Thursday, September 30, 2021

Full Length Review: Psycho "Vulture Church" (Selfmadegod Records) by Corban Skipwith

Band: Psycho
Location: Boston. Massachusetts
Country: USA
Genre: Punk/grindcore
Full Length: Vulture Church
Format: Digital album, compact disc
Label: Selfmadegod Records (Poland)
Release date: September 24, 2021
Wow, this week must be PUNK WEEK! I swear in one way or another I’ve only reviewed Punk albums all week! But hey not complaining!!
Vulture Church by PSYCHO
So welcome back to another review! Where this file we will be tackling the crazy project by the legendary underground Punk/Grindcore group from Boston PSYCHO with their new album featuring 18 new tracks to dissect!
Firstly, the main thing find interesting about this album is although it’s extreme in nature (and trust me, it is on the furthest end of the spectrum!) it’s not ‘heavy’ in sound if that makes any sense? For example it’s not like the band KEN mode that utilizes a more ‘Deathcore’ mixed with Punk sound (at least on their album LOVED) and that variety has its lovers and haters.
But none the less, if I had to think off the top of my head a project this can be similar to it would have to be Black Flag’s album ‘Family Man’ in how extreme the narrative is, the lyrics, the focus and the aesthetic as a whole!
I mean when it comes to this album you can tell just by the track titles! You’ve got songs like
-Animal Boy
-Transvaginal Mess and many more to put worry into anyone who isn’t already familiar with the style of music.
But as any Punk band worth their salt they have the classic trademarks that make you know their a Punk band such as
-The use of slap stick voice and sound samples
-The short length of songs
-The small but explosive nature of the tracks
Anyone who listens to Punk knows what I’m talking about with these, every album back in the day had them and I guess they are just following suit! Which isn’t a bad thing at all!
When I was listening to this album I felt the aggravation, the aggression and the maniac nature of the band and with so many decades of experience mastering this art over the years they are sure to bring a perfected sound that kicks ass.
Actually I was playing a competitive wrestling match with The Rock in WWE 2K16 and it was insane how hard that match was so this album helped a lot in providing me the energy haha.
Anyway, enough about me. This album is any Metal fan’s desire and any Punk rocker’s fantasy! It’s ridiculously fast paced and in your face ready to kick your teeth out if you’re not ready to handle the aura that is ‘PSYCHO!’ –Corban Skipwith

Johnny X: Guitar, vocals
Mike: Bass, vocals
Charlie Infection: Drums, vocals

Track list:
1. South Of The Border
2. Drive 3
3. Stressed Out
4. Animal Boy
5. Bleeding Out
6. Vulture Church
7. Life Lost
8. Dead On A Mountain
9. Name Dropper
10. Transvaginal Mess
11. Slave
12. Rock Opera
13. Louder Than God
14. Sever The Sist
15. U.K. Joogler
16. Eye Of The Storm
17. Uncle Buff
18. Cancercunt

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Full Length Review: So Long Until the Séance (S.L.U.T.S) "B Movie Superstars" (Independent) by Corban Skipwith

Band: So Long Until the Séance (S.L.U.T.S)
Location: Belfast
Country: United Kingdom
Genre: Budget shock rock
Full Length: B Movie Superstars
Format: Compact disc
Label: Independent
Release date: Halloween 2021
You know when it comes to music there are so many different avenues and roads, streets, and roundabouts, left turns and right turns not to mention the endless amounts of roundabouts, traffic lights, speed cameras, and freeways all designed to give you a new destination and adventure to travel on.
But the one thing that always is interesting to try even if you’ve heard it done a thousand and one times is
Because when it comes to fusion, you never know how it will turn out, I’ve heard some AWFUL fusion projects in my time and I’ve always heard some AMAZING in the same respect, and today, I’m here to announce an album that is the perfect fusion of two of my favourite sub-genres that I can’t let it be ignored.
So Long Until The Séance and their album ‘B Movie Superstars’.
What an experience this was, as I type this to you now I’m already thinking back to how good this album was, it blew me away! With all-new albums, I didn’t know what to expect and this blew away all my expectations and much much more! So to clear it up for you guys this is a combination of
Horror Punk and Glam/Hair metal!
I want you to imagine the two worlds of Frankenstein Drag Queens From Planet 13 and bands like Whitesnake and Van Halen coming together and this album is their sonic love child! It’s perfect from start to finish! What’s perfect about the two above-mentioned subgenres are that they are all about FUN! You’ve got the Tongue and Cheek Punk essence of the Horror Punk and then you have the glossy, fast-paced and direct vibe of the Hair/Glam Metal and this album has taken the best elements of both and combined them to make this one of a kind record!
It’s only 9 tracks but man do they ROCK! Well, technically they Rock and Punk but that’s not the point! This album is the definition of FUN! You know I’ll be the first to admit that I love a serious, dark album as much as the next guy, but nothing and I mean NOTHING is better than a well-executed fun album and that’s exactly what we have!
The vocals are kickass, melodic, hard felt, rocking, everything you would want from an album like this! The guitar is shredding, drums are smart and technical and that bass slaps harder than when you think you're tough enough to take on your mum as a teenage brat, it slaps!
What’s the kick here? The kick is that this is a PRE REVIEW for the upcoming album! I won’t be releasing any link for the album but you have to take my word for it that THIS IS A MUST LISTEN for 2021!
If you won’t purchase for them purchase for me! I do my absolute best to present to you all as many reviews as I can on a weekly basis (sometimes working this 7 days a week) including a full-time day job! So as a favour to your favourite independent music critic! Go click on their Facebook group and pre-order this album because I’m never wrong and there’s no reason to start now!
It will be available soon and you will want to be there when it is! –Corban Skipwith

Track list:
1. Prologue
2. Another Horror Story
3. Carol Anne
4. Knives Amongst The Ivy
5. Necrophiliac
6. Beautiful And Cruel
7. Brave The Night
8. Suspiria
9. The Hex

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Monday, September 27, 2021

EP Review: Holy Death "Deus Mortis" (Seeing Red Records) by Corban Skipwith

Band: Holy Death
Location: Los Angeles, California
Country: USA
Genre: Death/doom metal
EP: Deus Mortis
Format: Digital, limited edition vinyl, cassette (sold out)
Label: Seeing Red Records
Release date: October 30, 2020
Today, I want to discuss with you all a very tragic EP, one in which it’s whole existence is brought forth due to pain, suffering and ‘death’ and today you will be able to hear how devastating tragedy sounds on a record. Holy Death with ‘Deus Mortis’ So this is the October 2020 release by the band featuring a track list of four songs plus an Entombed cover.
In the description for this band it states that the lead singer had a near-death experience and which led him into the creation of this band, and has apparently lost several family members since, which is a pain no one should have to suffer. But in doing so he has unleashed into this world a series of tracks that feel absolutely soul crushing and detrimental from start to finish, a collection of songs that go past any emotional barrier or sense of ‘appropriation’. This is just pure, raw, animalistic emotional vulnerability over instrumentation and it’s one of the most mesmerizing thing I’ve ever heard.
The production itself gives a strong combination of Doom/Sludge with those slow, methodical pacing of the music combined with those heavy, sluggish guitar riffs and precise drum patterns to really hammer in the intensity provided on the songs. I can’t stress this enough, the sonic aggression provided to us is something I haven’t heard in a really long time. This is real, heartfelt pain expressed here, not just put on for the sake of ‘Metal’ or ‘Being Brutal’. No this is genuine sorrow expressed, and when you hear the real thing, no matter what you're used to hearing, you can recognize it right away.
The only album I could really compare this to (authenticity-wise) is the album IOWA by Slipknot. How rumour goes they were all at the rock bottom of their lives, Corey convinced them all to stay and record their animosity, and how that album became one of their most infamous records for that reason!
The same applies to this! Even though it’s only five tracks it won’t be for the weak of heart and don’t think just because you're used to heavy styles of music that this will be a cakewalk. Because when you step into this record you're walking into the real thing and sometimes the real thing can bite back.
What an astonishing effort on this one, I always take my hat off to those rare few who decide to unleash their anger and sorrow on to an album for the world to feel, it obviously can’t be easy but if the desired result was to have us all feel the pain, then message received.
Link is down below, go support this band and feel the incredible aura this record produces! –Corban Skipwith

Torie: Vocals, guitar
Aspen: Bass
Stephen: Drums

Track list:
1. Ritualistic Pain
2. Spiritual Degradation
3. Deus Mortis
4. A Crown Grows out ov His Head
5. Wolverine Blues (Entombed cover)

