When the hate is not enough, when the knowledge is too small, see the tears of an old wizard…

Yet another week, and the unknowable forces from the spaces between the stars (or the cracks in the earth if you’re more of a subterranean guy/gal) have chosen to reanimate our desiccated corpses. They’ve spoken through us, vomiting forth messages of ruin, and… reviews for metal albums. Sure, why not? Also: an interview with the highly esteemed Herr Rytkonen, fragments of which originally appeared in the Decibel retrospective on Metal Maniacs, unveiled here in its complete form for the first time.

Jake Moran
Raising Holy Sparks – Beyond the Unnamed Bay
United Bible Studies – The Kitchen Session
Circulation of Light – Twilit Homeland
Áine O’Dwyer – Music for Church Cleaners
Bölzer – Aura
Kinit Her – The Cavern Stanzas
Giantkind – Early harvest, late harvest
Circle of Ouroborus – Streams
Sivyj Yar – Towards the Twilight
Desaster – A Touch of Medieval Darkness

Marty Rytkonen Playlist
Thou Art Lord – The Regal Pulse of Lucifer
Walgefluster – “Trauerweide” advance demo tracks
Drowning the Light – The Fading Rays of the Sun
Entombed – Left Hand Path
Finsterforst – Rastlos
Impaled Nazarene – Urga Karma
Imperium Dekadenz – Meadows of Nostalgia
Kampfar – Mellom Skogkledde Aaser
Autopsy – The Headless Ritual
Mercyful Fate – Don’t Break the Oath

Jim Clifton Playlist
At the Gates – The Red In the Sky Is Ours
Massacra – Final Holocaust
Summoning – Let Mortal Heroes Sing Your Flame
Necrophobic – The Nocturnal Silence
W.A.S.P. – s/t & The Last Command
Gorguts – Obscura
Khors – Return to Abandoned
Altar of Plagues – Mammal
Coffins – Buried Death
Morbid Angel – Covenant

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~ by jakemoran on July 17, 2013.

23 Responses to “When the hate is not enough, when the knowledge is too small, see the tears of an old wizard…”

  1. Most youtube reviews suck. I haven’t seen a lot, and there is a reason. There is one in which a group of guys sit on a couch and talk about albums/reviews. They end up not be reviews, but them just bullshitting. And kinda of sexually awkward too. I was thinking Queer Eye for the Metal Guy actually while watching it. youtube is great for finding super obscure stuff though. that is all i use it for. Found a lot of old shit on demo format that was lost over the ages over the last few weeks. Listening to a lot of Vatican Shadow and Emptywhale and other stuff that is non-metal, but what i call Neo-Navigation style.

    Nothing of real high quality coming out lately. NOTHING…. Dry spell…….fine with me. gives me time to reflect on all the shit i have in my man cave!

  2. For those wondering, Evilingus is referring to my post about video review on the Worm Gear FB site: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Worm-Gear-Zine/159875590721323
    I tend to agree with you re: the vast majority of youtube reviews. Like Austin mentioned, I think an artistic pursuit should be analyzed artistically if within a public forum, and taking the time to write down one’s thoughts (speaking for myself, as a biased writer) has more validity, and carries with it more respect for the artist \m/
    I also agree that we are enduring a dry spell for new releases; that and, first and foremost of course, the fact it’s a fucking great album, are the primary reasons I chose to review the new Thou Art Lord 😉

  3. Cool read on MM. I got issues here and there in the mid 90s, then subscribed around ’97 or ’98. I lost interest after the Wagner-Marty Era came to an end; they were alway my two favorite writers and the ones whose tastes and opinions best reflected my own. Outside of death metal, I could be pretty sure that, if Marty or Jeff recommended it, I was gonna dig it.

    Re: online/youtube reviews- I agree with the sentiments expressed. I rarely bother reading reviews anymore and I never watch video reviews; people just slap together a paragraph (or short video) of crap off the top of their head and pass it off. Little-no effort put in, and it shows. To me, reviews are only useful if I understand the reviewer; is this a person who has tastes similar to mine? Is it someone who shills for bands his friends are in? Is it someone who just hates certain styles? Without such context, it’s hard to get much useful info from a review. If some random poster going by Watain_fan69 says the new Gorguts sucks and that Summoning went in a totally different direction on ‘Old Mornings Dawn’, um, should I put any stock into that, or is it just some poser who doesn’t know what the hell he/she is talking about hoping that, if their post count gets high enough, they can achieve Metal God status under their avatar at Metal Archives?

    The easy online access to music has, in a way, circumvented the need for reviews. Why try to discern the motives and tastes of someone writing under the name ‘cold_laker’ when I can just go to youtube and listen to the bloody album for myself? Nevertheless, I do miss the days of having steady reviews written by known quantities, like Wagner, who could provide really useful insight and seemed to possess the same general views on Metal as myself. That’s why I came to the new WG site; I’m not into extreme forms of metal nearly as extensively as Marty, but he’s a ‘known quantity’ whose writing I can trust. And he’s always been a cool guy when we’ve crossed paths on other sites, such as Lapland (sadly long past its prime as a source of info, entertainment, or, well, anything else).

