Master

Master – Vindictive Miscreant Review

Master – Vindictive Miscreant Review

“Take a minute to appreciate this album artwork. Not only is it an excellent demonstration of basic design principles, composition and color theory, it also clearly establishes the genre of its artist. In this case, the artist is Master and the genre is death/thrash. Master have been active since 1983 with minimal interruptions and a long roster of ex-drummers and ex-guitarists. Having finally settled on a solid lineup in 2003, Master soldiered on with few changes made to their thrashy death sound. With fourteenth installment Vindictive Miscreant, Master aim to prove they’re just as vital as they were in 1983.” Who’s your Master?

The Lurking Fear – Out of the Voiceless Grave Review

The Lurking Fear – Out of the Voiceless Grave Review

“An interesting anecdote I saw told was a fine–art professor’s first exercise with his Master’s students. He shows them a Jackson Pollock painting, and asks them to write why it is good. After receiving the wonderfully pretentious responses, the professor reveals that the “Pollock painting” was actually his apron from his studio, hopefully teaching the students that there may be more to judging good and bad art than feelings.” Smock-core!

Johansson & Speckmann – Edge of the Abyss Review

Johansson & Speckmann – Edge of the Abyss Review

“I like to imagine the absurdly prolific Rogga Johansson’s inner monologue to be similar to Pinky and the Brain’s introductory bit, with him eating whatever the Swedes eat for breakfast, wondering ‘what should I do today?’ and answering, ‘the same thing you do every day, Rogga: write and record a death metal record.’ Our hero would then draw a band name from a hat or make one up depending on his mood, and by lunchtime would have written about seven songs and called up whoever was needed to complete the lineup. Johansson & Speckmann had clearly been drawn from what must be a very large hat by now, and before the traditional Swedish dinner bell rang that day, Edge of the Abyss was born.” Pinky and the Brawn.

The Body – Christs, Redeemers Review

The Body – Christs, Redeemers Review

“Nobody understands The Body. Not even The Body understand The Body. It is a musical gesture pure and simple, with no need to be described and no reason to be judged. It is there and then, with no epistemological meaning whatsoever; it is an artistic expression lying on an imaginary floor deprived of attributes. Or full of attributes, which is the same thing. This duo of pain inflictors from Portland, Oregon, knows how to fiddle with cacophony while, at the same time, titillating your senses with moments of supreme beauty. Not happy with the description?” When Alex gets in a groove, he doesn’t care if you like his descriptions or not. That won’t stop him for waxing poetic all about these sludgesters.

Johansson & Speckmann – Sulphur Skies Review

Johansson & Speckmann – Sulphur Skies Review

“Neither rain, nor snow nor soccer riots can keep the Rogga Johansson express from it’s appointed rounds through the Swedish death metal landscape. This is the fourth album I’ve reviewed in 2013 that had his bloody prints all over it (Megascavenger, Just Before Dawn, Paganizer) and he’s in countless other projects as well (Demiurg, Ribspreader, etc. etc. to infinity and beyond). As I study the endless tide of Rogga works, I’m left to marvel at both his inhuman productivity and the overall quality of the material he creates. Johansson & Speckmann is his new collaboration with the legendary Paul Speckmann of long running, seminal death act Master. With such a titanic union, one obviously expects great stuff (and shitty, DIY album art) and since between them they cover the spectrum from Swedish to American death, the possibilities seem limitless (well, except by the parameters of death metal).” Have you felt like it’s been too long since a new Rogga release cropped up? Me too!

Surgeon – Chemical Reign Review

Surgeon – Chemical Reign Review

“The awesomely-named Surgeon is a trio from Philadelphia, and according to them, they play progressive metal with a touch of doom. Their second album is out this week and goes by the very metal name of Chemical Reign. I was unable to find any trace of their first album on the Interwebs, and as it turns out, “Surgeon” is not the most Google-friendly of band names (although I now know where to get a gastric bypass done).” So how does a doom-prog band from the City of Brotherly Love sound? Is there some malpractice going on in the songwriting department? Mr. Fisting will explain all after his procedure.

Paganizer – World Lobotomy Review

Paganizer – World Lobotomy Review

“More Rogga?? With Mr. Johansson being involved in one of every three reviews I write lately, maybe we should change the website name to Rogga o Rama. I’ve recently examined his Megascavenger and Just Before Dawn projects and here he is again with his main outfit, Paganizer (he also has a collaboration with Paul Speckmann of Master coming in a few weeks). The man is an omnipresent force in the Swedish death scene (hell, he IS the Swedish death scene) and he’s been responsible for lots of rich, creamy death metal. In all honesty though, I’ve always found Paganizer to be a pretty spotty act. Some of their early output was solid and some of the more recent stuff was less so.” So does World Lobotomy cause brain damage or suffer from it? Our resident Rogga expert Steel Druhm is back from the nervous hospital to provide his diagnosis.