Absurd Asgardsrei: possibly the worst re-issue in metal

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In 1998, a few black metal musicians — many of whom faced legal troubles in their home countries — came together to make a recording. The result, Asgardsrei, captured black metal in transition: its epic past, its roots in punk merged with Oi, and its tackling of unpopular subject matter, in this case out-of-the-closet NSBM.

This form of music differed NSBMTM that was to follow which meant exclusively Drudkh-style droning sugar-substitute melodies and battle-related titles with neo-Romantic lyrics:


Alone I wander
Wastelands of the soul
Among the corpses and ash
A single flower rises
Kill the Jews with fire

Absurd back in the day combined a poetic style that might be called “immaturism,” a wide-ranging complaint with the modern world, and yes, some rather violent ideas. It defied categorization. Their debut album, Facta Loquuntur, sounded at times like ultra-simplistic punk with lyrics from a child’s point of view, pointing out not policy failures or physical breakdown in Western society, but its completely backward spirit and denial of all existential importance. Always on the edge of black metal, Absurd both increased the discernible Oi/RAC influence and put together more black metal style riffing, creating a hybrid that kept both voices without allowing the extremes of either to take over.

Fast-forward to 2012. Absurd — now with none of the 1999 members — re-issues Asgardsrei in a new form. As it is arguably the most musically interesting album from Absurd, combining the raw forest metal (this is the band that wrote “Green Heart” after all) with greater proficiency and alertness, it could be a big seller for this band. Unfortunately, they decided to under guise of a re-master actually alter this album. First they turned up the guitars and turned down keyboards, background sounds, etc. They replaced the subtle intro with patriotic bluster and industrial percussion. Then they either modified or added drums to give the album a constant kick-happy Oi beat. Finally, they modified vocals to sound more like the recent Oi/metal hybrid the band has been putting out. The result crushed all subtlety and made this album very much the exact thing this band in its original form would have recoiled at.

Thuringian plain, deep dark forest
Evil dwells on there in the woods
Snowcovered hills, cold winds blowing
Romantic place, is it understood ?!

Evil in the forest in Germany’s Green Heart !

Hateful savages, strong black minds
Out of the forest, kill the human kind
Burn the settlements and grow the woods
Until this romantic place is understood !

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yZuRPWBbe0

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Remember the fallen (Adam Gadahn)

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Remember those who never had a chance. Like many of us, they grew up in a wasteland of broken families, pointless wage-slave jobs, hippie ideals and grim social collapse mundanities, a utopia of fond visions and a dystopia of nightmarish collisions with the reality those denied. They had nothing to look forward to but a mortgage in the burbs, a family ending in divorce, and a society which systematically disregards the beautiful and zeroes in on the failed, the corrupt and the deceptive. A world coated in advertising and saturated with deceit.

It is my unfortunate duty to relay to you that Adam Gadahn, a metalhead and devout fan of Incantation and Timeghoul, passed away in January by drone strike. As the lapdog media relates:

Officials also announced that a separate strike killed Adam Gadahn, an American who became a prominent propagandist for al Qaeda, was close to Osama bin Laden, and had a $1 million bounty on his head. The deaths bring to seven the number of Americans killed in drone strikes, six of them inadvertently.

The White House said it was unaware the four were present at the sites, which were hit on Jan. 14 and Jan. 19 near the border of Pakistan and Afghanistan. President Barack Obama apologized to the families of the hostages and said he took full responsibility as commander in chief.

This conflict is beyond politics. Yes, we have divided into factions but no, that is not our problem. Our problem rebirths itself time and again because it is within. We have become rotten, whores to our own independence and manipulators so canny we have even fooled ourselves. This civilization has sold itself snake oil for centuries and the result is the continual destruction of those with spirit, sensitivity and the guts to do something about it. Those who conform, lower standards and follow trends always win. This is the source of evil the real thing, as opposed to the supernatural scapegoat that the credulous choose to believe exists.

