This week we have an interview with Eviga, who handles the bass, vocal and guitar duties for Austria’s all killer-no-filler Dornenreich, fresh off the heels of their March 2011 release Flammentriebe. The weather may be cold and dreary but this week there’s plenty of hot, hot, hot shows to heat up your weeknights or weekend. Get out there and support your local bands so the shows keep on coming. Also included is a link to a completely free download of the new Enslaved EP The Sleeping Gods as well as streams to check out the two simultaneously released Boris albums courtesy of NPR and a stream of the awesomely pungent new Anaal Nathrakh album. Blog exclusive reviews include Anaal Nathrakh, Backslider/Nimbus Terrifix split 7”, Scar Symmetry and Demonaz. If you read all the way to the end you get a special surprise of awfulness!
The love-it-or-hate-it cheesy hard rock/heavy metal of the ‘80s is still kicking. If you’re feeling nostalgic or just need something to do Thursday the 19th, Club Vegas hosts the fashionable Bang Tango with Heartbreak Hangover, Aerial, Shadow and Motorman. $10 tickets are available in advance or $12 at the door. Music starts at 8 p.m.
Feeling like getting your heavy-as-hell on? Check out some blazing locals Friday night for a free show at Salt Lake Recording Service (721 S. 400 W.) with Gravecode Nebula (this could be there last show ever!), Incendiant and Adipocere. Music should be underway around 8 p.m.
On Friday night May 20th, Provo folks get their chance to get their heavy on at ABG’s, 190 W. Center Street with Old Timer and Muckraker. $6 gets you in, tunes underway around 9 p.m.
Some say the rapture is going down Saturday, so why not go get your face melted in style and lovely extremity? L.A. based war-themed black metal crew Ritual Combat headlines at Bar Deluxe Saturday night with local stalwarts Iconoclast Contra and The Obliterate Plague. Advance tickets are $10 and available at the Heavy Metal Shop and Raunch Records or it’s $12 at the door. Music underway around 8 p.m.
Saturday night, May 21 Club Vegas host a tribute to Ronnie James Dio with Scarred for Six, Deny Your Faith, Muckraker and Reveeler—all of whom’s sets should include some Dio classics. $5 advance tickets are available or $7 at the door. Included is a free compilation CD of local heavy metal acts. Tunes underway at 8 p.m.
On Tuesday May 24, the Urban Lounge hosts touring act Rye Wolves of Eugene, Oregon with locals Dwellers (who will be joining the Rye Wolves for the rest of their spring tour) as well as the mighty Blackhole to kick things off. Music starts at 10 p.m.
Check out some awesome streams and downloads:
Anaal Nathrakh – Passion http://gunshyassassin.com/rad/anaal-stream
Boris – Attention Please - http://www.npr.org/2011/05/16/136240462/first-listen-boris-attention-please
Boris – Heavy Rocks - http://www.npr.org/2011/05/16/136241990/first-listen-boris-heavy-rocks
Enslaved free download of new EP http://www.scionav.com/music/scionavmetal/index.html#general3,8187
SLUG: How have things been going for Dornenreich since Flammentriebe was released? What would you consider the best thing that’s happened to the band since the release?
Eviga: The tour we played in February to present “Flammentriebe” in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. We experienced tmuch enthusiasm, loyalty and passion within the reactions of our audience. It was breathtaking. Actually we just came back from a European tour with our friends from Alcest, and this very tour was another fantastic journey for all people involved.
SLUG: Being an overall fan of all types of metal and a journalist that covers all of its realms, Dornenreich isn’t a name that comes up a lot. I’m not sure how things are in Europe, but in America I would definitely consider the band underrated. Is this a sentiment the band shares or even cares about?
Eviga: It’s difficult to overview that. On the one hand we receive a massive response of people who ask us why we never tour the US in spite of the fact that we seem to have numerous supporters there. On the other hand I am aware of the fact that Dornenreich does not sell a lot in the US. Anyway, we’d love to play concerts in America, but it’s obvious that Dornenreich is too special and multifaceted for a bigger audience, so, in the end it’s sorta sad that we are not able to tour the US (usually our concerts tend to convince even skeptical people), but in the very end I don’t care too much about that all, for I can’t influence it at all. Dornenreich is about authentic artistic expression. That’s all I can say.
