Saturday, 30 July 2016

Searu - Metanoia

My friend, Jim, told me I had to download this EP as I was going to love it. With some trepidation I gave in to his pleas.  "Why trepidation?" I hear you ask. Well this is because the previous band he ordered me to listen to sounded worse than fingernails on a blackboard echoing in a saggy snatch.

However, all is forgiven, he has redeemed his tarnished reputation, as Searu my friends, are awesome!

Who Are They?

Searu comprise of Lee Thorley on Drums, Jordan Rooney on Vocals, Thomas Pinto on Bass, Adam Hitchener on Guitar and Martin Beaver on Lead Guitar. They formed in 2012 are from Manchester and are currently, criminally, unsigned.


Google tells me Searu means "work of skill" or "machine". If so, it's a fitting name as the musicianship is at a very high level.

The sound is a tech tinged groove metal, with flecks of other styles such as New Wave American Metal. The vocal performance switches between a screamed and well performed clean vocal style.

Metanoia EP

I will concentrate on Metonia as it is their most recent release, alhough other material is available on Bandcamp (you should really get it all)!

Metonia was released a couple of years ago but is still reflective of their direction although I am told their sound is evolving all the time. In it's own right though the EP is an excellent listen and a must have.

It opens with the high impact To Our Nothingness. In parts aggressive and fast, in parts vocally melodic, almost funk like. A brilliant introduction.

Revalation Reclamation has one of the best vocal performances I've heard for a while. The heavy vocal parts remind me of my favourite Randall Blythe work.  It's a technically excellent track musically from all instruments. Some of the drum fills had me keep rewinding to hear again.

Lever starts with one of those "in the distance" vocals which gets the girls all wet! (I like it too, gush) It lulls you into a belief that it's going to be a gentle melodic number then decides to kick you in the balls at about a minute in. The breakdown and build up section is an incredible and hard hitting, within a track that improves all the way through.

Spiral shows off Rooney's clean vocal skill. It's a funk infused onslaught which has hints of Incubus circa Science in it.

Visceral gets back into a heavier place. Theres melody, speed, attack and groove in this track.  The drummer even plays behind beat for about 5 seconds to please the Doomers amongst us! (That short bit made my day!)

The last track is Circulate, which is my favourite. Starting with an excellent groove, almost stoner riff and screamed vocal it develops into an extremely hardcore tune with a thrash feel. It then progresses further into tech metal before reversing back through these sound scapes.  All these different styles fit seamlessly together as the track develops and it's an excellent journey.

If you like your metal highly skilled musically with aggression when its needed and grace when its required then get to bandcamp (name your price) and download this to hear it for yourself. Then think, "if his was them 2 years ago, how good must they be now?"

Searu are actively playing live shows at the moment, having recently taken part in Techfest. So, UK readers, have a download, when you see the quality, give them a facebook like and sit back and wait to go and see the next show. Non UK readers, download and like anyway, just because they're really good! Keep an eye on these guys....

Follow them Facebook


Monday, 25 July 2016

Fuckjar and Prisa Mata Split Ep - Chill the Fuckjar Out

The Bands 

I already spoke about Fuckjar here, and I am now firmly a fan of the band. Their brand of heavy sludgy goodness and screamed vocal style is something I'm buying into, big time.


But what of Prisa Mata? Well the name roughly translates to the rush kills you, which seems to be a saying in Spanish speaking countries to reinforce their laid back lifestyle and say chill the fuck out dude!

Who Are They?

The band members are from England, New Zealand and Spain but are based in London and started jamming in 2014.  They comprise of Jaz on guitar and making general noise, Raquel beating the bejesus out of the drums and Mark on Bass and throaty vocally depths of hell noise!


Their sound reminds me of some of the desert metal/rock from the likes of Kyuss, but dirtier with a topping of sludge and a understated psychedelic direction. They use a gutteral monosylabic scream style vocal which us used more as instrumentation rather than to deliver lyrics.

Prisa Mata

The Match Up

The match up between Fuckjar and Prisa Mata works. Both are extremely heavy, write monumental slow sledgehammer riffs and maintain a screamed vocal throughout.

However, they still have a very definitive personalities. On the whole Prisa Mata keep it slow, and have the deserty Kyuss on steroids with a twist of psychadelia vibe I mentioned before.

Fuckjar on the other hand, have faster vocal delivery, out and out heavyness and schizophrenic moments of brilliance. This makes the split a nice little window into both bands' trajectory.

The Ep

Firstly shout out to the artist, Darwin Drawin, as the cover is frankly brilliant!