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Full Length Review: Lori Bravo "Bare Bones" (Independent) by Dave Wolff

Artist: Lori Bravo
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana
Country: USA
Genre: Indie rock, avant-garde jazz
Full Length: Bare Bones
Format: Digital album
Label: Independent
Release date: May 16, 2021
In her last concert at New York's CBGB, Patti Smith urged new artists to continue the tradition established by the first artists to perform there. She urged creators to replace easy accessibility with something bold and innovative, adding that even if the club ended, people could still create if they dared. It seems that the artistic and musical expressions embodied by these artists have been given a new voice today by someone who has notable experience in the extreme metal world.
Lori Bravo developed her unique qualities earlier in her career. As the first lady of death metal, Bravo's exposure to classical music and opera influenced her work as frontwoman, bassist, and vocalist for Nuclear Death. Taking extreme metal to extremes, even in their time, these guys were the farthest you could get from the mainstream. Those who appreciated their nightmare visions were few and far between in the late 80s, since they were so out of the ordinary. While they disbanded in the 90s for reasons Bravo discloses to Terminus Extreme Metal Podcast, their legacy is finding new life in the 2020s.
I listened to Nuclear Death in the early days of death metal and felt I was listening to something special. The deeply personal compositions on Bravo's full-length "Bare Bones" give me the same feeling. While there are traces of her early career here, she writes music and lyrics that can captivate fans of Smith, Nico and Velvet Underground, Janis Joplin, the Doors, Pink Floyd, Lydia Lunch, Lingua Ignota and Diamanda Galas. The work of Bravo, who lives in New Orleans, holds a candle to anything inspired by the 70s movement in New York City. Her fusion of early punk/alt-rock, jazz, and blues isn't for everyone, but it appeals to the raw instincts of fear and anger on a level few artists of those genres can.
"Bare Bones" is an album that portrays you searching for something that continues to elude you, or comes with drinks or chemicals. You're situated in an abandoned house or an apartment in a run-down tenement with creaky floors and decaying walls. One feels like one must go to this place to escape the outside world in order to face one's demons. Is it better to overcome them or to embrace them? The experience described in the song will determine whether you can relate to this album, but the intensity and isolation in this album are so vivid that it's almost impossible not to.
Bravo has been recording solo since 2003 and does all the lyrics, songwriting, recording, mixing, and mastering here. She croons, croons, and howls like a possessed gospel singer letting loose with praises to all things dark and fatalistic accompanied only by acoustic and electric guitars. Bravo exhibits many feelings that most others only suggest or keep hidden from public view, whether it is entreating blank walls for inner freedom, struggling with addiction in silence, remembering long-dead family members, grieving lost beauty, or being consumed with the state of the world. Bravo reveals feelings others simply hint at or keep buried. -Dave Wolff

Track list:
1. Pink Moon
2. On the Pain
3. Digital Spell
4. Lay You Down in the Soil
5. This Devil I'll Allow (Southern Ruby Devil)
6. Where is My Lover?
7. Ashes
8. Fry Park
9. What Do the Beautiful People Eat? (What Are Beautiful?)
10. Suicide and Fentanyl
11. Diamond Heart

Friday, September 24, 2021

Full Length Review: Scars Like These "Piss Poor Attitude" (Circa 68 Records) by Corban Skipwith

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Country: USA
Genre: Punk, rock, metal
Full Length: Piss Poor Attitude
Format: Digital album
Label: Circa 68 Records
Release date: July 4, 2020
Who’s ready for some Punk? I know I am!
-Piss Poor Attitude by Scars Like These
So this is the second album by the Philly band and features a twelve track set list.
Let me start off by saying this, as a major fan of the classic Punk Era this album left me smiling ear to ear because as only one other band I’ve reviewed in the past few months has done this record signified the return of the REAL Punk Era! And I couldn’t be happier!
Amongst the 12 tracks you have some of the most brutal, outrageous and larger than life Aggression ever put on record. You can hear the personality dripping from each line, each hit of the drum, each strum of the guitar they make it clear that they are here to wear their heart and influences on their sleeve and it’s visible from 100 miles away!
The production on this one is so grimy, distorted and ruthless that it reminds of the band ‘Black Flag’ epically their first three records with the feeling of hopelessness, anger and resentment coming in full circle with every track, but the amazing thing about the classic era of Punk is that although the vibe and overall aesthetic of the tracks were this extreme in nature and emotional the tracks themselves were catchy!
(I could be wrong) but to my memory no music had ever been both hyper violent aggressive and catchy at the same time prior to Punk! You caught yourself singing out loud to the most outlandish and insane lyrics because of how memorable the choruses and lines are!
Quick detour here but I had an embarrassing punk moment myself a few years back when I was listening to the latest (at the time) Wednesday 13 album ‘Calling All Corpses’ and I was at the grocery store and I was singing out loud to myself the chorus ‘I wanna be Cremated, I wanna be cremated’ I had the whole aisle looking at me and It didn’t click until I realized I was saying it out loud (smile).
But back to the album, as I said it’s brutal in its sound and delivery but like every great Punk band it remains catchy and memorable!
The vocalist as well was phenomenal! You could hear in voice the rebellious nature, the attitude and the grit it all feels as real as can be and the way he utilized those nasty vocals are insane! He sounded truly demented at times and all the real Punk heads know the more screwed up the singer sounds the better the band is and by that theory they could rival Black Flag no problem!
You looking for an album to punch a wall to? Wrestle a tiger? Challenge Mike Tyson to a boxing fight? You may not succeed in any of these things but this album will give you the energy and conviction to believe that you will! It’s the perfect album to just let yourself go on and if your one for the more ‘heavier’ strains of music then this will be perfect for you! –Corban Skipwith

Tommy Scars: Lead vocals, rhythm guitar
Psyko Mike: Lead guitar
Vic DeVille: Bass
Dave Debauchery: Drums

Track list:
1. Intro/Cockthroat
2. Step 13 Sobriety
3. Play For Blood
4. Scars Like These
5. PC America
6. Fence Walker
7. Oh Nicole!
8. Born To Lose
9. Self Righteous
10. Sex Drugs and Rock N' Roll
11. Philly Rise
12. Piss Poor Attitude

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Poem: "Midas’ Daughter" by Alison Stone

Midas’ Daughter
by Alison Stone

The boat of truth turned back at the gate of my throat…
A girl unheard learns not to chatter, told
“be still,” she hardens from a laughing child
to a statue, her fixed smile sharp as hate.

Human beauty doesn’t tempt you, Father, not
my somersault, not my castle of gold-
flecked sand. Trapped in your opulent cold
garden, spoiled flowers shine. I suffocate.

We share a hunger, Father, you who grab at
everything, I whose favorite word is no. Mourn
your folly's price, repent and save us both.
Spend your final wish to touch the free bright
breathing world. Then I will be safe in my skin
and the silence will melt from my mouth.

Poem: "The Three Diablos" by Jeremy Void

The Three Diablos
by Jeremy Void

Remember Harry?
He was best friend
number 1
When I was 18,
a guy four years older than me
attacked me in Newton Highlands
because I had blue hair
Harry was there
but then he was gone
No one knew where he went
He did not have my back
14-year-old DP was there for me
but not Harry
DP got a face full of scolding hot
22-year-old prick got a boot
to the side of his car
as he pulled out
and then he pulled up
got out
and attacked me again

The police report lied
and I owed
the guy
$700 worth of damage to
his fuckin car
for the tiny dent
They made me pay for more
than what I had done

Lethal Erection played our first show
Harry on bass
DP on drums
It was a benefit show
to keep
me out of jail
I made $200
in all
Harry stole the proceeds
because he needed
a cab ride home
although I had heard he never
even paid the fare
He kept the money and

Then there was Ben
remember him?
He was best friend
number 2
A jolly asshole he was
I think he might have
killed himself by now
after his wife who married him
for his disability money
divorced him
Many times recently
I have looked him up
on Facebook
to reconnect but
he is a mystery
I reconnected with Harry recently
and he told me
about how Christy--
I really liked her,
to tell you the truth--
was only using him for
his disability check

When we were younger

Ben would
kick me
in the shins with
his steel-toed boots
whenever he felt
the urge
He fucked my first girlfriend
while we were going out
and after we were going out
which is so gross--
she was gross\\\

I stopped talking to Ben
because as I said
he was a dick
and ran into him while
hanging out with Jeff
Ben attacked me
put me in a headlock
as he tried to squeeze all the
life out of me
Ben was three times my size
He was a big dude
So I punched him the nuts
and when he released me
decked him in the face
and walked away
Jeff said that was
the most Punk rock
thing he had ever seen

Then there was Jeff
best friend number 3
Told everyone I was a Nazi
a week after I punched Ben
in the face
and I lost a lot of
really good friends
as a result

Poem: "Despareality" by Tanner Reiss

by Tanner Reiss

I am crying. It breaks my heart knowing
That while I sit in my room
There is someone somewhere
Feeling useless and powerless
Consumed by their demons
Thinkin’ death is the only means
To an exorcism.

