Veins of the Earth’ is one example, the forced nature of the style coming at the detriment of the overall track. 

Musically, Headshot are solid but unspectacular, with the most impressive song being the nine-minute Progressive workout ‘Invisible’ which closes the record. Elsewhere the songs are cohesive yet limited in creativity. Modern Thrash Metal may be in a healthy condition, but for every new and exciting band there are many who are just rehashing the same songs repeatedly. Headshot are sitting somewhere in the middle, and whilst they do what they do well, it’s an album that overall lacks the punch and drive that is needed to push them anywhere near the top end of the genre. 

‘Eyes Of The Guardian’ Official Lyric Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Burned (One by one) 
02. Eyes of The Guardians 
03. Scars of Damnation 
04. Ground Zero 
05. Tentacular (Part 1) 
06. Divide Et Impera 
07. Under A Blood Red Sky 
08. The Impenetrable Maze 
09. Veins of The Earth 
10. Invisible 

LINE-UP:
Daniela Karrer – Vocals
Olaf Danneberg – Guitar
Max Hunger – Guitar/bass
Ben Heber – Bass
Till Hartmann – Drums 

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Hutchings 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.

My Funeral – Funeral Manifesto

Funeral Manifesto Album Cover Art

My Funeral – Funeral Manifesto
Inverse Records
Release Date: 07/10/22
Running Time: 39:27 
Review by Laura Barnes
7/10

Seven years have passed since Finnish Thrash Metal band My Funeral released their last full-length album, “Violence Academy”, but it appears that Thrash Metal is a force unburdened by the passage of time. My Funeral have come out swinging with this latest offering, “Funeral Manifesto”. From the title alone, it is clear that this album aims to be the definitive My Funeral album. Unrelenting in its heaviness and stubborn in its rage, this is just under 40 minutes of pure, no-frills Thrash Metal. If this sounds like your cup of metal tea, then keep reading.

To say that “Funeral Manifesto” is an angry album would be an understatement. It is fucking furious. It is so pissed off that it wants to eat your soul just for the satisfaction of spitting it back out. Frontman Ilkka Sepponen’s vocals sound like a dog’s growl and lion’s roar rolled into one and is a huge improvement from his performance on “Violence Academy”. Although the vocals on “Violence Academy” were far from bad, “Funeral Manifesto” boasts a newly established confidence that convinces and compels. There is a complexity to the anger within “Funeral Manifesto” that separates it from My Funeral’s previous work – there is a sadness to it, and a greater sense of depth.

There are a few standout tracks on this album. ‘Primitive Evil’ provides an ice-cold opener to the album, with an almost melodic chorus reminiscent of Locus-Era Machine Head. After this, the focus shifts from melody to hard-hitting riffs and snaking guitar solos. ‘Darkness Walks Beside Me’ chugs its way towards a venomous earworm of a chorus. The album reaches its emotional climax during ‘Confessions’, an absolutely devastating song that sums up the ethos of “Funeral Manifesto”. It is an anthem of shame and torment that really showcases My Funeral’s song-writing growth. A special shout out also goes to the guitar solo on this track – the combination of style and production produces a delightfully retro result. These songs are demonstrative of a My Funeral that are passionate about what they are doing and are confident in their passion. 

I will say, however, that the only trouble with the no-frills approach is that sometimes, frills can help make things a little more digestible. “Funeral Manifesto” is an intense album, and for the large part, that’s a good thing, Sometimes, though, that intensity blurs songs together, especially in the latter half of the album. Each song on this album is a good listen, but some tracks – such as “The Night Will Come” – warrant an individual listen in order to be appreciated fully. That said, My Funeral do end the album on a strong note, with ‘The Uprising’. The clean vocals used during the verses on this track are fantastic at adding tension and structure to the song. When Sepponen bellows out the concluding, ‘YOU CAN’T BRING ME/DOOOOWWWWN’ it feels cathartic and earned. A sanguine ending for a grisly album. 

All in all, this is a top-notch Thrash Metal album, perfect for hyping yourself up before beating the shit out of your enemies. It would be a great addition to any Thrash Metal collection. 

