Friday, August 17, 2018

Band Interview: LECTERN by Dave Wolff (second interview)

Interview with Fabio Bava of LECTERN

I interviewed you for Autoeroticasphyxium zine in early 2017, when you were promoting your 2016 full length Precept Of Delator. How much success did it received since its release?
Precept Of Delator was the album with more success, I am sure of that! There were lots of reviews, good responses and requests. Everyone was impressed by the quality of the songs, which was high, brutal and sometimes technical. Before we played a show in France not so long ago, a guy told us it was our best so far.

Lectern’s latest full length Deheadment For Betrayal was released this past April. In what ways does it represent the latest step in the band’s evolution since you released Bisbetical back in 1999?
I think it’s a weird record! Intricate, with the riffs’ entanglement which sounds impressive. Sometimes these songs quite astonish me! We passed more than four months in the studio, the sessions were fragmented and not continual I have to say. Deheadment For Betrayal varies in all its tracks. There is also a technique we never had before in such amounts. Perturb In Lamb Thronal and Dogmatician Of Predicator are full of awkward passages, especially for the guitars and the drums. After more than twenty years, there is no way that Deheadment For Betrayal and Bisbetical could be compared. On Bisbetical we were a raw and tough band, but we want to take back such effrontery on our next album.

There are some musicians who try too hard to be “open minded”, and much of the time it comes across as contrived and false. Has it been important for Lectern to learn, progress and grow naturally, on their own terms, rather than trying to force it?
Being original, different or following fashion is something that never interested me. From 1992, with grunge, the real music was destroyed by the establishment for being something I call non-metal. That shit killed the scene, so I don’t want to partake in this benchmark! It’s a choice! You can choose for change, new solutions, I choose to be myself. Lectern is a death metal band; you cannot imagine anything different! With every album, we try to do something different, but it must be death metal, always! So in my opinion, it’s harder being death metal and changing something here and there, than it is to change completely. Everyone makes his choices, and I don’t care what others do! Do you remember Rob Halford after quitting Judas Priest? He did Fight, Two, Halford and Judas Priest again. This is the proof, it’s better to do the same things, it’s safer than the changes themselves!

Twenty years is a long time to be in a death metal band. In that time you must have seen many bands come and go in Italy, and many others stay for the long haul. How has the scene over there held up over the years?
Antropofagus was and is still here, they have a lot of success, also Natron. There are still many death metal bands; there is a certain culture of it in our country. Also a band like Fleshgod Apocalypse is having a massive impact on the audience, so it was easy for Nuclear Blast to notice how important they are. I think they can finally have what Nocturnus have only brushed!

How much variety and new ground do you see in underground metal today? Where does Lectern fit into this, if at all?
Heavy metal today is not the same, it seems to be but it’s not! Even Iron Maiden has new elements in their music, not like Killers anymore! Music stands the test of time. Nowadays we have new sounds due to new procedures and hardware for recording, new instruments. The approach is different. In part it’s cool and could help, but if I were a simple customer, I would be bewildered! As one from the old school, I still buy records, merchandise, metal magazines and tickets for concerts. It’s still normal, but I don’t care about normality! I don’t follow usual patterns, I don’t really care.

How many stores are near you where vinyl albums, magazines and concert tickets can be purchased? How much has online ordering had an effect on local stores?
Not so much. You can buy your records online now. It’s the same for gear. People can easily stay at home doing a lot of things at the same time. You can purchase your stuff online, so what’s better than roaming with a long list in search of this and that? Now we are full of online mails, when some time ago you had to go in stores in search of your things!

Do more or fewer venues exist near you these days? Are more local acts on international acts performing at those venues?
Yes, but there are not audiences. We play out a lot with a massive campaign from our label. Also venues are interested in big bands or those who play covers. If venues are empty during certain gigs, it is not with free entrance or low fare tickets that you can solve the problem. People seem to be more interested in merchandise than the records. It is very hard to find a label nowadays, because sales are not as before. There is a not specific answer to that.

Has there been more independent zine activity in the past year. Name a few local zines you would recommend to the readers.
Headfucker was undoubtedly the best! It was professional, a real magazine, with a lot of pages and inserts, posters, reviews, news, interviews and much more. It was completely in black and white. Headfucker merchandise was terrific too. Remember it was also a record company that released the first album from the mighty Natron.

Describe the songs on Bisbetical that you think showed the most potential for growth.
Decollation Of All Apostles and Font Of Discord. The sound was impressive and brutal. The overall compositions were quite great!

