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Syntek
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:14 pm
Posts: 651
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 1:46 pm 
 

[BLACK OCTOBER - BLACK METAL SONGWRITING CHALLENGE - OCT '13]
- RESULTS + REVIEWS -

[DOWNLOAD THE COMPILATION HERE]

Congratulations, guys! And what an interesting 40 days it's been. The yield this year has been nothing short of fantastic, with a near 110 minutes of music submitted, spread over 18 tracks, from 13 users. Not to mention that the quality of songwriting this year, for the most part, has been pretty jaw-dropping. There's also been a big variety of genres submitted, ranging from traditional black, to blackened punk, to depressive black, to melodic black; shit, even some black/power, believe it or not.
Ready your bodies, guise. This is gonna be a big one.

[The Tracklist]

The list of submissions and their assigned themes goes as follows:

[01] Fractum - Marras - Mental Illness & Insanity
[02] The Dying's Last Breath - CloggedUrethra - Death
[03] Entartete Kunst - shibby2441 - Historical Events
[04] Evocation of That Which Appears Behind the Stones of Sorrow - ShaolinLambKiller - Occultism
[05] World Plagues - TheCrippledGod - Violence, Gore & Anatomy
[06] I - Syntek - Social Isolation
[07-08] Large Cigar + An Affair - KFD - Corruption & Greed
[09] Vindication of Many - lemisotheist - Local & Ancestral Folklore
[10] Nature - guitartheist - Nature
[11] The Phantom Xim Wanders Pesegam - Commandaunt - Technology
[12-14] Omnipresent Emptiness + The Black Seas of Infinity + A Creeping, Black Fog - infinitenexus - Space & the Cosmos
[15] Misconceptions of a Virgin Birth - Anomic Humanoid - Eschatology
[16-18] To Vinland... + Ninlil + Bushido - InThyKingdom - Civilisations & Cultures

In terms of song order, rather than placing tracks by date of submission (in which case infinitenexus would've been first by a long shot!) they've been placed, in my opinion, in a generally pleasing order; short ones proceeding long ones, and vice versa, to give it a nice sense of flow, and prevent any potential monotony. Akin to last year, the EPs have also been placed nearer the tail-end of the compilation (which are absolutely killer, may I add), so make sure not to neglect them just for being nearer the end of the tracklist.

I also managed to (unwillingly? :p ) extract lyrics from each participant this time around, so make sure to read through that as you listen to it as well.

[The Reviews]

It's strongly encouraged that each of you takes some time to peer-assess eachother's work. Anyone who didn't participate is also welcome to review - the more the merrier, after all! As usual, you should make sure to evaluate for lyrics & theme and composition, but also for performance and production. I personally wouldn't use numbered scores myself, but honestly, it's entirely your preference. As long as it's more than just a one-liner, it'll be fine.

And with that, I bid you happy listening, chums!

Oh, and do say if I've buggered up compilation-wise, and I'll make sure to re-up it.


Last edited by Syntek on Wed Nov 20, 2013 8:38 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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iamntbatman
Chaos Breed

Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 5:55 am
Posts: 11409
Location: Tyrn Gorthad
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 2:28 pm 
 

Awesome, can't wait to give this a listen and review. Is there any chance you'll get any late submissions coming in today, or is the submission phase of the contest hereby declared over and done? If it's the latter I'll just download it now, but reviews will come tonight.
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Syntek
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:14 pm
Posts: 651
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 2:32 pm 
 

iamntbatman wrote:
Awesome, can't wait to give this a listen and review. Is there any chance you'll get any late submissions coming in today, or is the submission phase of the contest hereby declared over and done? If it's the latter I'll just download it now, but reviews will come tonight.


Oh no, the submission period is well and truly over - everyone that would've submitted has submitted, as far as I'm aware!

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CorpseFister
Veteran

Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 2:07 pm
Posts: 2623
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 2:52 pm 
 

Nice work boyos! I'll check it out when I get home.

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themicrulah
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2011 12:00 am
Posts: 1167
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:22 pm 
 

Downloading now. I've been looking forward to this. :D
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CloggedUrethra
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Nov 30, 2002 4:30 am
Posts: 458
Location: Ontario, Canada
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:47 pm 
 

Cool! Downloading now and will bring it home to listen on my other comp tonight. Might take a day or two to post reviews.
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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
Posts: 13213
Location: United States
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 4:29 pm 
 

Looking forward to getting down and reviewing all of these. Might do it how I did last time where I reviewed a number of them and then the rest the next day.
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Commandaunt
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 10:31 am
Posts: 572
Location: Bolivia
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 4:45 pm 
 

Can't wait to get home and review/listen to these. Excited!

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lemisotheist
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 4:38 pm
Posts: 1
Location: Sweden
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:15 pm 
 

This gon' be tasty!

Downloading :D

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InThyKingdom
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Jul 31, 2013 4:25 am
Posts: 196
Location: Bulgaria
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:22 pm 
 

Good work guys!
Here is the list of the bands and the projects i enjoyed most.
May be absolute favorite is Entartete Kunst by Shibby2441. I'm not good at words just going to say that I really liked what you did!
After that Syntec's - I, really njoyed the atmosphere there! Maay be a bit better recording quality would give me even higher impression!
Guitartheist - man. It was like I was listening to a new album by Head Control System! Amazing song!! Sometimes ur vocal lines aare pure mr.Rygg (aka Garm).
The last but not the least the EP by infinitenexus. Had some really big ideas on it that kept my attention.
Listed in that Order doesn't mean I have pure favorite, but really njoyed your works guys! Looking forward for the next contests and your appearance there!
Big respect to all!!

P.S. Excuse my bad English :)
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Syntek
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:14 pm
Posts: 651
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 6:47 pm 
 

InThyKingdom wrote:
Syntec's - I, really njoyed the atmosphere there! Maay be a bit better recording quality would give me even higher impression!


All in the spirit of black metal, friend. ;)

But yeah, expect some reviews from me in a day or two.

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infinitenexus
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 2:35 am
Posts: 1888
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 6:48 pm 
 

Thank you, InThyKingdom!

I'm downloading it now, and I'll listen to it a review it tomorrow. I'm really tired and not in a great mood today, so I want to wait until I'm feeling better. Really looking forward to it though.
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Commandaunt
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 10:31 am
Posts: 572
Location: Bolivia
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:46 pm 
 

Track 1. Marras "Marras Inc." - Fractum - Wow! First track on the compilation and I already feel like everything here is going to put my track to shame. That first riff is fantastic and is definitely one that I'm gonna remember for a while. Also loved the scream at 03:29 :D BLOOOOOOOOOOOD!!11. I felt this was quite reminiscent of something off of Puritanical Euphoric Misanthropia, which is def a good thing in my eyes, though it may not be in others lol. This had some great production, and sounded very professional on the whole, other than the drum machine of course. Only suggestions are (my opinion) maybe turn up the keys a bit in the mix, and have a bit more power in the vocals (But I think you said something about having the flu, so don't worry about that). The lyrics weren't that interesting in my opinion, but I did like your enunciation in the latin lines Atmospheric, engaging and memorable. 9/10

Track 2. CloggedUrethra "Nostril Caverns" - The Dying's Last Breath - The length of the song was kind of offputting at first, but it really didn't feel like 14 minutes. Despite disliking the production at first, it began to grow on me around the 4-5 minute mark - It was a bit thin, but I think that it fits the emptiness and loneliness you're trying to convey. The lines "Almost time, about to die, it'll be fine, returning to nothing" encapsulated the song well, and kind of made me feel like this after I was finished reading the lyrics. Overall, very bleak, lonely and depressing. Though it took some time to get used to the production (as if I should be ripping on other peoples' production considering what mine was like haha) I felt this was a very solid track, and while I wouldn't listen to something like this more than once or twice, I can definitely point out some awesome things going on here. Biggest downside was that it suffered from the same problem I had with Marras' song (the vocals being pretty weak). 7.5/10 P.S Whereabouts are you in Ontario man?

