There’s a decidedly black metal tint to this edition of Short Sharp Shock, but in a few different varieties. This is one of the great things about black metal; I love how versatile it can be, whether it’s employed directly, as in some of the bands below, or whether it’s used as an enhancement to some other style. Does adding black metal into the mix make everything better? A case can certainly be made it seems…
Band(s): Black Mass Pervertor
Title: Life Beyond the Walls of Flesh
Style(s): Blackened Crust
Duration: 19 minutes
Release date: April 13, 2018
I always like a bit of Finnish filth, so what a great way to start off this edition of Short Sharp Shock. Do you yearn for black metal, but want something that’s been strangled and brutalised by punk and crust? Do you? Well, Black Mass Pervertor are here for you. Short and nasty, these tracks blur by in cascading waves of filth and excrement, wallowing in their depravity as they coat you in blackened vomit and unspeakable excretions. This is old-school, Satanic and blasphemous blackened crust that’s more than enough to kick-start you in the morning. Or maybe just kick you…
Band(s): Three Eyes of the Void
Title: The Moment of Storm
Style(s): Melodic Black Metal
Duration: 28 minutes
Release date: December 4, 2017
Keeping with the theme, I rather unsurprisingly have some more black metal for you now, albeit of a different variety. Three Eyes of the Void have produced a relatively lengthy EP of sharp, cold, melodic black metal. The songs take an atmospheric approach to their aggression, and the tracks on this release are well-written and full of frosted might. For such an obscure out-of-nowhere release this EP is ridiculously strong. There’s some great songwriting here, and it’s all presented, performed, and delivered in such a strong manner that you really wouldn’t be surprised if this was something that a label like Season of Mist had put out. Very, very impressive. I can’t wait to hear what this band does next.
Band(s): The Negative Bias/Golden Dawn
Style(s): Atmospheric/Symphonic Black Metal
Duration: 23 minutes
Release date: April 6, 2018
Some atmospheric black metal for you now. Both of these bands play an atmospheric/symphonic version of black metal, although each with a different emphasis. The Negative Bias’ music is more forward-leaning and modern, whereas Golden Dawn’s music is more traditional and nostalgic. Each band offer up a single epic track to this split, and I can honestly say I’m not sure which I prefer. Both have their selling points.
The Negative Bias’ song – “The Temple of Cruel Empathy” – gives us a more complex, modern take on black metal. It reaches for the cosmos in no uncertain terms and is intent on forging its own path. This can be contrasted against “Lunar Serpent” by Golden Dawn, which has essentially been birthed out of the second wave era and resolutely embodies this. Both approaches work massively in favour of each of the bands, however, and they each have their own strengths to recommend them. Ultimately they complement each other perfectly, and this is a top quality black metal split that should have any fan of the blackened underground salivating in anticipation.
Title: Boundless Torture
Style(s): Blackened Death/Doom Metal
Duration: 23 minutes
Release date: May 18, 2018
What a hideous, reeking mass of pain and suffering this is. Boundless Torture is a broken, degraded mess of blackened death/doom that probably should have been put out of its misery a long time ago. As far as this kind of grimly atmospheric music goes, the one-man torture machine that is Gateway knows his stuff. Boundless Torture is very effective at what it does. When you’re listening to this it’s like all other forms of music cease to exist, so completely are you swallowed up by Gateway’s world. Frightening and horrifying, yet incredibly compelling.
Title: Forced to Suffer
Style(s): Blackened Deathgrind
Duration: 8 minutes
Release date: March 2, 2018
And finally, for your listening delectation, we have the debut demo from the US deathgrind one man wrecking crew that is Misrule. This eight minutes of blackened deathgrind is so unrelentingly harsh, raw, and nasty, that I can’t help but have fallen in love with it before the dissonant nightmare of the first track had even had time to wash the blood off itself. I urge you to stop reading my pointless, inadequate words right now and just give this a listen. Prepare yourself, however, as this is not something for the fragile or weak.