Good morning, good afternoon and soon to be good night! Welcome to another highly anticipated edition of Death Metal Dossier. Today is an exciting day because we have stretched our collective wings (mine are usually spread only to shelter Ryan) and included an LP in the mix! And not just any LP. An LP that you probably missed, and one you will definitely regret not hearing. We’ve also got a smattering of the usual demos, EPs and other crap raining from the death metal heavens.
Regarding food, we’re kind of starved right now. Ryan hasn’t cooked in a while, and we missed meal preparation day over the weekend. So, we’re without black rice (of the Oryza sativa family) to use as a fiber-rich carbohydrate base, and we’re really not stocked up on frozen veggies as much as I’d like to be. Our backyard garden just hasn’t filled in as we were hoping. It’s not the end of the world, of course. Ryan and I could certainly use the time to thin out a bit and get our bodies lean and mean for the upcoming autumn. And it’s not like we’re sitting here begging you to send us donations of canned goods. It’s just important to note that we’re all a bit hungry.
We’re happy that you’ve decided to join us on this brief but important journey. Please feel free to grab an ottoman or throw rug and curl up near the fire while we walk you through a few recent releases.
Carnal Tomb – Abhorrent Veneration: Hooooooooooooooooooo doggie! Gather up the goats and herd them untoeth the pen for they belongeth in the cave of hope. An album that gets stronger as it forges on, Abhorrent Veneration serves up a heaping triple scoop of old school death metal. Sounding unlike other bands from their Berlin-based homeland, Carnal Tomb are built on old school stalwart influences such as Grave, Autopsy and Obituary. Using those they slowly-but-surely tear the doors off your minivan with tight riffs, quick pace changes and solos shreddier than a bag of Kirkland brand shredded Mexican Style Blend cheeses. Speaking of blends, Carnal Tomb blend a bunch of influences (in addition to the aforementioned ones) in a high-powered, super elite Vitamix to produce their old school smoothie of death metal power. And remember, life is BYO-Straw now. [Manny-O-War]
Sanguisugabogg – Pornographic Seizures: Every month Ryan and I sit down to a nice glass of port (we have an extensive cellar collection) and discuss what we’re going to cover for the next month’s episode of Death Metal Dossier. We always mention that we have to stop covering so many releases from Maggot Stomp and Caligari Records. But then Maggot Stomp does something like puts out the Sanguisugabogg EP and we are put between a rock and a hard place because it’s simply that good. Sanguine Bob Sagat is clearly a band paying tribute to the legend and humor skills of Mr. Bob Sagat. That’s clear not only from the name but from their penchant for shockingly gruesome and lewd lyrical stylings. While they hail from brOhio they might as well reside in Riff City (next to Redman’s Brick City, New Jersey) because they have built a solid foundation on concrete, brick and steel riffs. A tightly-tuned snare rat-a-tat-tats out the rhythms accompanied by double bass and copious amounts of fills. Relentless is a word that often gets tossed about regarding death metal but, to toss it around again, Sanguisugabogg (which is a name that makes me thankful for copy/paste) are absolutely relentless in their brutal-but-brief assault. Guttural vocals and riffs, bro. Slamming beers and rocking fanny packs. Sweatpants and high tops. Make it so, Number One. [Manny-O-War]
Arnaut Pavle – Arnaut Pavle: One of the wonderful things about writing for Last Rites (besides cultivating fresh vegetables with Manny) is the fact that there aren’t a lot of restrictions in place as to what we can cover. So today we’re going to spread the wings of Death Metal Dossier a bit and delve into black metal. Furthermore, we’re hopping in the Wayback Machine to the year 2013.
“What’s this?” you are probably asking. “Death Metal Dossier is supposed to cover new releases!” Well, you’ve got me there, but luckily Finland’s Arnaut Pavle are reissuing their 2013 demo on the enigmatic Mystikaos label along with their yet-to-be released debut album coming up in September. Now’s the chance to get a jump on things if you missed out on this one, because it’s a helluva demo.
