Kriegszittern ist krieg

a1731883717_10Kriegszittern are a German duo committed to vomiting up short, sharp shocks of punky, war-obsessed death metal.  Their debut demo was recently committed to tape by the ever-reliable and increasingly prolific Caligari Records, and it’s certainly a must-listen for fans of the genre at its ugliest and most primitive.

Of course, when one thinks of war-themed death metal, one immediately thinks of Bolt Thrower, and while Kriegszittern undoubtedly employs some of that legendary band’s churning brutality, I find myself more reminded of the rumble of early Swedish death metal, as well as the smoked-out savagery of Autopsy.  To be sure its a winning combination, perfectly suited to the demo’s slightly muffled, ramshackle production scheme and the band’s bludgeoning approach to songwriting.

Kriegszittern aren’t going to win any originality contests, but if you’re in the market for this sort of atavistic death metal fix, chances are you could give two shits about originality and are more concerned with having your skull sufficiently rattled by a blast of cro-magnon musical mayhem, and this is something that the band excels at.

A quick glance at their Bandamp page reveals Kriegszittern have a second demo out titled Frostbite.  Although I haven’t had the opportunity to spend as much time with this demo as I have the Caligari-released one, a cursory listen reveals longer compositions and a more sophisticated approach to songwriting without losing any of the nastiness that makes their first tape so darn enjoyable.  It’s currently available from the band as a pay-what-you-want download, so snap it up while you can.

Melt-Banana’s joyful noise.

035It’s been a few weeks since I saw Melt-Banana at Harlow’s, and for some reason I just can’t get their set out of my mind.  Part of this is no doubt due to the fact that I actually got to see Melt-Banana; sure, they’ve toured the states many times, but keep in mind that I was living in the middle of Iowa up until a year ago, not exactly a hotbed for extreme and/or experimental music.  Since we’ve moved to Sacramento, I’ve already had the pleasure of seeing a handful of bands I never imagined I’d get the opportunity to see without traveling great distances (Sargeist and Ufomammut immediately spring to mind), and the Japanese duo are probably number one on the “holy shit, I can’t believe they’re actually playing where I live” list so far.

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Devilspit – Grim, Hateful and Drunk (Caligari Records, 2015)

a2394422930_10With an album title like Grim, Hateful and Drunk, it’s pretty easy to guess what you’re getting from France’s Devilspit.  Filthy, punk-influenced black metal is the name of the game here, so if you’re into similarly scuzzy shit such as Whipstriker and DeathCult, you best grab a bottle or twelve of your favorite rotgut and cuddle up with this disgusting tape, which is currently being peddled in a limited edition of two hundred by our pals at the venerable Caligari Records.

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-(16)- / Brainoil / Kowloon Walled City / Church @ Starlite Lounge, Sacramento, CA 04/25/16

039If there’s one thing I’ve learned about Sacramento in the ten months I’ve lived here, it’s that this city loves its doom and sludge.  I’m sure as hell not complaining, especially when we get shows of this caliber; long-running LA sludge godfathers -(16)- descending upon the Starlite Lounge along with Oakland sludge/punk legends Brainoil, SF noise rockers Kowloon Walled City and hometown doom-lords-in-the-making Church was indeed a dream show for fans of all things slow ‘n’ low.

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Bretwaldas of Heathen of Doom – Seven Bloodied Ramparts (Caligari Records, 2015)

a1537650385_10It’s been a few months since we last heard from the increasingly prolific Caligari Records, but fear not, because the label has recently released yet another slew of great tapes, the greatest of which just might be Seven Bloodied Ramparts, a reissue of the third album from obscure UK metallers Bretwaldas of Heathen Doom. Originally seeing an extremely limited physical release back in 2010, Seven Bloodied Ramparts might be a bit of an oldie at this point, but make no mistake, this is an album that deserves to be heard well beyond the handful of diehards that picked up on it the first time around.

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Napalm Death – Apex Predator – Easy Meat (Century Media, 2015)

Napalm-Death-Apex-Predator-Easy-MeatHow good is the new Napalm Death death album?  Against all odds, this band continues to age like a fine wine, and Apex Predator – Easy Meat continues the unfuckwithable fifteen-years-and-counting roll they’ve been on since 2000’s Enemy of the Music Business.  I pretty much said everything I have to say about the band’s late-career renaissance in my review of 2012’s Utilitarian, but it’d be downright shameful if I neglected to spill at least a little bit of digital ink on the stunning piece of work they’ve unleashed in 2015.

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