Saturday, 14 July 2018

Nijiumu – Era Of Sad Wings (1993)

Country: Japan

1. Untitled 02:39
2. Untitled 16:10
3. Untitled 06:52
4. Untitled 05:13
5. Untitled 04:54
6. Untitled 09:30
7. Untitled 05:07
8. Untitled 04:48
9. Untitled 06:52
10. Untitled 03:56

Keiji Haino (灰野 敬二 Haino Keiji) born May 3, 1952 in Chiba, Japan, and currently residing in Kawagoe, 
is a Japanese musician and singer-songwriter whose work has included rock, free improvisation, 
noise music, percussion, psychedelic music, minimalism and drone music.
Haino's initial artistic outlet was theater, inspired by the radical writings of Antonin Artaud.
An epiphanic moment came when he heard The Doors' "When The Music's Over
and changed course towards music creating the improvised rock band Lost Aaraaf in 1970.
In the mid 1970s, having left Lost Aaraaf, he collaborated with psychedelic multi-instrumentalist Magical Power Mako.
Other groups Haino has formed include rock duo Fushitsusha in 1978, Aihiyo in 1998,
Vajra (with underground folk singer Kan Mikami and drummer Toshiaki Ishizuka),
Knead (with the avant-prog outfit Ruins), Sanhedolin (with Yoshida Tatsuya of Ruins and Mitsuru Nasuno of Korekyojinn, Altered States and Ground Zero) and a solo project called Nijiumu.
Nijiumu (滲有無) featured Keiji Haino, Asahito Nanjo (who left in 1990), Takashi Matsuoka and Shizuo Uchida.
They created mysterious soundscapes mixing acoustic instruments, electronic treatments and Haino's vocals.
Asahito Nanjo (member of High Rise, Toho Sara) speaks about it in an interview:
"Nijiumu concentrate on creating an atmosphere. There was no clear concept,
sometimes we wouldn't even talk about what we were going to do.
Nijiumu is like Fushitsusha in that it was started with the aim of doing something that no one else had thought of.
It doesn't have any clear philosophy behind it."
Haino has also collaborated with many artists, including Faust, Boris, Derek Bailey,
Bill Laswell, Stephen O'Malley, Jim O'Rourke, John Zorn and John Duncan.
Haino cites a broad range of influences, including troubadour music, Marlene Dietrich,

Iannis Xenakis, Blue Cheer, Syd Barrett, Charlie Parker and Butoh dancing.
NHK, Japan's national broadcaster, banned him from broadcast from 1973 to 2013.
He has been active since the 1970s and continues to record regularly and in new styles.


Saturday, 7 July 2018

Akrabu – Kispu Ina Ina Nekelmu (1996)

Country: United States

1. Awakening The Serpent Force (Declaration) 00:19
2. Raising The Serpent Force (Conservation And Channeling) 01:54
3. Summoning The Desert Winds From The Scorpion's Domain 02:06
4. Invoking The Chaos Beyond The Stars 03:26
5. Chant Of The Dreaming Ancients, A Curse Unto The Elders 05:32
6. Conjuring The Shadowed Mountains Of Mashu 03:04
7. Procession Through The Desert Lands Of Sumeria 01:02
8. Invoking The Temptress Of The Dark Waters 03:02
9. Summoning The Ancient And Immortal Ones 05:16
10. Spilling The Water Of Life Upon The Stone Altar (The Sacrifice) 02:59
11. Opening The Gate Beyond The Stars 06:45
12. Embracing The Immortal Wine (Communion) 03:02
13. Conjuration Of The Serpentine Eye (Ascending The Path Of The Vampire) 02:47
14. Channeling The Dragon Realm (Awakening) 02:31
15. Towards The Veil Of The Dreaming (Crossing The Veil Of The Abyss) 04:57
16. The Scorpion's Sting (Penetrating The Sleeper's Astral) 04:43
17. Unleashing The Serpent Force 01:43
18. Releasing The Ancient Winds 03:01

Formed in 1995 with the release of the "Kakos Draconis" demo, 
Akrabu has been the musical outlet of Scorpios Androctonus (Crimson Moon, Sabnack, Possession Ritual).
Consisting entirely of acoustic instruments, Akrabu has continued with this tradition throughout its recordings, 
avoiding the use of synthesizers or sampled/synthetic sounds.
Based on Sumerian lore/ritual and mythology, the music of Akrabu is intended to evoke a meditative state 
utilizing a variety of acoustic guitars, exotic stringed and wind instruments, various percussion, voices and field recordings.
The hour long album "Kispu Ina Ina Nekelmu" was recorded entirely with acoustic instruments, 
chanting and voices without the use of synthesizers.
It was originally released on Dark Age Productions in 1996 as a cassette covered by printed paper sleeve, 

wrapped in snakeskin, all in black velveteen bag with printed booklet in a limited edition of 100 copies 
and it was reissued on it's 22nd anniversary with a different cover, again on a cassette and for the first time on a CD format.
Recorded at the Serpent Chamber, Covina California on analog 4-track in 1996 and performed by Scorpios Androctonus 
with the help of Darke Shadoe on female vocals, conjurations and invocations.


Sunday, 1 July 2018

Lucifugum – Path Of Wolf (Demo 1996)

Country: Ukraine

1. On Search Of My Soul 03:48
2. Bringing By Rain 04:25
3. The Mysterious Garden (Hymn To The Black Art) 05:13
4. The Sabbat 03:36
5. Wolves... 04:15

Lucifugum was formed in 1995 in Zhytomyr by Khlyst, Bal-a-Myth and Faunus.
Faunus left the band in 2001, and Bal-a-Myth died in his sleep on October 5, 2002.
The albums "...Back To Chopped Down Roots" and "Sociopath: Philosophy Cynicism" were recorded in 2003 
with different session musicians which, however, didn't join the band.
In 2004 Khlyst moved to the Ukrainian city Mykolaiv to continue the activity of Lucifugum 
together with local black metal musician Elena (aka Stabaath).
"Vector33" was the first album with Stabaath, where she recorded vocals, guitars, bass and keyboards.
The album "Sublimessiah" was the last one to feature vocals by Stabaath 
because of critical problems with her throat during the record of the vocals on the album.
Khlyst is handling the vocals since then.
Khlyst and Stabaath (Igor and Elena Naumchuk) are the owners of the black metal label Propaganda and they are married.
Igor Naumchuk also used to have close ties with the band Nokturnal Mortum 
but later all relations have been stopped due to ideological disagreements.

Monday, 11 June 2018

Eden – Fire & Rain (1995)

Country: Australia

1. The Darkness In Me 05:30
2. Snake 03:53
3. Why? 05:17
4. Hooveless Horses 05:12
5. Fire And Rain 04:03
6. Sky Above; Sea Below 03:58
7. Song Slowly Song 02:58
8. Stretched On Your Grave 06:19
9. Rooms Above The Sea 02:08
10. Breath Upon New Eyes 03:39
11. Just Like Water; You Run From My Eyes! 04:20

Eden founding members Sean Bowley and Pieter Bourke began a song writing partnership in Melbourne, Australia in 1988. Eden’s initial 12 inch EP "The Light Between Worlds" was released in 1990 on Nightshift Records, Scotland.
The EP caught the attention of BBC Radio’s John Peel who featured tracks on his show, 
resulting in rapid support of Eden by The Alternative Press Magazine in the USA.
In 1991 Eden moved to London based label Third Mind who continued to grow the band’s profile in Europe and the USA with the release of Eden’s first full length CD "Gateway To The Mysteries" in 1992.
In 1993 Eden joined the roster of Projekt Records, releasing "Healingbow" (1993) and "Fire And Rain" (1995).
The same year Eden released a CD of remixes and rarities titled "Earthbound".
In live performance they have shared the stage in Australia and overseas with Love Spirals Downward, Lycia,  
Rowland S. Howard, These Immortal Souls, Underground Lovers, Attrition, Heligoland, Ostia and countless others. 
Eden undertook a promotional visit to the UK (1990) and an extensive tour of live dates in the USA (1996).
After two decades of silence, in June 2017 Eden went to Germany, 
joining The Mission, Skinny Puppy and She Past Away performing at Wave-Gotik-Treffen Festival in Leipzig.  
Eden's performance was combined with the release of their eighth album "The Edge Of Winter".
The album was recorded by Adam Calaitzis and produced at Melbourne’s Toyland Studios.
"The Edge Of Winter" delivers on the promise of the distinctively diverse, uniquely sumptuous sonic palette  
Eden has long been known for, spanning darkwave, neo-psychedelic and ethereal genres and featuring the reknown sublime eastern-tinged baritone vocals of Sean Bowley.
Their current line up features Sean Bowley (Vocals, 6 & 12 String Guitars, Keyboards),  
Andrew Kutzer (12 String Guitar) and Matthew Sigley (Bass Guitar, Drum Machine and Keyboards).

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Old Forest – Into The Old Forest (1999)

Country: England

1. Grond (Hammer Of The Underworld) 04:29
2. Death In The Cemetary 04:57
3. To Haunt The Old Forest 03:38
4. Hymn Of The Deep 05:19
5. Glistening... 03:34
6. Where Trees Are Withered 04:05
7. Shadow Whispers 04:20
8. Become The Gods Of War 04:19
9. Hammer Of The Underworld (Demo Bonus Track) 04:13
10. Death In The Cemetary
(Demo Bonus Track) 04:50
11. Shadows Whispers
(Demo Bonus Track) 03:29
12. The Deepest Caves
(Demo Bonus Track) 01:04