TRACKLISTING
01. Primitive Evil
02. Suicidal Thrash
03. Darkness Walks Beside Me
04. When Darkness Falls
05. Nirvana of Negative
06. Confession
07. The Night Will Come
08. Twice Fallen Angel
09. No Regrets
10. The Uprise

LINE-UP:
Ilkka Sepponen – Vocals, Bass
Joonas Kivineimi – Guitars
Carlos Correa – Guitars
Tomi Louhesto – Drums

LINKS: 

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Laura Barnes 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.

Blind Illusion – Wrath Of The Gods

Wrath Of The Gods Album Cover Art

Blind Illusion – Wrath Of The Gods
Hammerheart Records
Release Date: 07/10/2022
Running Time:
Review by Richard Oliver
6/10

Blind Illusion are a band revered in old school Thrash circles and known for their technical Thrash debut album “The Sane Asylum” in 1988 and also known for who played in the band on said album – namely Les Claypool and Larry Lalonde of Primus. Apart from that cult debut album, Blind Illusion have mainly been inactive, splitting up in 1992 and then reforming in 2009 with only vocalist and guitarist Marc Biedermann remaining from the early days. A second album “Demon Master” was released and universally panned, but now Blind Illusion are going for third time lucky with album number three “Wrath Of The Gods”.

Much like previous album “Demon Master”, Marc Biedermann is the only remaining original member of the band on “Wrath Of The Gods”, but he is joined by Tom Gears on bass and also some old school Thrash royalty in the form of Doug Piercy (ex-Heathen) on guitars and Andy Galeon (ex-Death Angel) on drums. After the misfire of “Demon Master”, what we get on “Wrath Of The Gods” is very much an old school Thrash Metal vibe. This is far more straightforward then the technical and Progressive Thrash of “The Sane Asylum” and has a lot of Classic Rock and Metal leanings as well as that classic Thrash sound. Album opener ‘Straight As The Crowbar Flies’ is a great solid Thrash song, as is ‘Slow Death’, whilst ‘Spaced’ is more of a groovy Heavy Metal tune. There are odd noodlings of technicality such as in ‘Protomolecule’ and ‘Lucifer’s Awakening’, but on the whole this is quite a straightforward album. Seven songs make up the main album but the CD edition has two bonus songs ‘Amazing Maniacal Monolith’ which is a another more straightforward Metal song but with an interesting Bluesy mid-section and ‘No Rest ‘til Budapest’ which has a Classic Rock sound to it.

“Wrath Of The Gods” has good and bad things about it. The thrasher moments are the strongest whilst some of the Classic Metal and Rock influenced songs sound very generic. In fact, the main criticism that can be levelled at “Wrath Of The Gods” is that it is just a very run of the mill sounding album. It is a massive step up from “Demon Master”, but it is a rather forgettable album on the whole. If you are looking for a very meat and potatoes thrashy heavy metal album then this will do the job but if you want something with more substance to it then you will probably find this album underwhelming. 

TRACKLISTING:
01. Straight as the Crowbar Flies
02. Slow Death
03. Protomolecule
04. Spaced
05. Wrath of the Gods
06. Behemoth
07. Lucifer’s Awakening
08. Amazing Maniacal Monolith (CD Bonus Track)
09. No Rest ‘til Budapest (CD Bonus Track)

LINE-UP:
Marc Biedermann (Vocals, Guitars)
Tom Gears (Bass)
Doug Piercy (Guitars)
Andy Galeon (Drums)

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Richard Oliver 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.

Elimination – Icon of Despair

Elimination Logo

Elimination – Icon of Despair
Roasted by Rob Sutton

Ugh! Thrash, my least favourite of the Metal genres and here I am presented with Ipswich based Elimination. I suppose being from Ipswich means there should be some interesting riffs, what with the extra digits on their hands, but alas we have riffs that sound like they have been used in every Thrash song since the dawn of time.

First up, as always, let’s begin with the vocals and who has resurrected Lemmy?! Man, this facial hair is poorly kept, if this is an imitation of the late great, then I would seriously recommend getting some Gillette on it and save yourself the embarrassment. Anyway, I digress, the actual style seems to be a cross between a shout and a scream much like that of Kreator, but with added constipation. This first scream sounds faker than Katie Prices tits. I think there is an effort to change things up at the beginning of the song with a clean intro, again this is just a vague attempt to be different and stand out from the ever-growing pile of shit this genre throws up. Does this work? Kind of, but it’s more of an after thought… like having a second child. This is continued by a few more melodies throughout the song which do give it a more European feel to it, so I’m guessing these guys were gutted when Brexit happened, as plagiarising the Germans will be a lot harder now. Still, drums are pretty solid and actually sound fat, shame the drummer looks like your Dad when he decides to go to his first Metal gig with you (yep that backwards hat is about as cool as MySpace). 

Lyrically, wow! We have the ability to rhyme and it’s used in almost every line. I didn’t realise the education system in Ipswich actually worked, although this is done to the standard of year 6 SATS and not that of a grown educated man. Guitar solos in songs tend to be a highlight for me and while these cut through the mix nicely, it does feel like a bit of a showoff. Well, I guess they have to try and impress women somehow (or men, I don’t judge). Speaking of which there is a lovely woman in the video, if this is one of their girlfriends then wow they are punching… or have money.

Shit! Bassist again, well its Thrash, no one cares about a bassist.

Disclaimer: 

None of the above represents my true feelings towards Elimination as they really are one of the best Thrash bands on the UK circuit! Ahhh what the hell, constipated, six fingered Trash metal!

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rob Sutton 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.

Sinnery – Black Bile

Black Bile Album Cover Art

Sinnery – Black Bile
Exitus Stratagem Records
Release Date: 16/09/22
Running Time: 49:07 minutes 
Review by Paul Hutchings
8/10

Whipping up a maelstrom of hatred and discontent, Israeli thrashers Sinnery may have taken six years to produce their sophomore release, but it’s such a snarling beast that it is most definitely worth the wait. Formed in 2012 in Herzliya, the quartet have thrown off the shackles to tour with some big names, including German legends Tankard. Their first album “A Feast of Fools” emerged in 2016 and they then enlisted the magic of Matt Hyde (Machine Head, Trivium, Slipknot, Bullet for My Valentine) to mix and master “Black Bile”.

So, what do Sinnery bring to the table? For starters, the album ripples with energy. You can feel the vibes pulsing through opening track ‘The Burning’ which leads straight into the title track. Alon Karnieli’s delivery is savage, a gritty, raging roar that combines the bruising aggression of Krysthla’s Ade Mayes with the power of ex-Onslaught frontman Sy Keeler. 

‘Who Will Be Eaten First’ follows. It’s a stripped back Municipal Waste banger, all heads down and flailing arms, high tempo and circle-pit inducing. The chorus chucks a huge hook into the mix, which is then followed by some Iron Maiden dual layered guitars. This all happens in under three-minutes. It’s powerful, if a little routine – but gets the blood flowing. 

Whilst Sinnery do the short sharp blasts well, it’s the longer tracks on the album which work best for me. The six-minute ‘Sever’ sees them slow down but retain the heaviness, reminiscent of Primordial in parts, although the vocals are variable. Other tracks which hit the mark include ‘Mouthful of Nails’ with a riff that could bring down walls and expansive lead guitar work whilst album closer ‘Holes’ drifts into Black Metal territory at points with some shimmering guitar work and blistering drum work, all complimenting the harrowing vocals. 

Their press release suggests the band may be heading to the UK later this year. If that’s the case, then this writer will be very keen to catch them. On this showing, there may be a storm of ferocity which needs to be seen.

‘Black Bile’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. The Burning 
02. Black Bile  
03. Who Will Be Eaten First 
04. Sever 
05. Anti Tribe 
06. Mouthful of Nails 
07. Hanged from The Sun  
08. Bleak 
09. Here Below  
10. Holes 

LINE-UP:
Alon Karnieli – Vocals & Guitars
Idan Kringel – Guitars 
Saar Tuvi – Bass 
Matan Carlos Mandelbaum – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Hutchings 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.