Time weighs heavy on shoulders of the brave

A week of absence has inspired a renewed inspiration. Maybe it’s the promise of spring? Whatever magics have brought us this eve, we gather in the Northland again, sans Mr. Clifton, to share with you another week of critical reviews. This is a special week, for not only has “Seldom seen” Jake returned, The Worm realm would like to introduce Jack Hannert to the fold of friends/writers that you folks journey from near and far to read every week. We are pleased to have his vast musical knowledge here for all of you to enjoy and exploit. He is one of us and we look forward to having even more talent to contribute to this weekly forum when either Jim or myself is unable to contribute.

This week we pose the question of sound quality. As we hang out at Mr. Jack’s this evening, spin beyond lo-fi black metal recordings, and unanimously agree that crust and anti production values is still a good thing. How do bands get modern recordings to sound so bad? It is a cult mystery. What are your thoughts on horrendous (on purpose) recordings? Keep it slick? Crust is a must? Or is it a non issue, just focus on the music? We want to know. Oh yeah… your playlist would also be required or do not entry! -Marty

Jack Hannert Playlist
Falls of Rauros – The Light That Dwells in Rotten Wood
Ulaan Passerine – Byzantium Crow
Galdr – Ancient Lights From the Stars
Wardruna – Runaljod – Yggdrasil
Master Musicians of Bukkake – Far West
Forteresse – Crepuscle D’Octobre
Wolvserpent – Perigaea Antahkarana
Blood of the Black Owl – A Feral Spirit
Waldteufel – Rauhnacht
Steven R Smith/Ulaan Khol – Ending/Returning

Jake Moran Playlist
Armanenschaft – Psychedelic Winter
Tim Hecker – Virgins
Skogen – Vittra
Graveland – The Celtic Winter
Horrid Red – Nightly Wreaths
The Caretaker – Patience (After Sebald)
Ulaan Passerine – Byzantium Crow
Rudi Arapahoe – Double Bind
Teenage Panzerkorps – Games For Slaves
Conjuror – Left Hand Path Of The Conjuror

Marty Rytkonen Playlist
Slough Feg – Atavism
Ifing – Against this Weald
Stilla – Ensamhetens andar
Astrophobos – Remnants of Forgotten
Bak De Syv Fjell – S/T
Doomsword – My Name will Live on
Drowning the Light – The Fading Rays of the Sun
Drowning the LIght – An Alignment of Dead Stars
Arghoslent – Incorrigible Bigotry
Passage d’Hiver – S/T

Jim Clifton Playlist
Woman Is The Earth – This Place That Contains My Spirit
Howls of Ebb – Vigils of the 3rd Eye
Beyond – Fatal Power of Death
Black Sabbath – The Mob Rules
Skelethal – Deathmanicvs Revelation
Overkill – Taking Over
Thergothon – Streams from the Heavens
Thulcandra – Fallen Angel’s Dominion
Dokken – Under Lock and Key
Celtic Frost – To Mega Therion


~ by martyworm on March 26, 2014.

10 Responses to “Time weighs heavy on shoulders of the brave”

  1. Nice SLOUGH FEG reference, Marty.

    Haven’t commented on these lately since I realized my listening moves in monthly cycles (or greater). Would hate to bore anybody to bloody tears. Here’s a few anyway:

    MINISTRY — With Sympathy (random find, random recommendation. I can geek to cheese-synths no problem.)
    SLOUGH FEG — Traveller; Down Among the Deadmen
    HELSTAR — A Distant Thunder
    DOMAINS — Sinister Ceremonies
    JUDAS PRIEST — Defenders of the Faith
    MYTHOS — Pain Amplifier (I used to tote this as a quasi-classic, but it didn’t ring so true this time.)
    MYSTIC FORCE — Shipwrecked with the Wicked (Check this out on Youtube. Almost 100 percent Awaken the Guardian worship…bizarre.)

    And tippled heavily for heavy metal sing-along. Hell yeah.


  2. And to answer the QotW: Render unto the necro that which is necro. Keep it organic always.

    Black metal already had its reformation and counter-reformation circa 1996-1999. After that schism that question in particular was settled as far as I can tell once the necro-Catholics made it doctrine.

  3. Rokken with Dokken Jim…nice!

    That Ifing album sounds promising and I’m really having a hard time waiting for the Falls/Panopticon split.

    Svolder – Desecration of the Five Holy Pillars
    Morbus Chron – Sweven
    Death – Human
    Cynic – Focus
    Legend – Death in the Nursery (A fav NWOBHM album of mine)
    Believer – Dimensions
    Rainbow – Rising
    Waldgefluster – Meine Fessein
    Vspolokh – Sorrow of the Past
    GWAR – Scumdogs of the Universe

    I think there is a time and a place for a raw, crusty production and a time and place for a clean, crisp production. Just depends on what style the bands are playing and what they are trying to convey with their sound.

  4. Sound quality rarely plays a part in my consumption of music, from a production standpoint that is. Some bands sound better with a full on production while others sound better with a crusty lo-fi approach. Where quality does come into play for me is in mp3s at low bitrates. There is a distinct difference in quality if you ask me and since my main form of music consumption is digital I tend to go for the highest quality mp3 or audio file I can get.