Arnaut Pavle’s sound falls somewhere between the crustier era of Darkthrone and the black/thrash attack of Aura Noir. While there are probably a thousand bands that draw on these influences, Arnaut Pavle have the chops to hold their own with their influences. Tracks like “Eat The Soil From This Grave” could easily fit along on The Underground Resistance, or “Skeletonized By Demon” on Black Thrash Attack, yet Arnaut Pavle have managed to make them their own, fitting the pieces together expertly to create a demo that tips from beginning to end. The songs just bleed into one another, conveying an atmosphere of nonstop evil energy that just makes you want to claw at the air in a nonstop frenzy of full black metal fury. The sound is unapologetically raw and has no trouble conveying the hateful passion behind the songcraft, and what more could any self-respecting fan of the truest of metals black possibly want? Don’t walk, run to check out what Arnaut Pavle has to offer. The hype for their upcoming full length is real. [RYAN TYSINGER]
Sovereign – Transmissions From The Kingdom Ov Ice And Bone: There comes a time for all of us to spread our wings, and we’re going to continue to do so by stepping outside the comforts of death metal yet again to examine the latest offering from Sovereign, a UK black metal band that just made a huge step forward in their sound, demonstrated on the two-song EP, Transmissions From The Kingdom Ov Ice And Bone.
Having shown promise on last year’s debut demo, Keys To The Soul, Sovereign further evolved and refined their approach to riff-centric black metal, incorporating more traditional metal riffing with a set of singles earlier this year. Yet with Transmissions, it feels like Sovereign have found the sound singular mastermind Korvus has been working toward.
Cleaning up the production a bit works in Sovereign’s favor from the start as the climbing and descending leads on the intro to “Speaking With Silence” hook discerning ears right away, and the riffing to follow feels like it has more room to unfurl its sinister wings across the subtle synths and driving rhythms.
The second track, the eponymous “Transmissions From The Kingdom Ov Ice And Bone” quickly falls into a slower, more mid pace that evokes memories of Burzum’s Filosofem, in particular “Beholding The Daughters Of The Firament” before taking a sharp left turn into thrashier realms, peppered with touches of melodicism as Kovus howls his unholy incantations from beyond. Fans of Negative Plane and Rebel Wizard will find plenty to love in Sovereign, and each spin of the all-to-short release leaves me wanting more every time. [RYAN TYSINGER]
Anthropophagous – Spoiled Marrow: Oh, hello. I didn’t see you standing there with all your delicious flesh that’s just dying to be slapped onto a lightly toasted brioche bun with a side of pickled giblets. Welcome to 2019’s best death metal demo culled from an already impressive oodle of metal de la muerte de 2019: Anthropophagous’ adorably titled Spoiled Marrow.
Phagous: feeding or subsisting on a specified food
Boston is known for a lot of things: tea parties, shitty teams (eat me, I’m a Cleveland sports fan), great roast beef sammiches, even better cannolis, and an excellent hardcore scene (Jerry’s Kids!) Beyond that, who can really say what the hell goes on around there. Some seriously deep shit, I’m sure.
Wait a minute… Hold the phone, Mildred! These guys are actually from Montague, MA, which is approximately two hours west of Boston, so that’s probably an entirely different world. Maybe everyone in Montague is just like the guys in Anthropophagous: shambling, horrific and all-too-ready to welcome you into their home in order to sneakily club you over the head with a mallet and consume your flesh while barking obscenities mostly native only to Massachusettsans.
You guessed it, sports fans! These guys play belting death metal. The kind of death metal that leaves stains on the carpet after it wobbles from your dirty speakers. Spoiled Marrow is cavernous, but it doesn’t really sound “cavernous” as much as it sounds like it’s played by people who very well might live inside an uninhabitable cavern. To be perfectly honest, this demo almost sounds…happy? Am I allowed to say that? People can be happy while they consume other humans, no? Whatever it is, it sure sounds heavy. I think the drummer might play the drums while standing—that’s how hard this Cro-Magnon hits the skins. And the bass tone is the sickest thing you’ll hear outside of an extremely active Ebola tent. Just listen to the start of that cuddly title track and get ready to trade in that flute for a Fender four-banger.
Other Anthropophagous blessings: 1) Outside of one moment in the midst of “Memento Mori” where the vocalist very clearly states “Maggots coil in your eye sockets,” he mostly sounds like a napping Rottweiler grumble-grousing about crushing a Kong filled with very un-organic peanut butter, 2) These fricken guys know how to write death metal that SCOOTS, and 3) The demo artwork is clearly an ode to the skeletal remains of Slimer. EAT US, ANTHROPOPHAGOUS [CAPTAIN]