Review: Iceland’s Nexion Delves into the Void

Iceland continues to prove their worth in todays metal scene. The country has become a driving force, spewing forth talent like a volcanic eruption. Nexion out of Reykjavík are just one of many sure to cause a stir within the underground, combining elements of Death and Black Metal tinged with that special Icelandic finesse Nexion are already at tier level with their peers. Their self titled debut EP released on April 14, 2017 is a 4 track powerhouse of angry and desolate sounds. 

I. Of Genesis rings chaos as the first notes blast through, immediately enveloping darkness mingled with dissonance. The vocals of Josh Rood shine ranging from pain staking screams to low guttural chants. This is a great opening track, it immediately hooks the listener to the bands sound as a whole. Waking from a dream II. Of the Coiling Void is reminiscent of a crumbling dreamscape, futile and evil. If walking through a desolate nightmarish setting had a theme song this would be it. It is so catchy and fun but that still does not take away from the ideologies. Jump into a concoction of death and pestilence, with a melody that hooks you right in, III. Of the Pestwielder culmimates the art of this beast, full of headbanging passages and evil melodies that embody the bands sound. Crossing the bridge into new beginnings IV. Of the Final Throes of Creation has a sound that will rip through your ears. Violent drums and swift ominous guitar riffs make for a painful angry birth into oblivion. Nexion has released a stellar debut EP and fans of Blackened Death Metal are sure to get their fill while leaving room for more. These fine gentleman are doing it right, a very promising EP and hopefully more to come in the near future. 

Nexion

Jóhannes Smári Smárason-Guitar

Óskar Rúnarsson- Guitar

Josh Rood- Vocals

Kári Pálsson- Bass

Tumi Snær Gíslason- Drums

BANDCAMP

Nightmare Future By Expulsion

Something new has boiled down at Relapse Records from Repulsion’s Master Mind, Matt Olivo. Along comes a crew of musician’s that will assail your mind and you won’t be able to take cover. Be ready to have your whole existence stimulated without your consent, because EXPULSION won’t ask for your permission!

Expulsion is fused with Matt Olivo, Matt Harvey, Danny Walker and Menno Verbaten, such a deadly combination with such old school grind/death metal legacies. With their Nightmare Future album in debut for the last week, you’re bound to want to seal your head on tight before you dive into this creative madness. Keep in mind that Matt Harvey’s shredding vocals, are chaos itself in telling these gory stories. Envision it all, you won’t be able to escape.

Total Human Genocide opens with buzzed bass slaps fallowed by unrelenting guitar riffs and hammering drum beats, making you raise a hell of an eyebrow, catching you off guard, this is where the battle of human destruction begins.

Have you started your daily worship yet? Prepare your Altar of Slaughter for you’ll need to protect yourself from the deaths you’ll cause. Entering with a deadly grunt followed by an explosion of riffed schemes, you’d want to pick up your club ax or machete to begin the slaughter of the day. Perhaps your first kill was to unmask a wary friend. Mask of Fear may offer a gory truth, and your friend can’t hide forever.

Riffs that leave you wanting to scratch off the visions you have prophesied, skimmed punk drum beats that intertwine with grind scraped loops, Nightmare Future will make you want to gauge your eyes out. In Funeral Bells, guitar riffs break and conquer, you wonder if you’re listening to the same song after a minute. Your escape is useless, this is the place where you will meet your doom but there is no place for you in the depths of hell anyway. But don’t fret, the bells will sing for you after a mind crushing instrumental chaos.

Expulsion CDCov

You are off in the country side you come across a place you can call home for the night… but confined in this dark place is where perhaps you’ll meet your death.  A maniac that suffers from Compulsions doesn’t know what it’s doing until it sees its knife in its own hand. Doesn’t remember a thing after nearly ending your life and where else do you end up but on a hospital bed…….. Comatose… you are barely hanging on…. When will you slip away? ….. You can’t just listen, Expulsion will MAKE you visualize every gory detail that’s slapped in your face throughout this album.

I think I just attended my own funeral and watched my deadly descend to hell. Honestly I can’t even tell you more. You need to catch yourself a ride with these fellas, they’ll take you along the most brutal story lines. Need I say that Old school 80’s grind metal has made its damned f***n return? Expulsion will leave you sickened within 15 minutes.  I don’t know about you all, but I have certainly made my rounds across a self-made mosh pit in my living room.  Here’s to some more regurgitation from EXPULSION in the future, Hail the Darkness!

Cloak of Skies: Drug Honkey

Imagine reaching into the dark crevices of the mind and mulling through every emotion that drives an individual into oblivion Cloak of Skies by Drug Honkey would be the soundtrack. Combining elements of Doom, Death, and Atmospheric Black Metal with darkened synth infused industrial passages the band has created a plethora of feeling proving the point that Drug Honkey is the only drug you need. 

Dabbling in various territories Drug Honkey does not give in to the typical sound you would expect with the different genres, instead they encompass each one breathing in the atmosphere of a sickening trip and this is most definitely not a bad thing. Pool of Failure fills the ears with synthesized doom ladened riffs transporting the listener into the ruins of the mind, and throws in a psychedelic brew of unforgiving vocals. This song acts as a great introduction, paving the way for the rest of the album. Apocalyptic synths give Sickening Wasteoid an almost haunting presence and opens up the door to an industrial wasteland. 

