Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Summer Vacation 2015

It's that time of year again.

Jeff and I will be taking our (now) annual summer break to enjoy sun, fun, and all the non-horror summer popcorn blockbusters that none of you really care about. Speaking of, HOLY CRAP is Mad Max:Fury Road incredible. Go see it!

We'll probably cheat this year and post a bit here and there, but you can expect us to really ramp back up come September when the leaves start to turn, and we head into October. I'd like to think that if this blog was a corporate boardroom, someone would forecast that "the 2nd quarter has our best conversion rate."

In the meantime, why don't you follow us on Twitter or just... wait here for a little while... see what happens?

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Nekrogoblikon - 'Heavy Meta' (Music Review)

The Beatles. Michael Jackson. Nekrogoblikon. Icons of popular music. It is with great pleasure that I've been granted the opportunity to review the already award winning new release, Heavy Meta, by the Los Angeles based, supernatural music consortium.

You've no doubt already been swept up in the hysteria of goblin metal that was unleashed back in 2006. Classic records like Goblin Island and Stench, along with the Power EP captured the hearts and minds and guts of the public. To be a fan of Nekrogoblikon is to acknowledge your love of quality art. To question Nekrogoblikon's musical prowess is to be labelled a fool, and ostracized by peers, family, and random strangers at the grocery store.

Heavy Meta represents the apex of goblin metal. It displays the band at a new peak. Unleashing the most face melting riffs, skull crushing drums, and throat shredding vocals in recent recorded history. Also, there are goblins.

Throughout the entire album, the group simultaneously blasts through each track with their trademark sound of shredding guitars, keyboards, and goblins. However, this isn't just metal for the sake of metal. Each song represents an opportunity for the listener to learn something about the world, and maybe even a little bit about themselves. "Atlantis" explains the true origin and history behind the fabled sunken city, finally putting to rest the need for all those faux documentaries on the Discovery Channel. "Full Body Xplosion" is a musical lesson in the physics of bodies fully exploding. There is even a duet with noted self-help guru and keyboard enthusiast Andrew WK.

Perhaps the most important track on the album is the self-titled "Nekrogoblikon" that serves as a sort of mission statement. It's the band telling you "Hey, we're here, we play it loud, and we've inadvertently stumbled upon ancient evil creatures that will eventually destroy the human race."

A new standard in the genre of heavy music on all fronts, Heavy Meta is an album you and your family can enjoy time and time again. Buy it. In fact, buy several copies and hand them out at your next dinner party or other formal social gathering. John Goblikon will thank you.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Brutal DOOM v20 - Now with Extra Brutal

Have you ever thought "Man, I'd like to go replay a classic game, only jazzed up with an obscene amount of brutal violence?"

Brutal DOOM has you covered.

While not exactly new (it's been in development since 2010) this new v20 coming out June 5th, 2015 looks absolutely delightful with a bunch of new features including the ability to kick severed limbs and 30 additional maps!

You'll want to scrounge up a copy of one of the original DOOM titles to play it (I humbly suggest DOOM 3: BFG Edition to just get all the games for cheap) and then you can install this insane mod and "prepare to RIP AND TEAR GUTS" as creator SgtMarkIV inspires you to do.

While you wait, enjoy this trailer that will wet your whistle with gore that would make Game of Thrones a little uncomfortable.

Phantasm Soundtrack on Vinyl is Hipster Horror Heaven

This made my hour/day/week/month/year/millennium.

Look at that cover art! ORANGE!

Phantom City Creative is re-pressing the original motion picture soundtrack to Phantasm, one of my favorite movies of all time.

I will own this. Unfortunately, I won't be in Texas when it's actually released, so I'll need to figure out a way to get it from the internet somehow. Hopefully at retail price...

Here's the (not Lydia) deets.

The PHANTASM soundtrack returns to vinyl after a long 35-year absence with stunning new art by Phantom City Creative.

Commenting on the enduring appeal of PHANTASM’s iconic score, director Don Coscarelli said, “What amazes me is that the score has continued to gain traction as the decades have passed. I have met literally thousands of fans who continue to praise Fred Myron and Malcolm Seagrave’s work to this day. I want to thank the terrific crew at Mondo for dreaming up the idea of re-releasing this score in warm analog vinyl despite us all now living in a cold digital world.”