I swear, I am sick of this racism
And the mental health system
Is a joke in this province.
Not the kind that’s light-hearted and funny
It’s the kind that’ll take a life in a hurry
My mind is in a furry knowing
Somewhere someone’s vision is blurry
From the pills they popped.
The pain in someone’s wrists
They could not resist.

I will not say a name, I will not pass shame
Because I know the government
And their budget is to blame for this tragedy.
Money hungry power freaks
That are too high and mighty
To hear the dying cries of Indigenous
Youth all across this country.
It’s a national epidemic
And I prey I will not be caught in it.

I don’t wanna be pulled under
Or succumb to that monster
But until they cease this financial rape
There is no escape.
I want us to be free
But they don’t care about us or me
Just keep us locked away in a prison cell
Walkin’ thru their systemic hell.
Deaf ears do not hear our cries
Blind eyes miss our missing wives.

I am crying. It breaks my heart knowing
The only reason someone somewhere is alive
Is the front door opening and closing
And they are no longer alone –
Their little sister – I’ll call her Salone –
Has come home from school
And they can’t handle hearing her cry
So, through teary eyes they connect to the hotline
Pouring their heart out
To someone they can’t even see.

“Man, just yesterday my best friend Creedence
Got his ass kicked for doing a Cree dance
Then arrested for filing a grievance.
I mean, since when does reporting a crime
Come with the threat of doing time?
The only reason he was dancing
Is because his only sister is missing
And he’s trying to get the attention of a nation
But the government won’t listen
Says she’s just another addition to this country’s
Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.
But he knows she’s more than
A number on a Stat-Can sheet
Or a drum beat in Canada’s New National Anthem.”

I don’t want to be pulled under
Or succumb to that monster
But until they cease this sacrificial rape
There is no escape.
I want us to be free,
But the government don’t care about us or me
Just keep us locked away in a prison cell
Walkin’ thru their systemic hell.
Deaf ears do not hear our cries
Blind eyes miss our missing wives.

I swear, I am sick of this governance
Hearing the endless silence
When the problem is so glaringly obvious
Two hundred fifteen has become
Five thousand, two hundred ninety-six
But a concert of crickets would
Sell more tickets!
Thinking about how little Parliament
Cares about Canada’s Indigenous.
I don’t know why it started
Or what it will take to change it
But something has to be done
Because our desecration is still young
And getting worse by the second
With every life still unfound
That can’t be resurrected.

Perhaps all our souls, in a mirror
Should be painfully inspected
Until our eyes drown in tears
Perhaps that will clear our vision?
Rain disguises the tears
Tears clear the vision of this mission
But only if someone somewhere cares to listen!

Aug. 31st, 2021

Poem: "How Will We Grow (Do Bother)" by James Kenneth Blaylock

How Will We Grow (Do Bother)
by James Kenneth Blaylock, 7-10-20

are we really threatened
by any man, color of skin,
language, race or religion,
‘why can’t we be friends’...
as the song clearly states,
because fearfully we hate
not taking the time to know
each other, how will we grow
to love one another, my brother,
sister, father, mother, do bother

Poem: "Echoes in the Mist" by M Teresa Clayton

Echoes in the Mist
by M Teresa Clayton

One can hear, if he listens very well,
The echoes in the mist and stories they tell.
Lie down upon the moss, soft and sweet,
Say nothing, just listen as they begin to speak.
The fog slowly covers the landscape where
The sights and surroundings look eerily bare.
Your mind no longer knows the distance or the way,
You have no other choice, listen to what they say.
“You are not lost, you are simply found,
Look out into the mist that moves o’er the ground -
It knows the way to where it is going
Without ever asking, just with the ’knowing’.
Remember the lady who loves you dear,
She has cleaved you a path, so do not fear.
There are no obstacles to overcome, so receive.
The key is the ‘knowing’ and to simply believe.
Near the hearth, she keeps a fire for you.
She knows you are coming, you are long overdue.”
“Now the fog is lifting, can you see the tall trees?
Can you hear the birds and feel the soft breeze?
Look out at the distance, there is where you belong!
In the arms of her love, so pure, true and strong.
Yes, you have been found worthy of this gift of love,
It surrounds you here, with blessings from above.
We will walk with you until you and she are united,
Then your topsy-turvy world will at once be uprighted.
Oh how we will rejoice when you no longer need to roam -
The celebration awaits you, sir, at the gates of your home.”

Poem: "Monsters" by Elena Karis

by Elena Karis, October 25, 2017

Scratching, laughing, taunting they burst out of the closet
With glowing green eyes and forked tongues
Clinching the blanket, praying for help that never comes
Wanting to scream but you are in the clutch of paralyzing fear.
Crawling and slithering from beneath the bed
Grating nails across the metal frame
So loud that shrieking cannot be heard
Praying for help. That never comes.

Poem: "Behind the Shroud" by Jerry Langdon

Behind the Shroud
by Jerry Langdon

I don't know why
I feel under an endless sky
That feels out of time and space;
Like I'm living out of my place.
As if I am from another era.
How long has my soul visited Terra?
How long have I wandered;
How often has my soul pondered?
Will the light that is in my darkness
Ever know the answers to the endless
Questions that string out equations
That may not even have solutions?
With every passing year
As I feel darkness near
I hope my soul is freed from this prison
But I fear it will be incarcerated again.
If my soul could speak out loud
Would I want to know what's behind the shroud?
If the curtain were to fall
Would I want to look at all?

© Jerry Langdon 2021

Poem: "Muse" by Alan Lisanti

by Alan Lisanti, 2017

Hold me up
Hold me up to the flames
The pain is empty and powerless
And grips the wheel
Rotted wood creeks in her hands
But she's drunk with power like a renegade pirate aboard this aircraft she gave wings
Pilot of the wingless
Both medicine and curator of chaos and of suffering
Sails patched with courage where torn void used to be
Glue for shattered pieces
I have forged creativity
When her signals all had faded
I nearly abandoned my love and lunacy
Give and take of artists
Both magicians and thieves
Paradox of poison and miraculous remedies
Not for her, I'd never know of love
Never know of bleeding everything
And if not for music
I could never be sustained
She always showed up for harsh realities of souls like me who chase their dreams
She put me back together
So there's a purpose for my grief
But sooner much sooner than later
Heroes become the villains
Triumphs devolve into tragedies
And I'm carving motivations from a tree of disbelief
Like a beatnik with my suitcase stuffed with all these could have beens
Busking for the glory of purpose
Like closing credits
Fill the scene
With songs for all the drifters
I purge my agonies
At least I have a reason
Meaning instilled in words I speak
Maiden of my heart
Keeper of the keys
I find myself inspired by the lovely ones that leave
I find my art surviving in the stillness of the breeze
Upon the wings of Phoenix
Ashes and debris
Some call it liberation
When suffocation needs to breathe love
Look what you've done to me
Turning this tail chaser into lively now and free

Poem: Untitled by Hannah Marshall

by Hannah Marshall, 2018

A double edged sword
Of disappointment
And frustration
Free yourself
Expect nothing
Prior or in return
Do not let it smolder
Let go
Watch it all burn

Poem: "Divine Feminine/Masculine Union" by Renascentia Bella Morte

Divine Feminine/Masculine Union
by Renascentia Bella Morte

I can feel your energy
From thy crown, heart,
sacral, and root.
All the way down to my feet.
Filling me with
A warmth,
A tingling vibration,
A luminous light.
That goes beyond soul deep.
When you are not near,
Never do I fear
For it is like
Having you still within arms reach.
So my dear,
I do not dare.
Feel lonely,
nor do I ever weep.
For you have made a mystical mark.
That was felt from the very start.
This will always be cherished
Deep within my soul,
. My mind,
My body, &
Thine heart.

Poem: "This Cemetery Earth!" by Rich Orth

This Cemetery Earth!
by Rich Orth

Wherest decay twas decreed
Mandation to the godawful
Temptation and flee
Exhibit mere fantasy
Illusionation awakens
Expectation in this...
this Nocturnal Rhapsody...

