Issue One June 1st 2020 Headshot Music Industrial - Metal - Electronic - Alternative

Reality's Despair EBM / Dark Electro from Belgium Melancholic Disposition: available on cd and digital https://www.facebook.com/realitysdespair/ https://realitysdespair.bandcamp.com/album/melancholic-disposition

Metatron Interview: Page 22 Metal Reviews Pages 10 to 19 Including our Album of the Month, from Green Carnation EBM / Industrial Reviews pages 20 and 21 Alphamay and Zwaremachine Pro Patria Interview Page 6

Welcome to the first edi�on of the Headshot Music digital magazine. This is more of a test issue, as I’ve only been using the so�ware for a couple of weeks, and I’ve not had �me to make a full-sized magazine. So over �me, a few ideas will develop, as will the look of the mag… So in this issue, there’s a couple of interviews, and a dozen or so reviews. From July there will be a Punk column, a regular World Cinema feature, scene reports, news updates etc… and we’ll �e in a few features via radio broadcasts and podcasts… So plenty to look forward to… hopefully… So why am I doing this magazine? Well, I’ve been in lockdown since the first week of March. The “Boss Lady” has asthma, so we can’t take any chances, health wise, so we’ll probably be in lockdown un�l September, as things stand now. No-one knows how this pandemic will play out, but we have to err on the side of cau�on. In the first 3 months of lockdown, I’ve managed to completely fuck up my sleep pa�ern, which is just now returning to normal. A�ernoon naps are on the way out. I put on 7lbs in the first month, due to my not very fantas�c diet and as I have no set rou�ne, I’ve become extremely lazy. So this magazine is mainly to give me a set rou�ne. I’ve worked from home for almost 10 years and I always had set work �mes, but it didn’t take long for that to unravel. Now with the magazine, I’ll hopefully improve my mental health, as well as promo�ng some good music. Finance wise, I have to go with the cheapest op�on for now. So a free download via DropBox and an online version, supported by (the hos�ng company) site adverts. As I write this, I’ve not used the online op�on yet, so I hope that works out ok. In �me, as financial burdens are removed, I can create a sexy looking flip book version, but that’s a fewmonths away. Content wise, there aren’t a lot of rules. If I like it, I’ll include it, basically. But the core of the magazine will be a mix of Metal, Industrial and EBM. As I’ve men�oned there will be a regular Punk feature and we’ll dip our toes into the Alterna�ve scene. But if, for example, The Specials released a new album, I’ll happily review that alongside Slayer, or Nick Cave. I’ve changed my mind so many �mes over this, but the magazine will be monthly, out on the 1st . And then a�er that, it’ll be July 1st , August 1st etc… of each month (because that’s easier to remember). But as I didn’t have �me to make a full sized mag this month, there will be an extra issue out on June 15th If you want to get in touch with me over anything, all the contact details are on page 31. So many thanks for checking out Issue One… and if you like what you see, please spread the word Cheers Steve June 1st 2020

Chmcl Str8jckt Outlaw Industrial Rock WRTCH RMXS : NEW EP Outlaw Industrial...dark, sinister, heavy synth/guitar sounds, drawing inspiration from early industrial and metal scenes. https://www.facebook.com/chmclstr8jckt/ https://chmclstr8jkt.bandcamp.com/

5 Ques�ons With…. Peter V of Pro Patria Interview by Steve Thomas-Green You’re from Belgium, but live in Italy. How has it been during the lockdown. Or has it been quiet for you up in the mountains? Apart from you making lots of newmusic… I consider myself very lucky to have moved to a fairly remote part of the Italian Apennines because for us life hasn’t changed very much. We were able to go out, had ample breathing space and the queues at the li�le supermarket nearby were never more than three to four people. For those living in the ci�es or more urban areas things got a lot worse. Actually, up to two years ago my wife and I were s�ll living in a small flat and I dare not imagine what it must’ve been like being confined to such a small space for two months without being allowed to go out unless for urgent necessi�es such as doing the groceries or going to the pharmacy. My thoughts go out to all who haven’t been as fortunate. People might not know this about you, but you have an Au�s�c side… as well as ar�s�c one. We have the same in my family, so I know exactly how it is… but how does it affect your music? Are you a perfec�onist and how do you know when to stop, when crea�ng a song? Being au�s�c has its advantages and disadvantages and over the years I have learned to appreciate this part of me which I used to see as an adversary. One quality au�s�c people have is that they tend to excel in a few very specific passions and have the insa�able desire to exploit them, talk about them (contrary to popular belief, many au�s�c people are �reless talkers… when it comes to the right subject) or learn everything they can about them. One of my “islands of interest” is music, obviously, and it drives me to work long hours without ever taking a break, not just in the studio but constantly… in my head… un�l I’m overcome by fa�gue. Everything needs to be perfect. Unfortunately I’m also very impa�ent and o�en I throw a song on-line because I’m so enthusiast about it and can’t wait to hear what others have to say about it. And then… I hear a small glitch or error or something that I have to change. Other people tell me that they don’t hear the difference at all and that it’s all fine the way it is, but I hear it and it annoys me and it haunts me in my sleep un�l I’ve mended it. So I send version 2.0… 3.0… 55.0… and have to apologise for the inconvenience etcetera. Sigh. Lyrics are normally a very personal thing, but I’d like to focus on Into the Deep (mix with an Yperite twist). Which I believe you wrote in rela�on to WW1 and your Belgium homeland. Do you have a lightbulb moment and think you must write a song about a certain subject? Or do you think of subjects to fit around the music you’ve created… a very long winded way of saying “how do you write your sings” ha ha ha. And what made you want to write about this subject? Usually the music comes first and then the lyrics. Actually, I seriously dislike wri�ng and recording lyrics because I’m always terrified by the thought that the words might ruin the music. In a song, the lyrics are just as important as the music and they can either make or break it.

“Into the Deep” was one of the very few excep�ons, where I took exis�ng lyrics, the Wilfred Owen poem Dulce et Decorum Est Pro Patria Mori, and built the music around them. The mo�va�on here was two-fold. I felt that something needed to be set straight about the band name because some people consider it fascist. Mussolini, not being very fluent in La�n, had indeed used Horace’s words for his own goals, completely misunderstanding what “Pro Patria” was all about. More importantly, I wanted to talk about war and the horror that only we humans are capable of. I was born and raised in Flanders, not in its infamous fields but close enough to have been touched by the heritage of World War One from a very tender age. The memory of the so-called Great War resides in the shadows of World War Two because the la�er was of course more recent, much be�er documented, on a much more global scale and there was of course the monstrous holocaust which must never be forgo�en. Regre�ably, this has made many people forget about the First World War, which was in all likelihood even worse. The small strip of land that goes fromWestern Flanders throughout Northern France was transformed into the biggest slaughterhouse in history where soldiers were sent off on useless bayonet charges against machine guns every day and when things got really bad, such as at the Somme or in Passendaele, they died in eighty thousand in one single a�ack. That’s a city like Bath being annihilated completely… in one or two hours, just in a failed a�empt to conquer a plot of land the width of a football field! The worst thing about it, however, was that the generals, who resided in luxurious castles and never saw the front lines nearby, didn’t learn or didn’t care. To them it was all about the greater honour and glory of the na�on and they simply dispatched the soldiers on yet another suicide a�ack the next morning. To give you an idea of the sheer madness, it is es�mated that in that small strip of land and during those four years of war about one and a half BILLION ar�llery shells were fired. One and a half billion! If you want to see all of that piled up, that’s twenty �mes the great pyramid of Giza! About twenty per cent of those didn’t even explode and got buried in the bo�omless mud, resurfacing many decades later. Even today, more than a century later, two hundred and fi�y tonnes of World War One bombs are s�ll being found each year in that small corner of �ny Flanders alone and people s�ll die when they accidentally run over one of them. I just had to write a song about it to confront humanity with what we’ve become. We are capable of greatness such as the work of Bach, Da Vinci or Maxwell, but those seem only insignificantly small dots of light compared to all the evil we’ve caused and are s�ll causing.

