ALBUM REVIEW: Many Blessings – Emanation Body

Ethan McCarthy‘s myriad recordings under his classification of ‘Noise’ are what many of us might name Harsh Ambient or Ambient Drone. Dystopian, disturbian, yet with elements of clarity that break through the crushing sound (and occasional soundbites of sex), many fans will have encountered these often challenging passages through his work with Primitive Man and here with his solo project Many Blessings. Sophomore album Emanation Body (Translation Loss Records) embraces more atmospheric airs whilst retaining much of that visceral anger. Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Woorms – Twitching, As Prey

‘Twas a mere fifteen months ago that Baton Rouge, Louisiana trio Woorms released debut album Slake (Sludgelord Records), its grooves twisted into nasty bites of hostile Sludge Metal. Follow-up Twitching, As Prey (Sludgelord Records), stays hot on the heels of that initial full-length, both chronologically and in temperament, but shows a maturity and an inventiveness far beyond its predecessor. Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Khost – Buried Steel

Those who’ve known me for some time will have had their ears blunted by my constant praise for Birmingham, UK Industrial Doom duo Khost. Equal parts sampled violence, malevolent strings and vocal apocalypse, beautiful Eastern lamentations often deflect from that harsh path and create a nuance flavoured by the likes of VAST and Moby. Their fourth album Buried Steel (Cold Spring Records) sees a band now truly at ease with its style, happy to have edgy two-minute psalms populating a set in the knowledge that they serve a purpose for the whole.

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Killing Joke – RDF Live at KK’s Steel Mill, Wolverhampton

A single support in RDF (Radical Dance Faction) are in store for the hundred or so that are here with me by the time they come on stage, the numbers a touch disappointing for a gig that is sold out for the full tour. Against their name, their music is actually more eclectic Dub, making little sense at first in terms of who they are supporting, though this notion changes as they get further into their set, with a bit more of their stated Punk side coming out to play. While not awful, the audience around me doesn’t seem particularly engaged, with plenty of chatting going on, though there is some polite applause at the end of each track, while a few people do seem to genuinely enjoy some tracks. They occasionally bring on another vocalist to help out, though not to any particularly great effect. In all, a fairly forgettable support act, which is a shame given they have existed for over three decades at this point, as they just don’t feel right for the act they are supporting. Continue reading