SLUG: There have always been folk elements in Dornenreich’s sound—something which seems to becoming more widely popular amongst the “scene.” What first inspired Dornenreich to use the folk elements in your music and to continually evolve them with each album?
Eviga: The love for music in general. The acoustic guitar and even strings have been an important part of Dornenreich since the very beginning of the band back in 1996.
With “In Luft geritzt” (our purely acoustic record) we really wanted to gather at the fireplace of original music. The instrumentation is not what we focus on in the first place. Therefore our live set includes a metal version of the originally acoustic song “Jagd” as well as an acoustic version of the original metal-song “Reime faucht der Märchensarg.”
SLUG: How would you describe what Dornenreich is about musically and lyrically to audiences who have not heard any of your material?
Eviga: Dornenreich tries to combine contrasting elements to sensitize for the actual nature of life. Dornenreich is meant to be intense, mystic and timeless.
SLUG: Flammentriebe seems to mix the atmosphere folk styles of your last few albums, but also puts out a lot of the aggression on earlier Dornenreich albums. First of all, am I somewhat right in my assumption? If so, did the songwriting come as a conscious move or is the album just a result of where your train of thought was at the current time?
Eviga: You are right. “Flammentriebe” interweaves the intensity of “Her von welken Nächten” with the mystic depth of “Hexenwind/Durch den Traum” and with the structures of “In Luft geritzt.” Every album refers back to my intuitive way to play the guitar—for every single song relies on a rough guitar-sketch. However, it was clear to us that we wanted to create an album that contrasts with “In Luft geritzt” drastically. To me both albums gain a lot of additional depth via the fact that they differ that much with one another.
SLUG: When I listen to the new album and past works (with the exception of In Luft Geritzt) I feel a great juxtaposition of anger and despair against flat out calm and peacefulness—all very different emotions to feel in the course of around 46 minutes. What type of feelings was Dornenreich feeling during the recording of the new record?
Eviga: The recordings demanded a lot without any doubt. We had restricted ourselves to an exact amount of studio-days. This circumstance enabled us to let the album go in the end—instead of losing ourselves in experimentation and exaggerated perfectionism. We gave everything we had within the time frame we had and let it go. Thus, we tried to play ourselves into the emotion of each song take by take by take. It was a physical and mental challenge, but we were in a very good mood and we were totally convinced of the qualities of the album. Moreover it was important for the whole production that “Flammentriebe” has already been the fifth cooperation with Markus Stock (Klangschmiede Studio E). We know the strengths and flaws of one another, therefore we had a lot of fun during the recordings while we managed to stay focused at the same time.
SLUG: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions, it’s greatly appreciated and thanks for continuing your track record of making amazing challenging albums, the entire new record is fantastic, but I do have to say every time I listen to “Tief im Land” I get the shivers! Thanks again for your time.
Eviga: Hey, I would like to thank you for your passion and the fact that you put it into words. I really appreciate that! It’s a rare thing nowadays. All the best to you!
