Monday, 8 June 2015

Upcoming gigs

Tuesday 9 June at Magpies City Club
Weekend Nachos, Cursed Earth, Years of Abuse, Wretch,
and Autonomous Drones

Sunday 14 June at The Basement (early show - starts 4pm)
Totally Unicorn, Lo!, Looking Glass, I Am Duckeye and ...Is Dead

This one isn't in Canberra, but will be well worth the trip up the highway to Sydney...
Saturday 20 June at Hermann's Bar
Pallbearer, Hawkmoth and Looking Glass

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Unkle K's Bands of the Week

Mammoth Weed Wizard Bastard
Welsh doomsters M.W.W.B totally sound like their name. What really impresses me with this one-track 30 minute beast is that it slowly builds to epic proportions but at all times stays thoroughly enjoyable. As you would expect, the riffs are MASSIVE. Highly recommended for those folks into mammoths, weed, wizards and bastards.

Elder/Gold and Silver
I didn't think Boston's Elder could top 2011's brilliant Dead Roots Stirring, as the following EP, Spires Burn/Release didn't really blow me away. But their latest, Lore has exceeded all expectations. Heavy, melodic, top class musicianship, fantastic vocals. Already shaping up to be my album of year. Seriously, strap in for track number one, "Compendium" and be transfixed.

And as an added bonus, Elder guitarist Nick DeSalvo, along with Mike Risberg, have a brilliant release out: Gold and Silver - Azurite and Malachite. Very similar to Elder but a little mellower and jammier, without vocals. DiSalvo is really talented at playing the drums and keyboards, as well as sharing guitar duties with Risberg.

This split is from two of Kyoto's finest bands. W.D.L.K. open with two tracks that sound very much like Japanese legends Corrupted's older material, and go for around 17 minutes. Nasty stuff. Sobbed play a more traditional style of grind, like 324 or Realized, smashing out six tracks in six minutes. Thanks to old mate Emil Minty for the heads up. Melbourne's Die Pigeon Die recently played with both of these great bands on their Japanese tour in January - would have loved to have been there.
Sobbed: Facbook
W.D.L.K.: Facebook

Gigs of the Week
Thursday 14 May at Transit Bar
Hard-Ons, Super Best Friends and Yoko Oh No

Thursday 21 May at Magpies City Club
King Parrot, High Tension and Colossvs

Playlist: Unkle K
1. Captain Cleanoff - Rising Terror
2. Elder - Lore
3. Witchskull - Promo CD
4. Year of No Lights/Bagarre Generale - Split
5. All Them Witches - A Sweet Release

Playlist: lxp
1. Hydromedusa - S/T
2. Bell Witch - Four Phantoms
3. Sumac - S/T
4. Fu Manchu - Daredevil
5. Captain Cleanoff - Rising Terror
6. Zombi - The Zombi Anthology

Unkle K

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Reviews: Samothrace / Norilsk / Zig Zags

Samothrace - Live at Roadburn 2014
Featuring performances of both cuts from 2012's Reverence to Stone along with "Awkward Hearts", from their debut Life's Trade, this set portrays Samothrace to be every bit as enveloping and awe-inspiring on stage as I would have hoped. The vocals are noticeably less prominent than they are on the studio albums, but that makes the guitars soar even higher and provides a bit of a different feel that those familiar with the songs can sink into. Unlike many concert recordings, in which both the impact of the live setting and the quality of the music can be completely lost, the majesty and power of Samothrace comes across in full here, which is a testament to both the band and the Roadburn team. I wish I had been there to see this.

Live it here.

Norilsk - The Idea of North
Norilsk offer up an album of death/doom/metal that combines the cold and morose with the upbeat and melodic. The music creates an expansive and foreboding landscape that is broken up intermittently by atmospheric guitar lines that build tension and trudging rhythms that propel some fairly infectious doom riffs (often overlaid with tremolo picking). Morne and Paradise Lost influences are apparent. Being from Quebec, the band uses French lyrics, delivered through both death growls and whispers, which adds a point of interest. Although The Idea of North is produced more sharply than I normally go for, it is still compelling.

Listen here.