Poem: "This Sacred Place" by Steven Michael Pape

This Sacred Place
by Steven Michael Pape

This sacred place,
That i briefly visit
In certain seasons.
As inner voices, beckon,
And guide me towards.
A place where no one asks,
What i am doing?
Why i am here?
A place where one sits,
On freshly cut grass
Where incense smoke,
Lazily mixes with summer breeze.
My thoughts transgressive,
A sacred place,
Where i touch the stone surface
And trace each letter, inscribed,
With my hand,
Where warm lips kiss cold,
And flowers are arranged,
In impressive formations.
And the ancient angels
With watchful eyes
And weathered bodies,
Observe my exit.

Poem: "Silence Absolute" by Coralie Rowe

Silence Absolute
by Coralie Rowe

Falling into this realm of dreams
Nothing ever was as it seems
Fracturing figments swirling as one
Nightmarish apparitions that slowly become

Marbling mists of twisted shades
Appear so briefly and then they fade
Dancing in between black monstrosities grow
Moving in silence through the fog they flow

These eerie delusions they taunt my eyes
Creatures of wrath, death and despise
Spiralling back and forth enclosing around me
Seeking to consume me into my insanity

Manifestations of ash swirl in silence absolute
A raging seething mass that incessantly convolutes
An illusionary storm of undeniable hatred
My impending doom which could not be sated

They took me to pieces, fragmented my parts
Dislocated my being and devoured my heart
Absorbed into my dreams darkest deviations
Swallowed whole by my own mind's creations

Poem: "- Lesser Of Two Evils -" by Daniel Ryan

- Lesser Of Two Evils -
by Daniel Ryan

The Mind
Plays Cruel Tricks
On Me
Everyday Disconnected
Isolated Feelings
Deathness Facing
Self Awareness
My Mind
Has Made
Its Mind

Lesser Of
Two Evils
Closer In Days
Deadly Sin
Lesser Of
Two Evils
Age of Venomous

The Mind Plays
Cruel Tricks
On Us
Take The Risk
Be Washed Away
The Relentless
The Endless
Seas of Ideas

Lesser Of
Two Evils
Giving Answers
My Questions
Lesser Of
Two Evils
Let Us
Wash Away

Event Horizon
Timeless Space
Endless Eons
Empty Space

Lesser Of
Two Evils
Becoming Mans
Self Awareness

Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favour of fair use.

Poem: "Prometheus." by Sky Claudette Soto

by Sky Claudette Soto

In A grandeur of life we exist with blissful eye's as I layeth my head and ears down upon this kaleidoscoped cushion, peering out at the utmost resilient and intricate of thistle just dreaming..dreaming of angelic visions as life and death..nears..nears and passes right before me...before mine eyes in front of mine eyes ..Welling up with tears..Welling up with tears... tears of compassion..compassion and love I am helping my blackest of Beauty to lay unto rest before me ,beside me ..mine guardian I knoweth of your energy and always you shall be with me...besides me... sweetest of Guardians you are... I will..I will, always remember you are now my spirit animal ...Spirit guide.. Spirit of greatness,I will always love you forever...forever and ever.

First American Publishing Rights only
Copyright and written by Sky Claudette Soto.
August 12th 2021
A homage to Prometheus,my Rottweiler born August 20th 2010
his passing was on July 22nd 2021

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Full Length Review: Hundred Headless Horsemen "Apokalepsia" (Inverse Records) by Corban Skipwith

Band: Hundred Headless Horsemen
Location: Helinski
Country: Finland
Genre: Psychedelic death metal
Full Length: Apokalepsia
Format: Digital album, digipak CD
Label: Inverse Records
Release date: May 21, 2021
Welcome back everyone, back with another review and today I want to talk about an album that utilizes the keyword of the day ‘Patience’ and how they pull this off will be explained here.
Apokalepisa by Hundred Headless Horsemen
So, this album was released May of this year and features 6 tracks all running over 5 minutes with the longest track (the intro) running at a sizeable ‘11:47’.
What I felt whilst listening to this album was a sense of creativity and freedom of which I don’t encounter every day, see for a band to take this route of ‘ultimate progression’ you need.
Within these 6 tracks you have moments of buildup and ambient style aesthetics running through the track for a good 2-3 minutes before the heaviness steps in, they take their time with the production and the vibe they are trying to convey to the listener.
With the elimination of ‘time’ you can create and navigate wonders through your art and expression and that’s exactly what I felt here.
To be honest this is the only album I’ve heard in the past few years that (at least as far as instrumentation is concerned) reminds me of the band ‘Swans’ who are notorious for their elegant and sometimes terrifying use of buildup, suspense and concept building.
While I was listening to this record I felt a sense of awe as each minute of each song felt free and breathable, there was no rush to complete the song or the album as a whole, this level of complexity and desire can only be achieved when you destroy the need for ‘An Order’ or a ‘Schedule’ to release by.
As far as the sound goes, it gives off this strong progressive infused with Black Metal vibe, for the times when the vocals are present they are strongly Black Metal focused with those harsh death growls howling throughout the airwaves.
At the very least I can say this is an album that mastered the art of tranquility and divine art. This isn’t your conventional album focused on ‘hits’ and a ‘mainstream’ appeal.
This is for those who love a strong conceptual narrative and creativity. If you’re looking for something exciting, cutting edge and unique then this would be your natural point of interest! –Corban Skipwith

Track list:
1. The Road
2. No Longer Human
3. Breath of Death
4. Echoes
5. Spleen
6. Cataclysm

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Monday, September 20, 2021

Full Length Review: Plum Green "Somnambulistic" (Nefarious Industries) by Corban Skipwith

Band: Plum Green
Location: Melbourne
Country: Australia
Genre: Atmospheric folk
Full Length: Somnambulistic
Format: Digital album, limited edition 12” vinyl
Label: Nefarious Industries
Release date: September 17, 2021
If I said it once, I’ll say it a thousand times more. Nothing can beat a solid Folk album and this album.
Is honestly one of the best I’ve ever heard and that’s saying a lot.
-Somnambulistic by Plum Green
So this is the latest released by the Folk group came out a day after my birthday in fact! With 9 tracks to go through this is truly a unique experience.
What I love about Folk is that just like any other genre there can be many interpretations of the sound presented.
For example you have Ed Sheeran who plays to a more mainstream Folk appeal blending Pop and Folk together to make his music.
You have Taylor Swift in her latest music following the same pattern but with more acoustic sounds added.
There’s Artists like Joanna Newsom and Richard Dawson who create the most authentic and medieval equivalent of
the genre with classic instruments such as the harp and acoustic strings.
To me this album has combined the raw, folk aesthetic with a more ambient, aura driven experience!
When I was thinking what I could possibly compare this to all that came to mind was Björk and her album ‘Vespertine’ in which she used only the most soft spoken and elegant of sounds and instrumentation to present her message.
I feel the same here, the production is just absolutely breathtaking! It’s the sonic equivalent of sleeping on a field during a perfect day with wind blowing and the sun beaming, I honestly was struggling to stay awake during this album because it was so relaxing.
Any stress you think you might have had prior to listening to this will be gone by the end I can promise you that, it’s soothing, smooth and soul inducing all in one.
The vocal harmonies remind me a lot of Sade and her album ‘Love Deluxe’ with those strong yet delicate chords and pitches, it sounds as if she doesn’t come from earth, like she’s a mysterious interstellar foreigner come to grace us with sounds from a different world, one a lot more calm then earth.
The whole time I was listening I just felt so infused and pulled in by the music, it was if I had stepped into another world where I didn’t have any problems or worries, just the glorious challenge of listening to the presentation that is your world for the next 35-40 minutes.
I really REALLY recommend this album to anyone and everyone! It’s perfect for when you’re stressed or just for anyone looking for something unique and different.
As someone who is passionate and biased about my Folk and how it’s presented I can tell you I meant what I said above about this being an excellent album, please just take my word for it and give it a try! –Corban Skipwith

Track list:
1. Raspberry Vine
2. Eyes Shut
3. White Kitten
4. Grave Snuggler
5. People of the Snow
6. Walk Against The Wind
7. Moon of Honey
8. Here We Go
9. Belleza Nocturna