    Katatonia – Brave Murder Day
    Katatonia – Dead End Kings
    Morbus Chron – Sweven
    Cara Neir – The Overwatch EP
    Gwar – Scumdogs of the Universe
    Cormorant – Earth Diver
    Fluisteraars – Dromers
    Massacre – Back From Beyond
    Sargeist – Feeding the Crawling Shadows
    Dark Tranquility – A Memory Construct EP
    Thou – Heathen
    Sun Worship – Elder Giants
    Krigsgrave – Lux Capta Est
    Chuck Ragan – Till Midnight
    Heretoir – Substanz
    Triptykon – Eparistera Daimones
    Thränenkind – The Elk
    Carpe Noctem – In Terra Profugus
    Angist – Circle of Suffering
    Galdr – Ancient Lights From the Stars
    Gorguts – Colored Sands
    Vspolokh – Sorrow of the Past
    Falls of Rauros – The Light That Dwells in Rotten Wood
    Woods of Desolation – As The Stars
    Oak Pantheon/Amiensus – Gathering Split
    Obsequiae – Suspended in the Brume of Eos

  5. @Neil…I’ll check out the Mystic Force. AtG is one of my favorites, so kinda curious to listen based on your comment.

    Dub Buk – Taking you On! & Rus Above All!
    Scanner – Terminal Earth. Inferior to Hypertrace…but still fun
    Morbus Chron- Sweven – Like the Tribulation album from last year, I enjoy the long periods of instrumental sections on this. Too many bands today sing over everything.
    Cult of Fire – The Sanskrit title one…
    Desecresy – The Doom Skeptron
    New Light Choir – Volume II
    Morbid Angel – Domination – Otherworldly and Supreme Solos from Mr. Trey…

  6. I tend to favor the lo-fi “warmer” productions. Although I do like quite a few of the newer hard-hitting productions on some of these tech-death albums I find the sharpness of the tones is hard on my ears after a while. The volume I’m listening to them at may have something to do with that as well 🙂

    Asgard – To A Golden Age
    Gigan – Multi-Dimensional Fractal Sorcery & Super Science
    Lunar Reign – Magnum Opus
    Theory In Practice – Colonize the Sun
    Philosopher – Superior to All Experiences
    Buddy Rich – Stick It!
    George Russell – The Essence of George Russell
    Aurora Borealis – World Shapers
    Fluisterwoud – Langs Galg En Rad
    Sammath – Godless Arrogance
    Sacramentary Abolishment – The Distracting Stone
    Medicine Death – As A vigorous & Lustful Figure
    Embrionic Death – Regurgitated Stream of Rot

  7. Awesome to see someone mention Sacramentary Abolishment – The Distracting Stone. I love that album. Often interpreted as messy, ‘forced’, etc. I think it just screams HONEST, raw, and unbridled. The track MIST is an all-time favorite.

    Ok, here we go …

    While I would be the first to admit that a ‘proper’
    production has the ability to elevate great material to
    amazing levels of profundity, I would never be so foolish
    as to say that a recording cannot be great without a
    ‘proper’ production. Looking back at a lot of my favorite
    music of the past couple decades … much of it has what
    many would consider to be ‘horrible’ production, even when
    genre standards are taken into consideration.
    The music I enjoy seems to have more to do with the actual
    painting and not so much to do with the perfect
    canvas/frame. I would have to say, if made to choose,
    that because I prefer a more rustic and natural sounding
    production … tally one more for crust / anti-production.

    Which leads me to the first item in my recent playlist:


    Owl’s Blood – all

    These need to get pressed again. Larger quantities, on CD please.

    Winds of Garden – Dusze martwych drzew
    Great demo from ’99. A quick glance at YouTube only
    shows one clip, with very poor sound when compared to the
    CS I have. It at least gives a shadow of an idea for
    those who might not know them yet. Although I transferred my to CDR years ago, I’d love to see someone officially release this on CD.

    From the same circles, also spinning:
    Minas Morgul – Wilderness Shrouded in Winds
    Same here. Someone please officially issue a CD of this raw ‘time capsule’.
    Perunwit- all early works

    Night, All. Until next …

  8. Glad you appreciated the Dokken hail 😉 Great voice from DD, great guitar playing from George Lynch; the cheesy lyrics just add to the Friday night fun! Also, always love to see any Death album on the list; I remember hearing “Lack of Comprehension” for the first time and being completely blown way by where Chuck had taken his sound and musicianship. Ballsy move that alienated some, but I loved it from the first \m/

  9. That Mystic Force was awesome … I started the full album video up, and listened to the entire thing nonstop. Great call!
    As for production, for the longest time (mostly in my more ‘mainstream’ period), I really appreciated a ‘pro’ production, but as I delved deeper into the darker realms, my focus on the music over ‘studio magic’ – and the freedom from ‘studio money-grubbing’ that colder and/or organic recordings gave to musicians – conspired to tweak my tastes to the raw. I still love clean production in the classics (ie, ‘Rust In Peace’, ‘Reign In Blood’, ‘Painkiller’, etc, etc) but these days – unless the music tickles my fancy to the nth degree – the sharp, compressed, modern approaches ache my earholes. \m/

  10. Jim you were nearly coined as Jim “rokken with dokken” Clifton in that playlist last week, but i stayed my hand 😉

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