Zig Zags - S/T
Blasting out of an isolated garage stuck in the middle of a vast post-apocalyptic wasteland, Zig Zags hoist high a (black) flag rallying the punks, rockers and thrashers to keep the party alive. Absorbing the blood of The Stooges, The Ramones, The Misfits, Black Sabbath and old Metallica through their tongues, they spit their influences back out as twisted skate rock: something like a more nostalgic, lo-fi bastard sibling of The Shrine. Part Easy Rider, part Return of the Living Dead, all catchy as fuck.

Listen here.


Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Unkle K's Bands of the Week

Lizzard Wizzard
A new 7” from Brisbane’s Lizzard Wizzard to follow up from 2013’s excellent S/T tape. Another quality QLD stoner/doom outfit along with Frown and Zodiac. Song title of the month: "The Ghost of Randy Savage".

Holy Serpent
Only one track to go on so far from this very promising Melbourne outfit's forthcoming release, Shroom Doom, out in May on Riding Easy Records. This is heavy, catchy and the singer has a killer set of pipes. Melbourne is pumping out quality doom at the moment with Horsehunter, Watchtower and Holy Serpent all making a massive impression on me.

Elite Suppressor
Old mate Kevin (Geeheeb), formerly of The Oily Menace has just torn my face off with his new project Elite Suppressor. Short nasty, noisy, punky grind turned up to the max. Vocals sound like a Japanese Man is the Bastard x10. Not for Opeth fans.

Gig of the Week
Melbourne’s Horsehunter and South Oz’s Space Bong team up for this killer tour. Canberra show is Thursday 19 March at the Phoenix.

Playlist: Unkle K
1. Elite Supressor - 2015 Demo
2. Lizzard Wizzard - S/T
3. Grief - Alive
4. Dystopia - The Aftermath
5. Motorhead - Ace of Spades

Playlist: lxp
1. Elder - Lore
2. Brothers of the Sonic Cloth - S/T
3. War on Women - S/T
4. Torche - Restarter
5. V/A - Back from the Grave Vol. 9 and 10
6. Nux Vomica - A Civilized World
7. Gay Kiss - Preservation Measures
8. Burlap - Demo

Unkle K

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Unkle K's Bands of the Week

Thank you Dave S for this week's photo.

Lotus Thief
Wow, I’m really digging Lotus Thief’s blackish doomgaze. This band features members of Botanist (who I’ve been interested in for a while but their lo-fi black metal just does not click with me, which is a shame as the artwork is amazing). Anyway, this is a lot more accessible than Botanist, with only the drumming being similar. The melding of different styles really works for me, with only the quieter ambient interludes not really coming off.

Wild Rocket
Another bloody awesome Irish band. Along with Slomatics and War Iron, there are some great bands coming out of the Emerald Isle. Doomy space rock, but the vocalist sounds totally original with his kind of punky approach. It took me a few listens to get used to them but once they clicked with me I was hooked.

Playlist: Unkle K
1. The Kill - Kill Them...All
2. Graveyard - Hisingen Blues
3. Lotus Thief - Rervm
4. Wild Rocket - Geomagnetic Hallucinations
5. Internal Rot - Mental Hygiene

Playlist: lxp
1. Usnea - Random Cosmic Violence
2. Manhunt - S/T
3. Haapoja/Dephosphorus - Collaboration LP
4. The Kill - Kill Them...All
5. King Woman - Doubt
6. Los Saicos - Wild Teen-Punk from Peru 1965 (cheers Dave/Brad)

Unkle K

Monday, 2 February 2015

Upcoming gigs

Saturday 7 February at Transit Bar
With Heavy Heart 2, featuring Inverloch, The VeilMyraeth, Los Hombres del Diablo
Black Trillium
, and And Then Silence
Wednesday 11 February at Transit Bar
CJ Ramone, Hard-Ons and No Assumption

Saturday 14 February at Magpies City Club
Harm's Way, Legions, I Exist, Hygiene and Urge to Kill

Wednesday 18 February at The Street Theatre
J Mascis and Peter Black

Thursday 19 February at Lacklustre HQ
Manhunt, Internal Rot, Hygiene and Blight Worms

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Cacophemisms' 2014 lists

Unkle K

Amazing year for releases. I couldn't possibly narrow it down to ten and I was still discovering 2014 releases with a couple of weeks until the end of the year.