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Sunday, September 19, 2021

Seven Inch Review: Thunderclap "Morkkis" (Ashtray Monument) by Corban Skipwith

Band: Thunderclap
Location: Gainesville, Florida
Country: USA
Genre: Doom rock
Seven inch: Morkkis
Format: Digital
Label: Ashtray Monument
Release date: September 17, 2021
Are you guys ready for some of the most exciting and cultivating rock songs of the year? Well look no further because these guys hit the mark with
-Morkkis by Thunderclap!
So this is a duo song set by the band and each song although together share their own unique and eye grabbing differences that make them come together so well!
The first track ‘Morkkis’ feels like the more ‘upbeat’ and ‘emo’ of the two. I know those two words together don’t normally sync but what I mean is this the more catchy and faster of the two tracks while also sharing the same vocal and instrumentation choices you would hear from bands like
-Escape The Fate
-Panic At The Disco
-All Time Low
-Fall Out Boy etc.
It’s infectious and almost hypnotic in the way the track is presented and played!
The final track ‘March Of The Wombat’ is the one that feels closer at hand to the ‘Doom’ aspect of their description. You can hear and feel the heavy, sluggish instrumentation as well as the heavy vibe and aesthetic of the guitar riffs, drums and bass.
The tempo is also a lot slower and more serious in contrast to the former, I feel a strong ‘Black Sabbath’ vibe to this track with the prolonged production and vocal style.
As mentioned above the beauty of the different styles coming together on one EP is delightful and almost presents a ‘Ying and Yang’, ‘Shadow and Light’ scenario to the listener which I think is quite fun and enjoyable!
Please go support this band with the link below and remember if you share this album and recommend others to share then we can start a loop and that will go a long way in helping the band get the attention they deserve! –Corban Skipwith

Todd Rockhill: Guitar, vocals
Ale Gasso: Words, guitar
Salmon Nason: drums

Track list:
1. Morkkis
2. March of the Wombats

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Friday, September 17, 2021

Full Length Review: Dalisay "Ang Trahedya ng Dalisay at Ketungin" (Independent) by Corban Skipwith

Band: Dalisay
Country: Philippines
Genre: Death/thrash metal
Full Length: Ang Trahedya ng Dalisay at Ketungin
Format: Digital album
Label: Independent
Release date: September 15, 2021
Who would’ve known that the most brutal sound in metal would come out of the Philippines?
Today I’ll be reviewing the September 2021 release of the band Dalisay, Ang Trahedya ng Dalisay at Ketungin
This album first of all takes the expression ‘sounds like an exorcist’ to a whole different level!
This is one of the most brutal metal albums I’ve ever heard and I mean that if this album came out during the prime era of Cannibal Corpse they would be in deep trouble! Make the mistake of making light of this album!
From front to finish this is such a brutal experience! I mean they are going crazy on the instrumentation the guitar is insanely heavy the drums are relentless and brutal the bass is just shredding your bones apart that’s how bloody ruthless it is!
The thing that I do find interesting though is that in the longer cuts there are two of them, ones nine minutes and ones closer to twelve they do add some variety.
So some elements of acoustic to start the track off some sampling of like cars on the street or something.
It’s in the two tracks that I see the experimental part of them because the rest of the album from the tracks are nothing but pure death metal brutality I would say something heavier than death metal! Maybe a combination of both black and death but in terms of the severity of it all.
Literally the whole time I was listening to this album I was getting scared! It’s just insane the vocals I don’t know anything you’re saying because obviously I’m not from the Philippines but man they can’t be seen anything nice! This is just pure violence on a stick!
See this is the kind of album for an old-school traditionalist nothing but loud hammering instrumentation over death growling, high-pitched scream combination performances, This isn’t for the casual metalhead on the fence this is for decade-old followers.
I will give the album this much it has blown away my expectations of what true heavy (heavy) metal sounds like!
It will sound like a current band because even though they’re taking the old past roots it doesn’t make what they’re making any less unique any less brutal or any les sadistic by any means of the imagination!
Please go listen to this album go give them the support they deserve!
To all your metal bands out there you better watch out! You better shift your game up because at this rate you’ll be blown into the water by this band right here great job guys. –Corban Skipwith

Jorel Torres: Guitars, vocals
Mark Gilbert Saguibo: Bass
Jux Mauricio: Drums

Track list:
1. Botod
2. Karnal
3. Sa Bunganga ng Pagkabaliw
4. Ang Libing na Naipundar ni Jetro R Soler
5. Hamog
6. Gulok
7. Ang Trahedya ng Dalisay at Ketungin

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Single/Video Review: Cadaveria "The Woman Who Fell to Earth" by Dave Wolff

Band: Cadaveria
Location: Biella, Piedmont
Country: Italy
Genre: Black/gothic metal
Single/Video: The Woman Who Fell to Earth
Format: Digital
Release date: June 1, 2021
I still remember Cadaveria when she was the frontwoman of the Italian goth-death-doom-black metal act Opera IX from 1992 to 2001. “The Black Opera: Symphoniae Mysteriorum in Laudem Tenebrarum” was one of the albums I listened to often in the late 90s, so naturally I was interested in learning more when I got wind of her new black/goth metal band.
Cadaveria sounds like the logical progression from her work with Opera IX, particularly with cleaner production and greater vocal range. Though occult and witchcraft based lyrics are something those bands have in common, Opera IX leaned closer toward black magic and dark paganism while Cadaveria’s lyrics are more personal, especially when it comes to thoughts of mortality.
Her personal theme resonates in Cadaveria’s latest promotional video “The Woman Who Fell To Earth”, which includes a thought out story that’s highly spiritual as well as introspective. It refines time tested concepts related to black metal, concepts involving the cosmos and earth’s pagan past, and shows them in a different light without letting them lose their edge.
The concept of “The Woman Who Fell to Earth” involves a woman, possibly some spirit, who arrives on earth from parts unknown, possibly a parallel dimension, seemingly to reunite with her earthbound essence and return it to life after ages have passed. I say this loosely because there are unanswered questions left open to interpretation. For some reason I felt compelled to watch Cadaveria’s previous videos, “Shamanic Path”, “Divination”, “Matryoshcada” and “Return” (originally by Deine Lakaien).
I guessed these videos follow a narrative of sorts, at least a loose narrative, about a woman reborn of the earth whose return was brought about by ancient and forbidden pagan/shamanic rituals. Her purpose to heal a sick world made corrupt by human greed and lack of understanding of a “bigger picture”, one she is eager to teach again.
I don’t presume to say this is what Cadaveria had in mind, but using my imagination it seemed those videos compile a story, or could compile a story, that jibes well with “Woman”. The imagery presented in those short films seems to reveal key moments in the mysterious earth mother’s tale. Plus the notion that while her legend is perceived as evil, she is nonetheless a force for good. This was partly on the spot, as all those songs are connected to events in Cadaveria's personal life. 
I also watched a mini-documentary on Cadaveria’s Youtube profile explaining the concept of each song and the clips made to promote them. Cadaveria and Marçelo Santos of Morbid Vision discuss the ideas they shared during their collaboration. Duality, rebirth, divination, nature, and tribal beliefs and practices are the themes of the first four promotional videos.
All this seems to culminate in the imagery created for “Woman”, which was likewise directed by Marçelo Santos of Morbid Vision. Within the framework of the darker subgenres of metal, it turns all preconceptions on their heads as it represents purification of the earth and the possibility for renewal of nature and thus humanity. Hardly a negative outcome for the world.
The video for “Woman” depicts the arrival of this visitor from distant space, and her disorientation as she absorbs her new surroundings as she takes a journey to understand her purpose. Without additional commentary, I gather the imagery is symbolic of a personal journey into heightened states of awareness of what the human soul can become. I’d suggest watching all five videos back to back to appreciate the shared vision between them. –Dave Wolff

Cadaveria: Vocals
Kris Laurent: Guitars
Peter Dayton: Bass
Marçelo Santos: Drums

Full Length Review: Freakstorm "Storm Inside My Heart" (Afraid Of Sunlight Records) by Corban Skipwith