Evil is real. Its name is error, and all error consists of separating our expectations from reality. That eventually becomes a devotion to lying about the split between mental image and the world beyond, at which point we retreat into a fantasy existence of mental projection, desires and emotions. As a wise poet once said:

Take your instinct by the reins
You’d better best to rearrange
What we want and what we need
Has been confused, been confused

We are confused. Our wars no longer advance anything but the defense of the status quo, and all of us hate that. We all admit the problem is morons and that 90% of everything sucks, but no one is willing to get past the sacred cows lest some opportunist step up and whip up a lynch mob to tear down the heretic. “The nerve of that guy — he said our society is actually failing. What a rube!”

Above you can see a letter written by Gadahn back in the day. It contains some of his opinions on death metal and literature. He had great taste in metal, came from a broken home in a broken time, and did his best. Rest in peace, Adam.

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Castrator – “No Victim” (2014)

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Approaching deathcore like a doom metal band, Castrator mix invariant riff-chorus pairs with extended solos over slower riffing and hybridize the chromatic riffing of their influences with Judas Priest style hard rock riffs. The strength is the melodic soloing which, while very much cut from a conventional metal/rock mold, guides the slowly looping slow-paced riffs to make an interesting atmospheric piece. Their death metal riffs however both conform strictly to archetypes and achieve no variance, so that a wall of extremely similar sound gives way to a solo, then repeats briefly and fades away. Many of these riffs stick to fixed patterns at a single note, which produces the kind of droning that made post-Suffocation clones excruciating. Melodic hooks drape over power chords in a backdoor way of creating a groove, but these become repetitive quickly as well and have the kind of pop tendencies that trivialize death metal. The vocals perhaps provide the strongest point of focus for this band, but that in turn becomes a weakness, because vocals alone cannot unite a loop of similar verse/chorus riffs with breakdowns into a song. The gruff monotone vocals keep a bass-heavy pulse going that drives songs forward with aggression and anger. While the band write catchy songs, the low internal complexity and archetypal riffing detract from the desire to hear this again.

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Another day, another novelty band from media

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What is a novelty band? A band chosen for anything other than its music. Common topics include bands with: women, female singers, minorities, retarded people, gay people, transsexuals, unusual instruments, drug use, JPOP girls and children. Record companies love novelty bands because the media fawns all over them, then the hipsters do, and it sells hype quickly and bypasses the normal metal fans, who are critical of quality instead of being driven by novelty.

The latest novelty comes to us from Vice Magazine who want us to read about Al-Namrood from Saudi Arabia. While it is true that this band may be risking their lives to perform, it seems like they face roughly the same amount of struggle that bands behind the Iron Curtain did back in the 1980s, which means they can circumnavigate authorities to exist, record an album, shoot a video, and be feautured in American media with their faces in the video and not get killed.

As with all novelty stories, this will be short-lived. There have been many tales of heavy metal bands from the Middle East and after the media blitz, these bands have gone nowhere. The quality test is what matters. If you cannot pass the quality test, you are SOL. Al-Namrood will be the latest to fail the quality test because their output is only nominally black metal, not aesthetically distinctive and indeed a bit awkward, and finally, the songwriting is not that memorable at least by metal standards.

“Bat Al Tha ar Nar Muheja” consists of fast melodic riffing in the style of Satyricon Nemesis Divina with a Middle Eastern influence on the choices of scales used. The vocals, on the other hand, sound like something from more recent Absurd albums. The song seems put together in the style favored by Behemoth, where riffs relate marginally to each other and the main point is to follow the vocals and rhythms to a big break and a melodic interlude, after which point the band returns to blasting fast single-picked riffs. While it is not terrible, it is also not exceptional.

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#MetalGate Band Podcast 3

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The MetalGate Band group produces a series of podcasts where informed participants in the movement against censorship in music meet to talk about issues of the day. If your Mom is in the room (for modern metal fans) or your children are (for underground metal stalwarts) you might want to keep the mute button handy because there is frequent, copious and gleeful use of obscenities.