I know you play live with Pro Patria... so how do you work things. Is it just you for the studio side and do you use the same band all the �me for concerts, or is it more of a collec�ve of friends? And do you have to think of the live side when crea�ng a song in the studio? Pro Patria’s had a very mixed composi�on over �me, especially during the early years and at one �me we’ve even had a female singer for a short while. I guess that I’m the only constant and nowadays it’s just me crea�ng the music and lyrics and doing produc�on and mastering. When the band returned to the scene three years ago a�er an invita�on to play at the well-known Familientreffen Fes�val, it was just me on stage, hopping from the frontstage mic to a keyboard on the side and back. It didn’t really work out very well, to my opinion, so I started looking for assistance. When I then got invited to play at the gigan�c W-Fes�val, I eventually found two Facebook friends willing to help me out: Sebas�en Blondwülf (Wülf 7) on keys and Jérémie Venganza (Super Dragon Punch) on percussion. It was a bit of a risk because the W-Fes�val was the most important gig Pro Patria had ever played and… we had never actually met un�l the a�ernoon we all arrived at the fes�val’s back stage. Strangely enough, there was a sparkle of magic between the three of us and it turned out to be the best Pro Patria gig ever, and there have been quite a few. Therefore I hope that my two buddies will be willing to con�nue their assistance in the years to come because it feels really good having them next to me on stage and I also hope that they feel the same about it. Of course, every �me I create a song I already imagine what it must be like doing it live, although it’s certainly not a prerequisite. Some of the songs I’mmost fond of from a musical perspec�ve, such as “The Insignificance of Time” or “Death of a Friend”, probably won’t work out well on stage, but I don’t care. My main mo�va�on is to try to create something beau�ful, something that’s musically interes�ng and may even be called art. Well, let me emphasise the word “try”. If people like it, than that’s a bonus and if they go berserk whilst we’re playing it live then I’ve achieved everything I’ve ever wanted. Next year will be 30 years since your first Pro Patria demos (sorry if that makes you feel old). Obviously technology has changed a lot since then, as has life in general... especially now. How do you look back upon those �mes… and will you marking the occasion by maybe doing a tape release in 2021? Or even a re-issue of Spasma�cae? Actually, we recorded our very first demo tape in November 1988 already, so it’s almost thirty-two years. :-)

I actually look back upon those �mes with extremely mixed feelings. On one hand we were having a lot of fun, even though personally I took things way to seriously right from the start and forgot to simply enjoy it somewhat. On the other I felt extremely frustrated because I had so many ideas buzzing around in my head and was technically bound to the very limited equipment we could afford, which was basically a Roland D20 synth, an effects processor and a couple of small drum pads. Not really the kit needed to make a big impression on record labels. Studio �me was even much more expensive back then than it is today and so it took us un�l 1993 to find the right opportunity and the necessary funds to create Spasma�cae in a professional studio. Nowadays you can already make great-sounding music with a modest PC and some free so�ware and therefore making music has become something that’s accessible to all. As regards to your ques�on about a tape release, I don’t think so. I’m aware that the tape market seems to be booming lately, but it seems more a kind of strange, nostalgic hype rather than something that has a real ar�s�c value. Ever since the eigh�es and the incredible standard that was raised by top producers such as Trevor Horn, the quality of the sound has become just as important as the quality of the music. Mixing and mastering techniques have evolved light years and I’m s�ll trying to catch up as much as I can about this extremely delicate and complex part of music produc�on, hoping that every new CD sounds be�er and more professional than the previous. So my million pound ques�on is: why bother spending weeks to even months trying to make something sound as well as possible, only to put it on tape a�erwards with the dreadful impact this has on sound quality? Spasma�cae had already been re-recorded, remixed and remastered for a large part when we created “Quod Erat Demonstrandum”, so I don’t really see the need to re-issue it. Clearly, my brain works like that of an ar�st, not like that of someone who’s great at making money. That being said, I could give your readers a premiere by announcing that I’ve recently found the original digital master tapes of both “Spasma�cae” and “Veni Vidi Vici”. I’m s�ll searching for the “Militaria” master but it must be around somewhere. I am planning on looking for someone who’s able to create digital files from those DAT tapes and will put those on-line instead of the current versions which were all derived from an ordinary casse�e. Probably they won’t be published on CD, however, because they’re too old to my opinion and they’re not something I’m par�cularly proud of now. “Quod Erat Demonstrandum”, on the other hand, is. Thanks for your �me Peter… please feel free to plug your music and website…. h�ps://propatria.bandcamp.com/ h�p://www.propatria.be h�ps://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPk9gzXnnUSYeyAMwq2NgRA

Album of the Month: Supported by NAR-METAL https://nar-sanktaugustin.de/nar-metal-radio/

ALBUMOF THE MONTH Green Carna�on: Leaves of Yesteryear (Season of Mist) Review by Sam Thomas Some bands you listen to all the �me, serving as a soundtrack to your life to the extent that you blank them out. Green Carna�on are the complete opposite of that for me. I can’t listen to themwithout giving themmy full a�en�on: their music is such an intense emo�onal experience. Leaves of Yesteryear is described by the record label as being par�ally a retrospect on the band’s career: the album cover art certainly looks like something from a bygone era (not a bad thing, before you ask). There is a selec�on of tracks old and new, with a reworking of “My Dark Reflec�ons of Life and Death” from the debut album, back in 2000, “Journey To The End Of The Night” which in its new form comes in at two minutes shorter and minus the female vocals. There’s also a rather interes�ng choice of cover track, Black Sabbath’s “Solitude”. It’s actually a very interes�ng idea for a band that have gone through the usual upheavals, split up for a bit and now are back together again. If the inten�on was to give an example of both how far they have come and the range of their talents, then in my opinion they have succeeded beyond measure. Opener and �tle track “Leaves of Yesteryear” kicks things off with mul�-layered melancholy and some beau�ful lyrics (which is something of a Green Carna�on trademark). Of course there’s some pre�y heavy guitar in the background as well. “Sen�nels” follows, by which �me your ears are in for an uncompromising heavy ba�ering straight from the outset. And it’s catchy as hell, so be prepared to find yourself headbanging along. I can also report that for me it also became a bit of an earworm (and an unusually pleasant one at that!) I was a bit surprised when I read the track list to see that they had chosen to do a new recording of “My Dark Reflec�ons of Life and Death” as I didn’t think it was outstanding. I’ll s�ck by that, but only with regard to the original version. The new one is just amazing! I am so glad that they decided to rework it – it totally eclipses the original. There is more depth and more power, more anguish crammed into a slightly shorter version (only a couple of minutes have been trimmed, but it seems to �ghten it up quite a lot). Also, and this plays to my personal preferences, the female vocals have been dropped, which has the added effect of making a much more compelling version. The other big surprise was that Green Carna�on have chosen to do a cover version of “Solitude”, the Black Sabbath track. Although, when I think it through, it really shouldn’t have been a surprise at all. The Sabbath version is one of those strange heartbreaking ballads that always has me wondering (and apparently everyone else as well) whether Ozzy was the vocalist or not. For the record, Sabbath have stated that it was Ozzy. The Green Carna�on version is haun�ngly beau�ful, sending shivers down my spine every �me I hear it. There are some perfect single keyboard notes dropped into it, like pebbles into a deep mountain lake that ripple through the track. Kje�l Nordhus’ vocals are outstanding (as they are throughout the album). This is a tremendously accomplished albumwhich showcases a breadth of musical talent that cannot be easily �ed to any genre. Pick any word from prog, dark, death and add metal any you will have covered part of it. And if you want to chuck in doom as well, I won’t argue. This is brilliant, you need no category beyond that! www.greencarna�onmusic.com www.facebook.com/greencarna�onnorway