Track 3. shibby2441 - Entartete Kunst - I'm not a big sludge/drone/whatever fan so at the beginning I was kinda like ... Ehhhh. But then it turned into punk-influenced black metal and everything was okay! But then it turned back around again near the end and I was kinda like ehhh again. No worries though! This style of metal just isn't my cup of tea. This song reminded me of Woe's album "A Spell for the Death of Man" (in the production, manic vocals and riffing style) and while I didn't find that album to be very great, it has awesome reviews on the archives, so you're probably doing something right. I dug the punk-inspired parts, but wasn't a huge fan of the slower parts, nor did I enjoy the production very much. 6/10 from me, but I feel like I'm going to be alone with that opinion :P OH, and the lyrics were cool! I didn't know of the lyrical subject you chose, so reading up on it was interesting. "closed minds, need cut open" - Good line :)

Track 4. ShaolinLambKiller "Ange de la Mort" - Evocation of That Which Appears Behind the Stones of Sorrow - Some very portal-reminiscent stuff going on here, which is cool. It kinda lacks the beefy production that I feel makes this sort of experimental/grind/black metal work, but there are certain spots where the instruments themselves make up for this, such as the tom-heavy part around 3:00. I'm really not sure what else to say about this. I don't listen to this sort of music much, and if I do, it's usually as background noise or as something to fall asleep to. It was trancey, atmospheric, and I felt it was very much a valid representation of the title. The title sort of implies an element of ambiguity in the stones and makes me think of a primitive culture performing rituals around some sort of magical obelisk - the vocals even sound like some demonic minion at points, so I think you captured your given subject very well. Finally, I think the lyrics were pretty neat - reminded me, again, of portal, maybe even Nile. As I said before with urethra's song, I wouldn't listen to this more than once or twice (maybe I would if the production was more beefy?), but I can see the objective value in it. 8/10 Very interesting stuff!

Track 5. TheCrippledGod - World Plagues "The perfect diarrhea - DEATH!" LOLWUT. While your lyrics puzzle me (it seems like you just made a list of the first things that came to mind which had to do with biology - or maybe they were so deep they just went way over my head) the song itself was pretty cool. I was glad to hear some thick production after the last few tracks, but with that said, this song on the whole felt more death/thrash than black. The intro was even a bit doom-y. The riffs were catchy, your arrangement of riffs was good, you had a lot of really solid transitions and the vocals were well done. I'd say 7/10 - nothing spectacular or out of the ordinary in terms of death metal (I'm not even sure I would called this blackened death metal) but on the whole it was pretty good for what it was - average, playing it safe, old-school-esque metal.

Track 6. Syntek "Writhe" - I Wow! These lyrics definitely tell a story. At first, I thought this would be another uninspired, angsty attempt at dsbm, but as I listened and read, I began to realize that this is definitely what dsbm SHOULD be. The loneliness and selfishness that this song and it's accompanying lyrics exudes is astounding, and really personifies dsbm as a subgenre. Kind of at a loss for words, but kind of not - I could probably compliment all day long, but I think pretty much everything that was integral to making a solid dsbm track is here - the production, the atmosphere, the lyrics, the genuineness (that is a word believe it or not :P), the compelling, yet uncompelling personality..Fantastic stuff man. The only reason I don't give this a 10 is because I feel it could've benefited from maybe some keys, samples, or other weird things .. Ear candy if you will.. 9.5/10 God damnit, I really underestimated the quality I'd find in this challenge - will have to try much harder with the next one!

Track 7-8. KFD - Large Cigar/An Affair - Hmm, well this is the most DIY-sounding it's gotten so far, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. It actually reminded me a lot of cryptic slaughter, with the simplistic "fuck you" approach to the lyrics and riffing. Once again, not really hearing much black metal, other than in the vocals, as this is more punk/thrash, but it's cool for what it is. Really digging that groovy part in "An Affair" at 0:37, coupled with the shouts that accompany it. Sorry I don't have anything more to say! Good old school, anti-society blackened thrash. 7/10.

Gonna stop here for now .. Feel like I'm running out of ways to say good jerb. Plus the next one sounds like it's gonna be a trip. Really good stuff so far everyone, excited for the second half! Will hopefully post some more tomorrow.


Last edited by Commandaunt on Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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iamntbatman
Chaos Breed

Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 5:55 am
Posts: 11409
Location: Tyrn Gorthad
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:49 pm 
 

I'm almost done listening/reviewing and will edit this post in a bit with the reviews. All I've gotta say is that this is really good stuff! The batting average is wayyyy higher than challenges of yore, with a whole bunch of songs so far that I really, really enjoy and that make me want to hear more in the same vein.

Sorry for the long post! I also apologize if my reviews got lamer and lamer as they progress, but as I was drinking some tasty winter brews while listening and reviewing I may have lost some mental faculties by the end there.

Marras - Fractum
I could tell right from the opening chords that I would really dig this one. Wonderful, rich guitar tone that's perfect for this second-wave worshipping style. Despite your comments about having the flu, the vocals were really great - a bit lower and more....slurpy than what is usual but I thought this was a nice touch rather than a detriment. Really loving the melodic tremolo riffs and arpeggios all through the song; expertly crafted stuff. The programmed drums also sound really good (nice and organic feeling), so kudos to you for that. You also handled the lyrical subject expertly, with some of those queasy riffs excellently conveying the lyrics. The last verse has really great lyrics, by the way. Excellent song. I would listen to a full album of this without question.

