Author Archives: Roy

Haus Arafna – Asche (2020)

A while ago Galakthorrö material started to appear on Spotify (not all though), apparently the Arafnas were cooking on something. Then there was a newsletter which included new material, even a new Haus Arafna album! The first since 2011! So then some 7 weeks of impatience before I could finally put the new album in my player.

From “Children Of God” (1998) to “Butterfly” (2003) to “You” (2010) to “New York Rhapsody” (2011), Haus Arafna seemed to have been scraping off some rough edges. There always still were noisy industrial tracks, but there came more and more softer tracks.

When you put on “Asche”, it soon becomes clear that the Arafnas did not scrape off the sharp edges immediately. After two great industrial tracks, the pretty rough “Kreise Um Das Nichts” is presented, which also has the first Haus Arafna official video. The track is not as harsh as Haus Arafna can be though.

So after a first round in the player, I took another spin with my eye on the lyrics. From death to mourning and a lot of misanthrope. After a rough start, the album already gets more melancholic in tone, but combined with the lyrics, the new album is actually pretty depressive.

As we are used to from Haus Arafna, the industrial music is beautifully crafted, magnificently detailed, surprising too, since the sound certainly is not entirely the same as on previous albums. “Asche” contains but one track that can be described as melancholic, but it is certainly not all power electronics here. Also mrs. Arafna’s vocals are remarkably absent. She mostly functions as background singer.

Be all this as it may, the tracks on the new album are superb, but damn this album is heavy.

Links: Haus Arafna, Galakthorrö

Te/DIS – Transparent Subsistence (2020)

Also our tempted dissident comes with a new album, the third album in six years time, all on Galakthorrö.

Te/DIS’ latest seems a bit softer or simpler, I am not sure how to put it. The sound is still recognizable, but it differs somewhat from the previous albums, maybe a bit more… “poppy”?

If you know the project, the music is fairly simple and minimalist, a simple beat, a bit of melody and vocals.

Just as the previous two albums “Transparent Subsistence” sounds nice. Good to play when you want something uncomplicated.

Links: Te/DIS, Galakthorrö

Mode In Gliany – Kelc’h-Lizher (2020)

Not a new project, but new to me. After six albums released between 2015 and 2018 and some other releases, this French project found its way to Galakthorrö.

This 33 rpm 7″ contains four tracks. The sound is pretty much like that of November Növelet and Da-Sein, somewhere between minimal wave and angst pop.

The songs on “Kelc’h-Lizher” are nice. I am going to have to see what other releases of this project sound like.

Links: Mode In Gliani, Galakthorrö

Blitzkrieg Baby – Genocidal Sextasy (2019/20)

It does not happen often, but Spotify surprised me. I have known Blitzkrieg Baby since the “Kids World” tape on Beläten from 2014. Later there were a few other releases.

Spotify had only one Blitzkrieg Baby track on some compilation and yet last week I got “Genocidal Sextasy” as a new release. Not bad of Spotify. Incidentally I notice that older releases have been added to Spotify as well, even an album that I did not yet know: “Homo Sapiens Parasitus” (2019) which was released on Neuropa just as “Porcus Norvegicus“.

Actually “Homo Sapiens Parasitus” seems to be newer than “Genocidal Sexstasy” as this 2020 version seems to be a second edition. Cloister Recordings also rereleased some earlier material and that is probably how it all ended up on Spotify.

Anyway, if you know Blitzkrieg Baby, you will know what to expect. Nihilist lyrics, slow, beat driven music that sometimes leans towards industrial. This project as a very recognizable style, but it is not easy to compare to something else to give an idea of the sound.

This new album, as with previous releases, has amusing tracks and tracks are I like better, particularly the more industrial tracks.

Interesting and should you have missed them so far, give them a listen.

Links: Blitzkrieg Baby, Cloister Recordings

va – 19 Beläten En Sommar Av Plåga (2020)

It looks like it that Beläten is no longer the label of Thomas -Trepaneringsritualen- Ekelund. I already noticed that Bandcamp has it listed as coming from Berlin and Ekelund was happy to have been contributed, which would be a strange way of describing a track on your own compilation. Discogs says that Beläten was active from 2012 to 2016 and apparently it has risen again.

On this compilation you find familiar Beläten names, Distel, Celldöd, Michael Idehall, Blitzkrieg Baby, Cryme and of course TxRxP. There are other familiar names such as Brighter Death Now, Moral Order and ARM. Some names do not immediately ring a bell, such as the TxRxP clone Dayofwrath of which I cannot find any information (good track though).

Music wise the compilation has some industrial (Moral Order), but mostly “post avantgarde pop”. All tracks seem to be exclusive, most are good too. A varied compilation which does hold true of ‘the old Beläten’. Available on tape and through Bandcamp.

Link: Beläten

Undirheimar – Heljarrúnar (2020)

Cyclic Law is busy rereleasing old Cold Meat Industry material, but here they found a new project that would have fitted well on that Swedish label.