While this album stays true to the vision it does not tread lightly, there are aspects of pain and unforgiveness here. There is no safe space and Outlet of Hatred serves that purpose. The distorted vocals mingled with the swelling sounds feed into a feeling of catharsis. In a true psychedelic fashion (It’s Not) The Way seperates itself from the other songs leaning more heavily into the noise aspect while not straying too far from the curve. The title track Cloak of Skies feature impressive saxaphone work by Bruce Lamont of Yakuza which add more depth and mystery to this album. If “psychedelic doom jazz” was a real thing Drug Honkey have made it so. Normally remixed songs are something that are casually listened to in passing but Pool of Failure remixed by Justin K. Broadrick give the salutary nod to early Godflesh material which is definitely a big factor within this band. Drug Honkey transcends the genres presented making their unique sound an escapism from reality. If music is to be experienced it can be done with Cloak of Skies, but not only that it can be felt. Within the realm of metal there are plenty of bands that stand out but Drug Honkey are in a league of their own, pushing boundaries and bringing emotions forth to break barriers… highly recommended. 

Sixes: Worship Amps not Gods, A Live Offering

On June 10th The Union in Los Angeles hosted a benefit show for the now closed Complex. This local venue catered to the underground and their many art forms but was particularly partial to the Metal Scene. After its sudden and unfortunate demise the Complex together with Church of the 8th Day brought forth a band of artists and musicians to raise money for expenses lost due to the closure. While there were plenty of notable acts such as Young and in the Way, Ironaut, and Plagues, the band Sixes delivered their Blackened brew of doomy stoner metal that has already stirred up a buzz within the metal scene. 


Video Courtesy of sexthrash69

The darkened room is suddenly filled with ominous distortion moving the ambience into a slow rhythmic pattern, as the first notes of Acid God ring through. The rest of the band then makes their entrance and the ears are graced by a mind numbing scream from vocalist Stephen encroaching into an unforgiving relentless doom ladened groove. Methistopheles was a treat in itself, not taking away from the haunting feedback Sixes jumped into a furious unmerciful tune, vocals being spit out with vigor and rage, dripping with emotion and seeping into the very core. A Cross to Burn was the final song of the set, already a fan favorite this was a pleasure to see performed live. Headbanging through the rumble and becoming entranced by the music could be seen by those present. Sixes definitely have a lot to offer in terms of musicanship but they also possess the ability to speak through their songs. Be sure to keep an eye out for their debut album out later this year.

FIND SIXES ON FACEBOOK

The Maldoror Chants – Hermaphrodite: Schammasch

You are walking into treacherous waters my friend. Are you ready to be engulfed with all that you think you know? Once again embarking us on these mind wrenching subjects, Schammasch wants you to know that perhaps you might want to learn how to swim.

The newly and first of special releases, Hermaphrodite, is already a work of art you just can’t argue with. Schammasch vocalist C.S.R., has taken the first part sequence of”Les Chants the Maldoror” by Comte de Lautramont’s unforgiving poems and has molded them into an enchanted dark ergonomic flow.

schammaschpicTMH

The Prologue takes us in slowly through an atmospheric instrumental, which we anticipate that of which is to come. We are transferred into long trebled guitar riffs and tribal like drum beats to then delve us into The Weighty Burden of an Eternal Secret. We find that our Hermaphrodite is admired by many, but the confusion lies in those people that follow him closely. The world wondering why someone with such a beautiful disposition feels so cast away from whatever presence lives in the skies. Vocals that chant us into a sensitive state, overwhelming us in an echo that leads us to Along the Road that Leads to Bedlam, musically transcends us to an intelligent condition. Double-bass drum beats that weigh in as we are taken on his struggle. The struggle of knowing the self, he reflects, is he is such a monster? Feeling tormented by society’s judgements he doesn’t forget who he is, he would much rather stick to his kind… if he could ever find them.

So, These Tresses and Sacred, brings us into more desolate raspy vocals accompanied by a piano solo and synthesized harmonious background, can we resonate with our Hermaphrodite to see upon a place that he slumbers to be considered a safe haven? … May His Illusion Last until Dawns Awakening, the most chants verse vocals descending us into the night, consuming our Hermaphrodite to dream of those which are like himself, something he longs for. Vocals in a low rasping quest, continued tribal drum beats that beckon our Hermaphrodite that sleep is where there is Chimerical Hope. But don’t wake up dear, because everything you have ever wished for lies here in this dream. Guitar riffs continuously warning the listener our Hermaphrodite needs to stay asleep, because here he will not fail. Do Not Open your Eyes, once again leaves us spiraling into the unknown. Chanting us away into an unfavorable place leaving us wanting to have the chaos end.

Do you feel exiled yet? Only you can accept what is being given to you through all your transformations in order to find ever lasting peace. If you want to be able to transcend beyond the darkness, and take a trip into the unknown, Schammasch definitely are completely worth giving a listen to.

Sessions: The Summoned

Somewhere in between the world of Death Metal and Progressive there lies another genre that can be hard to pinpoint but it can be described as a plethora of things. The Summoned takes all of these aspects and throws them into a blender to produce a fury of brutal Death Metal with hints of progressive, technical, jazz, and fusion. Hold on tight this album is sure to deliver one hell of a ride. 

Keep on reading!