Nostril Caverns - The Dying's Last Breath
I had worries about this as it started since the sound was so thin and AM-radio-like, but then the mix came in in full. I can't say I was totally loving your lyrics, or your impish vocal delivery, but it was passable enough and didn't detract too much from the music. As for the music! Totally manic stuff, dude. The drum performance is captivating throughout, and much of the instrumentation is individually really, really cool, with some really excellent use of multitracked guitars. However, lots of the transitions from one part of the song to the next were a little jarring for my taste and given the gigantic running time, I was hoping for a little more rumination on some of the more powerful melodic themes. The song really could've ended at that fade-out, with the quiet storm-sample-laden part after that was just sort of doing its own thing for quite a long time and killed the momentum of the song. I definitely liked the simpler, sadder melodies more than some of the proggier bits or the angular aggressive chords. The thrashy riff eleven-something minutes into the song was really cool, but I dunno, it just didn't gel that well with the rest of the song for me. Definitely some weird stuff!

shibby2441 - Entartete Kunst
Really esoteric lyrics, which is a cool take on one of the more concrete lyrical themes. This is really fucking evil sounding stuff, dude. What tuning did you use? That bass tone in the beginning is glorious. Anyway, this is some really fucking cool black/crust/hardcore. I really fucking love the drum performance on this - it's really competently performed but the general pace gives the drums the feeling like they're just gonna fall apart into uncontrolled chaos at any second. The production is ultra dark, with that menacing 3-note main theme just being scary as hell every time it comes 'round. The vocals are also truly excellent, basically hardcore screams but delivered with the cadence of a black metal vocalist. Like Marras' track, I would listen to a whole album of this in a heartbeat.

shaolinlambkiller - Evocation of Really Long Song Titles

Very Portal-ish, this track. Discordance everywhere, and you did a really good job of capturing that multi-tempo feel where it feels simultaneously lightspeed and sluggish at the same time. Rather than that breathy oration you get in Portal this has some fucked up torture doom vocals, which fit pretty nicely. Lyrics seem sort of like a cross between some expected occult vibes and some fucked up ramblings you'd find in a serial killer's diary buried at the bottom of a pit of mutilated babies. While I generally liked the atmosphere you've got going (the super multi-tracked guitars were a big help there) I was never really gripped by any of the fast riffs and it was only those slower lurching ones that did much for me. I might've dug this more a few years ago when I generally had more interest in really fucked up chaotic stuff but these days I definitely lead toward preferring the more straightforward when it comes to riffs.

TheCrippledGod - World Plagues
Haha, before the song even starts your lyrics are basically like Queens of the Stone Age's "Feel Good Hit of the Summer" with diseases instead of drugs. Really digging that guitar tone and your opening riffing! Those clean vocals caught me off guard - I liked the vocal melody there but the performance was only alright. Then the song kicks into high gear for the main section with a sort of old school black/death vibe. Pretty savage stuff, sort of reminds me of a thrashier Necrophobic or something. I wasn't huge into your main body of riffery. The break in the middle was welcome but it soon became evident that you're basically setting us up to just have the song play twice, which seems kind of lazy. My biggest complaint production-wise is probably your drum programming; while I've heard far, far worse it could've stood to be a little less robotic. Overall an ok song, definitely pretty capably performed and recorded but could've used more interesting riffing for the main sections and a less predictable overall structure.

Syntek/I - Writhe
Haha, man. This lyrical theme had so much potential to be total garbage. However, I've really gotta applaud you on your lyrics; this is some really well-written, melancholic stuff. It's weepy, sure, but you've got the poetic chops to make it work really, really well without ever seeming awkwardly melodramatic. The utterly scathing vocal performance was nearly flawless; I think I would've liked a bit more delay to drag out the tails of the words a bit. I'm kind of torn on the musical side of things. The drums sound mainly pretty good during the more basic beats but that drum machine cymbal was a bit grating (love that hollow metallic snare though). The riffs were...hmm. I almost really like them, but for much of the song I feel like your chord choices or something were just slightly holding it back from pure melancholic bliss. The really obvious exception to this is the center section where things drop out, some subtle synths are added then the guitars come back with that fucking glorious tremolo melody. Seriously, the back half of your song is perfect stuff (that outro!); I just with the first half had been as convincing.

KFD - Large Cigar/An Affair
Here's the raw shit! The guitars are muffled as hell but it basically works for the simple style pretty well. The drums are pretty whack; the cymbals are all real loud but the snare is super quiet during the blasts and really loud elsewhere and the bass drum barely exists ever. The vocals...hmm. Most of the time they weren't too good really, pretty spotty performance-wise but some particular lines get a really nice delivery. Those clean vocals though....I dunno about those, haha. Of the two songs I liked the punky/thrashy "An Affair" more. The lyrics were ok, super simple and straightforward but that fits your musical approach, too. Decent stuff all around.

lemisotheist - Vindication of Many
Sluuuuudge right out of the gate. Super thick, fuzzy bass tone that dominates the riffing, with the guitars panned way out to the side and being much more textural. Once the actual song starts, I can see you're going for more of a trudging Melechesh sort of thing, which is pretty cool. The riffing is pretty straightforward powerchord-based with some groovy harmonc-laden bits, but for the most part your riffs are satisfying. So far out of all the songs I listened to this one would definitely benefit quite a bit from some production tweaks; it sounds pretty clean and professional but during the blasting parts especially it's like the whole mix suddenly becomes pretty lifeless. I would've liked a more natural, warmer guitar tone as the really digital sounding distortion you've got kind of adds to that overall lifelessness. The vocals also sound sort of...tired and sleepy, and while they do an alright job of conveying your lyrics I would've liked to hear them belted out by a stronger vocalist. The lyrics were good though, and you've chosen a powerful subject that works really well with the song.

guitartheist- Nature
I thought this was a black metal challenge? Haha. This sounds like power metal basically. I appreciate how much work went into the vocals (loads of vocal tracks and falsetto "female" backing vocals, Fenriz style!) but they really don't do that much for me and are mainly sort of distracting. The lead guitar playing is absolutely the highlight, and provides a welcome distraction from the pretty spastic, unfocused riffing. Oh, here's sort of a black metal part in the middle, I guess, but it just sort of adds to the spasticity of the whole thing rather than seeming like a natural part of the song. Also, the programmed drums and bass become really glaring during this part. I get what you're going for in the lyrics, comparing nature the abstract to human nature, but they didn't really do a whole lot for me (could be that the vocal performance didn't really help sell them to me, either).

Commandaunt - The Phantom Xim
Your vocals are pretty good, and you've got a nice trebly guitar tone, but the drums are pretty terribly grating throughout (but you brought that up, so no biggie), but your riffs really just don't do much for me at all for the most part. That more folky one halfway through is alright but otherwise the riffs are utterly forgettable. Luckily, though, your lyrics are cool as shit. Star Wars fanfic or no, they're really well written. If the drums were a little less grating I might be able to say more about this, but as it is they're so hard to ignore it's hard to really focus on your riffs to say what it is about them that doesn't appeal to me, but as it is I just don't really like 'em much. Still not too big a problem while listening to the song and reading along with the lyrics, though.

Yfel - 3-Song EP
Hmm, sorry dude, but out of all of your musical projects that are actually in genres I like and listen to, your black metal stuff is probably my least favorite. There's just...so much blasting, and so many hyper-aggressive riffs. I don't really listen to any norsecore type stuff but I suppose this probably sounds a bit like 1349/Marduk/Dark Funeral a bit, though with more palm-muted death metally riffs. A couple individual riffs here and there are pretty neat, but the bread-and-butter style used for the bulk of the songs just ain't my thing. As always your production is pretty immaculate, but is maybe just a little too shiny for this stuff. Your vocals are maybe just a little too...staccato and breathy? Just not really my favorite. Your lyrical subject is an easy favorite for me, though, so it wasn't hard to read them and get a big smile goin'. Of the three the instrumental "A Creeping, Black Fog" was definitely my favorite - it's got gallons more passion than the other two tracks, avoids ticking the "be super aggressive and have blasting" boxes in favor of a simple, mournful yet powerful melody. I'd love to hear you expand this sound into a full-fledged project.