Every episode has its own topic, and some high points which may be related. The peak of this episode seems to be the discussion about the difference between making media solely to make money or be popular, and those who want to be popular as a means of getting their music or movies out there to express an idea.

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Black Witchery/Revenge – Holocaustic Death March to Humanity’s Doom

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War metal bands Black Witchery and Revenge issued their new release on tax day, April 15, with each band recording three new songs of their trademark sound, which their biography eagerly informs us is inspired by Blasphemy and Sarcofago. With excellent and intriguing cover art, and raw but clear production, this release should appeal to fans of the genre.

Black Witchery tear into their three tracks with a studied recklessness and noisy attack. These shorter songs use the standard circular structure with a final detour, but the band inserts rhythmic breaks throughout — the war metal equivalent of a breakdown in deathcore — to build intensity. Most riffs follow the rock/grindcore paradigm of a static chord, possibly with a chromatic offset, establishing a rhythm to which a fill is added. These riffs resemble faster version of punk hardcore riffs in minor key with lower tuning and faster, more precise playing. This shows a heritage with more in common with Napalm Death than Immortal and a lack of the atmosphere and uniquely shaped songs that made the Blasphemy proto-black metal grindcore hybrid work well, as well as an absence of the melodic structuring of the Black Witchery demo. The relentless aggression of these songs will make them popular but they will not be as memorable as Blasphemy or Sarcofago. If this band wishes to improve, their first step will be to worry less about being intense enough and worry more about shaping that intensity so that at the end of each track, a profound shifting of mood and idea leaves the listener in awe. This was the standard Blasphemy achieved on the best moments of Fallen Angel of Doom and the direction Sarcofago indicated their material should take with songs like “The Black Vomit.” Of these three tracks, “Curse of Malignancy” is my favorite for its directed power that forcibly enacts a concise regimen that achieves the feeling of warfare at least in concept.

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Revenge takes a different approach to war metal through riffs longer in duration which use the same surging technique but depend on active drums to break pattern with accents and spur the riff on to change. This technique can rally the attention of the listener and is often used in marching bands. It however creates a reliance on the drums, which although it makes the surge tremolo riff technique less important, also relegates guitars to a secondary role and creates a type of static riffing that resembles doom metal sped up to grindcore paces. Much like Black Witchery, this music is almost exclusively chromatic, which gives it the primitive and violent feel prized by fans. Revenge also tackle Bathory “Equimanthorn,” but in imposing their own rhythmic standards they enhance the jerky and sing-song nature of this tune (comparable to Mayhem “Deathcrush”) and add nothing to the original, so it stands out barely. This band has always been one of the more technically proficient voices in war metal and while their music is enjoyable in a single listen, the songs are too similar in approach, topic and technique for prolonged listening. “Revenge” rounds out this three-song EP and may be my favorite track on this side for its compact, solidly focused assault.

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Infernus – Grinding Christian Flesh (2015)

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Late model black metal features many of these entries: as much borrowed from the days of speed metal as black metal, keeping a constant “jazzercise” style constant tempo and intensity, and while there are some sweet riffs, they are marooned in a sea of throwaway budget riffs and patterns from 1987 Exodus clones. Infernus has great rasping vocals but essentially, doom their album with highly predictable note progressions in the riffs and a constant, incessant droning style of composition. Many heavy metal touches pervade this album, suggesting that like early Gehennah and Nifelheim, this is heavy metal dressing up as black metal and equalizing all of its riffs to the same speed to hide their hard rock, speed metal and heavy metal origins. While the fans of the band will defend it on the basis of irony or some nostalgia, the result is musical tedium because of a failure to come to point. This is like watching the 5,000 slides of the vacation your neighbor just took, except that now the slides are old riffs and old tropes.

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Music industry comes up with successor to Opeth

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Opeth made a career for themselves out of making death metal that was not death metal. Instead, it was rock music that dropped in death metal riffs during the choruses, kind of like how a nu-metal band plays quasi-acoustic and whispers so it can explode into angry dad-hating rage. This allowed the audience to feel like outsider rebels while being low-risk conformists.