Old Forest was formed in 1998 and consisted of Kobold (James Fogarty of In the Woods..., Ewigkeit),
 Beleth and Lord Grond (Orcrypt).
With influences from the early 90s classic bands, such as Emperor, Ancient, Darkthrone and Burzum,
Old Forest formed in order to preserve the underground and, by then, lost feeling of cult spirit of Black Metal.
The debut demo "Of Mists And Graves" was self-released, and led to a handfull of offers 
from reputable black metal labels to release the debut album.
After the second demo "The Kingdom Of Darkness" was recorded,
Old Forest set about recording their debut album "Into The Old Forest" for the label Mordgrimm Records.
The album was universally hated by commercial magazines,
got terrible reviews and became an instant underground classic.
A second album was recorded in 1999, "None More Black", but this was never released.
The band was placed on hiatus and the master tapes of the unreleased album were buried in the New Forest in Hampshire.
In 2007, Old Forest reactivated once again re-releasing all of their demo recordings as free digital downloads,
to re-aquaint the old fans, and to act as a flag-bearer for a new crusade of anti-commercial Cult Black Metal.
They then began work on writing and recording the "Tales Of The Sussex Weald" trilogy of EPs
for the record label Death To Music Productions.
In 2011, the 3rd and final part of the trilogy was released,
along with parts 1 and 2, on the full-length album "Tales Of The Sussex Weald".
In 2015 the band released their latest album "Dagian" through the Avantgarde Music label
featuring Kobro (In the Woods..., ex-Carpathian Forest) on drums.

Monday, 21 May 2018

Exiled Shadow – North Abyss Shadows (Demo 1999)

Country: Greece

1. Anguish Of Pagan Night 04:08
2. Where The Shadows Rise 02:00
3. Haunting The Light 02:23
4. The Testimonial Code Of Death 02:42
5. Savior Of Sorrow 02:27
6. Ancient Spirits Of Evil 01:49

Exiled Shadow was created in the summer of 1998 in Thessaloniki, Greece,
by Tasos (guitars, vocals) from Ptolemaida and Vasilis (drums) from Thessaloniki.
The group's basic influence was Scandinavian black metal while the lyrics were based on evil, darkness and paganism.
Their first demo "The Lost Mist Path" was released in September 1998 
with Kostas (of the local death/grind band Soultaker) handling the bass.
The second demo "North Abyss Shadows" was recorded only by Tasos and Vasilis and released in February 1999.
After a few months with the pseudonyms Shadefrost (Tasos) and Haggath (Vasilis
Naethor joined the band as a full time member in bass.
With this line up, apart from the old tracks, they also worked on four new songs 
which were released in September 2000 as their third demo "...And The Funeral Becomes".
Throughout their existence Exiled Shadow appeared live only once 
participating in a rock/metal festival in Ptolemaida in the summer of 2000.
In 2018 Askio Productions released "North Abyss Shadows" compilation 
that features all the demos of the band in a limited handmade ekopak CD-r edition of 50 copies.

Monday, 14 May 2018

Univers Zero – Heresie (1979)

Country: Belgium

1. La Faulx 25:25
2. Jack The Ripper 13:30
3. Vous Le Saurez En Temps Voulu 13:02
4. Chaos Hermétique (Bonus Track Recorded In 1975) 11:52

Univers Zero are an instrumental progressive Belgian band formed in 1974 by drummer Daniel Denis.
The band is known for playing dark music heavily influenced by 20th-century chamber music.
In 1973, Claude Deron and Daniel Denis, both former members of the band Arkham, set up a new group, Necronomicon.
By that time, apart from Deron (trumpet) and Denis (drums), the group consisted of Roger Trigaux (guitar),  
Guy Segers (bass guitar), Patrick Hanappier (violin), John Van Rymenant (sax) and later on Vincent Motoulle (keyboards).
At the time, Guy Denis (percussion) took part in some shows and rehearsals 
and Jean-Luc Manderlier (keyboards) was present only during rehearsals.
Necronomicon was renamed to Univers Zero in 1974.
The band was part of a musical movement called Rock In Opposition (RIO) which strove to create dense challenging music, a direct contrast to the disco and punk music being produced in the late 1970s.
Obvious early influences were Bartók, Stravinsky and composers such as Albert Huybrechts, who was also Belgian.
Whereas their early albums were almost entirely acoustic, featuring oboes, spinets, harmoniums and Mellotrons, 
their 1980s albums tended to rely more on synthesizer and electric guitar, sounding much more electric.
In 1977, they released their first eponymous album "Univers Zéro", later remixed and renamed as "1313". 
The album shows a heavy rock and roll approach despite the fact that the instrumentation was largely acoustic.
This is mostly due to the use of drums and bass guitar.
Two years later the album "Heresie" proved to be even darker and more complex.
Subsequent albums lightened the sound only slightly but became ever more electric.
The group disbanded in 1987 but reformed in 1999.
In the interim, drummer Daniel Denis released two solo albums and joined Art Zoyd, a similar band from France.
Since 1999, Univers Zero released five studio albums.
In 2011, they joined forces with Belgian groups Present and Aranis 
to form a 17-member ensemble called Once Upon A Time In Belgium.
They premiered at the fourth edition of the Rock In Opposition festival held in Carmaux, France in September 2011,
where they performed "New York Transformations", a work composed by Kurt Budé.
Once Upon A Time In Belgium and Univers Zero appear in the documentary film
"Romantic Warriors II: A Progressive Music Saga About Rock In Opposition".