Anomic Humanoid - Misconceptions of a Virgin Birth
Considering the lyrical topic and song title, I was expecting some really dissonant DsO type stuff, but instead I'm treated to some wonderful Finnish-style black metal! Really fucking great guitar riffs and wonderfully caustic vocals. It jumps right out at me that you ought to have a live drummer, as your drum programming is super clicky and robotic sounding which utterly clashes with the really organic sound you have going in the rest of the song. I'm not super huge on your lyrics but then again the lyrical subject you were assigned doesn't really appeal to me much, anyway. Kind of irrelevant as far as I'm concerned as your riffing just hits all the right notes for me. Reminds me a lot of Sargeist and that new German band Sarkrista. Find yourself a drummer and write an album, stat!

Historian - 3-song EP
YESSSS SYNTHS. Haha, I'm not actually huge on synth-laden black metal but I can't believe I've gone through this much material in a black metal challenge without a wonderful medieval synth intro until just now. I really dig the style you've got going here. Swooning vikingish/folky riffs but with plenty of aggression coming through in the drums and the vocals. The break in "To Vinland..." is glorious, bringing back in the synths for support! Triumphant lyrics are basically spot-on. Then Ninlil takes me to a totally different geographical locale but this still sounds like the work of the same band. Wonderful Middle-Eastern sounding scales in the riffs, with those subtle synths surging underneath. On Bushido, is that a sample or do you speak Japanese? Haha, again a subtle style shift but again still sounding like the work of the same band. This one's more like melodic death/black metal with churning riffs that remind me of charging cavalry. Love the subtle drawing swords samples. The production on this stuff is grand, and all three regions get a unique but interesting lyrical (and musical) treatment. I'd love to hear more material by this project, with more time spent among each of the cultures it visits in these songs as you've got a clear knack for writing stuff with a strong sense of time and place.

Favorites: Anomic Humanoid, Syntek/I, shibby2441, Historian, Marras
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Last edited by iamntbatman on Thu Nov 21, 2013 2:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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VariedTastes
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Sep 22, 2013 2:24 pm
Posts: 140
Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 2:19 am 
 

Downloaded... Only one song in but shit... I'd pay for some more of that.
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KFD
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 8:19 pm
Posts: 1064
Location: France
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 3:43 am 
 

Commandaunt wrote:
Track 7-8. KFD - Large Cigar/An Affair - Hmm, well this is the most DIY-sounding it's gotten so far, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. It actually reminded me a lot of cryptic slaughter, with the simplistic "fuck you" approach to the lyrics and riffing. Once again, not really hearing much black metal, other than in the vocals, as this is more punk/thrash, but it's cool for what it is.



I don't remember ever listening to Cryptic Slaughter in my whole life, but I'll check this band.
If you're not hearing any Norwegian black metal in "Large Cigar", I can't do anything more for you, sir ;)

Anyway thanks for the review.
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shouvince
Veteran

Joined: Sat Jan 22, 2005 9:11 am
Posts: 3176
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 6:31 am 
 

Whoa, this is a really great compilation and music quality-wise it's definitely a notch higher than the previous doom-challenge. I thought more contributors had signed up and expected some 20 different artists. Ah well, it's great nonetheless and kudos to all the contributors. I won't get into a track by track review like the others because they've covered what I want to say and much more. The stand out songs for me (entirely dependent on my taste) are the ones by Marras, Shibby2441, SLK, Yfel, Anomic and Historian. Great job. I must commend Historian though, coz I was really impressed with what I heard. It sounds so pro is all I can say. I love the strong folk influence and though I'm definitely not a fan of synth, I certainly didn't mind the use of it in those particular songs.

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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 8:56 pm 
 

Okay this evening I'm going to start reviewing. Thanks thus far Commandaunt & iamntbatman!
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infinitenexus
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 2:35 am
Posts: 1888
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:27 pm 
 

iamntbatman wrote:

[ I'd love to hear you expand this sound into a full-fledged project.


In my signature, I put out a full length album just recently. It's all in kind of the same vein, so you may not like it that much, to be honest. Thanks for the critique though, all is noted!

Okay, I'll go ahead and do my reviews now. And keep in mind that while I respect the black metal genre and I understand all of it's aspects, I don't personally listen to any black metal except for Watain and some behemoth (which is black/death anyways). Maybe a gorgoroth song or two. I'll type as I listen. So I'm not exactly a black metal expert.

01 Fractum - Immediately recognizable as black metal in every way, shape, and form, and I mean that in a positive way. I think you nailed the production, it's clean enough to hear what you're doing, but dirty enough to be true to the spirit of black metal. I really enjoyed this song overall, it's something I'd like to hear more of. My only complaint was there was a part where just the guitars played a few notes by themselves, and I felt the guitar tone was very thin and kinda weak. Overall an excellent song.

02 The Dying's last breath - When it first started off I was thinking oh god, I hope that isn't the drum sound he used for the whole song. Then it kicked in and sounded nice and awesome. I like the almost immediate tempo/feel changes in the song, it adds an aspect of musicianship and texture. Your vocals sound like you're being physically strangled, which I think is a good thing for black metal. Sounds kinda painful though lol. Not sure I liked what you did at 1:42 where you interjected a few seconds of something different. And then repeated again a bit later. I'm kinda neutral on that. There was an instrumental part right before 3 minutes that I felt didn't necessarily go anywhere, musically speaking. Not bad, I'm just being overly picky. Who did the drums? I really like how they sound. I also like how your song kinda goes through movements. Definitely a success there. I like the lead bit at 5:30ish. I like the acoustic/whispering part. Sounds like you created a good blackish atmosphere using mostly major chords, which is not easy. God damn that's a long song. It's a good one though. Very well done.

03 Entartete Kunst - I absolutely loved the bass tone in the intro. Once the song kicks in it almost seems to have a punk flavor to it. Not sure how much I like the vocals, but I will say they are great for black metal. Better than my own, honestly hahaha. I definitely like the use of a 5 string bass in this (correct me if I'm wrong). I heard some octave displacement just after 2 minutes, I really liked that. More musicians/bassists need to do that, it really adds texture and dimension, not to mention heaviness to the song. So definitely good on that. I liked the outtro also. Good song.

04 Evocation of stuff - WHERE'S THE FEEDBACK?!?!?! I think your raw sound is definitely appropriate for black metal. I'm not a big fan of excessive dissonance, though I'll admit it's perfect for black metal, so I don't personally like the first minute or so, but from the next part of the song on I do like it. I really like what you did at 3:30, with the alternating two chords over the blast beat. That really adds a good black metal atmosphere to your song. The continuous drum fills with noises and moans and stuff over it was really cool also. I also like what you're doing from about 7:14 on, with the long tense chords over the faster drums. I also really like the long fadeout, that noise. How did you make that guitar noise? Just loose floppy strings and moving your hand about? Oh, and what tuning is this in?

