Saturday, 20 July 2013

Kromosom - Nuclear Reich 12"

My blogging output has really been quite low this month, so I decided to get right into my next post. And what better way to do that than with the latest 12" from Kromosom!
This really came out of nowhere for me. Even though I don't really enjoy the experience of Facebook I find myself going back on it more than I would really like. In this instance it turned out to be rather beneficial though. After some mindless scrolling I saw a post from Kromosom announcing their new 12" would be released in the near future on Distort Reality. I hadn't heard of them but after a quick search I was able to find their online store. Of course I placed an order as soon as I could, and it arrived safe and sound (along with another goodie that I will post about soon) really very quickly.
Two versions were available to buy; the regular and limited version. I had no idea what was different about the limited version, but assumed it was a colour variant. Of course I was right, but after looking on discogs to see if their was information about the pressing I saw the limited version is stated to be on marbled orange vinyl. I don't know about you, but mine is clearly quite yellow with a hint of red and green marbled in there.
The artwork isn't quite as good as on 8 tracks, but certainly does carry that DIY cut and pasted charm. Inside the cover is two inserts, one containing the traditional ever so limited lyrics to all eight songs that has a band photo on the back. The other is a poster from their Nuclear Reich tour.
Musically, this is my favourite work from the band since their demo tape. The whole thing might only just last past the 13 minute mark, but it is seriously amazing. The whole LP is ridiculously fast and leaves you feeling like you've had a shot of adrenaline right to the brain.
For a preview, of sorts, watch the video below.

I've also just found out that the whole thing is online as well!

Friday, 19 July 2013

Integrity - Suicide Black Snake 12"

God why haven't I posted about this sooner?  I'm sure all of you know this already, but 2013 has brought us yet another Integrity album; Suicide Black Snake. You'd think after a solid 25 years Integrity (well I suppose just Dwid really) would be beginning to sound a bit tired, but this album proves the band is still as fresh as ever.
SBS consists of 10 tracks, and while some of these were present on 2011's Detonate VVorld's Plague, it may as well be an entirely new album. Brilliant tracks such "I Know Where Everyone Lives" and "+Orrchida" have been re-recorded, reinvented and sound considerably more abrasive than their earlier incarnations. Then there are brand new tracks such as the title track, "There Is A Sign" and the true gem of the album, "There Aint No Living In Life". I mentioned this track when it was available to listen on the internet a while ago but the second that harmonica starts I still get shivers down my spine.
At first I thought the artwork was a little obscure, and apart from the bats I couldn't tell exactly what was going on. That was until I actually received the LP and was able to open the glorious gatefold to reveal the whole picture including the brain. 
Those bats might look familiar to you, and if you are thinking they are from the Vermapyre split with Parasite you would be right, for the most part anyway. At an initial glance you might just be able to make out something is missing from the Bat's heads. Integrity's classic invisible ink comes into play again here, where with the magic of light you can reveal exactly what is missing. Integrity's logo also revels itself at the top.

  This record has been released as so many different versions already that it is hard to keep track. Last I counted there were 8 different versions and a test press, with some being unique colours for sale at A389, Magic Bullet records, Cobraside distribution and on tour with Integ. These include different solid colours, clear, clear and colour mixes, splatters, you name it. The version I picked up was exclusive to A389, and is limited to 100 copies that sold out ridiculously fast. It is called fireball and is really quite visually impressive.
Now that I think of it I'm pretty sure I saw a couple of extra versions on Facebook the other day, so maybe the total count is closer to 10 or 12 versions.....
 The centre labels are also quite impressive. At a glance I find it difficult to tell the faces form an inward spiral getting progressively less demonic towards the centre. But when it plays it forms an almost mezmerizing spinning spiral that is hard not to stare at.
  "I Know Where Everyone Lives" is not the only connection to the split with Gehenna. On the inside of the gatefold cover is the same artwork. Once again, I'll leave you to see what it is depicting.
I'm really not sure what the other side is depicting, but again invisible ink is used to display the track listings.
 And to top things off there is also a massive poster of the artwork included inside the cover. It is seriously huge.
Overall it is a fantastic addition to the Integrity record family. It is very fitting for being my 200th post.....

Monday, 15 July 2013

Parasite/ Doraid/ Birth Ritual - The Savage Beast of Three Head 3 way split 12"

Here is another record I was really excited about as soon as I heard about it. Since the awesome split with Vermapyre, I have been a big fan of all things Parasite and have always been keen to get my hands on more of their releases. Not all that long ago they announced they would be releasing a 3 -way split album with Birth Ritual and Doraid. As it was a Japanese release it was a little hard to get my hands on, but I got there in the end.
The artwork features, you guessed it, The Savage Beast of Three Head. It is quite a cool looking front cover, but I'm a bit confused why the additional cover piece was included. As you can see in the first photo the only real difference is a change to the font of the album title.
The back cover features photos of each of the three bands and the track listings. Each band plays four songs, which are all new for Parasite at least. I'm not too familiar with the other bands, and while they are in a similar style to Parasite, they just don't quite match up. They sound considerably more polished which seems to take something away from the energy in the music. That gritty sound is one of the things that I love about Parasite. At least their four songs are bloody awesome.
To the best of my knowledge this came only on black vinyl. Perhaps there are some other versions out there somewhere, who knows...
Aside from the great tracks, this record is stellar in terms of extras. First of all is the insert pictured above. I suppose it quite standard, with band artwork and track information etc. It is still always appreciated to receive though. Next is the large fold out poster of the album/tour artwork. If the tracks on here are anything to go by that would have been a great tour.
Lastly is a large selection of various flyers. I'm not really sure what most of them are for, but again it is always appreciated to get something extra.

Saturday, 6 July 2013

Sledgehammer - Your Arsonist 7"

I have been without internet for a while, and haven't been able to keep up with my usual routine of posting. But as of yesterday I am all connected again so it is back on. Here we have the first (and only if I'm not mistaken) release by Sledgehammer. Back in 2003, this band was a small side project for Dwid, who of course in on vocals, but also features Hans from Liar on bass. 
The 7" features a character holding what is probably meant to be a sledgehammer, but what certainly does look more like a mallet than anything. I suppose the two are pretty similar really. On the inside is an insert of an undressed woman, which is the artwork for the CD version of the release.
I got this from Discogs, where it was listed as being an orange variant. After I purchased it I realised there were several copies that were listed as orange in the title, but were in fact black when you read the full description. Luckily when mine turned up it was orange, it is definitely much better than the black. I have also seen a red version on Ebay, that was a tour version or something like that. It was limited to, oh lets say 20 copies.
One side of the label has the same character from the artwork. The other side took me a while to figure out what the picture was. It looks most like a child with something in their mouth, but I can't say for sure exactly what...