Album of the Day: Exhaustion – Demo

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Label: COF Records

It’s a real shame that Exhaustion went no further than releasing a single demo. Said demo was a short blast of blackened hardcore fury, moving with relentless fury and viciousness. A relatively brief affair – over and done within 12 minutes – it still contained more than enough power and quality to show that the band were capable of much bigger things over an extended period. Alas, it seems that is not to be, as the band have seemingly not so much split up, but drifted away.

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Album of the Day: Coffin Rot – Demo

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Label: Rotted Life

Malignant Records have, for a few years now, been one of the leading names in dark ambient, drone, and death industrial; so, it’s exciting to see them branching out in to death metal with new label Rotted Life. Their first offering on the label is the self-titled demo from Coffin Rot, a dirty, filth-encrusted four song onslaught of pure old-school filth. If you’re in to death metal that sounds like a horde of zombies eating the world alive, heavy with the stench of decay and rot, then you’ll want to be all over this like… well, like zombies over guts.

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Album of the Day: Deus Vermin – MMXVII (Demo)

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Label: Self-released

Clocking in at a short six minutes, the debut demo by Leeds-based band Deus Vermin is a whirlwind of blackened death metal, full of destructive urges given license to run free and wreak havoc. The two tracks on MMXVII are incredibly well-realised for a demo, with a compositional strength that many bands writing full-lengths would kill for; and they’re all wrapped up in an atmosphere that is both murky and strong, allowing every bone-crushing drum hit and skin-shredding guitar line to come through clearly, whilst keeping enough obscured to still feel dark and ominous. It’s a very impressive start for this band, and well worth your time.

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Album of the Day: Formerly a Genius – Demo 17

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Label: Self-released

Are there any phrases that will cause music fans to recoil in fear in the same way that “experimental screamo project” will? Probably, yeah; but then you listen to the first demo from Formerly a Genius, and your reaction is likely to be either to embrace this three-song release like the best thing ever made; or to flee in utter horror. Six months on from first hearing it, and I’m still not sure what I think of it; sometimes it’s the greatest demo ever made, other days it sounds like an utter catastrophe. Either way, it’s not the kind of music that invites apathy.

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Album of the Day: Ante-Inferno – A Dream of the Devil

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Label: UKEM Records

The debut live demo/EP from Ante-Inferno, A Dream of the Devil, is every bit as cold and grim as you’d hope for from a record with such a name. Tapping in to that same sense of grandeur and melancholy as fellow English bands Winterfylleth and Wodensthrone, with more than a hint of early Ulver’s nature-based mysticism to its atmosphere, A Dream of the Devil is the kind of record that demonstrates all that is good with modern atmospheric black metal, and the so-called English Heritage black metal movement that sprang up a few years ago.

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Album of the Day: Feral Nun – Demo Tape

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Label: Negate Everything

Rough, raw, and with everything pushed in to the red, the demo tape from Feral Nun is a 10 minute riot of gothic post-punk. Crude in the best possible way, this is the what Bauhaus or Joy Division would have sounded like were they even more strung-out on anxiety and desperation than was already true, spitting out shorts bursts of violence and catharsis. In short, it’s bloody great.

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Review: Baron Soil – Demo Tape

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Label: Negate Everything

It’s easy to feel angry and hopeless these days, what with the political shitstorms that are Trump, Brexit, and the rise of corporations controlling our lives like some quietly creeping dystopian sci-fi plot. On their demo tape, Baron Soil provide the perfect soundtrack for such anger and circumstances, channeling their rage in to four short tracks of melodic crust, that move with real purpose and urgency. It’s short, fast, and leaves me wanting more – just as a demo should.

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