Astral Sleep - Astral DoomMusick Review by Steve Thomas-Green Album number 3 for Finnish Doomsters, Astral Sleep. And a�er 2 albums on Solitude Produc�ons, they’ve glided, slowly, onto Saarni Records. Which, incidentally, is run by the bands vocalist/guitarist, Markus Heinonen. So with 4 tracks spread out over 44 minutes, this could really only be a Doom album. Although for Astral Sleep, the songs are a bit shorter than their normal epic excursions. And epic is most definitely the right word to describe this album. Astral Sleep include most forms of Doom here, bar, a bit of Stoner Doom. For the most part it’s just epic. Soaring vocals, slow, plodding riffs and a rhythm sec�on that is so slow, it would come in second place in a race with a 3 legged blind tortoise. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. Some albums are a chore to review, but with this album, it’s been my main soundtrack whilst I’ve put this edi�on of the magazine together. It’s instantly familiar and the occasional bursts of energy/anger don’t disturb my train of thought. And I think if you play a promo for pleasure, rather than because you have to, it’s always an indica�on of how good an album actually is. And I’d go as far as saying that this album is excep�onal. There are two vinyl op�ons for this album, one includes a board game. So you can play along whilst listening to the music. Unfortunately my promo was digital, so I have no idea what the game is like… but it’s a cool idea, nonetheless Basically, if you like/love Doom, then this a no-brainer h�ps://www.facebook.com/astralsleepdoom/ h�ps://astralsleep.bandcamp.com/album/astral-doom-musick

Avlid - Ond Bråd Död (Void Wanderer Productions / War Productions) Review by Miloš Šebalj Is it just me, or an album coming from Sweden has to live up to certain standards? Ever wondered why there is a completely different scale when it comes to judging a band from an ‘exo�c’ country? An album coming from China, Bulgaria or Paraguay can be good (though all of them have some real gems, even on the global scale), but a record from a German band is presumed mediocre. Long legacy in black metal (or metal in general) holds the expecta�ons high and the young bands have trouble breaking through the wall of their forefathers and their legendary releases. Avlid basically has everything working for them. From the outsiders perspec�ve, at least. They are a black metal band from Sweden. They have found two reliable labels that have histories with providing a stepping stone for the young and promising acts. And they have a rela�vely good album. “Ond Bråd Död“ is a record that grabs your attention and hardly lets it go. Perhaps the three ambient interludes fall out of place here and break the momentum, but the ’regular’ songs are quite decent. Though Avlid doesn’t stray far off the prescribed black metal formula, they do manage to create songs that capture the listener. They do so by using prevalently melancholic atmosphere to guide you through the album. A dose of ’doomy’ slowdowns enriches the cryptic feel even further. This ghoulish, nocturnal aura is just fragmentarily cut by the barrage of cold riffs. Skillful use of the keyboards is the key distinctive feature of Avlid. The duo doesn’t go for top speed, as it is mostly unnecessary in their musical output. They rather focus on diversifying their songs with crea�ve use of drums and guitars. Luckily, they stop playing around before it turns overly progressive. This way, the Swedes master a certain dose of memorability, even if the songs are usually quite long. Now, did Avlid achieve something that will help them break out of anonymity? Probably not this �me. Despite “Ond Bråd Död“ being a fairly good record, it still lacks that certain something. Given that this is a newcomer on the crowded Swedish black metal scene, the fact that they didn’t bring anything new to the table is somewhat expected. The album is crafted with extensive use of familiar musical patterns. When you translate the title of the opening track, it says „Kill Yourself“. This is hardly some new idea. I didn’t get the lyrics, so I can’t be sure, but judging from the title, it is not promising. However, what is promising, is the fresh energy piled into the album. While there are many albums that can be compared to „Ond Bråd Död“, most of them just don’t feel sincere enough. Or are just downright effortless. Avlid did make a strong first step onto the scene. I can surely see them emerge with something highly acclaimed next time. In that case, the black market price for this CD might skyrocket within few years. I would recommend ge�ng it while it’s hot. Might not be the best one you own, but it is definitely not a waste of money. h�ps://www.facebook.com/Avlid-103767564526103/ h�ps://avlid.bandcamp.com/releases

Bethor - nataS liaH (Nazgûl Records) Review by Miloš Šebalj Just the sight of the album’s name made me think of Impaled Nazarene and their demo “Taog eht fo Htao Eht”. Shortly a�er the announcement of this release reminders came that Bethor actually opened for the (in)famous Finns in Belgrade, Serbia. And the connota�ons expand through the music presented on “nataS liaH”. Now, Bethor is one of the oldest black metal bands in Serbia, ge�ng close to entering its third decade of existence. The album in ques�on is the fi�h full length effort. Well, fi�h if you count an album that was a tribute to Bathory and consisted en�rely of covers from the legendary Swedish project. There’s even another Bathory cover closing this album, though the lyrics to “A Fine Day to Die” are in Serbian this �me. While Bethor (as is the pseudonym of the main character of this band) may have been strongly influenced by Bathory on the early releases, the spectrum of his crea�ve affec�ons has widened as of late. Sure, Quorthon’s brainchild is s�ll present, even his later, atmospheric works. However, the essence of this album is buried deep within the most primi�ve, brutal and downright nasty sounding black metal of the oldest school. The men�oned Impaled Nazarene, especially in the ultra-fast drumming, ‘noisy’ thrashing riffing of the German originators Sodom or Kreator or the sonic perversity of Von, Blasphemy and the likes… All of these come together to form “nataS liaH”. Combina�on of these elements is certainly the worst nightmare for people used to any sort of musical finesse. There is nothing like that on this record. Pure, unadulterated fury is what Bethor offers. With all that in mind, things can go just two ways. This can either become a totally unlistenable a�ack of random noises (as is the case, most o�en), or a pressure cooker of devil’s delights ready to explode in your old school ears. Luckily, Bethor goes for door number two. First of all, “nataS liaH” is produced to perfec�on. It packs a terrifying punch with its sheer weight. Polished, but not plas�cized. Very much organic and flowing naturally. Another thing is that the record is composed and arranged in such a way that you cannot really complain of the ‘same old, same old’. There is enough fresh ideas to avoid the simple copycat label. We have enough of those anyway, right? Furthermore, Bethor con�nues the frui�ul coopera�on with Csaba Nemeth who was responsible for the cover artwork, once again. The front cover, while being filled with appropriate black metal imagery, avoids the simplifica�on usually applied to covers of such releases. Sure, “nataS liaH” is raw, primi�ve, old school, necro�c in the best black metal tradi�on. Cliché to a degree even. But… Bethor, version 2020, should be a brilliant gi� for you if the epithets men�oned above have magical grasp on you darkened souls. By far the best Bethor has come up with, to date. Excellent! h�ps://www.facebook.com/Bethor-521365371270723/