Over time, the Swedes in Opeth found their original inspiration, which was to be the Dave Matthews Band for the vegan chocolate Tumblr set, and stepped aside from being death metal-flavored entirely. Never fear! The labels have brought you Tribulation which is essentially the Opeth sound updated with some hints from Enslaved about how to be metallish without using metal riffs and, thankfully, uptempo and catchier songs.

Tribulation is what Opeth always should have been. Essentially hard rock, using somewhat linear but expanded song structures, they create the atmosphere of a Gothic band with the guitars of heavy folk rock, making atmospheric and pleasant music that keeps the hoarse whispering vocals of death metal. For fans of Cradle of Filth, Opeth, Tiamat, newer Paradise Lost and Pyogenesis, this is a perfect fit.

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Interview: Swordcery

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After hearing their somewhat unusual fusion of NWOBHM and doom metal, I received the opportunity to have a chat with the members of Argentinian band Swordcery. They asked me to meet them off the coast and there I was, in a rowboat with a Zune to record the interview, and a submarine broke the surface of the ocean a few hundred yards away. Among the torpedos and cruise missiles, we talked about Swordcery and metal.

You are drummer in Swordcery, a heavy metal band from Argentina. Can you tell me how the band was formed, how long it has been around, and what recordings you have released?

Andrés: I was introduced to Marcos, Swordcery guitarist, by a mutual friend. He kind of auditioned for this classic rock band I was playing at the time, but while he was still learning the songs that project disbanded. A couple of days after that, we half jokingly bounced off the idea of starting up a stoner/doom metal band, as I had recently got him into The Sword and Elder, and we both enjoyed Sabbath and Black Label Society.

Andrés: Fast forward a week later, he came up with a riff (which would eventually be the beginning Ruined Realm) and we got together and just kinda worked on it, just the two of us. It took us some time to find out exactly how to play what we wanted because neither of us had any experience at creating that particular sort of metal, we just knew that we liked it a fucking lot and that we wanted in. At some point it just clicked and we decided it was time to look for a bassist. An acquaintance suggested Isaias, and we’ve been at it together ever since. This all happened almost exactly three years ago now.

Were there any particular challenges in becoming a heavy metal fan, and then a heavy metal band, in Argentina? What about in your local area?

Andrés: I think heavy metal enthusiasts in Argentina face the same challenges that people all over the world do: being relegated to obscurity, portrayed in negative stereotypes in mainstream media, etc. Same goes for those that want to carve an artistic career with metal. However, a particular trait of argentinean culture that I think plays a role in all things metal here is the fact that due to our recent historical background (mainly the military juntas and their “cultural protectionist” and nationalist policies), heavy metal and hard rock are still perceived, almost subconsciously in most people, as something foreign, a cultural artefact that does not belong in this country. I think that pushes newcomers away from metal and into more mainstream and “acceptable” interests.

Andrés: That said, there has been a somewhat vibrant but uninspired and homogeneous metal scene in our country for three decades now, and in my opinion it’s no coincidence that for the most part it has always overplayed and explored the same themes again and again: national pride, identity and social issues. Almost like it’s been trying to fit in in the cultural argentinean ethos. I’ve digressed a little bit, but this plays a role when you try to make your way, musically speaking, into the metal scene here: it gets really, really difficult to find a crowd that buys into your music if you don’t pray at that particular altar. This all applies to the local level as well, with the added bonus of living in a somewhat uninhabited area like Patagonia that makes gathering a following all the more difficult.

What type of band do you hope to be? Is this a weekend project for you, or do you want to play Eurovision?

Isaias: My greatest ambition is that our music gets recognition at least in our continent, and that it finds its way into Europe and the USA eventually, and for us to make a living of our art, travel and play around the world.

Andrés: Like Isaias said, definitely not a weekend project. Making a living out of our music would be more than enough, but I think we allow ourselves to dream as big as possible. Who doesn’t daydream of being the next Black Sabbath and playing huge arenas and all that, right?