Dornenreich new album review:
Dornenreich = Drudkh + Fen + Secrets of the Moon
If this is the next step in the ever-evolving and progressing musical journey of Austrian-bred Dornenreich, I’m quite content with it. I haven’t avidly followed the band—bits and pieces crossed my path throughout the years, but my interest was more in the band’s 2000-era material, Hexenwind and Durch Den Traum. Flammentriebe comes out swinging with its title track only offering relief in the form of pure agony. The new album brings a pristine and disturbing mix of the intensity of older albums and tidbits of the atmospheric and folksy sadness of the more recent albums. This latest offering is unbelievably decisive and infectious, oftentimes manic and depressive, while riddled with painful and angry pushes of musical and vocal insanities. “Tief im Land” is an outstanding song with sharp violin work piercing along with Dornenreich brainchild Jochen Stock’s perfectly executed loud and soul-bashing tremolo riffing. The bulk of the guitar riffing here is crushing, working either perfectly or in juxtaposition with the violin work. This is Dornenreich’s most accessible album, but the words ‘complacent’ or ‘conformist” are not in the band’s vocabulary; Flammentribe is going to be talked about long beyond its year of release. –Bryer Wharton
Blog exclusive CD reviews:
Anaal Nathrakh = Emperor + Aborym + Napalm Death
This is one record not to mess with – the UK’s maddening duo that makes up Anaal Nathrakh have been kicking out the extremity for around thirteen years now, and while not quite a name spoken amongst the extreme metal elite, Passion adds another notch of awesome to their full-length albums. Passion is a mother flinging bestial crushing noisy and beautiful assemblage of ten songs that easily will incite you to either tear at your flesh from the insane extremity of it all or raising your fist in its utmost glory. The record enjoys near flawless production from the raging storm of blast-beat drums—which don’t feel overtly triggered—and fantastical ,fanatical mixing of the most unholy black metal speedier than speedy tremolo riffing and nasty grindcore riffing, all backed by beefy bass. Pile in some crazed atmospheres from the sole instrument player Irrumator and you’re left with a mighty ass beating. The songs are not only outlets of extremity, but each has its own identity that’s going to keep you coming back to tracks. Vocalist V.I.T.R.I.O.L. also perverts listeners with some wicked screaming. Add in a few guest vocal appearances and it all just gets nice n’ gut wrenching. Part of the vocal intro of the track “Drug-Fucking Abomination,” “Oh Holy Fuck!!!” explains it all—you’re in for a hell of a ride with Passion. –Bryer Wharton
Backslider/Nimbus Terrifix = Discharge + Doom + Terrorizer
This contains all the might and muster a good grind 7” split needs. Give Praise records is giving the no-names and upstarts a chance with both artists featured on this split—to the best of my knowledge, this is the first recording to feature both bands. With total running time equaling only eleven minutes, it really is just a tease and taste from the artists. Both embody older grind and fastcore style,s but with a bit of ‘90s styled grind flair. Backslider contribute five very short cuts—lots of stop and go crazy tempos initially with things slowed with the last few cuts. Backslider stay on the crusty side with some doom n’ groove ,leaving good questions as to what a full-length from the Philly based two-piece could offer. Nimbus Terrifix go blazingly fast for their almost six-minute contribution to the split. The Scranton power-violence crew really didn’t need to make individual tracks, because their four cuts just play out as one hunk of violence and blatant nastiness with tidbits of technical geetar noodlin and a pretty groovy drum performance. If you’re shopping for cheap 7” splits, this will make a fine addition to you list. –Bryer Wharton
The Unseen Empire
Scar Symmetry = Soilwork + In Flames + Nightingale
Ah, melo-death metal—a term used to describe modernized melodic death metal. No, it’s not the stuff from the early ‘90s that At The Gates and In Flames, made creating not only a scene revolution in Gothenburg, Sweden, but all over the world. If you have no taste for melo-death then you’ve never listened to bands like Scar Symmetry or the much-touted band they “supposedly” ripped off Soilwork. There’s something about catchy melodies with just as catchy vocal and guitar hooks that are hard to resist, especially for fans of more accessible, less raw-sounding metal. The production for The Unseen Empire is near pristine, and the mostly album sticks to the meat n’ potatoes of melo-death. Here there are some keys from time to time, but the guitars crunch as much as they fly into nicely done melodic work. The two vocalists, clean and harsh, work off each other’s strengths. This is a nice return to sound to Scar Symmetry’s pinnacle album Holographic Universe. Fans of modern metal that’s clean, heavy, melodic and catchy: apply to The Unseen Empire. –Bryer Wharton
March of the Norse
Demonaz = Immortal + I + Enslaved
Does the name Demonaz ring a bell? It should if you’re a fan of Immortal. Demonaz is the co-founder of Immortal and still contributes the majority of the band’s. Demonaz bowed out of Immortal over a decade ago because of severe tendonitis. March of the Norse marks Demonaz return to performing albeit it’s his vocals that are his instrument. The lineup is also rounded out with Ice Dale, a current member of Enslaved as well as other projects, handling the guitar and bass duties for Demonaz, and former Immortal and I drummer Armagedda completing the line-up. Not surprisingly, March of the Norse sound quite similar to Immortal—to put it in simplest of terms, the band feels like a more melodic version of Immortal with bits of Enslaved. March of the Norse falls into mediocre territory—there are some standout songs but most blur together. If you dig Immortal and Enslaved this is worth a check out. –Bryer Wharton
And here's your surprise, faithful readers: