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Imperial Triumphant – Abominamentvm by orlandooom407

“The order of the world is always right – such is the judgment of God. For God has departed, but he has left his judgment behind, the way the Cheshire cat left his grin.”

~ Jean Baudrillard

Thematically, Imperial Triumphant’s latest release, and first full-length album, is shown provocatively on the album cover itself. Christ hangs crucified not to a cross, but to a gigantic and filthy-looking engine with what could be a pair of large machines or simply extensions of the engine itself. The message here seems to be that Christian ideology subjugates and renders slavish its subjects in the same manner as the machines and technologies of the modern world dominate peoples’ lives and fates. Screens absorb the masses into seductive virtual hallucinations while millions are driven out of their jobs and purposes towards society at large by machines and robotic replacements. It is rare to see anyone now without a computer small enough to fit in their pocket, and even rarer to see one of these people not neurotically attached to such a device, depending on it for everything from communication to navigation and pornography. To travel anywhere in most civilized areas, one needs to depend on a car, or some form of mechanized transportation. To not be utterly and completely detached from the happenings of the world, one needs a virtual connection to our vast virtual repository of information: the Internet. Mankind may have created machines, but machines now rule mankind, and as Baudrillard would put it, the object now rules the subject.

Technology, in its cold rule over humans by their dependence on it, is a kind of extension of the abstract rule of an ideology like Christianity, taking the weak and addicting them.Did mankind not create both God and technology (perhaps unconsciously) for that express purpose: to compensate for weakness and absolve sufferings? We are so burdened by our responsibility to our will and fate that we must give it away to something else, so obsessed with production and surplus that we must minimize the time spent doing every possible activity (through technology of course) in order to keep up with the world, which accelerates with this very technological progress as its engine. The situation seems unbreakable whereby man creates technology to increase production and reduce the time needing to be spent on a particular act, but ends up over-working himself rather than gaining anything at all, because the extra time gained from these concatenations are simply spent on further activities, and the cycle continues ad nauseum. We are crucified by what we created to liberate and enable us. The same way Christian morality and metaphysics turn its followers into a herd of slaves (if they were not already), technology eventually comes to dominate its users and turn them into slaves dependent on its power and the comfort it brings to their lives, much like faith and resignation to an abstract all-loving and eternally-just God. Further, in the same way capital displaces the value of things and transfers them into an abstract endlessly-modular and exchangeable unit (money), the ideas of Heaven and God and similar abstract sources for value rob the natural world of its own value by stating that value can only be located within a “beyond” or an intangible God.

In ‘Abominamentvm’’s lyrics and music, the cyberpunk fear of technology’s subjugation of mankind, and black metal’s essential rejection of Christian metaphysics and morality doing precisely the same thing, are combined in full force. The overall pace of the album is very discordant and seems heavily inspired by the almost free jazz progression styles of other third-wave black metal bands like Blut Aus Nord and Deathspell Omega, with songs sometimes lacking any discernable structure during various points. The bass playing is very impressive in this album and on a few songs even breaks out into a bass-driven solo where the bass is usually pushed almost to the very back layers of the song. Despite these strengths, the music is so discordant that those with a taste for distinct melodies and song structures will only find those so-often within the songs. Discordant songs tend to run together and leave the listener with no distinct memory or idea of what they have listened to, which while interesting left me with little desire to hear any particular song again.

I feel the strongest songs on the album are ‘Manifesto’, ‘Crushing the Idol’, and ‘S.P.Q.R.’ which all have some pretty solid and technically fascinating progressions, even with the overall discordant embrace in which the songs are played. Again the bass solos and general bass prominence, along with unconventional sounds like air raid sirens, sound very interesting within a metal song. When the riffs are rolling they remind me of Marduk’s militant and pounding black metal style, and often the riffs will start after a nice drop-off in the song’s structure, carrying that much more impact. There are well-made and atmospheric transitions throughout as well, and they really help to drive home the palpable feeling of a terrifying “deus ex machina” future of mankind, sounding at times like the aftermath of war, and at other times like the harkening to a dark future. While I don’t aesthetically care for the discordant dissonance on this album, it does certainly fit the theme; it evokes the image of furious and free barbarians of the future reclaiming a world enslaved by religion and technology through hate, sweat, violence and fire.