Dekira - Ominous Prophecies (Void Wanderer Produc�ons) Review by Miloš Šebalj One might count the United States of America as almost an exo�c loca�on to look for a black metal band. Most of the other genres had their pinnacles there, but black metal never seemed to have caught up. Despite a couple of very good bands that emerged and were hailed even in the rest of the world. To use American terms, Dekira has quite an open field to run for a touchdown. However, I have a feeling they have tripped and fallen down somewhere in the ‘red zone’, missing a chance yet providing a new one in the next a�ack. Let me explain further. “Ominous Prophecies” is the debut for Dekira and it is a mostly pure black metal effort, drenched in the second wave. Being a debutant, it is expected to hear some new, fresh and original ideas. Wrapped in unrelen�ng energy that can almost exclusively come from a young act. One that has yet to experience downfall and hardship brought by the ever-expanding flood of worthless crap that always seems to move one step further. Hearing the album, there is no doubt Dekira has what it takes. “Ominous Prophecies” is without a doubt a black metal record. If I was to pick deeper, Dekira strives more towards a dark, melancholic approach, instead of the harsh chill of the Norwegian ancestors. S�ll, there is more than simple black metal at hand here. Melodic death metal is the most notable influence, especially when speaking about the guitar work. Closing track, “Ayahuasca”, is the perfect example, since those lead guitars o�en remind me of Dissec�on from their last records. Also, some modern Swedish melodic death comes to mind fragmentally offering a more versa�le soundscape than what most of the hard core black metal fans are used to. Bringing the atmosphere, rather than aggression, to the forefront, using somewhat unexpected means, Dekira created a fairly memorable record. Though not yet outstanding, as the interes�ng concept they had envisioned has its lapses. When it comes to those, most of them, I’m sure, derive from the lack of experience. Again, “Ominous Prophecies” is the debut album, so these ‘mistakes’ might have been expected. First thing that comes to the ear is the produc�on which went one step further than it was necessary. The sound is almost crystal clear and every instrument is perfectly audible, but the overall feel is that of a record that has lost its sharpness along the way. 21st century equipment and the possibili�es it offers have traps of their own that caught Dekira unsuspec�ng. The other thing is the men�oned memorability of “Ominous Prophecies”. Yes, there are parts of the albumwhich surely fall out of the clear blue skies and make it stand out. Par�cularly those melodic lead guitars that easily slide into regular solos and back towards tradi�onal black metal carnage without even a slight uncomfortable feel. The opening to “Shackled by the Hands of the Shepherd” is something I’ve never heard on a black metal record. However, as these parts are very catchy and place Dekira’s name somewhere in the back of your head for future use, they are s�ll few and far between. It is my opinion they can be further explored and be�er infused into the standard way of black metal songwri�ng. Thus providing the band with something that just might become a trademark of their own. Do not let the shortcomings of “Ominous Prophecies” stop you from taking it into considera�on. At least take some �me to try it online. The album definitely contains some promising material. A step in the right direc�on, for sure. I’m le�ng the debut soak in for a while and keeping my expecta�ons high for the next album. h�ps://www.facebook.com/dekiraband/ h�ps://www.facebook.com/voidwandererprod/

Evadne - Dethroned of Our Souls (Funere) Review by Steve Thomas-Green Dethroned of Our Souls is a compila�on, of sorts, from Spanish Doomsters, Evadne. Nicely packaged together, you get a remastered version of their 2014 Dethroned Of Light EP, a live track, a cover version and their debut, 3 track demo from 2004. Now, the biography promised a melancholic sound, based on the classic bands of the early 90s… and boy, did they get that absolutely spot on. Ok, you probably aren’t going to find a lot of originality here. But take it for what it is, and this is just majes�c. Crashing riffs, gentle melodies, growled vocals and a whole lot of misery… just how I love my Death infused Doom. If you said to a band, here are my 3 favourite Death/Doom bands, please go and make some songs that sound like everything I love about the genre… then Dethroned Of Light would be the result… including the male/female vocal duelling on Awai�ng, which features guest vocals from Natalie Koskinen. As I’ve already said, it’s not par�cularly original, but for my own personal tastes, this is just about perfect. So you get 3 of the 4 tracks from the EP, plus a “live session” version of the remaining track, Colossal. The other bonus track, is a stunning cover version of Officium Triste’s, Like Atlas, which originally came out in 2013. Rounding off this release are the 3 tracks from the bands debut demo, In the Bi�erness of Our Souls. It’s slightly rawer, and it (almost) reminds me of early Moonspell, mixed in with (defunct) Norwegian Doomsters, Paradigma. But it is slightly different from both bands I’ve men�oned. So, 66 minutes in total and a really fascina�ng release… especially if you’ve not heard the band before. www.facebook.com/evadneofficial h�ps://www.facebook.com/funere h�ps://funere.bandcamp.com/

Northwind - History (No Remorse Records) Review by Steve Thomas-Green Greek Metallers, Northwind, are about to release their first album in 33 years, their third album overall. Not surprisingly their sound is rooted in 80s Metal, but opinions being what they are, I disagree with most of the comparisons on the biography that came with this album. The biography recommends this to fans of Uriah Heep, Rainbow, Deep Purple and Black Sabbath, but frommy point of view, I’d say mainly Van Halen, Accept and Rainbow, circa Straight Between the Eyes… and maybe even a bit of Manowar and to a lesser degree Motley Crue. (Mainly because of some of the vocals) So you’re probably be�er off listening to the band yourself if any of the bands I’ve men�oned are to your own personal tastes. And I’d definitely recommend playing this a few �mes before making a final decision on the band. My first listen wasn’t the best. Whilst I like the vocals and the guitar work is excep�onal, the bands overall sound and the songs in general, were not really grabbing me, bar Pyrrhos the Eagle, which I fell in love with instantly. The problem, is probably that most of the album is mid-paced and it doesn’t really catch alight, un�l track 7, the aforemen�oned, Pyrrhos the Eagle… but I found that a�er a couple of listens, the pacing of the album didn’t really seem to ma�er and the album has really grown on me with repeated listens. Admi�edly, not every song is a winner, but the album is s�ll worth inves�ga�ng. If you like the flash histrionics of Eddie Van Halen, historically themed Metal, Rainbow’s Death Alley Driver, all mixed together with that special aura of 80s Metal, then give Northwind a go… there’s also a couple of vinyl versions for added authen�city… h�ps://www.facebook.com/NorthwindbandGreece h�ps://www.noremorse.gr h�ps://www.facebook.com/NoRemorseRecordsGreece

Offret - Зверь (Void Wanderer Produc�ons / Vox Project / Dead Red Queen Records / Grains of Sand / Manchikha) Review by Miloš Šebalj Seeing how no less than five record labels (from four different countries) stood behind this album, I must admit I had my hopes up. So many people willing to put their hard earned and never returned money into a release, they must have go�en something very special. Turns out I was wrong. Since I’ve go�en the request for a review from the Dutch Void Wanderer Produc�ons and their catalog is usually well selected, I expected much more from the Russians. “Зверь” (“Beast”) is the debut album by a trio that has previously released a self-�tled EP and a split with Black Mare. So, shorter releases, which bears the ques�on of Offret’s capability of presen�ng a full length record. Especially when you browse through all the varie�es the album has to offer. The concept behind “Зверь” is based on primal human needs, aspira�ons and desires. To be precise, it covers the founda�on of humankind from back when we were a young species of bipeds. Exploring such a backline might be interes�ng from a historical point of view, but the Russians failed to merge it into a compact piece of music. Their musical output varies from song to song, where you get a full on, noisy and raw black metal, followed by a melancholic and acous�c doomy intermezzo. Other �mes, there is a clear homage to early Emperor atmospheric black metal, supported by keyboards, yet s�ll quite noisy and disturbing. Not to forget the four minute ‘spacey’ ambient track “Данакиль”. There’s just too much going on here, so that my above men�oned point stands. It would work much be�er as two or three short collec�ons of similar tracks. That way it would certainly preserve more coherency. Perhaps it should have even ended up as two different projects if there is such a vast musical expanse the trio is trying to cover. Bear in mind the album is terribly produced, so I might have missed something, simply because it was le� inaudible. It needed much be�er sound quality if it was going for such a collec�on of hard to swallow sounds. Now, Offret does carry a certain dose of crea�ve momentum. Fromwhat I could hear, at least. “Зверь” fragmentally brings very tasty parts to the table and it is clear there are some fine ideas behind the album. However, they are not fi�ed together and seem as if piled up on top of each other. Pouring everything you got into an album is not a good idea if you do not use the skills to arrange them into something concrete. There’s a whole lot of moments on this record that will sa�sfy different audiences. Sadly, I do not think any of themwill be sa�sfied with the whole album. Take a listen and pick your own favorites. h�ps://www.facebook.com/offretband/ h�ps://voidwandererproduc�ons.bandcamp.com/

Ruadh - The Rock Of The Clyde (Northern Silence/Red Glen Produc�ons) Review by Steve Thomas-Green In some reviews, there’s always a “but”… so before we go to my but (just one t, not “my bu�”), let’s concentrate on the posi�ves. Ruadh are exponents of Sco�sh Metal. And that comes across in the music. Nature meets tribal drums and this instantly transports you to wild Scotland as the Scots are set to repel any invaders from their land. Like Flower of Scotland meets Bathory, it has captured the sound it set out to create, almost faultlessly. And when you consider that this is essen�ally a one man band, with a li�le help on the album, it makes the achievement of the absorbing atmospherics, just that li�le more impressive. The man behind the band, Tom Perre�, has an impressive clean sing voice and the overall sound of the choirs on the album, aided by female vocalist, Cie�, again, is pre�y much spot on. So all good so far… and now comes the “but”… I’m not a fan of the harsh vocals on the album. Which is a big shame, because I like everything else... a lot. They aren’t awful, but with everything else sounding so good, from the mellow Folk elements to the upli�ing Black Metal parts, in my opinion, they are the weakest link on this album. So, going forward, I’d either get in a guest to do the growly bits, or leave them off completely… although I doubt that’ll happen… But reviews are all about opinions, and that’s mine… Apart from that niggle… I think this is a great, rabble rousing album that can chill you out one minute and march you off to war the next. It’s also a huge leap forward from last years debut, so things are definitely heading in the right direc�on. This was released on May 22nd…. Get the cd from the label, or the digital, direct from the band h�ps://www.facebook.com/ruadhofficial/ h�ps://ruadh-northernsilence.bandcamp.com/album/the-rock-of-the-clyde h�ps://ruadh.bandcamp.com/album/the-rock-of-the-clyde

Alphamay - Conformity (Self Release) Review by Steve Thomas-Green The main downsides of ge�ng older are the body taking longer to recover, from almost everything… and the old brain slowing down. The upside of rapidly hi�ng my mid-50s, is that I was around when all of the early Synthpop bands exploded onto the scene. And the early 80s is s�ll my favourite era for music. Which is just as well, as the music on Alphamay’s 6th album definitely stems from back then. Now, I’m not sure where I read this, so I hope the informa�on is correct, apologies if I’mwrong, but I’m sure I read that this is the first �me that Alphamay have worked with professional producers. The albumwas produced with Hilger Tintel, who has worked with the likes of Blutengel in the past and the albumwas mastered by Krischan Wesenberg, who has credits for VNV Na�on and KMFDM, amongst others. And that �es in with my thoughts about Conformity. Whereas the music generally takes me back to the 80s, the vocals are much more modern in texture… although Death Is Kind has an 80s chorus and modern Gothic verses. I think my brain is telling me Tears For Fears meets very early Depeche Mode. The other standout track, for me, is Conform Us… which sounds like Andrew Eldritch fron�ng a more upbeat version of the Human League. It’s just a brilliant (dark) pop song. But to be honest, I genuinely like every song on the album. This album is huge step forward from their earlier work… which relied a bit too much on So� Cell influences, well, to these ears anyway. This �me around, the sound has a more general feel from 80s Synthpop, albeit with a crystal clear modern edge. As a rule, I do tend to shy away from the more commercial, catchy side of electronic music. But from the very first listen, I was hooked on this album and it was an album I was really looking forward to, a�er the single A�erglow came out a couple of months ago. And I’m very glad that my expecta�ons were richly rewarded. Conformity is out on June 20th . h�ps://www.facebook.com/electronicavantgarde h�ps://alphamay.bandcamp.com/album/conformity

Zwaremachine - Ripping At The Fabric EP (Brutal Resonance Records) Review by Steve Thomas-Green In most walks of life, there’s a pecking order. Be it the toughest kid in the playground to the most arrogant president in the world. It’s the same deal for music. There’s a band that’s at the top of the tree, and everybody else shuffles in below, jostling for posi�on. Zwaremachine and their gnarly take on Industrial and EBM have always been a solid band. So when I knew this new EP was coming my way, I thought I knew what to expect. Zwaremachine have their place in the queue and I expected something similar, a couple of years on from 2018’s Be A Light. Before we get to the new ep, Ripping At The Fabric, I’m going rewind things about 18 or so months, to when Zwaremachine singer Mach Fox told me he was coming over to Europe to play some dates in January 2019. I actually thought he was crazy. He was going to fly over from the US, possibly when our weather was going to be at its worst. I thought he was travelling a hell of a long way, for some dates that could easily be cancelled if our European winter kicked in, like it can. Anyway, moving on the present day and they tour went well, and I think he’s come over again since then, as well as hi�ng the road in the US. And since that ini�al European adventure, Zwaremachine have shown 2 fingers to the pecking order and with this shiny new EP, they’ve made advancements that I didn’t think possible. And I mean that in the nicest possible way. Musically, Zwaremachine have broken free from their cocoon and their music has a bright feel to it, a million miles from the o�en downtrodden feel of earlier works. Be it working with new people, be�er produc�on, improved song wri�ng, an all-round more professional a�tude (even down to the publicity pictures)… whatever the difference is, Zwaremachine have really come of age on this EP. The EP is a bass heavy stomp, that has a thunderous dance feel. Mixed in with a slight Wax Trax feel, a pulsa�ng rhythm and a nod (or two) to the originators of the Industrial scene, and it really is just about perfect. And in terms of the EBM / Industrial side of my life (I’m involved in the Metal scene as well) this is probably my favourite release of the year so far. The biggest plus point, for you, the fan, is that on the Brutal Resonance Bandcamp page, this is just $1. And it’ll probably be the best Dollar you spend all year. h�p://www.zwaremachine.band h�ps://zwaremachine.bandcamp.com h�ps://www.facebook.com/brutalresonance/ h�ps://brutalresonance.bandcamp.com/album/ripping-at-the-fabric

Paul Henderson talks to Meads ofAsphodel / Wolves ofAvalon frontman,Metatron

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Metatron, frontman of both the Meads of Asphodel and the Wolves of Avalon, two bands I’ve been a fan of for many years now. The Wolves of Avalon is a more recent project, a pagan metal band with lyrics themed around Bri�sh history, the Meads of Asphodel have been ac�ve since the late 90’s with a lyrical focus on the inhumanity of humanity and specifically tying that in with religion and the atroci�es commi�ed in its name since its incep�on. That’s played out to the sounds of pre�y much any kind of music you can conceive of with black metal at its core, along with a quintessen�ally Bri�sh sense of humour in spite of dark subject ma�er, and over the years the band have developed a cult underground following and have become one of the most fascina�ng and unique bands on the UK scene. They’re not a band free from controversy. Some of the themes behind some of the albums, while carefully considered and well intended, have nonetheless ra�led a few cages along the way. Two of those albums in par�cular, The Murder of Jesus The Jew and Sonderkommando, have drawn flak for numerous reasons, which is understandable if taken at face value. But there’s more to it than that, and these are referenced in the interview which follows. For this reason I’d like to give you some background info behind these two albums, so you’re aware of the overall concepts and contexts of those releases and can form your opinion however you wish but with that knowledge. Both those albums �e in with the core themes of the Meads of Asphodel’s lyrics, that of the atroci�es carried out by humanity in the name of religion and the hate that’s spread both from and to the three Abrahamic faiths since their origins. The Murder of Jesus the Jew tells the story of the likely historical roots of Jesus, that of a Jewish healer, a mortal human who was put to death by the Romans and whose story has evolved and placed him as a divine figure and the basis of the Chris�an faith. Essen�ally going back to where it all started, and what has become the basis of much of the world’s culture. Sonderkommando, which followed on from that album, is a much darker affair, being a concept album based around the Holocaust and one where Metatron visited Auschwitz-Birkenau in order to research and fully appreciate and get a feel of the gravity of this blight on human history. The lyrics to the albumwere wri�en on that site, and the dark spectre of those historical events is captured fully in that albums music and lyrics. The Meads have gone to lengths as well with this album to not frame this as a problem of Nazis perpetra�ng atroci�es against Jews, this is human beings doing this to other human beings and can easily be recreated in other circumstances in other �mes and places (historically it has been, and no doubt in future will con�nue to be). Metatron has wri�en and published extensive notes, explana�ons and thoughts going deep into the concepts on both these albums and these are available to read at metatronhq.com as “Metatron’s Codices”, I’d say these are invaluable reading for full insight into the lyrics. It’s important to note also, for those not aware of goings on within the black metal scene in recent years, there’s been increasingly vociferous arguments taking place regarding Nazis and Nazi bands within the scene. Such bands are present, unfortunately, although not in the sorts of numbers you might think from how fierce this whole debate gets, and there’s been a ferocious backlash not only against those bands but against anything remotely associated with them, or perceived to be associated with them. Both the Meads and the Wolves have been dragged into this, partly because of some of the concepts explored, partly due to the fact that some of the guests they’ve worked with over the years have been controversial, and partly as well due to the fact that they simply don’t care what people think and are quite happy to poke the hornets nest. As a result they have been in the firing line, and you will see the frustra�on borne of such accusa�ons played out in the following interview right from the outset. The background is important hence the fact I’ve a�empted to give some of that informa�on to fill you in if you’re unfamiliar with the history of these bands.

First allowme to thank you for taking part in this interview. I’d like to ask first, for the benefit of anybody who might not be familiar with your music and the bands you’re involved with, could you please introduce yourself and give a brief outline of the Wolves of Avalon and the Meads of Asphodel? I formed the Meads of Asphodel in 1998 when Black Metal was what it was, and no one gave a shit about Nazi’s hiding in the shadows. Funnily enough nor did I, and in the 40 odd years I have dedicated myself to this scene I have met thousands of black metal fans and probably 2 openly racist fellows, but �mes have changed and it’s a big issue now. The Meads of Asphodel have been dragged though this racist mire, and we’ve even had an Indian drummer, have a Jewish member, and pre�y much had guests from all corners of the world. The scene now is a watered-down version of what it was, most bands are pre�y lukewarm lyrically and weary of ge�ng shit. I am honoured to have known a be�er �me. Now I’ve had my rant, The Meads is a band that rips though religion with a plague dripping scythe and plummets into the genocidal impulses of humanity. All of our albums have this thread in common. The Wolves of Avalon reflects my love for Pagan Metal, and lyrically reaches back into Bri�sh history. I did not want the Meads to become lost in a lyrical maze, so I found other musicians to give rise to the Wolves and that is how I separate my lyrical visions. Coming to the Wolves of Avalon first, I believe you are due to put out a new vinyl only MLP �tled Y Gododdin the very near future which, in keeping with the band’s lyrical themes of Bri�sh history, is I believe based around the Gododdin tribe which occupied northern Britain around 600 A.D. What was it about this tribe and events surrounding it that inspired you to theme this release around it? If you look at the previous albums, in a historical �meframe then, Boudicca’s last Stand would come first, with Carrion Crows over Camlan [about the Cel�c Arthur], second, and Corpses Grey leaping ahead a few hundred years. Y Gododdin sits between Carrion Crows and Corpse Grey. It was one of the last acts of Bri�sh resistance against the Saxons, a final burst of blood hued glory in a �me where The Dark Ages had descended upon the light of civiliza�on and the age of the Barbarian had cometh. I think the Gododdin capture that mys�cal immortality of the warrior code and death before dishonour commonly a�ributed to the likes of, 300 Spartans, the defenders of the Alamo, the defenders of the Persian Gate, Masada, etc. (one would normal cite Custer in this group, but in reality his blundering and bad decision making caused his troopers death and I think a last stand was more like a decima�on of pockets of men running for their lives. Such is the power of Hollywood in roman�cising the past.) The �tle of the album is taken directly from the medieval Welsh poem Y Gododdin and that poem is accepted to be an early account of the Gododdin, the Ba�le of Catraeth and many of the warriors who fell in that ba�le. To what extent has the poem itself inspired and contributed to the overall theme and specific lyrics on the album? Also, are there any par�cular people men�oned in the poem you’ve felt drawn towards wri�ng about, and are there any other sources you’ve drawn from as well? The poemwas my ini�al inspira�on, and this was set before there was a United Kingdom. There was no Scotland, England or Wales. Just the isles of Britain known by the Romans to be the utmost border on Earth, and here is the ba�le ground of the Gododdins last stand. It is an extremely li�le known event that most definitely happened. The poem details a year of feas�ng as the great warriors gathered one by one to laugh drink and make merry. Then the end �mes arrive in a heroic ride to doom. There are no par�cular men men�oned, just my wish to keep such events alive, as history seems to be less of an interest nowadays. It’s a fine line being proud of ones past in this part of the world. I watched a documentary on a small tribe living near the Dominican Republic. The interviewer asked if these people were proud of their roots and customs and they replied with yes, and how the old ways were kept alive. You ask that over here and you can walk into a na�onalis�c trap and be brushed with that good old racist card. It’s a fucking joke.

