Switchblade – Switchblade III

•2010/02/12 • Leave a Comment

Switchblade – Switchblade III (Trust No One Recordings)

Swedish band Switchblade belongs to the kind that sets the groundwork for something both unique and inspiring: their music is veiled in a hazy, mysterious and awe-inducing atmosphere.

Back in 2003 I was already taken aback by their also self-titled first album and since then I keep my eye on their progress. Their obsession with this stark, minimal approach to music, in paths that bands like Breach had first set, had me orbiting around them. The transformation in their two-track, awesome 2006 release, that included even darker and melancholic melodies, while limiting the speed to doom-metal levels, showed that these guys had a lot more to say. And so it happened. Nobody could predict the road they’d take and, myself, I don’t know where to start. This is going to be a challenging task, just like Switchblade’s latest offering.

Read more

Albums we liked circa ’09 pt. II.

•2010/02/08 • Leave a Comment

i. Black To Comm – Alphabet 1968

Droning ambience. No edges or blisters here, only a Sylvain Chauveau kind-of light and a rare fragility.

ii. Monolake – Silence

Techno and Dub distilled into a minimal, sublime and discreet masterpiece.

iii. Vic Chesnutt – At The Cut

The bodycount has reached number 2 for this year’s top 10. Jack Rose in Thanos’ list, now Vic Chesnutt, who just before commiting suicide released one of the most bleak and unnerving records ever to be dubbed “folk” or “indie”.

iv. Heroin And Your Veins – Nausea

The underbelly of garage, surf, rockabilly is where HAYV choose to position themselves to grab the right mood, the exact moment the needle breaks the skin and the razor finds the throat.

v. Sylvester Anfang II – ST

Sylvester Anfang proudly fill a position generally reserved for Circle, in terms of modern krautrock and psychedelia. Less freak-folk, less acid, more motorik, more blissed-out repetition, a name that pays tribute to Amon Duul II but music that gestures to Can and Faust, these guys know the history, know the tricks, and most importantly, how to still sound original.

vi. Radian – Chimeric

Surgeons with guitars, laptops and a drumkit operate on the worm-riddled corpse of post rock. They cut through bone with glitch, they clear arteries with ambience, they give the heart a polyrhythmic beat, and something new altogether emerges from the mouth.

vii. The Thing – Bag It!

Imagine one of the most furious and innovative free-jazz trios of our time produced by Steve Albini. Enough said (except that the opening track is completely jaw-dropping.)

viii. SUNN – Monoliths & Dimensions

After an already stunning live album aptly titled Domkirke, O’Malley and Anderson join forces with an orchestra and a choir, and prove that, well, nobody can do it as well as they can. (Highlight: the closing track, Alice, a haunting tribute to the late wife of John Coltrane.)

ix. Converge – Axe To Fall

The natural continuation of the direction the band follows since their previous release, No Heroes,  with an array of collaborations which include none other than the master Steve Von Till himself, Converge create an album as aggressive as it is atmospheric. Stark contrast between opener Dark Horse which nods to their strictly hardcore punk roots and closer Wretched World, a move into post-metal territory in the vein of the title track from Jane Doe and Grim Heart/Black Rose from No Heroes.

x. Defeater – Travels

A concept album by a hardcore band? As easily as this could turn out a joke, Defeater are uncompromised and painfully emotional. To quote VNV Nation, they are in a mood of “total war”, a war with the outside world as well as a blistering internal conflict.

Albums we liked circa ’09.

•2010/02/08 • Leave a Comment

01.  Agoraphobic Nosebleed – Agorapocalypse

This is the new shit! A.N.  have made me bang my head this year like a teenager who listens for the first time to “Reign in Blood”. Full respect to Scott Hull for this astounding piece of art.

02. Switchblade – ST

Swedes did it again. This time even more dark and heavy. What’s next? I really can’t imagine. But i know these dudes do imagine. Hands down for this one.

03. Converge – Axe to Fall

This record has the ultimate energy and the necessary atmosphere in order to be in my top 3 of this year. I enjoyed the new material along with the collaborations and all i can say is that Converge can always produce top notch songs. Accept it.

04. HKY  – HKY

HKY is for me the ultimate surprise for this year. I couldn’t imagine that French can play such heavy music and produce such a unique atmosphere. These guys know exactly what to do and we are all about it!

05. Tombs – Winter Hours

Man, Mike Hill is the man! Winter Hours is a nasty, black, terrifying record; their live performance is outstanding and all I pray for is their next record to have more black metal influences/presence than ever. Amen

06. Kylesa – Static Tensions

This is a band that I really admire . The drum duo just slays and the rest of the band plays hell on their tracks. Don’t know what to say but I’ll tell the truth: heavy music needs Kylesa! Killer album.

07. Gaza – He Is Never Coming Back

Gaza plays the modern hardcore music with fury, fantasy, technicality and with the necessary essence of ultra dark atmosphere. Outsiders or not, Gaza needs our attention and not only.

08. Magrudergrind – Magrudergrind

As a fan of grindcore music I could not forget Magrudergrind’s new effort. These dudes know how to play and believe me, this is not a blindman’s buff. This is as dangerous as it should be.

09. Natural Snow Buildings – Shadow Kingdom

One of the best records ever for me. NSB are from another universe, let’s face it. But first, we have to accept that this thing is absolutely their thing. I totally support them. You should too.