– Maher





Swamp Abyss Sorcery – A Guide to Floridian Metal Circa 2012 by orlandooom407

I sincerely apologize for the lack of updates over the past few days. Combined with sending this grotesque chimeric bastard’s likeness to many of the blogs and forums that I frequent I’ve been heavily preoccupied by life, Fire in the Cave writing sessions and other writing projects. His name is THROMBIBULOUS and he exemplifies what happens when Rick Scott reveals his true form, except well, his flamingo penis is probably significantly smaller. He’s the newest mascot for several of us Florida people who decided to compile our songs together for this FREE COMPILATION entitled Swamp Abyss Sorcery. Satanik Recordings and HOT GRAVES compiled and released this free digital compilation on Valentine’s Day equipped with lore and artwork by Jean Saiz:

To help consolidate all necessary free time for the sake of enjoying the music I’m going to provide a series of one sentence matter of fact explanations of each band:

Miami:

Shroud EaterA  malevolent and equivocally dissonant stoner metal trio armed with a PhD in savagery.

Holly Hunt – Armageddon flavored instrumental drone doom duo with an enamoring gazey trim.

Orbweaver – Deranged psychedelic death metal hurdling through space at speeds that make The Milennium Falcon look like your little sister’s moped.

Orlando:

Druid Lord – Tomb smashing death-doom quartet smelt together by ancient witchery and venomous rhythms.

Fire in the CaveI don’t critique my own band. Grim Kim Kelly did though.

Tampa / St.Petersburg:

flyingsnakes -Explosive blackened crust that eviscerates boundaries between metallic and anarchic.

FatalUnabashed thrash that will trash your entire hash stash to fuel their toxic lashed dash.

Party Time – Hyper active hardcore punk in less than two minutes or your punishment’s free.

Jacksonville / Gainesville:

Hollow Leg – Ravenous Floridian cult classic doom quartet that’ll have you saying “WHAT?!” for days.

Extremely Rotten – Red herring gore grind brutality with vocal tones so low that if plumbers had spidey sense it would violently tingle against the subconscious.

HOT GRAVES – Menacing blackened thrash burning a glorious Midnight inspired homage straight through your mind’s eye.

If you haven’t already, CLICK HERE to download the entire compilation for free.

– Jared Oates Haggard



Total Rust Triple Feature Review /w Lurk, Chaos Dei and Tort by orlandooom407

Our new friends over at TotalRust Music recently sent me a nice care package with some of their newest releases. For those not familiar, TotalRust is an Israeli Extreme Metal/Doom label which has been around since 2004. They sent me three ridiculously crushing releases to kick off 2012.

Lurks/t
These mad druids hail from none other than Finland and bring with them some of the deepest cutting death/doom I’ve heard in ages. This apparently self-recorded (doesn’t sound like it!) debut smacks its listeners in the face with pure Reifert-worshipping brutality. It starts off by plodding along like an orc filled war wagon at a pace that can best be described as “Hey, I think the wheels are about to fall off.” Vocalist Koskinen stands atop the mound of low tones and bellows his variation of the Cookie Monster Overlord vocals we all know and love. There’s also some definite Crowbar influence in these guys, laying down riffs that would bring a tear to Windstein’s eye. If I had to a pick a winner out of this pack of three, this would be it, as it hits that doom sweet spot dead center while also being versatile enough to explore ambient passages and not lose momentum or sound like a bad Lux Occulta. Or a good Lux Occulta, for that matter.