How much of a process was it for the band to develop through all of their releases, from Bisbetical to Deheadment For Betrayal? Cite as many of your albums as you wish.
Improving as band and as musicians, I think. We wrote more than fifty songs in twenty years, so you can imagine how many progress we made. Lectern will head into the fourth studio to record soon, and for me Precept Of Delator and Fratricidal Concelebration confirm we are an interesting band. Deheadment For Betrayal was a challenge we won in my opinion, but I don’t know if we will never have another album like that. Our death metal is old school, without external elements that could upset the tested formula. When we play live, from all the reviews I read, we have proof we are doing something special. The feedback we received has been good!

What new equipment did Lectern have to work with recording the new album? In what ways did it improve your sound?
I think the difference is slight, as we will return to The Outer Sound Studios for the next record. We had the possibility to record with Pro Tools, which has been one of the best programs to record with for some years now! The difference is in our songs: who performs them, last generation gears and the producer! We have all of that!

Who at The Outer Sound Studios do you usually work with? Will you be recording the next album with Pro Tools?
Giuseppe is the owner, we will certainly record at his studio using the same programs, like Pro Tools and so on, also for our next record. There was also Alfonso, his colleague! We missed him too much for his great efforts, but he is working elsewhere right now!

Are any new compositions being written for the next album? What conceptual themes, if any, is the band devising for it?
Something’s on the way, we have some new songs which are already written. As for the lyrics, I think it’s gonna be something close to a concept about blasphemy. Also some artwork is ready. More than half of the songs are ready. Let me say I chose the right words and titles! It’s gonna be upsetting!

Who is designing the artwork for the album? In what ways does the artwork reflect on the songs written and composed for it? Is the new album going to be released independently, or will it have label and distro support?
We called up Andreas Marschall for Deheadment For Betrayal, as we were looking for someone important into the scene in terms of artwork. And he is! The visual side has its impact you know, but we had to change the first idea, because we discarded the illustration made by another artist for the cover. I don’t know who will release it. It’s too early so far.

Will the band tour or play shows to support the next album? If so, where are you planning to appear?
I just get in touch with our promoter. We have something in store, but as the new album is not available, we cannot set things. We will have a show with Avulsed in October, then we will see what happens.

Any final acknowledgments you want to make to wrap up the interview?
Behead all the followers of God!

DISCOGRAPHY
Bisbetical (1999)
Salvific Of Perhaps Lambent (2010)
Lectern (2014)
Fratricidal Concelebration (2015)
Precept Of Delator (2016)
Deheadment For Betrayal (2018)

LINE UP
Fabio Bava: vocals, bass
Pietro Sabato: guitar
Gabriele Cruz: guitar
Marco Valentine: drums

INTERNET
www.instagram.com/lectern666

-Dave Wolff

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Promotional Video Review: ROUGH GRIND Bulletproof by James K. Blaylock

Bulletproof
From their EP Trouble Or Nothing, released July 13, 2018 on Inverse Records
Place of origin: Finland
Genre: Rock, metal
Okay, let's be honest: Rough Grind know they're not reinventing the wheel with their new single Bulletproof. Instead they're playing down and dirty rock and roll. Bottom line, they're having fun. Kind of like if you went to a hard rock/metal music festival and these guys took the stage, you would take notice, because, just like their predecessors Motorhead, Crowbar, Pro-Pain, even Prong, they've come to earnestly obliterate some eardrums. Who cares if their lyrics are nothing to write home about likewise the amateurish video for Bulletproof. (Maybe for their next outing even doing a video documentary-style or video diary-style or even guerilla-style. Perhaps their lyrics can be beefed up a little more with a trusty thesaurus.) Regardless they obviously want to leave their dent in the infinite corridors of hard rock/metal. Truly if they continue with their tight-knit onslaught, they may very well do just that. There you have it The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. -James K. Blaylock

Lineup:
Sami: Vocals, guitar
Ville: Guitar
Ari: Bass
Killi: Drums


Band Interview: ZEBULON KOSTED by Daniel M. Ryan

Interview with Rashid Abdel Ghafur of ZEBULON KOSTED

When did you start your band(s) / project(s) and how long have you been making music for?
Since I've played with somewhere between twenty and twenty five different bands (I've lost count) I'll just talk about Zebulon Kosted. I started ZK in 1999 and released my first full length on cassette in 2000.

If you had to describe the sound(s) to my readers what would you tell them to expect?
Zebulon Kosted is an Avant Garde / Experimental Black Metal band. This means that our influences are diverse and that we push the boundaries of what is currently considered Black Metal. Some of our material is very long, fifty minute songs that take up an entire album and change from one genre to the next as it evolves. Other albums have nine or ten songs that mostly sound the same or similar to each other. We mix Dark Ambient, Harsh Noise, Experimental Electronic, Martial and Avant Garde music into the Black Metal mix, and try to have an "original" sound that no-one else can easily imitate.

