Tape Review

Cassette EP

Tout Va Bien
Zihni Music, 1999

This band remind me of the year 1996/1997 where Nathias Prod still in business. Nathias is a local underground distro which distributed lots of metal demos. And one of those demo under their distribution belong to Asafated. Nathias ceased it activity before I can get my hand on their demo. It will be interesting to hear what Turkish sounds like. Only now I managed to hear their music. 3 songs here which does not belong to a specific genre. But perhaps melodic doom/death should well describe them. The first song was more death metal. Start from the 2nd song, they become slower, gloomier. I like more these tracks. Melodic with dark feelings. The third tracks consist of couple of subtracks. So the actual playing time of this tape is quite long. Good music like this is not to be heard only in Turkey but worldwide ! Whether Zihni offer mailorder or not, I don't know since I got this tape by trading. If they don't have one, try getting this it. You will be mesmerised like I am. Unfortunately, the band is now r.i.p.
Asafated, P.K. 13 Zeytinburnu 34760 Istanbul, Turkey.


album-damage_digital_delete.jpg (10703 bytes)DAMAGE DIGITAL (Japan) 
Alternative Garage Entertainment, 1999

6 Japanese and 1 Malaysian in this grindcore act. 3 of them are vocalist, so here you will diversified growling, screaming vocal styles. I'm not the fan of this music and new with this band but the name DAMAGE DIGITAL is not new actually because I've read couple of reviews and articles written by the boss of Alternative Garage Entertainment, Joe Kidd in Blasting Concept column in a local newspaper years ago. Here you will 24 songs with the usual grind songs, fast drumming and insane growling and screaming. The songs are recorded in 2 studio, 1 in Kuala Lumpur and 1 in Japan and mastered in the famous Malaysian Mastering One Studio. I'm attracted with the vocals here. There's a growling voice sound so different. I don't know how to describe it. I guess you have to check it yourself. One more thing about grind/punk scene is the underground and d.i.y. ethic is strong. This pro-tape only for sale at RM 7 (Malaysia) but the cover, layout is too good to be sold at this price.

Enthrone Falls
Misery Records, 2000
A local distributor sells this tape without mentioning any info beside the band's name in their flyers. From the price of the demo written in the flyers, I thought ENTHRONED FALLS are from oversea. Surprisingly, they are from the same town as me and this demo comes with pro-printed cover. But does not mean it fit to be categorized as an EP. The sound is weak and the cover and the whole package is not that professional. But credit should be given to the band and label that have made something different than the rest of local demo bands. Claimed to play technical metal and to my listening, the music dwells in the realm of melodic death metal. I can hear from the songs that the guys are quite talented musician with interesting ideas but the overall sound is quite dissappointing. The vocals are not the best that I can listen to. Too hardcore-ish. The good music however saves this release from being just another average release. Anyway the label have done a good job in making their stuffs a bit professional than the rest. Watch out for more release from this new label.

album-mistik-airmata_sesalan.jpg (10869 bytes)MISTIK (Malaysia) 
Sesalan Airmata
Psychic Scream Entertainment, 1998
Great cover artwork but not the music. Black metal is what they play and while playing live, MISTIK really caught the attention of the crowd but in this EP they have let the crowd down (or maybe it's just me ?). There's an instrumental track played by DARK NIRRAJIM and the instrumental version Perjanjian Syaitan (with vocals can be heard in Panggilan Pulau Puaka 1 compilation) and the best one this EP. The rest ?  Just plain mediocre black metal and quite exhausting listening until the EP end.  It will be good if  Perjanjian Syaitan were put first in this tape and I can stop and easily rewind the tape and listen to the only best track here. Well, this song is just different with MISTIK music. It has this great, simple riff and being repeated all over the 7 minutes of this song.  But this EP is quite old actually since now MISTIK has progressed a lot when I heard 2 new songs in Storm Of Nebiula Compilation 2. They have improved immensely and that is a good news to Malaysian black metal scene !

NARSAMUM (Malaysia)
Dream Of Death
Muzik Box Productions, 1999

I've been waiting to hear something from this band since their demo 1994. I didn't have the chance to hear it but after reading few interview, I get a bit of info about them. Later in 1997, there's been a plan to release a split tape with Thailand's Heretic Angel but due to problems on the Thai's side, the plan are cancelled. At first I was quite hesitate to buy it. The price is not the usual price for cassette EP, a bit expensive for me. Having to fork out RM 12 for only 4 songs, I expect something killer from them. I guess there are tracks re-recorded from their old demo like "Blasphemy..." (also the title of their demo) for example. The music is death metal, melodic at times and has a bit of greek (Rotting Christ) riffs. The songs are not bad but doesn't have the extra energy for me to keep on listening.

album-sardotical_ep99.jpg (15145 bytes)SARDOTICAL SCOUNDREL (Malaysia) 
Extinction By The Birth Control
North Poem Records, 1999

Only few Malaysian band are into brutal deathgrind music and SARDOTICAL SCOUNDREL are proudly being one of them. First professional release from NORTH POEM RECORDS and also have a good distribution compared with the label's previous releases. With members of FILTHELESS, another brutal death metal band but SARDOTICAL SCOUNDREL is a lot different with the before-mentioned band. This band plays music which clearly influenced by old NAPALM DEATH, AGATHOCLES, and some US brutal death bands. The songs are short, with deep growling, fast drumming like mostly grindcore songs would have. This stuff is strictly for fans of this style only. As for me, this cassette EP, although have a good sound and neat cover, has the brutality but it is an average release that hard for me to swallow. I prefer to see them playing live because I have witnessed their shows and they are really insane on stage.

album-sauts_alastor_the_grand_executor.jpg (31588 bytes)SAUTS ALASTOR (Malaysia) 
The Grand Executor
Nebiula Production,  1999

A new promising Malaysian black metal band. The last news given by them was they are going to release a demo in end of 1999 but later on I found this cassette EP in a music store. Nebiula have made the right choice in giving the opportunity for SAUTS ALASTOR to release the recorded songs in a cassette EP because the package and production is much more professional than releasing it by themselves as a demo tape. 3 tracks of atmospheric and melodic black metal which can closely compared with Enslaved, Dimmu Borgir with some swedish melodic touches. The chanting in some part of the song really remind me of Enslaved. The 3 tracks are Sauts Monastery, Devouring The Purity Of Holliness and Anthem Of Impiousness. The usage of keyboard is really effective, melodic but doesn't loose the dark feeling. Really shocking actually listening to this EP because in Malaysian black metal, I didn't expect much except for the next release from BAZZAH, NEBIRAS. Not that the new Malaysian bm band is not good enough but most of it too obsess with the old root of bm like the old Absu or As Sahar (in their demo days). Another surprise is the executive producer of this EP is Atannaz. Formerly known with his black metal band, KITANAI-CHI and also release a cassette EP with MISTERY, his solo dark metal band. It has been years since the EP was released and I'm curious to know what is he up to know with his band and his label, Mistery Production which also handle the release of SAUTS ALASTOR debut release. Since The Grand Executor already mesmerised me, I will surely check both Mistery Production and SAUTS ALASTOR next release.

Cassette LP | Compilation | Demo | Split Tape