1. Electric Wizard - Time to Die - The kings return.
2. Eyehategod - S/T - Fantastic comeback considering their loss. Never released a bad album.
3. Internal Rot - Mental Hygiene - Melbourne grind tornado lifts the bar. Look forward to the tour with Manhunt in February.
4. The Oath - S/T - Looks and hooks, great heavy metal.
5. Slomatics - Estron - Irish sludgers get better with every release.
6. Occultation - Silence in the Ancestral House - A late discovery. Great dark doom rock.
7. Yob - Clearing the Path to Ascend - Love the Neurosis-y elements creeping in.
8. Yuri Gagarin - S/T - Swedish space rock, a heavier Hawkwind/Monster Magnet. Brilliant.
9. Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden - Best described by someone else as 'opium den metal'.
10. Horsehunter - Caged in Flesh - Young Melbourne doomsters, killer debut.
11. Old Man Gloom - The Ape of God (I & II) - Double LP of APE CORE.
12. Space Witch - S/T - Heavy as shit instrumental pommie space doom.
13. Thou - Heathen - Maybe their best yet, which is a big call with their back catalogue.
14. Satan's Satyrs - Die Screaming - Sleazy rocking punk brilliance. Would have rated higher, but those vocals.
15. Manhunt - S/T - South Oz PV wrecking machine. Make sure to see them in February.
16. Witch Mountain - Mobile of Angels - Don't go, Uta. Will be interesting to see where they go from here.
17. Autopsy - Tourniquets, Hacksaws and Graves - Best death metal band ever.
18. Obliterations - The Hole - More Sab/Flag thrashing madness from members of Black Mountain and Saviours.
19. Super Fun Happy Slide - Drop Your Pants & Grind - Would have rated higher with more listens. Love this band.
20. The VeeBees - Outta Ammo - 'Berra grog monsters hit the big league in 2014 with constant touring and a fantastic looking LP. Hardest blokes, hardest drinkers, hardest tourers in the land.

Just missing out: Floor, USA Out Of Vietnam, The Shrine, Jig-Ai, Godflesh, Monolord, Atomic Death Squad, Fistula.


1. Thou - Heathen
Words and thought are nothing. Instinct and experience are all. The facile trivialities with which we imprison our true, wild essence must be cast off and destroyed. Of course, Thou surely see the irony that such ultimately human-focused conceits, which are doubtless distilled from the work of numerous thinkers and writers, are expressed on Heathen through discursive lyrics accompanying deliberately contrived musical compositions. But this infuriating, hypocritical struggle is a reminder that we remain inescapably human. And Heathen unloads every single savage fragment of that struggle that it can muster, reaching out of the speakers with sheer desperation to grab, slash and tear mercilessly at the insufferable bullshit coating every single surface of our existence. This album really is something else. It builds upon everything Thou have done previously to see them masterfully controlling the brutality of their painfully heavy, skin-crawling sludge with finesse and seamlessly weaving in poignant moments of calm and serenity. The result is cohesive and nuanced while being visceral and vicious. Heathen forces a reaction and leaves a huge impression that has not dulled at all in the months since its release.

2. Yob - Clearing the Path to Ascend
There are many reasons that people revere Yob as something akin to a force of nature, not least being their craft in making music that is at once shatteringly heavy and deeply meditative. In that vein, Clearing the Path to Ascend is a record that comes as close as any other to cracking open some new, unexplored dimension where all is unbounded from the constraints of time. The spiritual chasm that Mike Scheidt’s howls rise from in the darker parts of the album seems as though it would disintegrate any unsuspecting feeble souls that unwittingly glimpse inside. But perseverance yields reward, and the entirety of this creation is far more psychically comforting than it is terrifying. “It’s time to wake up.” Yob is love.

3. Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden
Sometimes the hype is entirely deserved, and that rings true for Foundations of Burden. Pallbearer towered with their new spin on classic doom, which overflows with harrowing melodies, incredible tones and phenomenal songwriting. There are brilliant little touches secreted away amongst it all, which continue to reveal themselves after (many) repeated listens. A little more upbeat and accessible than Sorrow and Extinction, it remains epic, powerful and affecting.