Is your music available on any merch format such as tape/cd/vinyl or digital medium? Where can listeners find it?
ZK is currently working with Tetraktys Media for local distribution, Hammerkrieg Productions for national distribution and Fall of Eden Records for European distribution. We have released material with each label and all of them still currently have titles available for purchase on cassette and compact disc. For other merchandise check out the Zebulon Kosted Bandcamp and Facebook pages.

If you had a choice of working with other artists who would they be and why? Any collabs at all in the past or lately?
If I had the choice of anyone I would ask Steve Reich, Blixa Bargeld, Diamanda Galas and Steve Von Till because in my opinion they are artists that push boundaries and create something unique. I am currently wrapping up collaborations with Stormhammer and Birthday Moanz that will be released in the next three to four months.

How has the reaction been so far to your music?
That is a pretty tricky question, since we have always had such a wide range of reactions from listeners over the years. I think that most people with an open mind that are looking for something unusual are satisfied. When people are looking for specific sounds within a tight knit sub-genre I think they are disappointed.

What would you like done this year in your life may it be musical or personal.
I would like to make more proficient art and music than ever before, play cricket, watch soviet sci-fi films, eat better and sleep more soundly.

If there is any bands that influenced you over the years to make you want to become a musician in the first place, who are they?
When I was young growing up poor in Bozeman, Montana during the 90's my family didn't have access to the internet. Most people in Montana didn't actually until the end of the decade. Our music stores were o.k. but not great. I started listening to bands like Slayer and Morbid Angel, but I kept wanting to hear something more insane and outrageous. I started mail ordering from labels like Necropolis when I was 16, and started stealing Samael and Enslaved used CDs from the bigger corporate music store the same year. I think I heard a lot of the Black Metal that influenced me at the time almost by accident, since I was just shopping or stealing by what the album cover looked like.

If you had to describe the recording process of your music, how does it work best for you and what do you use?
Our recording process is a secret, but I can tell you that it is unorthodox.

How long do you expect to make music for and what are your goals till the end of this year onto the next?
I expect to make music until I am 75 years old, I turned 37 in January so I am half way there right now. I figure I will take a break at that time, and if I don't live that long I guess I will make music until I die. I have new full lengths and collaborations coming out this year, making them sound as solid as possible is my goal, it will be a big year for the band this year, 2019 will be even bigger.

How important is your work to you and what do you want others to get out of it?
Music and art are everything to me. I work day jobs to the best of my ability and with the proper respect for my fellow co-workers and employers, but I never put my heart and soul into it. That passionate part of my life is dedicated to art and music. I want people who listen to my music to understand that I have never tried to make music for mass consumption that bent towards one style or another to make money or achieve fame. This is what I am, this is what you get, I am true to my own sense of artistic morality and I will create what I think best expresses the theme I have come up with.

-Daniel M. Ryan

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Promotional Video Review: METALWINGS There's No Time by James K. Blaylock

There's No Time
From their debut full length For All Beyond, released independently April 19, 2018
Place of origin: Sofia, Bulgaria
Genre: Symphonic metal
Filmed at: Mixtape, Sofia, Bulgaria, April 19th 2018
Sound production by: Morton Studio
Release date: May 10, 2018
This is what happens whenever a nightingale decides to light wherever a metal band is practicing a kickin' new instrumental. Not really, but that wouldn't be hard to envision. Honesty, this is the symphonic metal band Metalwings doing what they do best. Turns out I've been a fan of that style of music for years. On this newest offering There's No Time they prove that they can skillful lull your socks off. If you're a fan of Lacuna Coil, Nightwish, Within Temptation or Evanescence then Metalwings is sure to be right up your metal alley. Not that they're a clone of any of those other bands, or anything, instead these guys provide a truly haunting soundscape all their own. Just read the pure poetry of their lyrics. They simply feel like a wondrous dreamscape: “Time flies like the river Time passes like the wind All by ourselves in this life Where we come and go alone like the rain There's no time To save your heart Searching for a way Far away from the dark There's no time To steal your memories Life is a dream with an end But you have to dream till your last breath.” Don't waste any more time, go check them out now. There you have it The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. -James K. Blaylock

Lineup:
Stela Atanasova: Vocals, electric viola, keyboards
Grigor Kostadinov: Guitars (2014-present)
Dracovallis: Guitars, Irish flute, backing vocals
Milen Mavrov: Bass
Angel Kitanov: Keyboards
Nikola "Blackie" Ivanov: Drums

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Film Review: Grey Matter (Red Skies Studios) by James K. Blaylock