4. What are your influences? Your music could be described as (approximately) a fusion between old Witchfinder General and modern groove-based heavy metal. What helped you along the road to this style?

Isaias: As a band, our influences lie mostly in bands that share the same genre: Black Sabbath, The Sword, Elder, Red Fang, and the like. I like to highlight the fact that we don’t only consume heavy metal. I think that’s part of what makes Swordcery different. Individually our influences are totally different and diverse.

Andrés: To elaborate on that, Marcos comes from a thrash and grunge background, infused with more extreme and technical bands like Amon Amarth and Meshuggah, for example. On the other hand, I’ve always been a fan of hard rock and classic metal, from old Judas and Rainbow to Manowar, and a big glam fan too, like early Motlëy or its more modern iterations like Crashdiet or Hardcore Superstar (Poison is shit though). We try to keep focused when we are playing as a band but I think all the wildly different influences subtly permeate the final product.

Andrés: I’d say we’ve always aimed, since day one, to create a big, fat, epic sound, like a moving wall of living thunder. Along the way we somehow developed a penchant for structurally complex songs. We are always trying to find new ways of making our brand of doom/stoner metal though, and we hope to reflect that in our upcoming releases.

What are the most important bands in the history of heavy metal to you?

Andrés: I know I might get shit on for this but my opinion is that the perfect trifecta of both hard rock and heavy metal was, is and will ever be Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, and Black Sabbath. I’m aware that there were a good deal of bands before them that paved the way to their final sound, and bands after them that refined it, but in my opinion they were the ones who set the foundations that we still follow to this day.

Most of your music is quasi-instrumental, with few vocals. Is there a lot of interest in instrumental metal? Why did you choose to make your music this way?

Isaias: It is true that our songs are mostly instrumental, with only maybe one third of vocals, but I don’t think we wrote them like that on purpose, they just kind of came out that way, maybe due to the nature of the genre.

Marcos: I guess we made our songs that way because it simply felt right at that time. Personally, as I’m a guitarist first and a singer second, I always enjoyed the instrumental side of our songs the most, probably due to the fact that I’ve drawn lots of inspiration from bands that are highly instrumental, like Elder and Colour Haze. For better or for worse, I think this has pushed us away from the more mainstream vein of metal.

Isaias: I’d like to note that we are currently trying to shift our focus a little bit to work more on the vocal aspect of our songs, trying to come up with more interesting melodies and playing around with vocal harmonies. This doesn’t mean we are going to make another instrumental song in the future though.

Andrés: As far as interest in instrumental music goes, at least in the local level, and mostly from people that are more used to more traditional or vocal focused metal, we’ve gotten mixed criticism.

Who is in the band, who composes the music, and how do you put together songs?

Isaías: We are a three piece. Marcos sings and plays guitar, Andrés provides ambience with his drumming and writes the lyrics, and I try to fatten our tunes with my four strings. As for our composition, we never start the same way; sometimes ideas spring up while we are jamming, or we come up with a specific riff or idea in mind and then work on it, and sometimes Andrés brings a lyric and we take it from there. After that we simply work on it, the three of us.

Marcos: Instrumentally speaking, me and Isaías come up with most it, though Andrés has an active participation when coming up and picking which riffs work and which don’t. We usually try to find a way to end up with a song that the three of us feel it’s ours, which even though it might sound like its not, it’s actually very difficult.

Andrés: In the end it totally pays off because the final product is truly the brainchild of our collective ideas, which makes Swordcery almost an independent creature, a thoughtform, if you will, unlike most other bands where everything is in charge of only one or two members and one as a listener can kinda get used to a sound and see the patterns, and finally get bored with them. Sure, as Marcos says, this means it usually takes a lot of time for us to come up and finish a new song, there’s a lot of debate and brainstorming going on constantly, and sometimes there’s friction but that’s only natural, and it goes to show how much each of us care about the end product. But this synergy that we have going on, how we actively feed on each other ideas, whether they work or not, that’s what sets us apart from most bands and for me that’s what makes me feel proud of Swordcery.

Speaking on metalgate topics: have you had any clashes with censorship? What about people objecting to your lyrical content? How do you feel about the idea that there should be rules about what metal bands can sing about, or that metal bands should worry about complaints about their content or image?

Marcos: So far we’ve only been criticized for writing our lyrics in English.

Andrés: And I think that ties in with what I answered before about heavy metal still being a foreign artefact to most of the local populace and the overly pseudo-nationalist lyrical content of most local bands. People here will gladly sing along to an Iron Maiden song but if an argie band writes and sings in english it gets frowned upon. At the same time that might have kept us away from criticism because most of our audience here doesn’t have a more than a superficial knowledge of the english language.

Andrés: I personally think (and to some extent I’d say my bandmates share the sentiment) that freedom of speech is sacred, for everyone, and more so for artists because artists, and that includes comedians and the like, are the ones that usually push the envelope regarding what is socially accepted and what is not, acting as the spearhead of new ideas and lines of thinking. If you restrain that, in the name of some perceived decency, political correctness, or whatever, you’re chocking the life out of one of society’s pillars which is intellectual discourse. And anyway, as it’s been proven again and again, ideas simply can’t be restrained, no matter how much Orwellian pro-censorship idiots try to. They always find a way to seep past any barrier, and do so with twice the strength.

Andrés: That also applies to what some call self-censorship, trying to make it look like when you self-censor yourself its not really censorship. Well, I’m of the mind that self-censorship disguised as decency or whatever, although pre-emptive in nature, is still censorship, and its even worse because it means that you internalized the idea that you can’t speak your mind so much that you thought-police yourself.

Do you have fascist or neo-Nazi bands down in Argentina? Do you feel they should be censored?

Marcos: There are some, but you gotta let them do their thing. In the end if you tried to silence them you’d only be giving them publicity.

Andrés: “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

According to the band bio, you write “Lyrics focus on sword & sorcery, fantastic, and science fiction themes and literature.” What literature and stories inspire you? Do you think there’s something in common between metal, science fiction and fantasy or romantic literature?

Andrés: Most of my inspiration comes from old pulp stories of the sword & sorcery genre, like Howard’s Conan and Fritz Leiber’s swordsmen stories, Bourroughs Mars and Pellucidar series; we’ve got a song based on Tolkien’s Silmarillion too, and there’s some Lovecraft thrown in for good measure. I’ve also been an avid old school Dungeons & Dragons DM for a bunch of years now and that’s always in the back of my mind when writing lyrics (Ruined Realm originally had a lyric in spanish that detailed the adventures of a typical D&D party on an ancient fallen kingdom, for example). Video games with rich lore have always been a great source of ideas as well, like the Thief series (City of Thieves is mostly about that game’s eponymous City) and The Elder Scrolls legendarium. Lately I’ve been devouring Warhammer 40.000 lore like a madman, and as a result one of our latest songs had a grimdark sci-fi theme. Finally, there are a couple of narratives of my own devising, they too hover around the speculative fiction genre with a weird, gritty bent. I guess it’s pretty clear that as a lyric writer I’m an unapologetic escapist myself. For me, lyrics about social issues or that simply describe everyday situations and feelings without a narrative backdrop, a plot of some sort, are simply boring, both when I’m writing and when I’m reading someone else’s content.

Andrés: I’m no literature major but I think there’s definitely something in common between speculative fiction and metal. What initially drew me into metal was how easily I could be taken away with it, like a switch inside that simply goes on whenever there’s some metal playing around, almost like magic. The only thing that does the same for me is fantastic literature. There’s also the fact that metal is excessive, larger than life, over the top, some might even say, and I feel that that makes an excellent background to deal with larger than life narratives and themes which other genres might not be able to convey appropriately.

You’re going to get this question anyway, but: “Swordcery” is an awkward name. Why did you choose this? Has it caused problems? How does it reflect your music?