The vinyl and screenprint (artwork by Mike Saputo) will be available on Thursday, April 30, at Alamo Drafthouse Richardson’s screening of PHANTASM. Cast members Angus Scrimm, Reggie Bannister, Michael Baldwin, Bill Thornbury, and Kat Lester and filmmaker Don Coscarelli will be in attendance. The vinyl and poster will also be available at the Texas Frightmare Weekend and online at a future date.
Texas Frightmare Weekend runs May 1-3 at the DFW Hyatt Regency.

Phantasm screen print
Artwork by Mike Saputo
Size: 24″x36″

Phantasm vinyl
Original Motion Picture Soundtrack LP
Music by Fred Myron & Malcolm Seagrave
First pressing on vinyl in over 35 years!
Featuring new liner notes by Don Coscarelli
Pressed on 180 Gram Vinyl
Artwork by Phantom City Creative

01. Main Title (3:55)
02. Welcome to Morningside / Hand in Box (2:41)
03. Mineshaft Chase (2:53)
04. Phantasmagoria / Silver Sphere Disco (3:16)
05. Hearse Inferno
06. Cemetery Spectres (0:56)
07. Spacegate to Infinity (1:08)
08. Jody at Morningside / Just a Dream? (3:03)
09. Phantasm Atmosphere (1:11)
10. The Tall Man on Main Street (1:35)
11. Funeral Organ / Dwarf in Hearse (1:45)
12. Under the Car (2:21)
13. Mike on the Road (1:02)
14. Hearse Chase (1:11)
15. Overturned Ice Cream Truck (2:18)
16. End of the Game (1:13)
17. Or is it? (Outtakes) (3:28)

[Originally posted on DreadCentral]

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Monolord - 'Vænir' (Music Review)

It's not often that I describe an album as "crushing". But if someone asked me how I'd describe the latest release Vænir by Monolord, I'd say "Hey someone, this album is CRUSHING."

Doom metal is really popular right now. Like, maybe even a little, TOO popular. The term gets bandied about and applied to a lot of heavy music releases that don't quite fit the bill. Monolord is NOT in this group. These guys are the real deal.

There was pretty much a collective circle jerk around their 2014 release Empress Rising, with good reason. It was a great record. Not only that, but a great record by a band that started as a side project. Incidentally, I always enjoy it when musicians get together without a group even being their primary focus and create excellent material. Now we have a follow-up with insanely high expectations, but have no fear, because Vænir is here, and it's going to blow your mind.

At the time of this review, I've listened to the supplied promo six times. Seriously, I liked this album enough to listen to it six times prior to writing about it. I enjoy it a little bit more with each session, because there is so much to love from this slab of Swedish sludge.

It's just a great example of what a doom album should be. The trio combines the type of heavy, detuned riffage you'd expect, but they aren't afraid to throw in some leads and a little wah guitar here and there to keep it interesting. It's REALLY difficult to write an interesting 3 minute song, let alone an 8 minute one, but they manage to pull it off in opener and first single 'Cursing The One'. Things are crushingly oppressive right from the get go, but Monolord never commits the sin of overdoing one lick or groove. They smartly switch things up to keep you engaged for the entirety. Even the 17 minute title track doesn't feel that long thanks to strong writing.

Thomas Jager's reverb-drenched "I'm trapped in a hellish eternal void" vocals are the icing on the blackened cake, adding the final morose layer and complete the vibe. If I can levy one minor criticism about Vænir it's that the vocals sit a bit lower in the mix on a few songs than I'd like. Again, a small ding for an otherwise outstanding album.

My favorite track by far was 'Died a Million Times'. Go listen to it now on their Bandcamp page and let a slow headbang begin to come over you. The track kills. 

Vænir has made a strong case for itself to become my frontrunner for 2015 metal album of the year (and we got a new Acid King release this year!) and is sitting right next to Dopethrone in my playlist right now. If you are a fan of doom metal, this is a must own. No excuses. Even if you're reading this saying "What the hell is doom metal?" I'll tell you "It's what people think Ozzy invented before he had a reality TV show" and then say YOU should still go check out Vænir because it's that good, and you may dig it if you enjoy any kind of heavy music.

P.S. - Bonus points are awarded for having a song named "Nuclear Death", and cover art that reminded me of Dark Souls for some reason. Now enough reading, go listen!