Time to take a break and make some gnocchi.

Gnocchi failed. I guess I'll stick to buying it. Bugger.

05 World Plagues - Doesn't initially sound like black metal, but I like it. When it kicks in heavier it sounds kinda like old school death metal to my ears. Still undecided on whether or not I like the clean vocals, but I tip my hat to you for doing something different. Definitely an old school death metal sound. I like it.

06 I - the intro is very reverby. This song is definitely one of those kind of atmospheric, moody songs that you put on in the background to set the mood. A couple notes: When you program drums, don't make the volume of the hi-hat always the same. Watch a video of how drummers play the hi hat and make the volumes and velocities accordingly. Like if you have 4 hi hat hits per measure, instead of 100% each hit, go 80% - 65% - 90% - 65%, with the snare hitting on the 90%. It's one of those little things that makes a big difference in making the drums sound more realistic. Also I would lower the volume of the hi hat overall a tad and boost the rest of the drums a few db. At about 5 minutes in, when you have the little clean accents, I really like that. Whatever it is that you're doing with your guitar, it has a great atmospheric sound. Is it just a lot of reverb? A very down, depressing sounding song. Awesomeness.

07 Large cigar, 08 An Affair - The drums should be louder, I can't really hear the snare. This has an old, like first wave of black metal kind of feel to it. I like how you wrote a black metal song called "Large Cigar." I think that's awesome. The second song has the same kind of old school. Actually "An Affair" makes me think of old Motorhead with old school death metal vocals. It's a pretty neat sound, actually. The drums are better on that song as well. Your high yells were in tune, that's good. I have trouble keeping mine in tune because I suck at singing. Definitely new wave of british heavy metal sounding. I'd like to hear a couple songs like "An Affair" with some better mixing and a more prominent, dirty bass gutiar.

09 - Vindication of Mary - diiirrrrty bass. Not really sure what genre I'd call this, but I really like it. Especially if it's mixed well, it would be something nice to crank up, with a nice rumbly bass guitar and booming kick drum. Not much to say about this song other than I really enjoyed listening to it.

10 Nature - Come on, be more inventive with your song titles! I was expecting some good guitar playing in your song and you delivered. I don't like the falsetto vocals very much. Also your master compression is way too much for a final compression. The ratio should be around 1.5:1. Sounds like you're running some pretty hefty compression, you can hear it pumping all the time. I definitely wouldn't call this black metal, sounds more like power metal or something avante garde (however it's spelled) - I don't mean that in a bad way though. Well call me a liar, it gets much more black metally around the 4 minute mark. The vocals sound good, are you still inhaling or have you mastered growls yet? Either way they sound good. Nice harmonizing on your vocals toward the end. Overall a great song, but I wouldn't classify it as black metal by any means. But it's always great to hear your guitar playing.

11 The phantom stuff - Your vocals in the beginning vaguely remind me of abbath. This also has an early black metal feel to it, though maybe a bit repetitive. I like how you had the guitars feedbacking in the background of the clean part. It added a nice atmosphere. Overall a great black metal song.

12-14 my stuff. Especially after hearing some of the other offerings in here, I can see how the clean production of my songs doesn't quite fit in with traditional black metal. That being said, with the equipment I'm using that's about as "raw" as things get, unless I just don't put any EQ on anything at all. Listening to it now I think the vocals need a bit more reverb. Maybe the entire mix. Granted I don't really write "atmospheric" or "moody" songs at all, including my black metal songs, but it would help. Although my vocals still aren't my strong suit, it is nice to hear my voice getting better. With "the black seas of infinity" I wanted to try something different, which is why it has the clean mumbled vocals up front. Plus I like showing off my range sometimes, haha. In the end, black metal is definitely not my strong suit, but I enjoyed writing and recording these.

15 misconceptions - my first thought is that your guitar isn't in perfect tune. Sorry. Might be the intonation. Then the song kicked in and sounded like some great early black metal. The vocals especially. I enjoyed this song a lot.

16 - 18 - The production sounds nice, and I like the vocals. Definitely a folk influence, and while I'm not a big fan of folk, I like how you incorporated it. I would just make the drums about 2db louder, personally. I liked the intro to ninlil. Very professional sounding. Actually all the songs are very professional sounding. I really liked the vocals on the second one. Overall I really enjoyed listening to your songs.


Sorry I got kinda quick at the end, it's getting late and I'm tired and I have to wake up early in the morning. Overall this was a great challenge, I really enjoyed it and I really enjoyed listening to everyone's submissions. Some were better than others but there were no bad songs at all, and that's great. I can't wait for the next challenge.
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iamntbatman
Chaos Breed

Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 5:55 am
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Location: Tyrn Gorthad
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 11:16 pm 
 

I meant in the vein of just that one instrumental track that I liked more than the others. I've listened to the Yfel album and it wasn't really my thing, sorry!
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infinitenexus
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 2:35 am
Posts: 1888
PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 11:27 pm 
 

Oh no worries. We all have our own tastes, after all!
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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
Posts: 13213
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 12:15 am 
 

01 Marras Inc. / Marras - Fractum [Mental Illness & Insanity]

Opens very nicely. I enjoy the build up to the actual tremlo picking I knew would come next. Reminds me of 90's black metal. more of the later 90's like 97 era. It's been awhile since I've listened to much black metal so I can't place directly what this reminds me of most. I'm not the biggest fan of the 1:18-1:40. Just not the biggest fan of the way the drums were done and the stop starting business. 1:40-1:50 I loved and wished you milked that for further. Didn't like again when the stop start riffing started again, but this time it felt less of a distraction. Overall the vocals are spot on, really like them. I like the tone of the guitars and the interplay that you did do with them. The drums are well programmed. And the mix overall is perfect for this style. Obviously no bass but none is needed. This has more gloss on it than what I normally like but it's not so polished and clean that i hate it. I think the synths are very well used and mixed perfectly so that they don't actually overwhelm the airspace. I love this ending and actually wished that went on for another minute.
Thought the lyrics were pretty good. I'm not a huge lyrics guy so I'm pretty soft on much of them unless they are overtly stupid. And I'm glad you included the background and what you used. I'll add that info in this cause I totally forgot all about that.

