Friday, 17 January 2014

Rot in Hell / Psywarfare split 12"

I'm always excited for new records to arrive at my doorstep, but there are some releases that surpass all others in terms of anticipation. These may be ones that have been lingering in the land of rumour for some time, or ones that you without a doubt know are going to be worth their weight in gold when their tracks first make their way into your ear drums. In this case, it is certainly both.
 Rot in Hell have done it again with an absolutely stellar split 12". If that wasn't enough excitement for you, the other side of the split comes from a band that arises back from the dead after (almost) 14 years, Psywarfare. It is a combination that offers a little strange, but definitely FANtastic record.

Rot in Hell play three new acoustic tracks, "Parthogenesis", "Theodolite and Pendulum" and "Poetry of Worms". At times I feel the acoustic tracks are where Rot in Hell really shine, and these have affirmed that belief for me. In fact, I think that Parthogenesis is probably the best track by the band thus far. The guitar is incredibly ominous and has the perfect blend of POIs singing and Lecky's screamed vocals. It sends shivers down my spine.

 Psywarfare is of course something entirely different again. For anyone who has heard Psywarfare before, you will at least be prepared for the audial onslaught that this side bestoys upon you. For those you have not, be warned. To give those an idea of what to expect, the project is the harsh electronic brain child of Dwid Hellion. Supposedly comprising of four tracks (1 new and 3 unreleased from the 90s), this side takes you through a journey of intense static noise, voice samples, bass, distorted screams and all other kinds of noises you could possibly imagine. The name of the project says it all really.
 The packaging for this release is also top-notch. Both of the bands have artwork that take up one side of the cover. My favourite of the two though is the classic Psywarfare figure. It is as if this character jumps right out of the record grooves to destroy your brain.
Two colour variants of the record are (currently) in existence, white and clear. I opted for the white, and it turned out great. A pet hate of mine is when a bit of black gets smeared into the white from the standard version, but this is incredibly clean and looks great. I'm not sure how many of these were pressed, but they are currently available from the bands directly or through the Deathwish E-store. Strangely, this is Magic Bullet records release, but I am yet to see it for sale from them. At any rate, I doubt these will stick around for too long.
If you dare, the Psywarfare side is up for streaming and download on the Holy Terror bandcamp page. 
If you also have a look here, you might just find a couple of the RIH tracks too...

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Cape of Bats - Olcott Rites II Tape

Since their first 7" EP, Translyvania, Cape of Bats have been rather busy putting out new releases. They have released an awesome split 7" with AVM, appeared on the Classified Resistance compilation as well as releasing some solo tapes. Early in 2012 they released their own tape called Olcott Rites. Sadly I happened to miss out on this one, but right towards the end of last year they released the follow up, Olcott Rites II. I knew this would sell out pretty quick once again, but I did manage to secure myself a copy. And it sure doesn't disappoint.
The tape consists of four brand new COB tracks, totalling to just over 14 minutes. If you have heard anything from these guys before (and why wouldn't you have), then you should be familiar with their dirty style of punk infused black metal. What is actually a bloody treat though is the instrumental parts to the tracks Totenkrowpf // Ravyngrave and 122 Hours ov Fear (Screamers). These create an incredibly creepy atmosphere and just work perfectly with the other noisy tracks. The latter of these two is also my favourite on the release, as the instrumental blends into the rest of the track so very well.
Aside from the awesome tracks, the packaging is quite interesting with this release too. Usually tapes comes in a rather standard plastic case, but this came in a much bigger (almost like a scaled down DVD case) with the tape clipping in the bottom left. I really like this as it allows for bigger artwork and an overall more interesting package design. The tape itself is clear purple, which goes well with what lies behind it....
What is even better than the case though is the awesome poster that comes along with the tape. It is a screen printed extension of the tape artwork on purple card. The level of detail is immense, and it is almost a pity that more of these won't be printed. Only 31 copies of the release were produced, so this is really something quite special.

Unfortunately that does mean that most of you won't be able to get your hands on one of these. However the band is kind enough to put the whole tape up on their bandcamp page free of charge.

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

The Bellicose Minds - The Spine 12"

Most of the records I get, and post here, tend to be on the metallic hardcore side of the music spectrum. That's not too say that's all that I'm into, and this release is a perfect example of something a bit different to my usual records. 
Although now signed to A389, the best way to describe The Bellicose Minds would probably be as a slightly darker and twisted version of Joy Division. Whatever you want to call it, it is bloody good stuff. Overall the album has 11 songs, that together just reach over 34 minutes.

From what I can find online, there are two versions of this record released. The first is what my copy is, the black pressing released by Sabotage records in Germany, and Black Water records in the US. This version comes with everything you see in the photos, especially the black cover with the brain and spine photo. However black water also released a more limited white version of the records, which was pressed in 200 copies. This features an additional silk screened cover, which does really look quite a bit cooler. I especially prefer the rear cover on the limited version featuring the vertebrae.
Inside the sleeve comes a nice insert with the song lyrics on one side, and a cartoony graveyard picture on the back.

These guys have also just (pre) released a 10" with A389 records. This is actually a vinyl re-release of some previous tracks, but it sure to be good.

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Pulling Teeth - Witches Sabbath I & II 7"

The new year is here already. I'm hoping this year will see some more great record releases (so far I have two lined up already), but for now I will be covering off what I didn't have time for in 2013. I thought I'd start out with a quite exciting pickup I had been looking out for for quite some time; the last of the Pulling Teeth Witches Sabbath series. I didn't think this set took me all that long to get, although after looking at the first post I see that I originally began back in September 2012. Maybe that isn't a long time for some people, who knows.
Again these records were never available to purchase by themselves. Volume I was the only of the series released on the Deathwish label, which came alongside the pre-order of the Martyr Immortal CD release. Volume II was released by A389, along with the pre-order of the Japanese version of the Vicious Skin CD. Of course, both are limited to 300 like the rest.
The records come with all that you see, artwork on the front, Roman numerals on the back and except for the cat label, a blank 7" record. There is no information about what tracks are on the vinyl, but luckily the series consists of cover tracks so you can work out what the tracks are meant to be. Volume I comes with a cover of Nirvana's "Territorial Pissings", while Volume II comes with Black Sabbath's "Symptom of the Universe".
Keeping in line with all the other ones I have acquired, I was able to pickup two from the series at the same time. The last pieces in the puzzle were volumes I and II, which were definitely proving to be the most hard to come by off the set. I had seen volume two appear on Ebay a couple of times, but every time I was outbid right at the last second. Discogs wasn't proving particularly fruitful either, until sometime in December when I saw both for sale from the same seller. They offered me combined postage on the two and I placed my order straight away. Perhaps because of Christmas they took a while to come, but I finally have the final pieces I needed.