“Heljarrúnar” opens with an ambient track with drumming, think Sephiroth or Vortex. Then follow minimal dark ambient tracks that could have been released by Loki. Sometimes a bit of chanting, sometimes a drum, ritualistic and all lengthy, haunting tracks of descent dark ambient.

It is not a style of music that I listen to a lot these days. When I do, I do prefer a style darker than most CMI releases of old and I must say that however “Heljarrúnar” may sound fairly typical, the album is well executed and even manages to keep my attention in spite of the minimalist approach.

Links: Undirheimar, Cyclic Law

Dødsmaskin – Verdenssmerte (2020)

I have known Dødsmaskin for a while, but apparently I have never reviewed an album of theirs. I remember liking the first album that I heard in a style that I call “ambient noise” with here and there some dark ambient.

Later albums that I heard seemed to focus more on the dark ambient, with only here and there a noisy tone. Also more and more atmospheric elements seemed to find its way to the music. Thus came that I only liked some of the tracks.

After releases on Malignant and Cyclic Law, the project has been picked up by Tesco. “Verdenssmerte” opens with a soft piano and slowly but surely the track goes over into a noisy texture.

The second track sounds a lot more interesting to me. A somewhat industrial dark ambient soundscape gets some noisy tones after a while. This track is nicely dark and in the style of Dødsmaskin that I like best, especially when things get even more noisy.

After a more experimental ambient track comes another nice noisy industrial track, an alright industrial track and an ambient closing track.

Indeed, some tracks I like, most do little to me.

Links: Dødsmaskin, Tesco

Radar Men From The Moon – The Bestial Light (2020)

It is strange how things go sometimes. Last week Facebook notified me that Aufnahme + Wiedergabe (from Berlin) has an event in my hometown in October. There are never concerts of interest in my hometown, so I clicked to see which bands (Spit Mask and Gnaw Their Tongues, the first has released material through A+W, the latter is a Dutch noisy doom metal band). Then I noticed that another organiser from the concert is a name new to me: Metakamer, “a independent clothing brand based in Eindhoven” (sic). Well, well.

On the Facebook page of Metakamer a radio show was announced which opened with… Haus Arafna. This took place on an Eindhoven radio-station I had never heard of: Rararadio. There prove to be some (locally) famous musicians active there. Then there is also a link between Metakamer and a local band that I already knew, but not too well: Radar Men From The Moon.

RMFTM is an experimental rock band. They tend to change styles with every album and frequently also change members. They very recently released an album (May 8th). A good reason to listen what is what.

“The Bestial Light” contains noisy rock. Sometimes the sound is slightly stoner, sometimes the psychedelic rock background shines through, but most tracks are more like Swans (their noisy style), Zeni Geva or Pop. 1280. The band itself seems to call their style “acid metal” and “strange wave”.

Not bad at all!

Links: Radar Man From The Moon, Fuzz Club

Khost – Buried Steel (2020)

Every once in a while I feel like playing “funeral doom metal”. Yet slower and darker than much doom. I prefer the music to be without vocals (and with electronics), but there are a few bands whose vocals are good enough.

I was somewhat surprised when I found two such bands on the not-exactly-a-metal-label Cold Spring, Sutekh Hexen and Khost. Khost have made a few excellent albums, very dark, very slow. And here is their latest.

“Buried Steel” opens with more of a Godflesh-type industrial metal track, slow, but not as slow as Khost can get. A good track though. The second track is like that too. Then comes the magnificent track “Intravenar” with a slow techno beat, extremely low vocals and minimalist background sounds. The next few tracks are more comparable to earlier material and “funeral doom” is a good description. Great tracks to. I like the long ‘sample tracks’ in between less so though.

As closer off there is a remix of “Intravenar” by Mothboy! Not a better version than the original, but an amusing reference to another kind of music.

A wonderful new album. I am not yet sure if previous albums are better, but the new album is slightly different.

Links: Khost, Cold Spring

A Place To Bury Strangers – Rare Meat (2017 / 2020)

Earlier this week somebody posted a live photo of APTBS on an industrial forum and I replied saying that they are my favourite popband, which was not received well. I found APTBS when I was looking for more uptempo “shoegaze” many years ago and I still see the band that way.

In basis the style of the band is shoegaze, so wave-type rhythms, screeching guitars and soft vocals. The band has two sides. On one end of their spectrum they make soft songs that are well described as “shoegaze”. On the other end they go way off track with extremely noisy rock with massive feedback walls of guitar noise. Unfortunately, the latter style seems to become thinner as new releases are put out.

Somehow I missed the tape from 2017 on which “demos and rarities 2003 – 2017” were released. Due to everybody having to stay at home because of the Corona virus, the band decided to release the “Rare Meat” through their Bandcamp page. A great idea!

“Rare Meat” opens with two magnificently noisy tracks, “I Walk Away” and “Hit The Ground”. Then follows a less interesting soft song, but we are soon back to guitar noise again.

Some tracks are earlier version of songs that appeared on albums. Most tracks were new to me. There are great energetic tracks, but I do not like most of the softer songs here (sometimes they are better), but over all “Rare Meat” is an excellent album that brings back the old days of this great band from Brooklyn.

Link: A Place To Bury Strangers