10. Jack Rose – The Black Dirt Sessions

Last but not least, one guitar player whose heart will be in our guitars forever.  Listen to this man for a last time; it’s such a heavy emotion. Let’s hope he is somewhere better. We’ll miss him.


•2009/10/21 • Leave a Comment



Kongh – Shadows of the Shapeless

•2009/08/30 • Leave a Comment

Kongh – Shadows of the Shapeless (Trust No One Recordings)


Realising what a band can achieve in such a brief period, I was more than anxious for the new effort of Sweden-based band Kongh. As their appearance in last year’s Roadburn Festival blew my mind off, and the first samples in their myspace page sounded like heaven in my mind, my eagerness was growing, especially when I noticed a black metal approach in some points. Fuck yeah.

The whole thing begins with the ideal “Unholy Water”, a great take-off for an amazing album. The riff prepares the listener for something that holds you pinned to your soundsystem, which is more than satisfactory. And it keeps going like that – these guys sure can make you headbang without great effort. Thanks to (but not limited in) the beautiful changes that hold each of the tracks together, I can say with certainty that, in comparison to “Counting Heartbeats”, this is a completely satisfying effort and surely more than just okay. On the other hand, Kongh have chosen an approach expressed in lengthy tracks, sometimes larger than 11 or 15 minutes, something which entails the trap of repetition and of fillers. Good thing is though, Kongh surpass these dangers with ease, and as if this wasn’t enough, they come off so cool in putting their ideas to practice, that you don’t even realize the full length of their songs. And why should you care? Alternating between crushing and mellow riffing, making excellent use of dynamics and changes between growls and shouts (the vocals here stand somewhat apart from your general scene-band) and finally resulting in a beautiful production, you can’t help but immerse yourself in their effort.

Read more

Scott Kelly interview circa ’08

•2009/07/04 • Leave a Comment

An Interview that Never Sets.

At our recent visit at Roadburn Festival (2008) I planned to do only one interview. Not that I didn’t want to do more with the other artists, but to speak with a guy like Scott Kelly got me a bit anxious. This was important! I met him backstage and he was as I thought he would be: honest, open, humble and direct. Due to this we managed to hone in on what makes him, and Neurosis, tick. Please have a seat.

Read the whole interview here

Switchblade interview circa ’07

•2009/06/13 • Leave a Comment

I did an interview for the swedish gods Switchblade  back in 2007 for their “2006” album. Published at Electric Requiem magazine which is now not available, thought some people might find their words interesting. Words by Tim. Enjoy.


Read More

Lunar Miasma – Mala Aria

•2009/06/08 • Leave a Comment

Lunar Miasma – Mala Aria (Insult Recordings)

Lunar Miasma is the next step. It grew, and through obsessive thought became action, marking the end of the era of Red Needled Sea (Panos is also playing @ Heavensore). From the last live shows a new-age direction became apparent, which has now become focused and not in the least nervous. And that is, I believe, the bet Lunar Miasma win, since “Mala Aria” doesn’t sound like a clumsy hybrid between new age and ambient. The goal now is split in two: psychedelia and atmosphere. The former is accomplished through the use of analog synths, real time effects processing, Theremin and most of all in the fact that “Mala Aria” is recorded live in its entirety. Play it loud enough and you can see the dude hunched over his synths in front of you. But – the right atmosphere can only be achieved through the right sound quality, and the job he’s done in high frequencies is absolutely professional.

With their debut release, Lunar Miasma take the necessary risks, and prevail over them, crafting a track in 4 parts, building the right bridges from one to another, spreading the layers in the right way so as to achieve the right kind of flow, exactly like it should be in any concept based work. And I believe that’s the case in ambient music: in the right changes that will lead to the desired atmosphere and will thus create psychedelia, accompanied at the same time by the right sound, so as to go there easily and effortlessly. “Mala Aria” will be released through Insult Recordings, the company of Lunar Miasma, which maintains a high quality level in all its releases. The 100 lucky ones who will grab the disc will taste the satisfaction of a completely experimental recording. Hurry.

Lunar Miasma/Kommpound/Naφθalyn Live!

•2009/06/04 • Leave a Comment


Sabbath 20 June 2009

@ Kinky Kong, Athens

Cum: 21:00     Entrance:5E




Tombs – Winter Hours

•2009/03/17 • Leave a Comment

Tombs – Winter Hours (Relapse)


Mike Hill is one of the obscure, invisible players in musical underground; he is also the guy responsible for the creation of Anodyne, who released exclusively great records, and Versoma, who didn’t fare quite so well. Hill continues as producer and founder of Black Box Productions, only to create Tombs a little later. This is their second release in Relapse, and they have so outdistanced their previous self that it took me a while to realize that it’s Hill’s band we’re talking about.

I confess I was taken aback with the direction the trio has taken, in the beginning. Their sound is thicker, the space the instruments claim in the final mix is different, and the general aural quality isn’t high-key but jarring. Of course, the bigger difference with their previous release is the change of style. That is, for example, Hill as the vocalist still uses shouts but now they’re more sentimental, and that is communicated in the whole of each song. Moreover, the changes he tries in his singing are very functional and serve the rest of the composition exactly as they should.

Read more