4. Mantar - Death by Burning
It didn’t seem to garner that much attention, but this German/Turkish duo spat out a feral little mongrel with their debut, Death by Burning. It’s a raw, depraved concoction that both scrapes through howled doom and belts out primitive, straightforward death rock, while maintaining dark (but catchy) melodies. Rabid and hyperactive, it sounds like Black Cobra sinking into a tar pit and dragging Nirvana in with them, while Kyuss and Chuck Schuldiner (and maybe Darkthrone) throw rocks from the edge. I look forward to hearing more from this band.

5. Earth - Primitive and Deadly
Dylan Carlson and co. once again deliver the distorted dreamscapes and hypnotic repetition you would expect, but this time there is more. The enigmatic, rolling contours of Primitive and Deadly have a definite forward momentum. They are accentuated and given life by some surprising, soaring guitar leads and spectacular vocal contributions from Mark Lanegan and Rabia Shaheen Qazi. It all fits together perfectly, resulting in an album of irresistible, otherworldly blues that compels you to return.

6. Oozing Wound - Earth Suck
In short, Earth Suck consists of Oozing Wound throwing seven more noisy, sludgy, thrash tantrums. It is debauched, petulant and annoying in the best way possible, with frenzied riffing, psychotic screeching and hammering drums all working to toe a fine line between speedy bangers that can induce neck spasms and maddening assaults of repetition that could drive almost anyone over the edge. Spite and cynicism have never been so much fun.

7. Martyrdöd - Elddop
The blazing metallic d-beat of Martyrdöd’s latest album is punctuated with slower passages, featuring chords that ring out to accentuate a heightened emotional focus, as compared to 2012’s Paranoia. There are rock 'n' roll touches here and there and characteristic, squealing guitar lines ascend above the searing rhythms which, for the most part, refuse to be shackled by what seems to be a more considered approach to the songs. And those throaty, barked vocals wail painfully over everything to make sure the intensity doesn’t let up for too long. Great stuff.

8. The Atlas Moth - The Old Believer
The Atlas Moth took another evolutionary leap forward on The Old Believer. The depth in the music is almost tangible, as if you were hearing it inside a fevered hallucination. All the elements meld together with amazing subtlety, and moving the vocals further back in the mix has helped round out the edges of their quirky amalgamation of prog, goth, doom and sludge influences. My only gripe is that if they tread much further towards Tool, they could risk falling into parody (some would probably say they already have). But otherwise, this is a damn impressive record.

9. Grand Magus - Triumph and Power
Countless times have I jammed Triumph and Power at ridiculous volume in the rattling, collapsing Pulsar. The other commuter drones peer blankly with dull-eyed scorn at the aging loser they behold: grinning maniacally as he furiously bangs his head, he grasps the wheel with white knuckles, stubbornly clutching to a faded adrenaline- and testosterone-fuelled teenage fantasy of righteousness and battle, loosening his grip only to pump his fist at them in mighty, victorious defiance. And then I pulled in to the workplace carpark.

10. Fu Manchu - Gigantoid
A welcome return to form by these old favourites, Gigantoid doesn’t shake up the tried and true formula too much, but it does have a few tweaks to keep things interesting. It’s a bit more laid back and much more dynamic than Fu Manchu’s last couple of outings. Psych-inflected fuzziness comes to the fore, balancing out the more raucous, punk vibe that carries over from their recent albums. Closing track, “The Last Question” is a highlight, providing a fantastic, unexpectedly subdued, spacey exit.

Honourable mentions
It has been a massive year for music, and picking out only ten albums was extremely difficult. A lot of my other favourites appear in the other lists in this post, but to avoid further duplication, here are some additional releases that I think also rate a mention.