    Since I’m rambling on… I did get to meet both Marty and Jeff over the years. Met Marty briefly at Milwaukee Metalfest ’99 (one of those terrible Koshik fests where half the advertised headliners were never actually booked). Met Jeff at a record show in NC about 10 years ago. That one was funny ’cause I didn’t recognize him at all; we were both digging through boxes of vinyl and ended up talking for awhile since he was contemplating purchasing a copy of Witchfynde’s ‘Cloak and Dagger’, which I noticed and which happens to be an old favorite of mine. Wasn’t until a week or so later when a mutual friend mentioned Jeff had gone to the record show and talked to some guy about Witchfynde that I put 2 and 2 together 🙂

  4. Well, I wouldn’t agree that reviews have lost their value; usefulness of YouTube as a vehicle for decision-making notwithstanding, I personally can’t count how many times – even within the last few years of this current digital era – reviewers a) described an album or artist I’d never have known about otherwise with such fervor that I felt compelled to dig further and/or b) brought up a fresh perspective on an album I’d previously dismissed, only for me to then put the record on my playlist. Time-saving may be a critical factor in music buying decision-making, and we have avenues such as YouTube for that, but I think – for me, at least – an instant thumbs up or down on sonic art means risking missing out on a creation that may have lasting meaning for the listener. Good to hear your thoughts, however, and for whatever reason – Marty or otherwise – we appreciate your support of Worm Gear \m/

  5. Good points. Maybe I’m biased b/c I’ve found no reviewers in recent years whose opinions really mesh with my own. There may be some good ones out there lost in the sea of online reviews.

    Written descriptions of music can always be tough to decipher, so it’s just easier to go ahead and listen for oneself. You are right that this approach can cause someone to rush to judgement and dismiss an album too quickly as they hurridly move on to the next d/l, link, or video. Music comes pretty free ‘n easy currently, but people don’t appreciate things that are free and easy. I think Marty once described it as ‘disposable music mentality’ or something like that. Before Napster blew the doors open, folks tended to study/analyze recordings (including written descriptions of them) in more detail since it took more work- purchases or tape trades- to acquire them.

    Reminds me, I gotta check out that new Gorguts some more

  6. Yeah, I can really understand both sides (Jim’s and Nightsblood). I don’t even read anymore reviews, expect here. I loathe most places. They have all been replaced by young ignorant and arrogant hipsters it seems–the music-wikipedia experts. Nothing against the youth at all, but there is a seemingly large disposition at hand they don’t realize and therefore should respect. That would be growing up with styles and genres, and really feeling and experiencing how they developed makes a HUGE difference. There is just something there in experience and being ‘there’ and apart of it, that makes it all so much more valuable and knowledgable. If I attack something new that is really superfluous, it is expected to see a young little shit counter with the typical argument: “yeah, you all think only the old stuff is good and nothing else and are close minded and don’t know any better, blah blah blah”. There is some partial truth there, but he/she couldn’t be more wrong about being open-minded. No, I don’t like you just because you are wearing white sneakers, play a v-guitar and wear a bullet belt yelling and screaming like it is such a novel cool thing, nor do I like you because you are playing super heavy sludgy doom guitars with a whining lady or creepy Ozzy singer. Get fucked, you and all the band wagon-no-creative-boring-sheeple-ass losers that really don’t no shit about shit or how to bring anything new to the table. And maybe I don’t like you because you are just another tragic accident of a black metal band that really should of never existed. Make that 10,000 of them! And maybe that extra Death Metal band that does the same fucking thing the guy next door does sucks too. That ain’t closed minded folks, that is just knowing your shit. Right? AHHH!! Rant finish. Hulk feel better. Now go rub one out and call er a night! hahaha

  7. I like reviews. They’re still a good way to get clued in on albums you might have otherwise missed. There are thoughtful and perceptive reviewers around if you know where to look, and their insights into the craft, history, and art of specific albums and music in general are rewarding enough for me. I can see why reviews wouldn’t serve a useful or interesting function for a lot of people. That’s fine. I think it’s easy to over-think these things.

  8. and hear is an example of me going to actually give the Thou Art Lord a real try and listen cause Jim said it was “fucking awesome”. I otherwise wouldn’t have. So there is still merit in listening to others, and alas, yes, they must have some inkling of similar tastes. I am being redundant here though.

  9. I like reviews a lot. That is; when they’re well written. And that’s where the majority fails: not everyone with and opinion is a good reviewer. “An artistic pursuit should be analyzed artistically” like Jim said so well. Writing about music is hard (a wise man once said that talking about music is like dancing about architecture) and takes skill (I know, since you’ll find some reviews of my own scattered on the net from before I decided I should leave reviewing to better men than me).
    A well written, insightful review can inform me about a certain record in ways a quick listen on the internet can not. Man, not long ago I did almost all my buying based on reviews in (real, paper) magazines and more trivial things like what the album cover looked like and if I liked the band name and song titles…
    Hell, I can vividly remember the cover of Kill ’em All staring at me from the shelves in the store (not when it was first released mind you, I turned 6 in 1983) when I was 13 and thinking “that must be the most awesome, incredible, sinister and HEAVY thing I’ve ever heard”. And after scraping pennies for a couple of weeks I bought it and it was everything the cover suggested…

    Reviewing on youtube? Never seen it, sounds like something idiots who like to see their own face and hear their own voice would do. Fuck ‘m.