I read an ar�cle a�acking Moonsorrow on Metal Sucks recently. The comments a�er the ar�cle says it all about how bad journalism can be. The comments are basically what 99% of metal fans would say as level headed human beings. Have a read at: h�ps://www.metalsucks.net/2020/03/05/moonsorrows-troublesome-rela�onship-with-white-supremacism/ How can we expect the music on this release to sound in comparison to the Wolves of Avalon’s previous albums, and in what ways will we hear the lyrical themes of Y Gododdin expressed musically? It is a more solid, be�er produced set of songs that s�ll harness the violin. The atmosphere and song framework is s�ll very much in tune with what we have been doing in the past. Mid-tempo pagan inspired metal. As I understand, this is to be a vinyl only release. What are your main reasons for focusing only on a physical release, and specifically only vinyl? I am a great fan of vinyl, so I thought it would be good to have a vinyl release, a format you can hold, have a cover you can behold, and listen to that grainy atmosphere from the deck through the speakers. The produc�on required is more refined than one used to blast out of your phone. I have licensed the art frommilitary illustrator Kurt Miller that so reflects the image I had for the Gododdin.

How do you an�cipate this release will be received, both in terms of recep�on to the music and sales of the vinyl? Also are you only releasing a limited number of copies (and if so, howmany), or will more be made available depending on demand, and do you have a release date in mind? Not having a worry of making a loss financially, allows me to do what I want and to do it from the heart. This has been the greatest blessing for the Meads and the Wolves, as we all create the music first and hope people will like it. We are no longer subordinate to labels. The release will have a 500 press, and will be out July if all goes to plan. I think the music will speak for itself. It has been great to do things the way they used to be done. Drums tracked in the studio, the art actually being purchased, the session musicians all being into the music. The whole process with the vinyl is more involved than a cd, and even though for the modern era the packaging of vinyl can be a pain in the ass, it’s all part of that old school feel. Once again, you’ve got a number of guest musicians involved, including members of Venom Inc, Forefather, Taake and Drudkh. What will each of those guests be contribu�ng to Y Gododdin? All the guests have contributed vocals to the tracks. Tony Dolan has done the narra�on for the intro and he sound like a possessed Dracula. It’s not just speaking into the mic as I would have been more than happy with. He literally does a Shakespearean vocal that kills. Thurios has done vocals before for us and that Drudkh associa�on is such an honour to have, as it is with Forefather, another band we are very respec�ul of. And finally, the unapologe�c Hoest. What can I say... You’re obviously really into Bri�sh history both in your lyrics and I’m assuming outside the band as well. Which aspects of Bri�sh history that you’ve not yet covered most interest you and could be the subject of any future Wolves of Avalon albums My main focus is from 400-700AD, In a chao�c post-Roman Europe. This is where I thrive historically. To con�nue the Wolves Bri�sh themed lyrics I would look at the ba�les of Brananburh of Maldon, as a future release. These are also lesser known events in our History. I have always been a History nerd. More due to my father filling my roomwith books when I was young. Nowadays it would be a room of computer games, laptops and i phones. Even my children look at books as relics of a bygone age and it is a sad reflec�on of the �mes. I know you don’t need to be a bookworm to get on in life, but words can be so powerful and I so get the line, the pen is migh�er than the sword. What aspects of Bri�sh history could you best draw parallels to and connect to the modern world, and what specific things from our history do you see that could most relate or be applicable to today’s world? I think any history �me line with, religion, war, disease, cruelty, slavery, kings and peasants, reflects today’s world. The world is no worse; it just has not changed when it comes to war and cruelty. We humans kid ourselves if we think the world will be any different, as we always have. We are a stain on this planet, an anomaly that should not be here, but we are and that’s the mystery. Were we planted here by Aliens? Did a God create us? Did we evolve from now ex�nct primates? Who fucking knows is the answer... and most of us couldn’t care less.. What’s next for the Wolves of Avalon a�er this? Where do you see the band heading? I never really think that far ahead. I just have ideas then focus to complete them. The future is always a blank canvas. It depends on my pa�ence with this scene and how faceless it has become. If you are new to it then it will no doubt seem the best thing ever, but for us old ones, it just does not compare to how it was. That is life, and nothing will change the way the internet has turned music inside out.

Coming to the Meads of Asphodel next, you released the latest Meads album Running Out of Time Doing Nothing which unlike the two previous releases, doesn’t have a singular lyrical theme running through the en�re album. What were the reasons for approaching the latest album in this way? The previous albums, Murder of Jesus the Jew, and Sonderkommando took years to research and the content had to be so precise. Both were dealing with historical founda�ons and both immersed in Jewish misery. The Jesus albummore lost in a theology swamp, and the Sonderkommando pushed into a taboo box where usually only NSBM bands use the subject for propaganda purposes. It becomes apparent when researching the two subjects how all consuming the Jewish race has affected the world. Its core religion spawning Chris�anity and Islam. Even today the Middle East boils in hatred, so nothing new then... I wanted to be free of a specific concept with the new album, to write about whatever was in my head. My Mother was dying during the final stages of the release, so it has some very deep stuff lyric wise. The album touched on the Middle East, as well as the American Indian genocide, and at �mes, lyrically dri�ing into a dreamy surreal world that I rarely explore. The newMeads shirt is a reflec�on of my sorrow. I always used to visit my father at the cemetery and sit on a bench. His grave was by a tree and nowmy mother is with him. I was with my partner one day who blurted out, ‘We are all running out of �me doing nothing’, and that struck deep inside of me, and so the album �tle was born.

