Sounds From The Heavy Metal Underground – Week of 06/09/2014

by I.O. Kirkwood on June 10, 2014

SystemHouse 33 cover I.O.’s Pick of the Week:

SystemHouse 33 Depths of Despair (self-released) Self-styled death metal is what you’ll get from Mubai, India’s SystemHouse 33. I listen to everything sent to our box (which can cause a fugue I call “metal fatigue”) so when I found myself not wanting to stop the songs once I passed the refrain, I knew I’d stumbled on a gem. I love the  brittle production of the highs and the thick groove of the lows. The screaming is hardcore while the growls are death, the guitars take it to the thrash level, the drumming is just right for whatever track is playing, and there is a melodic element with electronic sampling (and some Eastern style vocals) that links it all together. Tracks of note are “Deathwish,” “Stark Revelations”‘ … Who am I kidding? The whole fucking album is a must listen. Tell us what you think. Be sure to include  SystemHouse 33 in your reply.



Halahkuh Desecration (self-released/signed to Transcending Obscurity) Halahkuh cover What the hell is going on in India? Are they taking over death metal? Halahkuh‘s “In Extremis” had me banging my head. The drums are non-stop brutal and the guitar wailed through more than just a token solo. “Sacrilege” stabbed me through and through and “Possessed, Strangulated, and Enslaved” just wouldn’t quit. Definitely melodic death metal with the supersonic speed of thrash. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Halahkuh in your reply. Facebook:

WO FAT The Conjuring (Small Stone)WoFat Wo-Fat releases their 5th studio album and it is laid-back, bluesy sludge. This is hot-box fare that throws me back to 1969 when I was in utero listening to Hendrix, Santana, and other Woodstock luminaries. The Conjuring will drop via Small Stone on June 17th, 2014 on CD and digitally. You can also grab a vinyl edition here in transparent red or black, each limited to 250 copies. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Wo Fat in your reply. Facebook:

The Conjuration  Surreal (self-released/signed to Swimming with Sharks Records) The Conjuration cover This one-man project out of Danville, VA is fresh, experimental metal right out of the box. I love the vocals, growled and screamed. The music has a fascinating texture. You’ll get it all in this album from heavy, pummeling passages to jazzy technical guitar work to experimental keyboards.  Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  The Conjuration in your reply.

And here’s a look at some work from The Conjuration’s previous release The Human Condition:


Amberian Dawn Magic Forest (Napalm Records) Amberian Dawn cover A blend of Olivia Newton John’s Xanadu, ABBA, and Within Temptation, this is a symphonic power metal foray into fantasy. Capri’s vocals are lovely and I can see myself dressed in some gossamer fairy gown in a meadow flanked by menacing trees as I spin around beneath a burgeoning, full moon. Oh my, the music throws me back to my childhood.  This album represents what I love about metal: There IS something for everyone in this genre. Release date: GSA 06/27/14, Europe/UK 07/07/14, USA/Canada 08/07/14. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Amberian Dawn in your reply. Facebook:

By Definition The Concerns of Mortal Men (Clever Name Records) By Definition If you like straight up heavy metal, By Definition of Brighton, UK delivers. The vocals are a clean rasp, the guitars are relentless, and the tunes are catchy. The band has supported Black Label Society and Black Stone Cherry and delivers root heavy metal flavored with a bit of bluesy stoner metal in their live video of “Warrior.” Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  By Definition in your reply.


Inanimate Existence A Never-Ending Cycle of Atonement (Unique Leader Records) Inanimate Existence cover Technical death metal, a subgenre that has burrowed like a parasite into the cold corners of my heart ever since I saw Nile at Baltimore Sound Stage, is meant to be played live.  As far as the recording, skill is evident in every track of Inanimate Existence‘s sophomore release and as I become more conversant in this subgenre, it’s easy to spot a good album like this when I hear one. The album is set to release on 06/24/14 but the real test will be going to a show to see if they can take their recording skill and make it live and breathe on stage. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include Inanimate Existence in your reply.