    Oh, and playlist:
    Ulcerate – all albums
    Gorguts – all albums
    These two band make excellent playlistpartners I’ve found out.
    Adversarial – All Idols Fall Before the Hammer
    Adversarial – Prophetic Plain of Abyssal Revelation
    Nuclearhammer – Obliteration Ritual
    Nuclearhammer/Begrime Exemious – Heretical Serpent Cult split
    Canned Heat & John Lee Hooker – Hooker ‘n’ Heat
    My first proper introduction to John Lee Hooker stompin’ his feet, bashing his one-chord guitar lines and hollerin’ the blues, excellent!
    The Vandermark 5 – A Discontinuous Line

  10. I don’t know Jimbo….Not feeling the new Thou Art Lord. Seemed like average cool Greek Black to me. Nothing wrong with it, but just too difficult to stack appropriately against against old Rotting Christ, Varathron and Necromantia (pre-official 1st album releases for all 3). Because that is really what Thou Art Lord is, an amalgation of these 3 bands, IMO. And none of these bands have put out anything truly dark, abyssic and evil in decades. Soooo….anyways….hehehe….

  11. If you want trully excellent Greek Black, I would suggest Ysengrin’s latest on I,Voidhanger. That is a masterpiece.

  12. “pre-official 1st album releases for all 3”

  13. Is that a really complicated way of saying “demos”?

  14. no, because they aren’t all demos. MLP, EP and demos. eh….to the others: perhaps if you listened to this stuff from the get go you would see it a different way.

  15. and 7″‘s. read up sucka

  16. I can read, homie. Unfortunately we can’t all be O.G. old skool die hard underground unholier than thou ancient greek black metal like you… For us new jacks Thou Art Lord is fine though.

  17. I have heard the early works of all 3 bands, and it’s all great. Where you’re wrong is in suggesting that His Majesty at the Swamp, Thy Mighty Contract, and Crossing the Fiery Path (not to mention Scarlet Evil Witching Black) aren’t the natural culmination of those demos. And total classics. I wouldn’t want to kvlt myself out of listening to those very regularly….

  18. So I am now being attacked as some kvlt asshole (why spelled with a K, come on. You spell it that way, I never have), because of my experiences and opinions? Did I imply you are newbies that don’t know shit from shit? No…I only suggested that I feel differently about something because I grew up wit it. It wasn’t an attack on my end, but it was yours. Read my above long statement again. This is exactly the typical shit you hear when I bring up my experience and opinions on Metal. So you both can get fucked.

  19. Instead of telling us to get fucked you could wonder if it’s something in the way you express those opinions. If, like you said earlier, you experience this “shit you hear when I bring up my experience and opinions on Metal” more often…
    And man, you sure get pissed off easily.

  20. Well, you came off in a bit of a passive aggressive way with the whole ‘kvlt’ stuff. I am not just here to whip out my proverbial playlist dick, but to discuss and yes, debate. So there ya have it. And I think my ‘get fucked’ comment was very appropriate, principally because you deranged my opinion into an attack on my just being “kvlt” and not embracing anything new, which is far from anything from the truth. So these kind of comments and insinuations are cheap simplistic ways of discounting opinions, and it really really pisses me off.

  21. As far as Thou Art Lord, it’s precisely the fact that the new Rotting Christ has little to nothing to do with where they were in the past that I like ‘The Regal Pulse of Lucifer’ so much. I feel that the album represents what would have been their actual 2013 record if RC’s technological interests had never taken hold. And while I thoroughly enjoy Non Serviam, Passage to Arcturo, Thy Mighty Contract, and the demos I’ve heard now, I wasn’t into them when those albums dropped, though I appreciate them all immensely at this stage in my Metal evolution. So when newer bands like Sacriphyx take that Greek BM influence, throw some inspiring guitar lines and fresh perspectives on what has come before, I’m relieved rather than insulted on the continuation of that legacy. Having said that, I do understand that if you have lived with those sounds for over 20 years, it may be hard to hear anything but a ‘rehash’. But maybe that’s the blessing for those of us that discovered things somewhat later, the lens is opened a little wider without an emotional attachment – which is your blessing from it 😉

  22. That is a fair statement that I can very much agree with. I was so close to Passage to Arcturo and the Ades Winds demo, then came ‘Thy Mighty Contract’, and it was so clean, with programmed drums, and a bigger production. It was a humongous let down. However, had I heard Thy Mighty Contract first, I wouldn’t have known that attachment and earlier understanding of Rotting Christ, and perhaps would have throughly enjoyed it? I don’t know. The drums and clean sound of it really killed it for me. Hard to know the other way around honestly.

  23. bwhahahaha. i just noticed the Rodney video. Dude that is funny. Classic

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