Band: Freakstorm
Country: Germany
Genre: Metal, rock
Full Length: Storm Inside My Heart
Format: CD, Digital album
Label: Afraid Of Sunlight Records
Release date: June 25, 2021
So this is the latest full length album by band Freakstorm a band from Germany and this would be my first time listening to them.
What I discovered among these 9 tracks is a band who not only had the brains to take the best elements from their influences but to incorporate them in a way that makes for a fun, catchy and emotionally heavy experience.
Let’s talk production because listening to this album you can hear a whole range of various influences and inspirations such as
-Alternative Rock
-Pop Rock
-Classic Hard Rock
-Alternative Metal
All these ‘Rock’ based elements are drawn to their best selves with the instrumentation of groovy guitar leads, kicking drums (no pun intended) and slick bass to help leave a tasteful experience to the listener.
It was actually really interesting because depending on the track presented I could hear so many different artists running through my head for comparisons.
-Pat Benatar
-Fiona Apple and more!
It was exciting to hear so many different styles and fusions spread across the album. The lyricism was on a case by case basis in which every song presents a different topic and mood, reinforcing a different emotional response and feeling to the listener, doing this made for a very entertaining listen and one I shouldn’t soon forget!
Now to the vocal performances because they were really the star of the show. Although the production and instrumentation were amazing and well played the singer who pulled off those harmonies and melodies deserved a lot of the praise. She kept in tune with the various inspirations and sung clean, heartfelt and passionate lines! You could hear the drive and the soul within her.
It was impressive how from one song to the next she adjusted her singing style and mood to cater to the emotional context of the track that came next, she altered based on the situation and I give a lot of respect for that! Knowing how and when to adjust certain things for the album sake is honestly something most don’t do and I’m glad we saw a shining example of what TO do in this scenario.
I really liked this album guys, it was sold from front to back, the different styles and sonic aesthetic was brilliant and the songs were catchy and on point, If your someone whose only into the heavier sounds of Metal then this may not be for you but I highly suggest you give this album a try none the less!
The album link is done below and let’s all help each other out by supporting our local bands and helping them go viral! SHARE, SHARE, SHARE! –Corban Skipwith

Sinah Meier: Vocals
Oliver Hartmann: Guitars (session musician)
Dennis Ward: Bass (session musician)
Olli Fuchs: Drums

Track list:
1. Storm Inside My Heart
2. Wicked
3. Unbreakable Tonight
4. Not The One
5. Can't Keep Me Down
6. Shot Down In Flames
7. Out Of The Door
8. Nothing
9. Here's To Us (Bonus track)

This review can also be read at Corban Skipwith's Facebook group Relentless Reviews with Corbz. -DW

Monday, September 13, 2021

Interview with Sinah Meier of Freakstorm by Dave Wolff

Olli and Sinah
Interview with Sinah Meier of Freakstorm

Freakstorm began as a tribute project and eventually began writing original songs. At what point did you make the change and what made you decide on it?
In 2016 we recorded Halestorm’s “Here’s to Us”. One day we met them and showed them our version and they liked it. Back home I wrote a song about that experience. It was “We Got the Fire” and that was the point we changed to writing our own songs. It was released as a bonus track on our first EP “From Zero” in 2019.
The days we were on the road following Halestorm on tour and talked to them every evening were fun and we were absolutely in a rock n roll mood. In Bochum, Germany Lzzy Hale (vocals, guitar, keyboards) told the audience about our version of “Here’s to Us”. That’s was the highlight. We felt everything was much cooler than we could have planned.
With my head full of input, adrenaline, and experience I came home and wrote lyrics about the trip. I thought about it as a tribute project, but finally, it was our first own rock song. So I learned how it felt to write and record my own songs. That was the beginning. The next song I wrote was “Nothing”. And it was the first one we recorded with our producer Dennis Ward. From that moment we had nothing more in common with Halestorm. We still love them and they are our inspiration forever, but the songs we wrote until then sound different than Halestorm songs and my voice is different from Lzzy’s.
“We Got the Fire” was the song about the days with Halestorm and we showed that song to them by accident. Olli and I were in vacation in Honolulu when we noticed Halestorm playing a gig in the Republic. Of course, we visited the concert and had a lot of fun. The next day we met Arejay in the Hotel.
“Here’s to Us” and “We Got the Fire” are the only two songs we didn’t produce with Dennis Ward. So they were the bonus tracks on our releases.
“We Got the Fire” is on the “From Zero” EP and “Here’s to Us” is on the album “Storm Inside my Heart”.

What is the band’s current lineup? Has this lineup remained steady since Freakstorm formed? Also, what inspired the name Freakstorm?
When we met to record the first cover just for fun we went with some friends in the studio. Tracy is a girl from the Netherlands and we met her in the front row of a Halestorm concert. She played guitar on some gigs and then left the band because of the distance. The bass player Marc stayed until the “From Zero” EP and left the band during the Corona pandemic because of family reasons. So the only constant members are Olli and I. We tried to find a guitar player who fit into the band but after a few guitarists, I think we found now the best way for us. Our producer Dennis Ward is an awesome bass player and he played the bass on all new tracks and on all our following tracks. He brought Oliver Hartmann into the studio sessions, and he is one of the best studio guitarists in Germany. So, we will continue recording that way. Olli and I now have independence in important decisions. But we have a lot of help from people around like the guys in the newer videos. They are great and help a lot.
When we were looking for a name for our tribute project, we remembered Lzzy Hale is calling her fans freaks. So we liked the Name Freakstorm. I still think it sounds rocking style. The tribute project with all the personal meetings with Halestorm brought us some attention in the local press. So when we started with our own songs we didn’t want to change the name.

How did you and Olli first meet and what made you decide to start working together?
I met Olli first while starting a band together in 2003. Three months later we were a couple and since then we did all our music projects together. Olli knows me perfectly and he gave me the motivation to produce my own songs. Since 2017 we have been married. So Freakstorm is really a 24-hour project for us, because we are together all the time.

What bands did Oliver Hartmann work with before joining Freakstorm?
Oliver Hartmann didn't join Freakstorm as a band member. He is an awesome guitar player who joined us in the studio. It worked very well and we are happy he will help us in the next studio session this month again. It's not easy because he is with his own bands Hartmann and Avantasia.

Are you releasing your material independently or are you working with any local labels? How are your releases being received by the rock scene in Germany?
We work with local labels. Major Promo Music is for the digital releases, Afraid Of Sunlight is for the physical releases and they work together with Cargo our Distributor. That works very well. They are both in the same town of Gummersbach and they have lots of experience. They worked both in the 90s for the German EMI and know each other from those days.

How well is heavy rock and classic metal received in Germany these days? Germany is known for bands like Doro, Scorpions and Accept. Is there still an audience today?
We have still have a nice hard rock and metal scene in Germany. Remember we are the country of the Wacken Festival. Doro and Scorpions are the Great legendary acts, and I love them both. But we really have awesome new bands like Beyond the Black or Kissin Dynamite and not to forget the new Helloween Album was Number 1 in the German Album charts. By the way produced by Dennis Ward too. So Germany is not the wrong place to be a hard rock band.

“Here’s to Us” and “We Got the Fire” were also released on an EP with a few other songs. Explain how this was compiled, who worked on it with you in the studio, etc.
Our first EP “From Zero” was the first step into radio stations and record stores. It was a door opener. Now with the album, we see that it is easier. Some people have heard about Freakstorm before. And the magazines didn’t write about us in the demo part. More and more people are buying our CD. More people listen to Tony’s on Spotify, so we are very happy with the new release and I think we are on the right way. But it’s still a long way. We are really happy to go step by step in the right direction.
“Here’s to Us” and “We Got the Fire” were recorded with friends and produced by Robert Schuller. He played a lot of the guitars too. He is a really good friend. We played with him for eight years in the same band before Freakstorm. The releases of these songs, in the beginning, were self-made CDs.
There is another officially unreleased track on the “We Got the Fire” EP. It’s the Halestorm cover of “Familiar Taste of Poison”. “Here’s to Us” and “We Got the Fire” were remastered and remixed for the official releases by Dennis Ward. After that, we started recording with Dennis and everything became more professional. “Familiar Taste of Poison” is not officially released.

You recently recorded a cover of AC/DC’s “Shot Down In Flames” for a single you released this year. What inspired you to cover AC/DC and release it for fans to hear?
The making of “Shot Down In Flames” is a really cool story. I like how we came to that recording and especially to such a good one. We had that song in our live set. It was always fun to play it live. Olli remembered it during preproduction for the album and recorded the drums in case we would get some problems with our own ideas. Or he thought to produce it just for fun. Maybe as a single B-side or something like that. Olli sometimes makes decisions straight from his emotions and he knew I would sing it great. My point of view was different. I thought no way to sing a Bon Scott song for a recording. That’s a different thing than playing it onstage. And I wanted to record my own stuff as much as possible.
At the end of the sessions, Olli came to me again with the AC/DC cover. He knew the drums were still recorded and it wouldn’t take too much time to finish it with musicians like Dennis Ward and Oliver Hartmann. So Dennis pushed me during the vocal recordings and I started to like that version. But when Oliver Hartmann recorded the guitars it was obvious that we made a really strong version.
Afterward, Oliver Hartmann told us that he is one of the biggest AC/DC fans and that he played AC/DC songs since he was a kid. So no wonder he played a really awesome guitar.
So the ACDC cover became the second single release of our forthcoming album. In my opinion, a lot of singers tried to sing like Bon and no one did it really well. Nobody is like Bon. For me, it was different because I am a woman, so it’s obvious I do not try to sound like him. It’s just my own version. And I think it’s really good. BUT no one is better than AC/DC. That’s not what we tried to do.

Tell the readers about the videos you made for your singles. How much promotion did “From Zero” get on the radio and how many copies of the CD have been distributed to record outlets? Is it also available directly from the band?
“Not the One” was the second single and second video, which we shot on the same day like “Can't Keep Me Down”. The dress I wear in the video is mine from our own wedding in Hawaii on the beach. It's a cool rock ballad. I will never forget how we rehearsed it for the first time the evening before recording in the hotel conference room. Even I wrote the song a long time earlier some musicians from the session didn't know it at that time. Both tracks are on the album because they make it definitely better.
We had 300 copies made of the EP. On Amazon, it's sold out, but there are still a few available from us. Sometimes it's a copy on eBay available. It had some radio plays worldwide. It was a real good start.

How many radio stations in Germany have helped support Freakstorm at this stage in their career?
Maybe I don't know all the radio stations in Germany that play Freakstorm but there are a lot. Still not enough that Freakstorm would be known for everyone, but we are working on that. And it's always exciting when a new radio station finds out about us and plays our songs. In the smaller stations they're awesome guys who invest much of their time to support bands. These guys are great.

There was your single “Storm Inside My Heart” which was included on your first full length of the same name. Tell us about how these came to be and how the album was received.
“Storm Inside My Heart” was the first song we recorded for the album another goal was to show the audience to continue where we were with “Can't Keep Me Down”. It was written at the beginning of Corona so it was really ready to produce. We did a cool cover shoot with model Jenny Curci and she had a role in the video clip. That’s something we haven't done before, like my two different outfits in the video.
We have 500 copies of the album. Again another step. We are busy at the moment to fulfill all the questions and orders that come in, but we love it and are glad that it is doing so well for the band.

Having worked with Dennis Ward for so long, how well have you come to work together? Do you plan to work with him on your future releases?
We will continue to work with Dennis. He is definitely the best for us. And we enjoy working with him. It's been three years now we started working after Olli contacted him and asked if he would like to produce Freakstorm. After he had heard the demos he agreed and we find a way where everybody knows the way the other works. And I can tell you we learned a lot about producing by Dennis. We will be in his studio end of this month again. Really looking forward. Which of your songs are you planning to shoot a video for next? Any covers being considered or will there be more original songs? The next video we will shoot is definitely for the song “Wicked”. It's a weird story about a bad and dangerous relationship. We have many ideas for that video and I can say it will be a little more provocative. Really looking forward to it. I like “Wicked” a lot. It's a really good production. At the moment there are no more covers planned. We are concentrating on our own songs. When there is a good idea and it feels good, then maybe there will be a cover again.

Is Freakstorm gaining more listeners outside Germany due to social media and streaming?
Our followers on YouTube and Spotify are getting more and more, especially after the album release. Social media is the only way we can promote ourselves at the moment. So we are glad about all the reviews and interviews that come in. Like yours. Thanx, that helps a lot.

How often did Freakstorm get to perform before the pandemic hit? Any particularly interesting experiences that happened during these shows?
We played some gigs before the pandemic. In Germany. I think it was four or five and then we started producing and spent all our time preparing for the studio. We had a little six-city tour planned for the EP release but we had to cancel because of my pregnancy. I hope we can do that tour later. When our kid is old enough to come without.

How often does the band get to perform live today, what with everything that’s happening with the Covid pandemic?
We are not playing Live at the moment. It's too weird during Covid. Some friends got their concert canceled four hours before the show and that happens all the time. We hope that next summer the situation will be better and some cool festivals can be played.

Does Freakstorm hope to sign to a larger independent label for increased exposure and distribution? Or will you continue building from the grassroots for the time being?
That is really a difficult question. First, we are happy with the team we are working with now. It's a small label, but everyone is working hard and we celebrate every little step together. That's a nice atmosphere. But we know with a major deal it would be much easier to get famous. But I wouldn't want someone to tell me what to record or how to dress in a video. And the money must be good. No money I can although do without a major label. We will see what's coming in the future.

-Dave Wolff

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Interview with poet Renascentia Bella Morte by Dave Wolff

Interview with Renascentia Bella Morte

You have been submitting poems to Asphyxium zine since May this year. Your writing is loaded with supernatural and wiccan themes but also emphasizes a person’s connection with oneself. How did you develop this approach to writing poetry?
It comes from my life experience. It all started in my much younger years. I always knew I was different from an early age. I was always super sensitive to other people's emotions around me. I could read the energy of a room after I walked into it. I also had the gift of the ability to heal people at a very young age. With some of these special gifts and not understanding how to transmute energies at that of an early age. I would often find myself self-isolating. I found an escape from it through music and writing. Writing poetry became a very good way of releasing these heavy energies surrounding me and that had attached to me. Little would I know it then, but writing and music would ultimately end up becoming my biggest passions. Throughout the many years of writing. I'd say about ten years later I would find and meet so many other individuals like myself. I became part of a spiritualist organization where I took some classes on energy work. A Reiki course to understand my healing capabilities, & also further develop my intuition. A few years after moving to a new state. I would be introduced to a much familiar and broadened community known as The Vampyre Community. I have learned a lot from all of it and my writing comes from a lot of my personal experiences.

Talk to the readers about some of the poems you’ve written recently and where the inspiration came from.
A lot of my inspiration comes from people I feel a deep connection too. Some would call it soulmates. I believe we have many in our lifetime. It's become very cliché to say that they are just romantic connections. I believe it can be more than that. Friends, family, and yes even a lover. Have you ever met someone and don't know how, but you feel like you have known this person before. Perhaps even I'm a past life? It's a very rare occurrence but it does happen. For myself I can count on one hand the connections I have made like this. I treasure them dearly. A lot of my writing goes into connection. Some of my writing goes into my spiritual journey like my poem inward and reflects on my personal journey. I also get inspired by reading a line, hearing a line, or something someone might say. It's hit me to my core. I feel I must pick up the pen and I must start writing and I do.

Besides this zine, are any of the poems you’ve written published in printed or online magazines?
Actually there is one poem I wrote when I was first diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. It was an extremely hard and difficult time for me. I wrote a poem about my experience and it was selected to be published into a book of multiple poems. This was about ten years ago. The poems name was called Tug Of War.

How long has this book been in the works and who do you plan to seek out to help you publish it? Do you have it in mind to publish through an independent company or will it be self-published?
I have been writing for a couple years now. With always the intent to write a complete book. Originally I was going to write a book about my life and experiences. Yet I found I am more motivated, and inspired, by writing Poetry. It just comes pouring out of me. As far as publishing. I have a friend part of that spiritualist community I mentioned above earlier. That told me when I was done writing a book to come to her. She would help me edit it and get it out there. Yet of course I will do my research and see the best thing to do when the time comes to publishing it. It’s good to know I already have an option.

Do you have enough poems written to publish in book form if you were ever inclined to? At what point do you think you would have the means and resources to publish a book of your poems? How much of your work would you want to include?
Not yet but that is my ultimate goal and dream of mine. To publish a book. As far as a set date I do not have one nor the means it right now. I am still currently writing and concluding this book. I hope and plan for it to be soon. I believe also that I could reach out to some people I have met and know to help me in the right direction as far as publishing goes. As for as what I would include in it. Every single thing I have written.

What is Reiki and how much information have you gathered from the course you took?
Reiki is a form of energy healing. It originated in Japan. It is the practice of healing with the conception that we all have this unseen energetic life force that is moving through our bodies. When we practice it as practitioners we use our energy to manipulate the stress or harmful areas of the body of the person we are working with and thus remove it from them. Grounding it back into mother earth from our roots.

