The Darkness Call My Names
Extreme Souls Productions, 1999
The band previously release a promotape in '96 called Barbaric
Ancient War and a demo in '97 called The Darkness Call My
Name prior to the release of this album. According to the band's bio
this album supposed to titled as Hateful And Cruelty
but they decided to change the title with the one they already used in
1997. Enough with the historical facts. CRUSADE delivers 9 entertaining tracks, atmospheric
black metal, melodic and they called it 'genialer black metal'. What that
supposed to mean ? My English may not be corresct but the antonym for
'genial' is 'bestial' and that what black metal supposed to be. Maybe the
lyrics are genial but as long I don't read it, like KEKAL for example (I regret reading the shitty
lyrics) CRUSADE is a lullaby to my ears. Atmospheric
keyboards, melodic riffs, good production and professional cover inlay
(the best so far from Indonesia !), everything was done professionally.
Their music is my cup of tea. The only drawback is about some wordings in
the cover inlay and the too long thanks list. They should make a separate
sheet which contains only thanks list and put the lyrics in the cover. The
first black metal in Extreme Souls a very
talented band indeed.
Javanese Mysticism, 1998
Total chaotic speed black metal. Looking from the picture in the cover sleeve, one must
think that DRY is a foreign band. DRY
get their influenced from MARDUK and in terms of originality,
DRY may not have it. They may not be at the same level as IMPIETY in this style of music but they already made a great impact
on my first listen of this cassette. Black metal supposed to raw, grim, etc as many might
say and in Belenggu Kelam you will hear nothing except for
cold black metal. Keyboard are also used but not too many, only providing dark and gloom
atmosphere and without it, the songs will not be harmed. Some accoustic passage also
present in some of the songs, giving some times for listener to relax (for a while) before
the onslaught continues. As for the poetic lyrics, all are written in Indonesian except
for one track and all are interesting reading material as well. Pity it does not have
English translation. Malaysian Psychic Scream should have
released this instead of RITUAL ORCHESTRA, and of course DRY is band worth to be invested in.
KIBOSH SYBIL KISMET (Singapore)
This is the promo for their forthcoming debut CD. I must change what I have said in the review of Eastern Invasion compilation. The track they feature in that comp., "Dark Formation.." is taken from this album and was the only slowest track here. They play doom/black metal until to their 3rd demo. Now they play black metal, under influence of Old Mans Child and the bands alike. What we have here is fast and at times melodic black metal with keys accompanying along the songs and singing in both growling and normal male vocals. The song "Faceless Dawn" and "Glorious Submission" are the best among all. Fast black metal, melodic with a bit of thrash with some slow and accoustic part. A recipe for a great music. When will the actual release see the light of the day is not yet confirmed. I hope very soon.
Blk 426 Clementi Ave 3, #06-492 S(120426), Singapore.
Gradually Killed In Torture
Aluzza Productions, 1999
After their MC/EP gained lots of good reviews from
mag/zines/labels/bands worldwide, MORBIFIK is
now back in the business. Is "Gradually..." as
great as "Now I'm Bleed" ? One thing for sure, MORBIFIK isn't slowing down, not a single second
in any of the 15 tracks of this 30+ minutes tape which again released bytheir own label.
Brutal death/grind is what they played and they succeeded in delivering what
death/grind music should; heavy growling, hyper speed drumming, chugging guitar, etc. So
intense ! Sound-wise it is mych better than the EP but I was dissappointed with the front
cover artwork. I was hoping for more sick and gory picture from this guy. What the fuck,
the music is much more important, right ? Those who like Brutal
Truth, Cannible Corpse, Napalm Death, Carcass, etc might like it. As for me, I will
listen for one more time before I stop. I need more melody (melodic) in my listening as I
am not a death/grind freak.
RITUAL ORCHESTRA (Indonesia)
Psychic Scream Entertainment, 1999
I was surprised to see this tape on the shelves in local cassette outlet. I must
congratulate Psychic Scream Entertainment because of the
cover and inlay re-designing of this album. Believe me, the original version sucks. The
artwork is immature, the font are too small and too curly making it hard to read and
trying to hide the track title by spelling some words backward like Satan (natas).
Definitely, Psychic Scream Entertainment have choose the
wrong Indonesian band. RITUAL ORCHESTRA delivers nothing that
plain monotonous black metal. All tracks sound the same, horrible drumming, nothing really
interesting can be found here. RITUAL ORCHESTRA must also
learn some more English grammar lesson. Is it too obvious that the album title should be
written as Seeking Immortality ?
Sacred Productions, 1998
Formed by the members of ENFORCER and this cassette album is
released by their own label, SACRED PRODUCTION. You can
released anything if you have your own label and money. I don't really understand what are
they trying to do with this album. 'Metal Vein' is what they say for their music and
'metal vein' is not really my style of music. Claimed to combine various of style (metal,
non-metal, medieval, borogue, etc) but for me just boring death/thrash, only the
intro/outro is the only track I like. Of course, this is their first release, maybe they
can come out with something better next time. Sacred Productions will also produce couple
of mini and full-lenght albums for local bands. Do watch the review column here in Steel
Madness because bands are quite interesting.
Leviathan Records, 1999
Those who are still mourning because of AS SAHAR new musical
direction, don't be so sad. ZIARAH plays similarly to what AS SAHAR have play in their Primitively
Eastern Winds demo. I can't get my mind off from AS SAHAR
when listening to ZIARAH's Immortal Ceremony. 8 tracks of
raw, simple repetitive and yet memomarable riff of black/thrash metal with bad sound
production. The songs are good, but with this kind sound (even demo sound better) it will
kill the pleasure of listening of both side on this cassette. Maybe it's the manufacturer
fault because on my tape, side A is much clearer than side B. If this is the case, then LEVIATHIAN RECORDS should other manufacturer to press their
cassettes in the future. ZIARAH is a band worth the support
and maybe their next release is much better (sound-wise).