Azreal Premonition (self-released) Azreal With a name like Azreal, you know there will be some blackened metal thrown down.  Thrash, groove and straight up heavy metal also infuse this Australian Gold Coast outfit’s single “Cease to Be.” The video is serial-killer fare pointing to horror elements for those of you who dig that grave topic. Their  new LP, Premonition, was released June 8, 2014. Check out the new single:

And to get a better sense of Azreal’s sound, here’s a track from their previous album. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Azreal in your reply. Facebook:

The new album can be streamed at ReverbNation:

Funest Desecrating Obscurity  Funest cover The Old Ones brought a tempest as I listened to this album from Milano, Italia. The sky darkened and my front door slammed like something out of a classic horror movie. I’m expecting torrential rain and ear-splitting thunder any moment now. For those of you who enjoy old school Scandinavian death metal, this will be a treat and a tempest. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Funest in your reply. Facebook:

Primitive Man Scorn (Relapse Records) Primitive Man cover One listener posted in Bandcamp, “It’s so goddamn heavy I want to die.” Your ears will bleed as you listen to this Denver, CO outfit with its Sumatra blend of blackened, doom-laden sludge. The video for “Antietam” was too NSFW for my morning hangover stomach but you are more than welcome to take a look. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Primitive Man in your reply. Website:


Ecocide Eye of Wicked Sight (Disharmonic Records) Ecocide cover Lovecraft, you are immortalized yet again. This is a death/thrash metal incarnation of Kthulu fear-inspired worship from the Netherlands. Throw in the conspiracy flavored theme of a Sumerian alien super-race, the Annunaki, and I’m a convert to this old school death flavored trio. I always like a good story, especially if I believe it. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Ecocide in your reply. Facebook:

Svet Kant Loneliness (self-released) Svet Kant cover Svet Kant, out of Dublin Ireland, is experimental metal blending death and progressive elements. Santiago Kodela, the front man says this about the debut album, “…the only thing for sure is that we do metal, but not metal exclusively. We try to blend different styles, we approach vocals from new perspectives, and we try to offer the audience a new kind of music….” “The Peace Within Loneliness” is on of my favorite tracks. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Svet Kant in your reply.



Infest Cold Blood War (Xtreem Music)  Infest cover This death/thrash metal band out of Serbia may be what some think Vader’s last album should sound like. These guys have two speeds: INSANE and slightly less INSANE. This creates a “sameness” among the tracks that I find repetitive but that may be just what works for you. I would have liked to see more death metal tempo changes down to perhaps a JOG to mix up the break-neck speed because the songs stand alone quite well. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Infest in your reply. Facebook:

Super Fun Happy Slide Drop Your Pants and Grind (Blastafuk Records) SuperHappyFunSlide-artwork Straight out of the Australian grindcore scene, prepare yourself to get nekked and possibly have the fuck beaten outta you. This is in-your-face, Three Stooges kind of grindcore that thumbs its nose at good taste and has a bloody good time while doing it. If you live in a place where one out of every three species of fauna AND flora is liable to kill you, Super Fun Happy Slide is the logical result. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Super Fun Happy Slide in your reply.You can listen to practically the whole album on The Grind Show channel starting with this one:

Nefandus Reality Cleaver (Daemon Worship Productions) Nefandus cover Nefandus, hailing from Sweden, has released its third black metal LP of occult zealotry after a haiutus of almost twenty years. The new album features lyrical contributions from Grim Vindkall (Domgard, Snakeskin Angels), J.K. (Ofermod, Mortuus) and Vaerulv, as well as special vocals done by Thomas Sabbathi (Griftegard and Year of the Goat). This is a trippy offering with interesting time changes, a fast pace, and moaning guitar interludes. Have a listen and tell us what you think. Be sure to include  Nefandus in your reply. And here is some of Nefandus‘ older work: Facebook: ioI.O. Kirkwood is a Metal Descent contributor. You can check out her personal blog at

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