Andrés: It simply occurred to me one day while we were driving to practice and Marcos thought it was awesome because it was new, there’s no other band named anything remotely similar. The name’s always been an issue, especially if you keep in mind that most people here are not very proficient in anything besides spanish, but we like it enough to deal with it.

Andrés: It’s a made up word that combines sword & sorcery, which as I said before is the label applied to the literary work of Robert E. Howard and others like him. If you take our lyrics into account it works. Besides, the mental image of a barbarian wielding a sword against a chaos tainted sorcerer is metal as fuck.

If people are interested in hearing more from Swordcery and keeping up with news from the band, what should they do?

You can look us up on Facebook by our name. We are also in bandcamp as “Swordcery” too. Failing that, tell your local scrying expert too look into the empyrean realm and summon us by calling our true daemonic names.

Lineup
Guitarrista y Vocalista: Marcos Corbalan
Baterista: Andres Cabrera
Bajista: Isaías Arza

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Interview with Lech

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An interesting project emerging from the murky Texas underworld, Lech makes music of nearly pure noise and calls it “doom music” rather than a form of metal, but its similarities to metal (as well as electro-acoustic and other forms) cannot be denied. After reviewing the first album from this project, we wanted to hear more and were fortunate to get in a few words with Lech.

Who “is” Lech? Can you tell us band members, your history in music outside of Lech, and how you came together to form Lech -or- decided to do so?

We come from various experimental band backgrounds.

After some time away from music we decided to get together, and put out an 8 track ep.

You describe your music as “doom music,” although others might say electro-acoustic, drone or organic ambient. What inspires your choice of words to describe the sounds that you organize into music?

Doom in our opinion is the fear of impending threat or danger, but it can be taken out of context when describing music genre.

A lot of people think of Black Sabbath as being the godfathers of doom, and no doubt Tony is the Riff master but we believe Screamin’ Jay Hawkins was the true originator.

Doom music describes us best.

Is there a connection to heavy metal, or underground metal, that informs how you compose? Or is this an entirely different style? Do you have influences from any of the following ex-metal projects: Lull, Neptune Towers, Final, K.K. Null, Suuri Shamaani?

Actually the influences of the 8 tracks we have out now come from dark classical. Requiem, dirge, and Walter/ Wendy Carlos.

How do you create your music? Are these found sounds, digital manipulated, distorted or some combination of the above?

Our stuff is all original recordings.

No sample, found, or computer manipulation sounds.

What you hear that doesn’t sound like guitars are in fact guitars. The beginning of Waterwalker is a guitar run through an Eventide Space.

The experimentation that went into our sound would have to be seen to be understood.

When you compose, what do you aim to create? Do you hope to provoke a reaction or recognition in the listener and if so, what is it?

The first thought is probably “what the hell is this?”

Which I think we accomplished without saying, and the other is the true dark side of music.

Music is sometimes misunderstood, and when it is questioned you are usually on the right track.

Is this self-titled release your first recordings? What others are present? Will this be released on a label, or is it already out?

Yes, there will be another album out this summer under the Forlorn Group Label.

Why did you choose the name “Lech”? Does it have a particular meaning?

The name LecH was chosen because of the many different connotations that go along with it.

From the perverse, to the river in Austria.

It’s the unknown.

What are your future activities — will there be touring, more recordings, promotion or collaborations?

As for touring, and live shows we can’t wait to get a road crew together, and smoke some amps.

If you could play live with any Texas metal bands, which ones would you choose?

One would be Ryan from Howling Void out of San Antonio, and the other would be Annie Clark from St Vincent out of Dallas. She’s not exactly metal, but like us she has her own sound, which we like.

If people are interested in your music, where should they go to find out more and stay in touch with Lech?

We are taking a different approach to getting our music heard, so the best way for now is links on our Youtube stuff through our PR guy Kyle Lee.

Other than that we are working on a website, and hope to get out on the road to play live.

We are taking it as it comes at this point.

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Classic reviews:
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