Chaos DeiArising From Chaos
This is a French duo, playing above-board grade Black Metal of a decidedly un-kvlt variety. My favorite type of BM, these guys have a lot in common with America’s own Woe; they blow past the majority of BM bands in terms of raw intensity and insert so many esoteric and non-metal elements into their sound it’s almost criminal to keep calling them a mere Black Metal band. Either way, once the strange sounds and Pink Floyd-esque heartbeat sample roll away from the first track’s intro, you know exactly what you’re getting into, as Chaos Dei show they can still take you on a ride to Ragnarok without sacrificing their individual sound. It’s actually sort of funny that you can tell vocalist Eurynome has a distinct French accent when he sings; it lends a color to his vocals that automatically separate this from any Scandinavian or American BM band. Very cool, and while the album is extremely cerebral and demanding, I’d still headbang to it all day, every day.

Torts/t
This is a Spanish group specializing in a thrashy brand of sludgeonomics that actually reminds me of some of our own Floridian bands like Six Dead Horses and Shroud Eater. The vocals are fucking awesome, totally what I want in sludge bands. Hear it for yourself, I just enjoy it when a vocalist can make himself sound like a Imp from hell gargling spoiled milk. Perfect. The drumming is very similar to other Spanish bands, such as Orthodox and Monkeypriest, heard especially during the middle section of the first track on this album. Polyrhythms are always welcome in sludge metal, especially with riffs as strong as the ones found within. Definitely one to peep, especially if you know how heavy the above mentioned Spanish bands are.

These are all very good releases, and I’m glad it’s furthering my assertion that 2012 will be a great year for metal across the board. None of these bands are particularly large or well-known (at least stateside,) so it’s a pleasure to get ahold of these and spread the good word about our brothers in the Gospel of Heavy Shit. All releases are out NOW on TotalRust, so be sure to head over there and grab some solid sounds and look through the rest of their catalogue for some other unsung classics. Stay heavy!

– Chris Nunez



Gaul – S/T by orlandooom407

I’ve kept this baby in my back pocket for a little over a month now, and it’s finally had enough cultivation time for a review. My first couple of listens to Gaul ensured that I would have to spend more time enjoying and less time analyzing. I’ve reached my copious head bang quota and I’m ready to share my thoughts on Gainesville Florida’s very own: GAULLLLLLL.

Bands integrating elements of black metal and soul pounding doom seems to be a recent resurgence and that couldn’t make me any happier. This thirty six minute trudge into the swamps of Florida’s bleak hearted sound scape left a familiar taste and scent of fermenting poignant smoke deep in my sinuses. I’ve read other articles categorize a certain lyrical style in hardcore music dubbed “call and response” vocals. In Gaul’s case they seriously exercise a practice of “call and response” between stylistic shifts of suffocating doom metal and pertinacious USBM. Fans of Thou will especially appreciate the anguish billowing high pitched vocal styles an addition to the lengthy sustains. The pacing throughout “doomier” sections also resembles some of Thou’s as well and at times I felt as though I was listening to Tyrant.

Alternatively, the blackened portions remain short lived unfortunately. When they’re on though, they’re fucking on. Proponents of Weakling or other high hat blast fixated bands will ride some serious grooves within the pockets of megaton doom metal excursions. Gaul proves that the Floridian bloom (better than doack) metal uprising presents a strikingly noxious creation entrenched tightly within an increasingly irrational religious territory.

Summative Sentence: A series of fragmentalizing doom metal cauterized periodically by deepening onslaughts of tremolo blast beat harmony.

Favorite Track: Departure

Click here to dig on Gaul’s S/T LP for a NAME YOUR PRICE download on their Bandcamp page.

Click here to check out Gaul on Facebook.

– Jared Oates Haggard



Time Lapse Video of Scale the Summit Flier by orlandooom407

This is the next flier by Keith Carlson for an upcoming show on February 18th at Will’s Pub in Orlando. The bill consists of the touring duo Scale the Summit (Prosthetic Records) and Elitist (Blkheart Group) supported by locals Abuse and Fire in the Cave.

You can find the Facebook event here with links to each band.

If you haven’t heard Scale the Summit yet, please direct yourself to my obligatory, yet relevant, digression below:

 

– Jared Oates Haggard