Grey Matter
Based on the short story by Stephen King
Written and Directed By Bobby McGruther
Starring Mark A. Yajcaji, Jeffrey J. Scott, Ralph Cobert, and Stu Mark
What to say about Grey Matter? Well, first off, I was trying to remember if I'd ever read the Stephen King short story. Which I'm almost certain that I have since it's in the Night Shift collection. Unfortunately it's been too many moons ago for to me to remember much about it. Obviously it didn't stand out in the collection to me. I was more partial to The Last Rung On The Ladder, The Mangler, Children Of The Corn, Sometimes They Come Back and The Lawnmower Man.
Meanwhile, as for the fan-made short film Grey Matter, I liked it. Liked being the key word here. Although the acting is ambitious the dialogue was lacking. But I think the worst part of it all was the lighting, it seemed a bit non-existent. Yes, I'm aware, this is a fan-made affair, and I do give them kudos, but it was still rather drab. I found myself lost in what I was trying to see. Nevertheless it was still a good and noble effort. Oftentimes mistakes are the best teachers. There you have it The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. -James K. Blaylock

Full Length Review: KISSIN DYNAMITE Ecstasy (Metal Blade) by James K. Blaylock

Ecstasy
Metal Blade
Place of origin: Reutlingen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Genre: Rock, metal
Release date: July 6, 2018 (CD, digital, streaming)
Kissin Dynamite newest effort Ecstasy is an 80s-90s hair metal head's dream. Just throw Guns N Roses, AC/DC, Whitesnake, Ratt, Dangerous Toys, Queensryche, Twisted Sister, Dokken, Skid Row, Motley Crue and Scorpions all into a blender and turn it on high octane. What you will have conjured is the sheer essence of Kissin' Dynamite! Their bravado is unmistakable, likewise their volcanic overflow of talent. Doubled with completely stellar lyrics. What we're left with is an album of all killer no filler tunes. No wonder Ecstasy is their 6th offering. These guys have definitely found the perfect configuration for longevity. With songs like I've Got the Fire, Placebo, Still Around, Waging War, Breaking the Silence & Heart of Stone you'll be begging someone to pinch you and to tell you today's date, because, surely, it's not 1988, still. Not that Kissin' Dynamite don't sound modern but they definitely pay homage to their hair metal elders. Which in my book blends perfectly well. All the generic music out there these days makes one ache for yesteryears electricity. And by God I'll take it. There you have it the Good, the Bad and The Ugly. -James K. Blaylock

Lineup:
Johannes Braun: Vocals
Jim Müller: Guitars
Ande Braun: Guitars
Steffen Haile: Bass
Andreas Schnitzer: Drums

Track list:
1. I've Got the Fire
2. You're Not Alone
3. Somebody's Gotta Do It
4. Ecstasy [featuring Anna Brunner]
5. Still Around
6. Superhuman
7. Placebo
8. Breaking the Silence
9. Waging War
10. One More Time
11. Heart of Stone
12. Wild Wind [Bonus track]
13. No Time to Wonder [Bonus track]

Full Length Review: PROFANE BURIAL The Rosewater Park Legend (Apathia Records) by Dave Wolff

The Rosewater Park Legend
Place of origin: Norway
Genre: Symphonic black metal
Recorded at: Strand Studio, Oslo, Norway
Mixed and mastered by: Marius Strand
Lyrics by: Bjørn Nørsterud
Artwork by: Dalila Belazi
Release date: March 23, 2018
Available in streaming, digital and limited digipak format (500 copies)
Is anyone surprised that Profane Burial are from Norway? Can black metal bands from that part of the world still push the experimental envelope after 25 years? You may think so if you like Emperor and Limbonic Art as well as French bands like Anorexia Nervosa and Lord. But even those bands, for their achievements, haven’t gone quite as far into theatrical nightmare as this band has. I heard of Profane Burial’s debut full length The Rosewater Park Legend from Grand Sounds Promotion. The band bio, the album’s selling points and cover art all of Dalila Belazi were what first interested me. Then I read two members of the band were previously in Tristania and Blood Red Throne, and was inspired to listen. The Rosewater Park Legend waited years to be created after André Aaslie and Kjetil Ytterhus wrote enough material, found musicians to complete the lineup and started recording in spring 2017. Released one year later, the album achieves its intended goal of wedding traditional cold darkness to equally cold, somber orchestrations. Although the lyrics weren’t included in the promotional email, the track list reads like a series of horror film shorts that prey on the mind rather than shocking you with jump scares. From a literary standpoint it reads like classic literature more terrifying than Poe, Stoker and Lovecraft combined. With a circuslike theme involving strings, piano, keyboards, horns and choral vocals like Gregorian chant, The Rosewater Park Legend raises the fiendish, unhallowed black metal it’s built on to Goya-like proportions. Remember Celtic Frost on To Mega Therion and Into The Pandemonium? Few symphonic black metal albums approach the potential those two classics hinted at so long ago. As far as I know there are few albums I’ve had this to say about. The descent into madness here is felt as much as expressed through the songwriting and lyrics, and you really have to think about how far into madness it goes. As an opening track, The Tower Bell establishes the band’s elegance with eerie chants, setting the stage for a metal opera that grows stranger and more disconsolately beautiful with each song. While the vocals, guitars, bass and percussion have a theatrical feel on their own, the orchestral instruments add copious amounts of flavor through The Stench Of Dying Roses (The Children's Song) and An Interlude (Or How the Curse Of Rosewater Park Began), right up to The Tale The Witches Wrote. “One of the year’s best releases” is a term that is thrown around a great deal, but Profane Burial’s The Rosewater Park Legend is certainly a contender for the title. -Dave Wolff

