Monday, May 26, 2008

Appreciating Decay Through Metal

Zach is working on a really great review which he will hopefully be posting sometime this week. He is also cooking up quite the essay about extreme metal listening and the summer season. I gotta say that I am quite similar to him when it comes to summer. We both detest the summer for a number of reasons and it always seems that our extreme metal interest intensifies around this time of year. It's safe to say I generally feel more at odds with the average human during this so-called "nice" time of the year than I do in the cooler,wetter,winter months. Everyone seems to come out of their house and mingle around,soaking up the sun and rejoicing in the abundance of life,overgrowth of plants and ect. I don't want to steal or spoil Zach's more in depth essay here so I will not expound any further on WHY the summer aggravates me. There always seems to be such a great possibility of destruction and doom in the summertime. I have never had a premonition or anything..just this kind of shitty feeling that some dark cloud is ready to burst over my head. Perhaps I feel more connected to the outside world in the summer because I can't really escape hearing it(outside of my window),seeing it everywhere I turn and it becomes much more obvious how rapidly our Western society is decaying.

In recent months I have been learning to grin in the face of despair,that is to say I have been attempting to find humor and happiness in the midst of negativity. I am certainly no friend of our modern world but I am obviously a part of it,I am entangled within it's web and undoubtedly just another "worker ant" who is becoming dissatisfied. There are quite a lot of choices concerning what belief or activist stance I could take on the myriad of problems looming in the near future. I could fight,vote,stock food,pray,research,donate and recruit but I have come to the conclusion that it is all essentially pointless. The problems within our society and world are extremely deep rooted and building to a climax(as they have been for many years). We could very well be on the tipping point. While feeling afraid and sensing panic at first I have now come to realize it is far better to point and laugh at the modern world. Why should the result of so many mistakes built upon past mistakes be anything less than a total collapse? Nobody knows when this supposed collapse will come..nobody knows what will collapse first. People have speculated half their lives away and concocted all kinds of solutions both radical and subtle. If there were perhaps some kind of common enemy or common goal and I found it agreeable then I might fight. The truth is,the speculations,conspiracies and solutions amount to just as much chaos as the problems and issues do. So I laugh..I read the news on occasion and I mock and chuckle as I hold back the paranoia and panic which can benefit me in no way. I can appreciate this mess and embrace the ugliness as a result of my fellow man's foolishness. I can even look to the future with a glimmer of hope because once the empire has crumbled there might be a chance for intelligent humans to rebuild it. Then again logic tells me that nothing significant may collapse within my lifetime. It's very possible we could all just continue to run around continuously in our rusty hamster wheels for another 100 years. Either way things are heating up at the moment..unfortunately I am also referencing the weather.

The playlist that accompanies this attitude adjustment is made up of mostly death metal. The classics,some obscure demo tapes..a lot of "advanced" death metal if you will. The vibe of turmoil and urgency accelerating in the outside world is reflected well in the lightning fast riffage and complex drumming on a good chunk of these releases.
1.Order From Chaos-Stillbirth Machine*A fine example of a band living up to the standards of their name. If bombs were dropping and buildings were toppling onto screaming pedestrians in throes of bewilderment this would be the quintessential soundtrack to accompany the horror.
2.Immolation-Dawn of Possession*An album worthy to force upon all other humans by blasting it from my car while driving to work or to the grocery store. Also an album to really sit back and listen to with deep concentration. I am a fool for never giving this band a chance in the past.
3.Abhoth-Forever to be Vanished There In(1991 demo)*Prime obscure Swedish death metal. Three tunes on this tape..all pummeling and emanating a foreboding atmosphere.
4.Voivod-Dimension Hatröss*Voivod at their peak here with a harrowing view of the future delivered in 8 thrashing songs with heavily progressive leanings.
5.Embrionic Death-Stream of Solidarity(demo 1993)*Dripping with a quite a disgusting sound,these 3 tracks may be some of the best technical death metal committed to a demo tape(sadly no full length ever emerged from these guys). Some of the time signatures and riffs on this thing are so bizarre and the cover art is really far out. This recording captures the confusion I feel around me almost perfectly.

Descending now into the abyss of nothingness,this next playlist focuses on the bigger picture.
Consciousness,space,time and becoming comfortable with the nothingness which eventually all this disorder and turmoil must lead to at some point
1.Gorguts-The Erosion of Sanity & Obscura*Two phenomenal albums from these Canadian tech wizards. I can't get enough of these albums right now. They are a delight to really sink into and listen to,as the music on them is intense and satisfying. I can personify this music as some terrible,many tentacled beast which is near impossible for the human eye to make heads or tails of.
2.Demilich-Nespithe*If one can get over the croaking "frog" vocals they will most likely feel rewarded by the instrumentation and songwriting within this album. I can't say I like the vocals but I can appreciate them as another instrument slightly complimenting the guitars,bass and drums. Jazzy,twisted,weird and not of this world.
3.Timeghoul-Tumultuous Travelings demo & Panoramic Twilight demo*Existing completely outside of our solar system,these two demos are fucking amazing and should be heard by any death metal enthusiast. This band never got a deal,never got big,never went anywhere. Maybe it was the name? Perhaps people couldn't get into the sometimes chant like vocals? Or were the sci-fi lyrics a turn off to the one track mind of the gore obsessed metal fans at the time? Obscure and genuinely strange death metal which sadly gets the demo production treatment. The muddy sound quality might be a bit of a turn off to some but it doesn't hinder my enthusiasm or appreciation.

Alright,that is all for me today. Time to go make a sandwich and listen to Klaus Schulze.

*from the hall of wounded heroes