02 Nostrial Caverns / CloggedUrethra - The Dying's Last Breath [Death]

Nice fake intro. I was about to go goddamn I'm going to be disappointed to listen to this for 14mins Fuck. And I was about to start typing my shit on the production then I was hit with much better sounds and more interesting. I really like the chaotic nature of the drums and how more sporatic the drumming is compaired to your normal standard bm is. around 1:50- this part really reminds me of the band When Dreams Die. Like there are a lot of flourishes and parts that while they are working in this composition remind me of a lot of early 90's chaotic metalcore. Where there are tons of good parts, overall might not be the best song as in memorable but for my tastes I'd keep coming back to listen cause there are so many parts and interesting bits. The guitar tone fits more for that metalcore sound... I hate using that term cause I know alot of people hate the term but really how things are layered it's like very early 18visions, forever is forgotten, Aislinn.. That tone is clear clear. I would say I'd like it rawer but honestly I think it wouldn't work with what your playing so shits good. the drums sound great... oh i'm at the mid point. This is almost more like a little ep in the movements. If I was going to say one thing I don't like is I think the black metal vocals waver a bit in the vol as in sometimes it's just right a few times they were a bit too low and a few it was too high and I would've like a tad more reverb like you did for all your whispers and such. I really like all your more kinda wandering guitar lines that are sorta like small aspects of baring teeth interjected in with the other chorded and tremlo parts. Did you do all this song in a take or broke it up in sections, I figure with the obvious break with the pick scraps and moans and touching yourself. I like around 11:30 how you took what would be a normal blasting high impact riff and played a thick groove over it. and after that this section sorta reminds me of perhaps something that Ved Buens Ende would do. I really wish there was some bass up in here... fretless just sliding about to kinda holding things down. I think overall as well that maybe the drums could stand to be up a little bit more. I love the tone and everything just seems that the kick and snare could be a tad bit louder. Really I think you should release this on cd. I'd buy it. It felt more like an excellent 3 song ep to me.
One thing about the lyrics... I'm not a big fan of rhyming lyrics. Never been, I guess it reminds me of creative writing and idiots using AB rhyme scheme all the time. Not taking away from what you wrote, it's just not my preference.

03 shibby2441 - Entartete Kunst [Historical Events]

THAT FUCKING BASS TONE. FUCK YES. I wish it stuck out a bit more through the guitars. But I fucking love the tone of all the guitars and the drums sound perfect. Fuck love this song. that chaotic blast at the begining with the sludge and dissonance. Gets me damn hard. I love the punk riffing that ping pongs with the faster bit. Shit is awesome. I kinda wish the vocals were a tad louder... that's a fucking rarity coming from me. They are perfect for this style. I think there could be even a bit more caustic sound to them at points. Make them even more manic. Fuck at the midway point is just fucking dick hardening greatness. I'd def buy a cd of this. Make that happen. Also lyrics looked pretty good. I didn't feel like googling the event so uhm yay!

04 Ange de la Mort / ShaolinLambKiller - Evocation of That Which Appears Behind the Stones of Sorrow [Occultism]

When I had Occultism I knew I wanted to do something really bizzare and trance inducing which is why I also drenched everything in reverb. I do think that my very first riff when on way too long but oh well and I think upon remixing I think I'm going to make the drums a bit louder. Commandaunt, love the description of what the song sounded like to you which was close to what I wanted. I did purposefully go for this sorta wash sound. Kinda like Portal's Outre album which to me I didn't like at first but later I listened with differen settings and it was like OH them songs are there and they are good.

recorded with reaper.
Tama drums/ mix of different cymbals. Shure drum mics
BC Rich Warlock tuned to C standard.
Ampeg VH150 through a Krank Krankenstein 412
Sunn Concert Bass + DOD Overdrive
Dean X Bass tuned to C standard
Shure SM57

Took me awhile to conceptualize what I wanted to do, then a day to do the main guitars and drums and bass. Then another day for 2 more guitar track layers. Then when I did vocals, the added bell at the end, and a bit more guitar which was the outro... and how I did that infinite... Floyd Rose Tremlo.... completely smashing it to the guitar... basically constantly divebombing and whatnot with it for a min or so, 2 tracks of it.

What's funny is this came out so much better than I thought it would and actually all the guitar tracks were so clean I actually had to add some massive reverb to everything to get it to have that air of suffocation I wanted. Also the only double tracking of vocals is at the very end.

Since this i'm go on and write more and release an album with the postive feedback that I have gotten thus far outside of here even.





Will do the rest tmwr probably. I thought I would make it through more this evening but I'm tired for some reason and my molar broke. I'm literally falling to pieces.
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KFD
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 8:19 pm
Posts: 1064
Location: France
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 12:59 am 
 

Syntek, you didn't upload in the compilation the final versions I sent you at the latest time. I will upload them myself.

By the way, does anyone know how to post a direct Soundcloud track and what the fuck is going on at the moment with Youtube and Google+?
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shibby2441
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2006 4:40 am
Posts: 100
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:30 am 
 

Thanks much for the kind words y'all!
I'm on the road for a few weeks so I haven't been able to listen but I'm excited!

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Gypaetus
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2013 1:03 pm
Posts: 508
Location: Australia
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 2:55 am 
 

shibby2441 wrote:
Thanks much for the kind words y'all!
I'm on the road for a few weeks so I haven't been able to listen but I'm excited!


I had to pop in here to say that this is 100% correct:

ShaolinLambKiller wrote:
03 shibby2441 - Entartete Kunst [Historical Events]
Fuck at the midway point is just fucking dick hardening greatness. I'd def buy a cd of this. Make that happen.


You need to listen to SLK - I'd also definitely buy an album of that. I'm in love with the bass and guitar tone you used. You struck gold with this, for sure. I still need to listen to the rest of the compilation properly because I've pretty much had your song on repeat since I downloaded it :lol:
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PureNegativism
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Apr 27, 2008 12:40 pm
Posts: 190
PostPosted: Sat Nov 23, 2013 2:20 am 
 

Absolutely fantastic so far. I would have been really impressed with some of what I've heard here no matter the origin.
I really regret not contributing something. Alas... life gets in the way.
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KFD
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 8:19 pm
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Location: France
PostPosted: Sat Nov 23, 2013 3:26 am 
 

Here are the final versions of my songs, correctly remixed (thanks to Corpsefister for remixing "An Affair"):

Youtube: show


Youtube: show


Contact me if you want the full-quality version and lyrics.
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CorpseFister
Veteran

Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 2:07 pm
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Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sat Nov 23, 2013 9:49 pm 
 

Fucking hell guys. I gotta say, overall this might the best result in my time participating or listening to challenges. I tip my hat to all contributors. Syntek- nice work hosting, sir. I'll get some proper reviews of everyone's work up in the next few days.

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Syntek
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:14 pm
Posts: 651
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Sun Nov 24, 2013 10:44 am 
 

CorpseFister wrote:
Fucking hell guys. I gotta say, overall this might the best result in my time participating or listening to challenges. I tip my hat to all contributors. Syntek- nice work hosting, sir. I'll get some proper reviews of everyone's work up in the next few days.


Thank you, good sir. I just got lucky with some really musically gifted contestants this year.
I look forward to your reviews!

And thanks for the feedback on my track, guys, both positive and criticism! The latter is especially useful. :)

As for the hi-hat issue: Well, I've been a drummer for 6 years. So I know what ghost notes are, hah.
But no, I foolishly didn't compare mixing with both my headphones and hi-fi. The hi-hat sounds fairly well-balanced via headphones, so now that the issue's been flagged up, for any future reviewers in the time being, try using those instead.

Anyhow.
On with the reviews.