Lineup:
Ronny Thorsen: Vocals
Jostein Thomassen: Guitars
André Aaslie: Bass, keyboards, orchestrations
Kjetil Ytterhus: Keyboards, programming, orchestrations
Bjørn Dugstad Rønnow: Drums

Track list:
1. The Tower Bell
2. The Stench Of Dying Roses (The Children’s Song)
3. The Soldier’s Song
4. A Different Awakening (A Proclamation By The Priest)
5. An Interlude (Or How The Curse Of Rosewater Park Began)
6. The Letters
7. The Tale The Witches Wrote

Friday, August 10, 2018

About Autoeroticasphyxium Zine

ABOUT AUTOEROTICASPHYXIUM ZINE

EDITOR & PUBLISHER
Dave Wolff 

INTERVIEWS & ARTICLES
Liam Anthony, Loki Astaroth, Roberta DowningElena Karis, Alan Lisanti, Devin Joseph Meaney, Goddess Rosemary Sahjaza, Daniel M. Ryan, Tony Sokol, Alison Stone, Karin Webb, Dave Wolff

MUSIC & ZINE REVIEWS
Loki Astaroth, James K. Blaylock, Teresa Clayton, Heather Dawson, Roberta Downing, Eric Evers, Skitz J. Fitch, Ben Fitts, Abyss Forgottentomb, Frank Garcia, Tony "Reborn" Juarez, Alan Lisanti, Erik Martin, Patrick Ryan McGuigan, Sarah McKellar, Devin Joseph Meaney, Gene Olivarri, Jaime Regadas, Reggae, Deanna Revis, Drew Rizzo, Rrockhopper, Daniel M. Ryan, Goddess Rosemary Sahjaza, Robert Uller, Victor Varas, Dave Wolff, Xan

FILM & BOOK REVIEWS
Sophia Cynthia Cabral, Roberta Jean Downing, B. Knight-Forester, Chrissy McManis, Gene Olivarri, David Smith, Dave Wolff

CONVENTION REVIEWS
Gene Olivarri

FICTION & POEMS
Jillanna BabbJames K. Blaylock, Andy Bove, Big Jim, Chris Chaos, Kaya Chaos, M Teresa Clayton, Omesh Darkchild CrasherHeather Dawson, Lioness De WinterDebbie DixonRoberta Downing, Skitz J. Fitch, Ben Fitts, Abyss Forgottentomb, Eric Forsberg, Linzie Grotesque, Jonathan Hawk, Andy Horry, Johnny Hellion, Kay Irvin, Elena Karis, Alexander Kautz, James Ward Kirk, Joshua Laing, Jerry Langdon, Daina Lewis, Alan Lisanti, Hannah Marshall, Sarah McKellar, Devin Joseph Meaney, Craig Michael, Natasa Nikolic, Rich Orth, Steven Michael PapeLaura Petellat, S.C.C., Corvo Obsidian SahjazaDavid Smith, Tony Sokol, Sky Claudette Soto, Susan Stiltner, Alison Stone, Astrid Viridian, Jeremy Void

Contact the zine at AEAzinedw@aol.com

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Film Review: Escape From New Jersey (Blinky Productions) by James K. Blaylock

Escape From New Jersey (A Snake Plissken Fan Film)
Directed by: Chris R. Notarile
Written by: Hector De La Rosa, Chris R. Notarile and Kim Santiago
Produced by: Hector De La Rosa and Chris R. Notarile
Cinematography and film editing by Chris R. Notarile
Cast: Hector De La Rosa, Kim Santiago, Roberto Lombardi, William Kucmierowski, Emmanuel Brown, Thomas Daniel and Chris R. Notarile
Release date: August 3, 2010 (internet, limited), August 31, 2010 (DVD special edition), September 26, 2010 (Sacramento Sci-Fi/Horror Film Festival)
Available for viewing on Youtube and Veoh
Being that I'm a huge John Carpenter fan it was awesome seeing Snake Plissken up to his old shenanigans. It has been a minute since I saw him last escaping anything, but somehow, he has taken on a whole different appearance. That's right, folks this is a fan-made affair. Whether Snake is pounding Jack Daniels or bad guys, we're apt to see. Somehow pissed off women and scum bags alike always gravitate towards our hero. And this is no exception.
My only beef was how the movie was filmed. By that I mean they couldn't decide if they wanted to film at daylight or midnight. Of course they could be easily overlooked. Especially since it doesn't harm the flow of the proceedings. I love the truck driver's good ol' Jack Burton impersonation. Two-for-one Kurt Russell roles. Alas, this may only be realized by hardcore John Carpenter fans. It's pretty easy to see that Chris R. Notarize must be one of them. This time Snake is dumped off in New Jersey, therefore he has to escape, giving us our title Escape From New Jersey.
Never mind the years later sequel Escape From L.A. Perhaps this wonderful effort is supposed to be sandwiched in between the two, but then again, maybe this is geared more towards people forgetting that sequel. Although I enjoyed it myself many people did not. Of course Russell was about a decade older and the dialogue was wall-to-wall E-Z cheese. Meanwhile Hector De La Rosa does a bang-up job as Snake Plissken. All in all this was a fairly fun romp. My hat's off to everyone who contributed. Great overacting. Great lame dialogue. great film and sound quality.
A wonderful continuation and not a reboot, thank God! And there you have it The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. -James K. Blaylock

Promotional Video Review: SECOND TO SUN The Wall by James K. Blaylock

The Wall
From their full length The Black, released independently May 16, 2018
Place of origin: Russian Federation
Genre: Post black/groove metal
Release date: June 27, 2018
Second to Sun have created a haunting soundscape within the song The Wall. Lulling it's listeners to come into their musical abyss. The video seems almost fanmade, at first, until you realize that these guys are most assuredly inviting you to take flight with them. Lyrics like "Come on, knock with your hands. Yes, more pounding Do not you hear? - Oh, the wall is strong!" propel us deeper into those desired darker meanings. But the real question remains to be, "Do we wish to learn more?" With such mystifying lyrics and an altogether eerie video how could we not? -James K. Blaylock

Full Length Review: FUTURE USSES The Existential Haunting (Pelagic Records) by Dave Wolff

FUTURE USSES
The Existential Haunting
Pelagic Records
Place of origin: Los Angeles, California, USA
Genre: Psychedelic sludge/doom rock
Release date: September 14, 2018 (LP, CD, digital format)
Preorders available at:
Pelagic Records (North America)
Pelagic Records (Europe)
Nerve Gas (Australia)
Yet another new band emerges to take chances and make a statement few others thought of. Not your typical L.A. band, Future Usses have been active for five years and have taken a considerable amount of time channeling thought into their work. Their efforts are just beginning to pay off, as independent zines such as Metal Sucks are favorably responding to them. Founder/songwriter Sacha Dunable is an experienced musician, having worked in progressive/post-metal/doom metal bands like Intronaut and Bereft (also the ambient-electronic metal band Graviton) for fifteen years. His experience is put to good use, as he takes what he contributed to those bands, reimagines it and redirects it. As a title, The Existential Haunting encompasses many ideas, giving you an inkling of the bold innovation and ingenuity to expect from this album when it’s out in September. But to be completely conscious of the monumental consequence of Dunable’s painstaking work with Dan Wilburn (ex-Mouth Of The Architect) and Derek Donley (ex-Bereft) you should cast expectation aside and be receptive to the ideas they present. There is a wealth of original music from Dunable’s older bands to this one, and each instrumental appearing on The Existential Haunting unlocks another part of your brain, without a need for lyrical content written to tell you where the band is going. Taking you across the vast distances they explored composing and re-envisioning them, the tracks come closer to art than even they may have expected. From the eleven-minute opus What Is Anything to the haunting Make Flowers to the cold, bleak, dissonant, atmospheric title track, The Existential Haunting invites you to share your imagination with the band, building on repetitive guitar progressions, furnishing supposed limitations with many opportunities for growth. To quote Dunable, “The beautiful thing about making an instrumental record is that you’re not obligated to impose any specific literal message onto the listener, but rather to concentrate on setting a vibe that can be interpreted or personified naturally through the power of their own imagination… we made something truly unique and special.” I strongly recommend you check out this band as well as the others mentioned in this review. You’ll get massive returns for the time invested. -Dave Wolff

Lineup:
Sacha Dunable: guitar
Dan Wilburn: bass
Derek Donley: drums

Track list:
1. What Is Anything
2. Absolute Zero
3. Make Flowers
4. Heavenly Superperson
5. Apocalypse When Convenient
6. The Existential Haunting

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Solo Project Interview: DARK METAMORPHOSIS by Daniel M. Ryan

Interview with Count Draclecarde of DARK METAMORPHOSIS

When did you start your band(s) / project(s) and how long have you been making music?
Dark Metamorphosis was founded in 2008, I've been working on music off and on since about 2006. 

If you had to describe the sound(s) to my readers what would you tell them to expect?
I would describe Dark Metamorphosis as some sort of combination of progressive metal and several extreme music styles. I basically just play whatever I’m feeling at the moment and don’t try to stick to one type of sound. 

Is your music available on any merch format such as tape/cd/vinyl or digital medium? Where can listeners find it?
No physical media at the moment. Everything can all be found at the Evergrim Recordings Bandcamp account or the Evergrim Recordings Youtube channel. 

If you had a choice of working with other artists who would they be and why? Any collabs at all in the past or lately?
I usually don’t make plans for collaborations, though I am (almost) always open to them. I am currently working with C of Blasphomet on a new project to be announced soon. We worked together previously on two full lengths and an EP as Infernal Alchemy. 

How has the reaction been so far to your music?
Generally positive, when there is one. Most of my releases seem to go generally under the radar, which I am fine with. I do this for myself, first and foremost. 

What would you like done this year in your life, be it musical or personal?
I would like to have at least an EP released with Dark Metamorphosis, and finish the full length I am working on with my new side project. I need to get busy on this ever growing Steam back catalog as well. 

If there are any bands that influenced over the years to make you want to become a musician in the first place, who are they?
My early inspirations were many of the second wave of black metal bands, as well as Celtic Frost, Swans, and some of the Symphonic Death Metal bands such as Septic Flesh and Eternal Tears Of Sorrow. I take a lot of influence from electronic and synth music as well. 

If you had to describe the recording process of your music, how does it work best for you and what do you use?
I currently use an old Epiphone Gothic Explorer primarily for most of my rhythm work. I have a seven string Jackson Dinky, an ovation acoustic, and a Washburn bass. I use a Microkorg for the synth fills and Boss GT-6 multi effect pedal. The drums are programmed. 

How long do you expect to make music for and what are your goals till the end of this year onto the next?
I don’t have any end goal for Dark Metamorphosis. So I’ll be working on music for the immediate future. I would like to get an EP or full length album out by the end of 2018 or early 2019. 

How important is your work to you and what do you want others to get out of it?
Dark Metamorphosis is incredibly significant to me because it is my escape from the woes of life. Definitely the place where I go to just filter my frustration and put it into musical form. I don’t know what others will take from the music. I just hope they can find enjoyment out of it, in some form. 

Any last words for the readers of Autoeroticasphyxium zine?
I appreciate all support for my net label and my projects. Much more to come. So keep an eye out. Thanks for the interview, and good luck to you and Autoeroticasphyxium zine.


-Daniel M. Ryan

Promotional Video Review: REDEMPTION Someone Else's Problem by James K. Blaylock

Someone Else's Problem
From their full length Long Night's Journey Into Day, released on Metal Blade Records July 27th, 2018
Place of origin: Los Angeles, California, USA
Genre: Progressive/power metal
Directed by: Patric Ullaeus
Produced by: Marcos Efron
Executive Produced by: Nick van Dyk
Featuring: Georgina Gentle and Amy Shiels
Release date: July 10, 2018
Redemption's video for Someone Else's Problem looks extremely sharp. These boys look like they're putting on a killer show for the dust devils. Meanwhile a pissed-off, soon-to-be ex, girlfriend is back at the sacasa showing out in her own right. Although she wanders from room to room scantily-clad nothing really malicious ever takes place. She saves that for whenever she throws his car keys into the great blue yonder. Honestly, though, I think they should have left the footage of her at bay, for the most part, and instead worked on cooler aerial angles of the guys rocking. Though I do understand the importance of gratuitous eye candy, her presence was not really necessary to make the video any better or worse. Perhaps if we would have seen a backstory, but either way she's there in all her shining glory, doing mundane things. All that being said though the video itself is eye catching and crunchy. You can just tell they have a pretty solid musicianship. It's hard to imagine that this is Tom Englund first rodeo on vocals with the band. And there you have it the good, the bad and the ugly. -James K. Blaylock

Lineup:
Tom Englund: Vocals
Nicolas van Dyk: Guitars / Keyboards
Bernie Versailles: Guitars
Sean Andrews: Bass Guitar
Chris Quirarte: Drums
Vikram Shankar: Keyboards

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Band Interview: MADMANS ESPRIT by Dave Wolff

Interview with Kyuho of MADMANS ESPRIT

Describe the origins of Madmans Esprit and their approach to mixing gothic metal, black metal and visual kei.
When I first started Madmans Esprit (I believe it was around 2011), it sounded much closer to visual kei. But around the time I released the first full-length album 'NACHT' with the influences I've got from various extreme metal genres, it became somewhat DSBM-ish. Now with the upcoming album I don't even consider myself a genre artist anymore. As I never have a specific idea or concept to write my music, I can't really tell the origin of those three mixtures. It all came out of me naturally and it already sounded like that. Additionally, for me those three genres, if visual kei can be considered a genre, are not enough to explain my music.