Barghest - The Virtuous Purge
Corrupt Moral Altar - Mechanical Tides
Dead - Captains of Industry
Dilated Peoples - Directors of Photography
Harmony - Carpetbombing
Megaton Leviathan - Past 21 Beyond the Arctic Cell
Nux Vomica - S/T
Run the Jewels - RTJ2
Sunwolf - Beholden to Nothing and No One
Trap Them - Blissfucker

Shane (Cutting Hose, Burning Plastic)

1. Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden
2. Yob - Clearing the Path to Ascend
3. Thou - Heathen
4. Tombs - Savage Gold
5. Bongripper - Miserable
6. Earth - Primitive and Deadly
7. Panopticon - Roads to the North
8. Mutilation Rites - Harbinger
9. Godflesh - A World Lit Only By Fire
10. Nothing - Guilty of Everything
11. Solstafir - Otta
12. Morbus Chron - Sweven
13. Gridlink - Longhena
14. Midnight - No Mercy for Mayhem
15. Horrendous - Ecdysis
16. Electric Wizard - Time to Die
17. Today is the Day - Animal Mother
18. Eyehategod - S/T
19. Iron Reagan - The Tyranny of Will
20. Old Man Gloom - The Ape of God (I & II)

Geoff (Mendicant Music, also posted with reviews here)

1. Bethlehem - Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia
2. Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden
3. Dead Congregation - Promulgation of the Fall
4. Bölzer - Soma
5. Thou - Heathen
6. Godflesh - A World Lit Only By Fire
7. Super Fun Happy Slide - Drop Your Pants & Grind
8. Mournful Congregation - Concrescence of the Sophia
9. Horrendous - Ecdysis
10. StarGazer - A Merging to the Boundless

JJ (I Exist/BMA "Metalise")

1. Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden
2. Yob - Clearing the Path to Ascend
3. Electric Wizard - Time to Die
4. Conan - Blood Eagle
5. Thou - Heathen
6. Super Fun Happy Slide - Drop Your Pants & Grind
7. Autopsy - Torniquets, Hacksaws & Graves
8. Iron Reagan - The Tyranny of Will
9. Floor - Oblation
10. Eyehategod - S/T


1. Encoffination - III: Hear Me, O' Death
2. Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden
3. Monolord - Empress Rising
4. Boston Strangler - Fire
5. Super Fun Happy Slide - Drop Your Pants & Grind
6. Eyehategod - S/T
7. Internal Rot - Mental Hygiene
8. Yob - Clearing the Path to Ascend
9. Fistula - Vermin Prolificus
10. Conan - Blood Eagle

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Unkle K's Bands of the Week

Holy Serpent
Another great new band from Melbourne. The stoner/doom scene down there is spitting forth some great new bands: Horsehunter; Watchtower. These guys are not as heavy as some of the other new bands, with the singer having a pretty mellow voice, but he can sing and combined with some rocking tunes, I’m keen to hear further output.

Corsair from Charlottesville, Virginia have a rocking Lizzy-Gary Moore-Maiden vibe - great leads, cool vocals, great hooks. I found myself singing along after a couple of listens.

Video of the Week
Keeping up with the old school vibe is Ryan Waste’s (Municipal Waste) Living Fast video channel, totally dedicated to heavy metal. First two episodes feature Raven, Venom and many other NWOBHM classics. Highly entertaining.
Episode 1: YouTube
Episode 2 (Part 1): YouTube
Episode 2 (Part 2): YouTube


Couple of killer shows in the next few weeks. One for the kiddies with Full of Hell from the USA at a new venue called the Crossroads (a house) on Thursday 4 December, supported by Idylls and Machina Genova. And then on Saturday 13 December, Witchskull appear to be the youngest band on a bill of nursing home veterans appearing on a great old school lineup at the Croatian Club in Turner.

Playlist: Unkle K
1. Corsair - One Eyed Horse
2. Lucifers Friend - S/T
3. Electric Wizard - Time to Die
4. Hawkeyes - Poison Slows You Down
5.The Shrine - Primitive Blast
Playlist: lxp
1. Baptists - Bloodmines
2. Today is the Day - Animal Mother
3. Hoarse - S/T
4. Godflesh - A World Lit Only By Fire
5. Electric Wizard - Time to Die
6. Pneumatic Slaughter - Failed Executions
7. Horrendous - Ecdysis
8. Holy Serpent - S/T
9. Captain Beyond - S/T
10. Om - Enjoying revisiting all their releases.

Unkle K