Venom

Interview with Mirai Kawashima from Sigh

Interview with Mirai Kawashima from Sigh

Enigmatic and uncomfortably cheerful, gregarious and ambitious Happy Metal Guy managed to catch up with Mirai Kawashima from the Japanese avant-garde black metal band Sigh. He bombarded him with positivity, amusing anecdotes and uncomfortable questions about steel phalli until Mr. Kawashima relented; answering the questions and talking about… flowers? This fucking blog gets weirder and weirder every day.

Chrome Division – 3rd Round Knockout Review

Chrome Division – 3rd Round Knockout Review

Have you ever wondered what a group of Norwegian black metal musicians might sound like if they played greasy biker rock? Well wonder no more, just hunker down with a case of brews and Chrome Division. Featuring Shagrath (Dimmu Borgir) on guitar and members of Old Man’s Child and Ringnevond, Chrome Division delivers something like a drunken mixture of ZZ Top, The Misfits, Venom and Lynyrd Skynyrd. There’s nary a cold, icy riff to be found on their new album 3rd Round Knockout and instead you get rowdy, raucous, ribald and very adolescent rock/metal that’s actually exceedingly well done. This is well written, catchy, fun and highly addictive stuff and it even leaves behind much of the Motorhead worship found on their earlier albums. Its an alcohol fueled party album that virtually forces you to pop open a cold one as you listen. How can anything that drives you to drink be bad?

Macabre – Grim Scary Tales Review

Macabre – Grim Scary Tales Review

Macabre probably shouldn’t need any introduction to the majority of readers on this blog, but it’s possible they might. So let’s put it like this… Macabre is pretty much the one of the most underrated and idiosyncratic death metal bands of all time. Or grind. Or, whatever the hell you call them. These guys have been around forever (25 years, apparently) and while they haven’t produced that many full lengths in their existence, they have produced some of the most memorable albums I own. My first introduction to the band came around the time when they released Dahmer, which is their infamous concept album about Jeffrey Dahmer. Yessiree, bob. If you haven’t heard that record you are missing out. But Dahmer isn’t it, 1993’s Sinister Slaughter is another classic which is loaded with amazing tracks, as is 2003’s Murder Metal. But since it’s been about 8 years since the release of Murder Metal, I’d kind of even forgotten that these guys were still around. So what a fantastic surprise when Grim Scary Tales landed in my box. Oh, happy day!

Crucifyre – Infernal Earthly Divine Review

Crucifyre – Infernal Earthly Divine Review

The late 2000s have seen a resurrection of the old school Swedish death metal that Sweden became so well known for in the underground before the Gothenburg sound took the world by storm. In the last year we’ve had releases by tons of bands waving the flag of true Swedish death metal, and it’s been fun as hell to hear! Crucifyre is another band that is doing something that I would definitely not describe as new, but something I would describe as ultimately ridiculously entertaining and worth a listen if for no other reason than to experience this “all star group’s” vision of the old school.

Nachtmystium – Black Meddle II: Addicts Review

Nachtmystium – Black Meddle II: Addicts Review

If you ask any black metal purist what real “black metal” should sound like, you will probably get a slew of bands that, seem to blur into each other somewhat in a slew of blast beats, tremelo-picked riffs and shrieked vocals – and woe betide he who dares to experiment with this time honoured recipe. Black metal is a cutthroat genre among its fans, and bands that defy the trends of the genre yet still dub their metal “black” are quick to draw the ire of the once faithful. Blake Judd’s Nachtmystium took a major gamble when they decided to pursure a more avant-garde approach to black metal with Instinct: Decay and have both won and lost fans, but so far, (In this angry metal guy’s opinion, at least) their less orthodox releases have been consistent and relevant to the modern black metal landscape.