Explain what visual kei is, and how you incorporate it into your concept. How does it give the band a unique identity?
Visual kei for me is more like a scene and culture rather than a musical genre. It gives me the freedom to express what I want musically, also aesthetically.

Did you set out to do something different with Madmans Esprit from the beginning?
I never really had any idea with which sound or concept to do the band. I just had a couple of bands I liked and I wanted to play and materialize what came from me.

What bands were you listening to before you started Madmans Esprit? Did they influence you in any way?
I grew up listening to lots of classical, jazz, rock and pop music from my parents influence. I got into Japanese bands later on, such as X-JAPAN or Dir En Grey. Of course they all left a great influence on my music.

Where is Madmans Esprit’s place in the underground in Seoul, Korea? Do you remain in touch with the scene since moving to Germany?
Since I came back to Korea for a while, I'm currently working together with a few Korean metal people. But it's really hard to tell there is an existing music scene. Korea is a culturally very narrow minded country. There's only mainstream music. I'm much unknown just like other metal bands in Korea, But inside the small Korean metal scene, people know me. The band was formed in Korea but has much more of a reputation in Europe.

What was the Korean club scene and independent zine scene like before the move?
Most of the time when I had a concert there were less than ten people. Probably the biggest audience I had was around a hundred people. My demo album release shows that I organized. Cradle Of Filth came to Korea and there were like forty people. You probably get what I mean.

After you relocated to Germany, What differences did you notice scene-wise? How do German fans respond to your music?
I moved to Berlin in late 2014, scene-wise the difference is that there is a scene in Germany, that there are people coming to concerts, buying albums, sharing information, living their lifestyle. I think German people seem to be able to enjoy my music better.

The band’s lineup includes you and live guitarist Mario. How did you contact him and how well do you work together?
I met Mario in Berlin, I was looking for some members for Madmans Esprit online and he contacted me. He's an amazing guitar player and open minded person. He has a really good taste in music I can share with him and his ideas inspired me to rearrange the existing songs even better.

Did Madmans Esprit release NACHT before or after you moved? List the songs on that album with some descriptions.
NACHT was released in Korea. There are six songs: “My little dark paradise,” “Blood, cum and shit,” “A gaunt tree,” “The lily and the rose,” “Absolute Darkness” and “In der Nacht.” I don't want to self-explain my music, but I would say ‘My little dark paradise’ and ‘In der Nacht’ are the core songs of the album.

Are you the band’s lyricist? What has inspired your lyrics to date?
I'm the lyricist, and the answer will be long story short: my existence.

You have a Youtube profile with rehearsal, interview and lyric videos. How long has it been active and how often is it updated?
It has been there since the birth of the band, I upload when I have something to show. It is not scheduled nor fixed.

Who shoots and edits the promotional videos for your songs? Do you work with the same people for each of them?
I have a couple of talented friends who help me all the time. It is different every time depending on what I want to create. But I've worked with some of them in the past.

Who helped shoot your promotional videos for Parade Of Extinction and You Don’t Allow Me MV?
It was done by my good friends, some of them are also very good musicians. One from MS. Isohp Romatem and the other one from Dark Mirror Ov Tragedy. Both from Korea, they're worth checking out. I also have a very talented manager who helps me out with almost everything.

Who is your manager and how much help and support has he or she given the band?
My manager basically helps me out with everything other than making music itself, from clothing, videos to social media, etc.

Will your new full length Conscientization Of Unconsciousness be available in physical, streaming or digital format?
Currently the pre-order for the physical limited edition with a bonus track is going on. After that, on October 1 the worldwide digital release will follow through Gan Shin Records on every major streaming, downloading service.

How much input does Mario have into composing the band’s new material?
The writing of music for the upcoming album I've done completely on my own.

Have you had professional artists design album covers for the band?
I've done everything myself and my manager also helped me out.

How did the band land a release deal with Gan Shin Records for the new album? How much promotion has gone into the pre-order of the new album since it was made available?
I sent my music there and they found it good. I guess. There's no behind story or anything. As the limited edition is self-produced I couldn't make the promotion bigger than my social media and so on. But the interest is high.

Do you plan to perform in support of Conscientization Of Unconsciousness when it’s released?
There will be a tour in Asia soon. Most of the places will be where the band has never been so far. It would be mostly in Korea and Japan.

Any final acknowledgements you want to conclude this interview with?
I don't have a specific wish but thank you for having me and stay looking forward for the upcoming album.


-Dave Wolff