Out of all the songs on the album, which are your favourites both in terms of the music, and also the lyrical themes? Running Out Of Time Doing Nothing is probably my favourite track as it reaches back to the band’s early days with its catchy to the point structure. Lyrically, it must be, I stood �ptoe, reaching up for heaven. There a lot of offensive [for some] splu�ering on this track and it’s as light hearted as it is serious. I think that track alone reflects the very heart of the Meads. Of course, the Meads of Asphodel’s music is very diverse and eclec�c with seemingly nothing off limits when it comes to the musical styles which make up your sound. How does the crea�ve process take place with such an eclec�c sound, how do ideas form and make it into Meads songs? If there is a concept it a process of wri�ng a story, and if not, whatever irks me I tend to write down. Musically James creates what he does and we seem to meet in the middle with ideas and what are born from this process are the songs. The track, Bugsplat, was something James had that had nothing to do with the newMeads album. When he played me it, I just knew it was the intro to the release. It felt right even though the brain was saying, ‘are you mad!!’ It’s true nothing is off limits and that gives us a fathomless pit to fish for ideas. You also released an EP prior to Running Out of Time Doing Nothing, called Imperial East-West Onslaught, a split EP with Chinese band Rerthro. What were the main themes you explored on this release, and how closely do they �e in with the latest album? Also, how closely would you say Rerthro’s side of the split connects with your own? This was meant to be a release with Chinese band, Song of Chu, who are more audible and in tune with our sound, but they could not make the deadline and as I was pre�y determined to do a split with a Chinese band, Rerthro landed in the mix and that’s how that happened. I think the split is [like the Tjolgtjar split] is a clash of harsh and so�, warm and cold, as the bands we share the releases with are far more raw and primi�ve. It is in line with the Meads thinking of, if it sounds like it’s not gonna work, then do it... I like the underground split concept as our back catalogue shows. The tracks were all compiled during the album recordings and we separated the ep from the main album. The music is pre�y much one mass of work set to 2 releases, so it has a cohesive back bone.

One of the most remarkable moments from the Meads of Asphodel’s history was the album “Sonderkommando”, a concept album portraying the horror and atrocity of the Holocaust. I know it was a painstakingly cra�ed and researched album, with you actually visi�ng Auschwitz and wri�ng the lyrics while inside the camp. How did you find that whole experience at the �me, and how do you look back on it now almost a decade later? That album sent me into a dark hole for over a year. I basically ignored my partner and kids in a way and in the end it was detrimental but that is another story. I basically drowned in death. I had to remove the poli�cal mask of Nazism and the effects of Jewry in a very fragile post war German society to stare down the barrel of Human viciousness. It was no crueler than what the Romans or many tyrants have done. What was unique was the industrialized death machine that was born from pure and simple hatred. Once I had understood this soul of the crime so to speak, I delved into the poli�cs of Nazism and how it was born to a fer�le people who were being castrated by a Europe s�ll wounded by the Great War. The hatred of Jews was already imbued in most European na�ons so that was nothing new. The German people turned a blind eye to the ini�al menacing, and then War made the issue less concerning. Anyway, from an impar�al perspec�ve one cannot escape the conclusion that Hitler was a maniac and his ruthless policies u�erly abhorrent. Yet, we as human beings through the ‘History is wri�en by the victor’ reality forget the equally brutal genocidal intrigues of Stalin, the Turks, North American Indians, Mao, the Japanese, and so on. The Jews have the monopoly on Genocide, there are Holocaust days, and it is good to remind us of such inhumanity, but let us not forget the hidden abomina�ons, the unspoken slaughter, the disconcer�ng watered down blood drunk barbarism of human tragedy elsewhere.. Nothing we do will ever change what we are. I know the recep�on to that albumwas kind of mixed, I know it met with both posi�ve and nega�ve reac�ons within the metal community, and I also remember seeing the album reaching beyond the metal scene, even being praised in the Jewish Telegraph as I recall. Were the reac�ons from various quarters what you expected, both in and outside of the metal community, and in hindsight how would you say it’s perceived now a�er seven years have passed? The world is full of ignorance and arseholes. We had the whole racist card thrown at us; people were lost in how to dissect a horrible event set to music. The Holocaust is such a taboo subject when it comes to music. It’s ok to make a movie about it, write a book, but it’s not ok to sing about it, is what we learnt. The subject is so ingrained with NSBM that it is hard to disassociate from that par�cular hardly sub-genre. I am aware I do not help ma�ers by asking Hoest [Taake] to sing the lyrics to, Jew Killer. The track is about Pon�us Pilate who was a Jew killer, and has no Nazi meaning whatsoever, and yet we got the racist card shoved at as without anyone looking into what we were trying to do.. It’s that witch hunt syndrome again where Hoest HAS had an� Islammoments, and yet no one ever bemoans an� Chris�an content which ‘shock horror’ black metal is saturated with.. It was the album ‘Sonderkommando, when we were interviewed by the Jewish Chronicle who had nothing bad to say about the concept. I think if they are ok with it, then the wankers who gave us shit should just get back in their bedrooms and wank over a Burzum cd.

As with the Wolves of Avalon, you’ve had numerous guests on various Meads of Asphodel albums, these ranging fromMirai from Sigh to Hawkwind members Alan Davey and the late Huw Lloyd Langton. How do these collabora�ons usually come about, and which have been the most memorable to work with? Our most treasured guest is the underrated guitarist, Huw Lloyd Langton. Not only was he a gi�ed guitarist, he was also one of the most genuine fellows I have ever met. We spent many an hour in the studio, and he even invited us to his home to do some recording. We were genuinely saddened when he passed away. For me the Guests reflect my own love for the music they represent. I am a huge Venom and Hawkwind fan so having, Mantas, Tony, Huw and Alan Davey respec�vely on board is more than just a guest appearance. I am also a great fan of, Amebix, Primordial, Sigh, Acheron, Drudkh, Nokturnal Mortum, Graveland, Bulldozer, Taake, and have had the great joy of having guests from each band on our releases. Out of everything you’ve released with the Meads of Asphodel, which has been your favourite of those and why? Are there any least favourite releases from the Meads discography? The, Welcome To Planet Genocide mcd is my favourite Meads release. The, My Beau�ful Genocide, track just rips your balls off. James cannot be underes�mated with regards to being the very engine room of the Meads, and that can be said of James Marinos from the Wolves of Avalon. I don’t have a worst Meads moment; all the songs have been a joy to be part of. Where do you see the Mead of Asphodel going from here, and if you were able to take the Meads in any musical and lyrical direc�on you wanted without worrying about external factors, where would you go with it? I would love to do a kind of musical to vinyl/ cd, a concept albumwith the players having their own lines. A play set to audio. Finally, thank you once again for taking part in this interview, is there anything you’d like to add or say to people reading this as a final thought? Thanks for your �me and support. Metatron h�ps://www.facebook.com/themeadsofasphodel/ h�ps://www.facebook.com/thewolvesofavalon/ h�ps://www.facebook.com/godreah/

Issue 2 will be out on June 15th Issue 3 will be out on July 1st and then on the 1st of each month therea�er If you would like to include a promo for possible review/interview, please email us at: headshotmusic@mailbox.org Please note, we do not review albums from Spo�fy or Bandcamp streams, or via You Tube This months contributors: Paul Henderson Miloš Šebalj Sam Thomas Steve Thomas-Green Facebook Links: Ghost Wave Radio: h�ps://www.facebook.com/GhostWaveRadio/ Headshot Metal: h�ps://www.facebook.com/HeadshotMetalUK/ Headshot Music: h�ps://www.facebook.com/HeadshotMusicUK/ Dark Side of Metal: h�ps://www.facebook.com/DSOMDoncaster/ Black Angel Gathering: h�ps://www.facebook.com/blackangelgathering Mixcloud: h�ps://www.mixcloud.com/ghostwaveradio/

Black Angel Gathering By DJ Marcel P h�ps://www.facebook.com/blackangelgathering/ It's like a history lesson for lovers of dark music There is a new Black Angel Gathering show every Tuesday, on Ghost Wave Radio www.mixcloud.com/GhostWaveRadio/

1 Publizr


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