How did you discover your sensitivity at such a young age, and how did you learn to express it through writing poems? How did music figure into it?
There were a few incidents that happened.
First starting with premonistic dreams. Whenever I dreamt of myself wandering around in this house looking for certain doors and a way out. I knew danger was afoot.
If I dreamt I was floating to the bottom of my staircase or jumping from one building to another. Something good was to occur. At a later time in life I would find that I was actually astral projecting. Yet when we astral project we are very much free from our physical bodies. The association is pretty ironic that I related it to a feeling of being free when I was young. As I mentioned above too.
I could also walk into a rented out part of my house we lived in and tell how people were feeling. Often times even till this day I know things and people think I’m strange. As for the healing part. Everyone in my house would always want a massage from me. When I give them to my family. They would all say I have such healing hands. I learned later in life to ground the blockages of others back into the earth. In younger years. I took it into myself and found myself hurting and overwhelmed.
I really believe I was just born this way. My grandmother was also a very intuitive psychic. My mother always explains to me I get my gifts from her. I remember her when I was seven and her teaching me how to cloud scry. She sadly passed away when I was eleven years old, but before she passed on. She couldn't speak. She looked at me with a look I'll never forget. It was as if I could hear her. Like I'm so sorry for leaving and all you may endure but that she would always be near and with me always. I still feel her presence till this day.
From all these experiences. I would often need time alone. I enjoyed it. In these moments I could blast my music and get lost in writing and I found I had much to write about.

How did your grandmother learn about scrying and how much of this knowledge did she pass on to you?
I am unsure of how my grandmother learned about scrying. I did learn of her gifts later in life from my mother. She taught me cloud scrying and that was about it. She could read a regular deck of playing cards for tarot. This she did not show me and I learned that also later on. I wish I had the chance to learn more from her, but I am grateful that on my path I found a number of individuals that I was led to who did help me along my way.

At what point after having those experiences did you decide you wanted to increase your sensitivity and put your talents to practice?
It began soon after when I found the spiritualist community. I started by practicing more of my efforts in groups, and at home amongst family. When it came to the vampyre community and learning more about energy manipulation. It became easy to shift the energy in a room after practicing it. My Sire had taught me a lot how to control, strengthen, and manipulate it.

What kind of music did you most closely relate to while writing, and what spoke to you about it?
I listened to just about everything when I was growing up. Anything from the 50s till that time was the 90s. Even now in the 2000s I still listen to just about everything. I love my classic rock and roll but when I'm writing I'm mostly focused on writing. The music is just background noise.

How important do you deem music when it comes to encouraging creativity in writing?
I believe music is a great tool for writing. I can listen to anything and write my heart out. Yet I do believe music can have effect on others writing. Different tunes for different moods.

In what ways do your chosen spiritual views help sustain your connection with yourself?
I believe my spiritual views helped me understand and identify with who I am. Let me also define spiritual as well. When I say I am spiritual it does not mean I am religious. By any means. When it comes to the religious side of things. I am actually an omnist.
I believe there is always something to be taken or learned from all angles of religion but everything in life as well. Believing in spirituality though .Has made me sustain a much higher vibration and connection to myself.

What about vampirism did you learn that differs from mainstream preconceptions?
Mainstream preconceptions. Well there is a lot of them and I never believed any of them. One for instance and I still get messages as a lot of us do is. Can you turn me into a vampire? You cannot be turned into a vampyre. It is just something that is a part of and within you. Awakening is part of the process but no one does that for you. It's something that happens to you. Awakening is a messy process. The dark night of soul as many of us refer to it as. I also believe we don't just awaken once. We transition a few times. This is from my own personal experience and what I have personally been through. Each transition. Moving up each time. Read books If you want to see if some of what you been through relates to vampirism. Is my best advice.

How did you react to meeting people with similar spiritual traits after writing for so many years? Were the people you met taking the classes you attended or did you discover them on your own? We had a lot of death happen in my family.
A family friend was going to a spiritualist community where they practice mediumship, and do an offering of healing every Sunday. I finally went, it was incredible. There was a lady after service I will never forget. She looked at me and said "you have the gift." I smiled and I felt like yes these are my people. It was an incredible feeling. This is also where I met many individuals who would also teach me the classes. This was not the only place I learned though. When I moved to Tampa. My neighbor downstairs was also very highly intuitive like myself. Later on I would come to find out and realize she was also my distant cousin. Small world right. Her name is Rebecca Mead also known as Psy Phoenix within the Vampyre Community. She would ultimately teach me more in depth about energy work and an Unknown topic to myself vampirism. She was my first teacher, mentor, or as a lot of us would refer to as my sire. She introduced to the Tampa Vampyre Community. Soon after I would then meet a whole online community of Vampyres.
I would eventually become friends with Goddess Rosemary Sahjaza. I took a liking to her because of her great love and affection for animals. At the beginning of our meeting there was an instant connection. This doesn't happen with many people in your life but it most definitely did with her. Also a few other individuals on my path. A couple years later she would ask me to join the Sahjaza. Where I must say I have learned even more about my path, craft, gifts, and have spiritually grown into my higher self. A Maiden and Priestess. The Temple Sahjaza is a place where I would finally and ultimately feel permanently home.

How much did Psy Phoenix know about vampirism and energy work, and how was her instruction beneficial to you?
Psy Phoenix knew a ton about vampirism. She is someone I would refer to as an extremely naturally gifted Vampyre-Healer in this part of my studies and instruction. To name a few instances she taught me guided meditation. We would often meditate and she would lead me places. These are all private between myself and her of course but what was learned was how to open up that third eye of mine. Also as I mentioned above. She taught me how to manipulate energy. Now in Reiki I learned to manipulate the energy of one person. She would end up teaching me how to manipulate transmute the energy of an entire room. I have always been very much appreciated for so many things she showed me. Which I only have named a few.

Did you meet Goddess Rosemary Sahjaza online through the Tampa Vampyre Community? In what ways did The Temple Sahjaza help you expand on what you were learning from Psy Phoenix? Also have you been involved in any local events hosted by The Temple Sahjaza since you joined?
I actually got a friend suggestion on Facebook 12 years ago. Looked at her profile. I saw her great love for animals and this is how we became instantly connected, In more ways than just one. Meeting Goddess Rosemary Sahjaza and becoming a part of The Temple House Sahjaza has definitely made a huge impact on me. It also did help me expand a lot further. Like I stated early. I finally felt home. It was incredibly easy to open up and communicate with her. It wasn't just her though it has been a number of our family within The Sahjaza. I felt like we all might have come from different belief systems - backgrounds, but there was never no judgment because of it. Also a common goal of unity, empathy, and a strong family brother-sisterhood. The ultimate goal becoming the best versions of ourselves. It was all about learning how to strengthen each unique road within that we are on. Ultimately that is leading to the self. I learned to turn truly inward to heighten and strengthen myself.
There have been a number of online courses. That I might quickly mention.
That are open and welcome to any individual. It is definitely worth learning.
Many great and fantastic courses are available. Offered by our very own high elders. To name one that is offered that I personally took is called Shadow Work. By my dear sister Reverend Priestess Heop Liath Sahjaza. It was not an easy one as it isn't for most, but I assure you it has helped me vigorously and has been very rewarding. You may be asking yourself what is shadow work? For me it recognizing and making sense of old traumas, wounds, triggers, and or behaviors. What I learned most was acceptance, transformation, of being imperfectly perfect but also strengthening my core being to become better and strive for better. Ultimately in the end achieving balance. It's not a class I have done once but I revisit from time to time.
There has been a number of different courses. I'm just naming one off I personally found very beneficial. There are a ton more created by some of our most amazing elders within The Temple Sahjaza. I'm very grateful to Goddess Rosemary for our meeting and also this great opportunity. Also in regard to the last part of your question I learned a great deal from them both. Goddess Rosemary definitely helped me expand, but I wouldn't say one was more than the other. I find we all make each other expand daily. There is something always to be learned from everyone I find. That is what makes learning and life so beautiful. It's a deep appreciation and understanding of one another. I'm just grateful to have met them both on my journey.
I had planned on going to a couple events that had ended up being canceled due to the corona virus. Hoping to attend one as soon as it is safe to.

What other courses hosted by The Temple Sahjaza do you consider worthwhile? If someone outside the Temple was interested in taking these courses, how can they be looked into?
There are a few other courses that I could mention. Such as mediation, astral projection, also one on aromatherapy. If someone is interested. They can simply click the link here. It is open to anyone outside The Temple House.

Is there anything you hope to accomplish with The Temple Sahjaza in the days to come?
I like to continue to accomplish what I already have been. Exploring, developing, and strengthening my gifts. As well as also helping others within our community do the same.

Renascentia Bella Morte Sahjaza Contact information:

-Dave Wolff