Negative 13, Mourning Asteri (2022)

The sophomore album from Negative 13 is an ambitious affair, Mourning Asteri.

Negative 13 is a band from Pittsburgh, and it is the new incarnation of the band Negative Theory which proliferated in the early aughts. The music is sludge-centered with adventures in many other directions. The musicians are Scott Fisher (vocals), Edward Banchs (guitar), Chip Reynolds (drums, vocals), and Mary Bielich (bass).

I listened to the record straight through and wrote down a one-line knee jerk reaction to each song. These are not really based on the lyrics and mostly have to do with whatever popped into my head as I heard the songs for the first time. It is what the music made me think of and therefore what I plastered onto it. I wouldn’t take this too seriously.

Here we go. “My Scars Are Showing Again” – like a hoarse, wandering goblin minstrel drinking in a rural English pub talking about its day by candlelight. “Never Ending Exit Wound” – a very punk piece that turns into doom toward the end. “Pain Prism” – belligerent angst stemming from the lost search for peace and isolation.

“Mourning Asteri” – a sinister instrumental mood track. “Crack the Code” – continues from previous song and builds into a journey where many things go terribly wrong. “The Key and the Coat” – a hot punk take up front meandering off into the psychedelic wilderness as the song goes on. “Parahell” – wandering somewhat lost in mental confinement, searching for an exit. “Villain” – somber long-form doom, beautifully dark.

More thoughtfully, let me say I really like this music. In its totality, is unlike what I usually hear. The idea of combining sludge and doom with punk is a winner for sure. Adding psychedelic and even ambient-like passages deepens the effect. Give it a listen. Recommended.

Mourning Asteri is out on Friday, July 8th. Check it out at Bandcamp or any other elsewhere you like.

Links.

Bandcamp, https://negative13.bandcamp.com/album/mourning-asteri

Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/people/Negative-Thirteen/100063690412382/

© Wayne Edwards

Negative 13, Mourning Asteri (2022)

Veilburner, Lurkers in the Capsule of Skull (Transcending Obscurity 2021)

The new Veilburner album, Lurkers in the Capsule of Skull, is an all-out assault on your senses.

Pennsylvanian metal duo Veilburner have been haunting studios and stages since 2014. With four previous full-length albums under their collective belt, their fifth shows a confident complexity in technical exploration. Mephisto Deleterio plays all the instruments and lead vocals are provided by Chrisom Infernium.

“In the Tomb of Dreaming Limbo” cracks the capsule open in an absolute rage. Screeching, blast beats, and a howling abyss greet you after a short calm-before-the-storm ramp. This one will shake you fillings loose and explain to you why it had to be done. “Nocturnal Gold” starts out a little calmer but it does not stay that way for very long. The music tracks from a dark and sinister environment to an ethereal pelagic one and back again. It is a soundtrack for savage miners in the netherworld who have high aspirations. Dissonant elements land here too bringing the weird to a more intense level.

“Lurkers in the Capsule of Skull” is a stand-out track, and we should expect that since the album bears the song’s name. It is an explosion of diverse oddities. I could say something similar for “Vault of Haunting Dissolve” and mean it even though the oddities are entirely different compared to the former. The multifariousness of the musical constructions is impressive. The compositional creativity seems boundless, all the while laying in familiar callbacks that remind you where you are in the metal chasm.

The closer is “Dissonance in Bloom,” which could be a subtitle for the band. The attitude of this song is point-of-know-return recklessness even though the creation is fully-formed and executed without a misstep. This music challenges your senses and delivers a therapeutic litany if you are willing to hear it. Recommended.

Transcending Obscurity Records releases Lurkers in the Capsule of Skull on Friday, September 25th. Bandcamp is a good place to pick it up in the US.

Links.

Bandcamp, https://veilburnerband.bandcamp.com/album/lurkers-in-the-capsule-of-skull-dissonant-death-black-metal

Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/veilburner

Transcending Obscurity, https://transcendingobscurity.aisamerch.com/

Veilburner, Lurkers in the Capsule of Skull (Transcending Obscurity 2021)