I'm very over-encumbered with work at the moment, so I'll do 'em one at a time, and edit this post for each:

Marras

Right off the bat, this is some killer traditional black metal, and as soon as the first riff sets in, you know it's gonna kick ass. The transitions are superb, with each section progressing gracefully into the next, even with some starkly different musical contrasts and textures. The vocals are a little weak, and the lyrics frankly quite average, but they complement the riffs so well that it doesn't matter anyway. The production for this is perfect, with complete clarity, but enough grit to keep the track really savage. Now, for the cons, there is a riff at 1:20 that feels quite sonically empty, that would benefit from a chord progression underneath it, perhaps from an extra rhythm guitar or bass. Another thing is, whilst each riff is good; no, great, even, in its own right, nothing really explicitly grabs you by the balls and holds on tight – an aesthetic for black metal (at least for my preferences) in this vein is that it requires a certain degree of memorability.
Regardless, and with that said, this is still some stellar bm, and I'd definitely go as far as saying I'd buy the album this is on.

CloggedUrethra

I remember my initial thoughts as this song kicked in were “my god, please let this guy be trolling, please”. And thank fuck you were. The overarching riffage for this is brilliant; varied and attention-grabbing, the mix sounding balanced, and the drums punchy. I actually found myself getting feelsy at points, from both the fantastic dissonant harmonies you started employing around 2:05 and the acoustic sections.
However, to state the obvious, of course my primary gripe is the vocals, which sound like painfully bad whisper screams. The lyrics are also a little silly, but I couldn’t imagine anything else, frankly, as they just seem to fit so well. However, with repeated listens (which is easy, because the songwriting is so fascinating and sporadic), I've grown fairly accustomed to both, so they’re not particularly jarring. Maybe a spot of reverb would suffice, who knows? As aforementioned, this really sounds like an EP, with the differing movements and motifs, and is quite pleasantly broken up with the acoustic sections.
Even with the vocals in mind, fantastic stuff! I’d love to hear more tracks like this from you, man.

shibby2441

I'm going to cut the fat here, and get straight to the point: If this song was a dick, I'd suck it.
The riffage here is intense, somewhat chaotic and by far the catchiest song in the challenge, with a perfect production, straddling a fine balance between being lo-fi and having clarity. The arpeggiated riff especially, just before the d-beats kick in makes me particularly moist. Just a heads up. ;)
As far as lyrics go, it's nothing special, although the combination of lyrics and instrumental combined really evokes images of Downfall-esque Berlin, with ricocheting shells and crumbling buildings, so I guess they serve their purpose.
This review honestly took a long time to write, as picking out criticisms in this track is difficult. Perhaps some additional harmonies or leads during the more power-chord depedant parts. However, I can say this is one of my favourite songs on the compilation, if not my favourite, and I'll definitely be keeping an eye out for any other work you do.

ShaolinLambKiller

Upon the first listen, I was receiving quite strong feelings of "eh, this isn't really my thing" - around listens number 3-4, however, it just 'clicked', and this is now without a doubt one of my favourite songs of the challenge. I love the hypnotic and absolutely malign nature of this track, and the way it just lurches uncontrollably, almost feeling like an ambient piece. The instrumentation is actually very clear (with exception to the muddy-sounding toms) and the almost-incomprehensible rambling of the lyrics adds to the pitch-blackness of the atmosphere. Again, whilst the instrumentation is not too musical in its traditional sense, and blends into a wall of sound, the sickliness of the atmosphere is enough to make it interesting.
Believe it or not, the lack memorability or 'catchiness' throughout the track, whilst yes, a caveat, also provides for an interesting listening experience each time, and always leaves a satisfactory taste of bitterness in my mouth: Indeed, bitterness for me is a recurring mental image in this track, and to make a slightly surreal analogy, this song to me sounds like the taste of raw coffee. In your ears.
Great shit, man.


(More to come).


Last edited by Syntek on Sun Dec 08, 2013 11:34 am, edited 8 times in total.
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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
Posts: 13213
Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:15 pm 
 

I'll be hopefully reviewing more this evening after I go to the gym and record some vocals.
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CloggedUrethra
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Nov 30, 2002 4:30 am
Posts: 458
Location: Ontario, Canada
PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:37 pm 
 

Yeah, it's taken me longer than I thought to listen to/review this, since I'll be doing it on my work computer. But I've listened through it at least once and I think it's really cool! Good job to all the participants and I'm looking forward to the next challenge.

Also thanks for reviewing my song:

Commandaunt: I'm in the Milton area.
infinitenexus: I played the drums. With my new mixer, it was the first time I've had control over all the mics after recording, so I was able to hard limit and eq every mic separately to try and get a better mix than before, which was fun.
SLK: Yeah, I did the song in 3 sections: the bigger start and end parts, and then the middle ambient part. heh it's funny you mention the rhyming lyrics, because the last time I did lyrics was for a funny rap song and I guess the rhyming leaked into this challenge.

I guess the AM-radio beginning did its job well. I agree my vocals aren't good haha. Also about the lyrics, after reading everyone else's lyrics and then reading mine again, it sounds like mine are ripped from an anti-life cult's brochure or something.
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CloggedUrethra
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Joined: Sat Nov 30, 2002 4:30 am
Posts: 458
Location: Ontario, Canada
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 4:55 pm 
 

Here's part 1 of my reviews, I'll do the rest soon:

01 Marras
I really like the intro riff with the sad chords, and the multiple layers in the rest of the song make it pretty dreamy. The vocals are cool too, the way he enunciates every word. I thought the riff at 2:44 was kind of funny in that it seemed a bit out of place, but it wouldn't be the same without it. Cool song and I love how it ended with that intro riff + drum beat this time.

03 shibby2441
The bass is epic in this. And I dig the punky black flavour in this song. Bonus points for playing all the instruments yourself, that's awesome. The drums sound great, especially in the slower parts, and I like how the ride bell sounds like a knife occasionally puncturing you during the blast beats on the accents, and how the toms feel like you're receiving body shots from a pro boxer.

04 ShaolinLambKiller
This song is pretty effed up. Bonus points again for playing all the instruments yourself. This is like brutal atmospheric/noise black metal. And I love the armageddon toms with all that reverb, kinda like Limbonic Art but more armageddony. I dare you to try reading along to the lyrics and not losing your place. This song has a distinct atmosphere that I think fits perfectly with the Occultism theme. It's like I accidentally walked into some building by mistake and all of a sudden was drugged by the air inside, and there was some satanic cult doing a sacrifice while this music is trapped in your head.

05 TheCrippledGod
I dig the guitar tone in this, very buzz sawy. And the thrashy riff around 2 minutes was really cool, that was my favourite part of the song. The production sounds good too. Everything's very hearable.

06 Syntek
Sounds like there's a whole bunch of layers right off the bat. And you really get a feel of things once everything breaks down at the 2 minute mark. And then the vocals come in around 3 minutes, very cool with a depressive atmosphere. For me, there's almost nothing you can do wrong if the music sounds sad. 4 minutes in the riff changes and it's awesome. Cool depressive black metal song.

07-08 KFD
I love the song titles, they fit perfectly with the Corruption & Greed theme. Yet even more bonus points for playing all the instruments yourself. These songs also have a punky black flavour. The snare is more hearable in the second song. And that part at 0:38 in the second song with the whammy plus high strings later, haha that is so awesome. Reminds me of Gorguts.

09 lemisotheist
Starts with dirty bass and then goes into some nifty double bass drum programming. That, along with the part that starts at 5:58 then goes into the heavy palm muted parts, are my favourite parts of the song.

10 guitartheist
After hearing his EP in the previous challenge, I knew what to expect. Tight-ass guitar playing and cool drum programming. I think he maybe went a bit overboard with the compressor, it sounds like the volume goes up and down a bit sometimes. But everything sounds great anyway. And there are at least three different kinds of vocals I think and they all work. I totally love that clean part that starts at 2:04 with the clean guitar and clean singing matching the guitar notes. That's probably my favourite part.

11 Commandaunt
That opening part is pretty catchy. The song starts off with an upbeat tempo and screaming and then cools off briefly to start up again. While it's starting up again, I really like that stuff on the toms at 1:08. And then the part at 1:34 is great and then it goes into the ambient part which was cool. The snare sound at 3:40ish is like a slap in the face, I like it.
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ShaolinLambKiller
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Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2013 1:13 pm 
 

And here I continue on with the reviews:

05 TheCrippledGod:
Digging the guitarwork, builds a good atmosphere. The vocals seem to be further in the back I'm not sure if you did that cause you aren't too sure of your ability to clean sing or not so maybe it's for the best. To me some of the drum beats picked are a bit too busy for that first section and kinda ruins the atmosphere of the build up. When it picks up and gets thrashy & black metal... that all sounds great. Can't say I care much about the lyrics but that's not too important to me when the rest of the song is good. I don't pay attention to what you are saying just where you place things rhythmically. the return to the begining with double bass works far better to me than the sorta triphop beat that was originally playing with it. Anyway good song overall. I dug it.

06 Syntek
I'm liking all the layers of synth and guitar and what sorta sounds like feedback.. but I really hate the tinny sounding drum tone you decided to use. it sounds like a typewriter.. but with the treble boosted. I guess that's fitting for black metal but I never liked it and will said the same shit about the originators. Around the 5min mark I love that slow and pounding drums. I like how trance inducing it is and one the drums were doing the slower beat they sounded beefer. Less like tin cans kicked down a road, or maybe my ears got used to it. Really kinda reminded me of Lifelover. I liked it. I'd listen again. And I did... I really dug it more after that. do more.

okay be back for more in a bit.
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dystopia4
Thumbman

Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 6:47 pm
Posts: 4430
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 12:50 am 
 

Reviews:

1. Marras - Fractum
This is excellent, sounds like something that would be on a legit black metal album by a band who knows their shit. Great riff work, loved how some parts were a bit doomier. Nice throaty vocals, they have a strong presence and sound simultaneously vicious and articulate. The keyboards were a nice touch of subtle atmosphere, adding a gloomy feel.

2. Clogged Urethra - The Dying's Last Breath
The intro was horrible, but a bigger sound came in. But not that big. I found this whole thing rather sporadic and disjointed. Really hated the vocals. The atmospheric break in the middle was kind of cool but didn't fit the song. Some cool guitar parts, but as a whole the flow was just too all over the place for me.

3. Shibby2441-Entartete Kunste
A nice enough slab of chaotic punky black metal. The noise element is strong, adding a fucked up buzzsaw-on-steroids feel. Dig the section where it slows down and some dissonance is added. The only real criticism I can think of is that the drums are a bit too rocky at times for what the song calls for. I enjoyed this one.

Evocation... - SLK
This is some pretty horrific black metal. The dry bone-dust tone on the snare is really cool. Totally fits the sound. Slows down in a lot of places, and the twisted doom really brings out the horrific vibe. I only wish the vocals were a bit higher in the mix.

5. TheCrippledGod - World Plagues
Right off the bat I dig the brooding melodic guitar work, but not much else. The clean vocals don't really do much for me and the drum sound is too clicky and mechanical. The metal comes crashing in at full force and I'm digging it a bit more. Drum programming still sounds really fake (although better than what I can do as demonstrated on other songwriting challenges) but it doesn't ruin it at all. Old school sounding thrashy black/death is what we get. The sound is a bit cavernous with an excellent vocal performance that sounds more ripped out of OSDM than anything.

6. Syntek - I
Rather nice atmospheric piece. Almost wall of sound approach, lingering tremolo and distant melody. Production is rough but it works. Really dig the vocals, a bit arid but still forceful.

7-8. KFD - Large Cigar/An Affair
Eh, this didn't really do anything for me. Really raw stuff with a thin production. The riffing are definitely punky and thrashy and even reminds of speed metal at times. The drum sound isn't very good, this all sounds like it was recorded under a mattress or something. The vocals are what you'd expect for this kind of stuff, not the worst thing ever but pretty meh. Sorry man, I didn't care for this at all.

10. Guitartheist - Nature
I apologize for what's to come, but I really didn't like this in any way. This has just about everything I feel black metal shouldn't. High doses of power metal? Check. A metalcore breakdown (even deathcore wouldn't go with something this light and melodic)? Check. Inane clean parts, wimpy clean vocals and mechanical badly programmed blasts/double bass? Check, check and check. Featuring lots of highly melodic leads (that go into borderline shredding at parts) and (clean) high pitched wailing, this really is more a power metal song than a black metal one. In fact, it seems like a black metal section (that doesn't seem to have anything to do with the rest of the song) was added in just so this would fit the challenge. The drum programming is really mechanical, the vocals rather weak and the tremolo is highly melodic (not that that in itself is a bad thing, but this really doesn't have much to do with black metal besides being tremolo) with no real grit or power. It feels like an attempt to resemble black metal without really getting what black metal is about.

Sorry, it wasn't my intention to be mean with this (a lot of work obviously went into it), just really didn't like it and it represents to me everything black metal shouldn't be. This could have been something that people into that type of power metal could enjoy, but there just doesn't need to be a pseudo-black metal section in here. Despite all this, really good lead guitar work.

11. Commandaunt - The Phantom Xim Wanders Pesegam
Honestly, didn't have much of an opinion of this either way. Just rather average raw black metal. The drum programming could use some work (bad snare sound) and the production could use beefing up, but it's not outright bad. The vocals were quite alright and I liked how at times it was melodic without being fluffy and retained a bite. This was alright, but nothing I'd need to hear again.

12-14 - Infinitenexus
I have to say I like the atmospheric shit better than the black metal. The black metal is alright, but a bit thin and the riffing doesn't really do it for me. However, the calmer sections are excellent. A really cool caustic swamp vibe. The doomy part in the longest some was awesome, too.

15. Anomic Humanoid - Misconceptions of a Virgin Birth
Well this wan't bad at all. A raw buzzing tone is met with a caustic snarl. There's some really good melody in these riffs and it still feels raw and intense. Love the production on the guitar, it's thick, raw and has a distinct bite. This song has a good flow, both fast and slower sections and all melds into each other well and makes sense as a progression. One of the better tracks on this comp.

-----------------------
I'll add the rest in when I'm done my essay or feel the need to procrastinate again.
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