Fuckjar's contribution begins with Flesh Engine God. Straight away I'm hit by the improvement in sound quality whilst keeping the same raw, authentic feel. The riff is more complex and stoner-like than the demo and again shows a progression. After the breakdown the song becomes so intensely heavy and slow, with the same screamed vocal offering a juxt opposition. It's a great start and getting me amped for the rest of the EP.

Compliance Through Abuse starts at the same pace, slow, but soon breaks into a hardcore edged onslaught, a different sound to what I've heard from them before but another welcome style.

Carcass for the Hive is a slow, intensely heavy and dark offering. Full of atmosphere, feedback and tom work on the drums, it becomes a chugging almost mechanical onslaught. You can't help but be drawn into its sound and rythm.

I'll Get My Coat rounds off Fuckjar's contribution nicely, as in it's basically a feedback and distortion outro which couldn't really exemplify Fuckjar's general feel any better.

Prisa Mata's first offering, They Live, We Sleep is an Intro peice that follows nicely from Fuckhars outro with some heavy distortion and spoken sample.

This then filters into Soulburner which has a sludgy desert stoner riff. The gutteral monosylabic screaming style is something that makes Prisa Mata instantly identifiable. The quiet/loud dynamic created by switching between just bass and drums and introducing the heavier guitar works well in this track.

Ride the Sky is an 8 minute tripped out bit of brilliance. Dirty and heavy plodding guitars and bass, symbol crashing galore with some fantastic fills. The vocal scream is used to best effect on this track. It ends in psychedelic trip of guitar effects which makes you think there's so much this band is capable of in the psych realm.

I knew I'd like this as soon as I heard the Fuckjar Demo. What's taken it to the next level for me is two things. Hearing the progression of Fuckjar, whilst keeping the rawness of sound I like so much. Secondly it's Prisa Mata turning me on to a vocal style that previously if I'm honest, I may have dismissed, and broadening your musical horizons is never a bad thing. It works so well with the music and adds a valuable dynamic. I'd urge you all to listen to both these bands.

You can get the Ep on bandcamp in 2 seperate parts. Fuckjar's here and Prisa Mata's here for a price you name. As you will see you can also pick up a tape version of the EP for just £4. If you like the EP, surely this is a small investment for the collectors out there.

I hope you enjoy and get behind the bands.

Follow Fuckjar on Facebook
Follow Prisa Mata on Facebook

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Fuckjar - A Jar of Wonderful Sludgy Fuck

"Firstly", I thought, "what is a Fuckjar?"

Google soon told me it was a name for a lady who may not need too much negotiating with to convince her it's a good idea to let you dip your wick within her. This may or may not be the origins of Fuckjar's name.

Funnily enough it didn't take too much negotiating for me to want to listen to this band when the Slabdragger guys told me they rock. So maybe I am a music Fuckjar? Upon realising this, the philosophical questions and personal soul searching this name caused me was deep, meaningful and really, well, completely fucking pointless. Fuckjar is a great name though.

Who Are They?

They comprise of Chris on vocals, Ellie on bass, Lorenzo on drums and Ziya on guitar. They are based in London. From trawling through their Facebook page I can't help but get the impression this band are all about having fun, and that this may transpose to live performances (I hope to find this out sooner rather than later). I see sex dolls and horse masks aplenty, what more could a man possibly want?


Fuckjar deliver all the stoner sludgy riffing you could ask for make for with well thought out and slammin' tracks perfect for headbangers universally. An extreme metal style screamed vocal which adds a great intensity to the overall sound.

I will hopefully go on to also tell you about their split release with another awesome band, Prisa Mata, on a separate article but for now I will concentrate on their own Demo which was originally released in February 2015, so I'm a little late to the party, but screw it, if it's good, I'm talking about it.

The Demo

The Demo, which is aptly named "The Demo" opens with an plenty of feedback, a forewarning you're going to get a raw, live sound. And, fuck a jar (of pickled onions, so you remember it), the song Slug is an incredible opening track.

The riff induces head banging instantly. The track slows down into a more Doom laden feel, with a sinister, dark feel. This leads nicely into the faster paced Jorogumo, a floor stomper from start to finish, especially when, at about 40 seconds in, we're treated to a riff which is one of the best I can remember hearing for some time.

Club Serosa builds up layers from the beginning, firstly guitar, then the introduction of bass and drums, giving it meat and drive and then the vocal comes and gives you a kick in the balls. It continues the theme of awesome crunching riffs and throws in a nice little thrash style surprise for good measure.

The next track, Crushing Your Throne is Doomy offering in its style song on the release, after a minute and a half the track is played slow, heavy, sludgy and intense. The guitar tone and feedback as well as the usual vocal style still makes it feel like an aggressive onslaught.

The demo finishes with the psychotic, fast paced Old Fred, another stomper which in parts it reminds me of a more extreme (and thus more to my taste) System of a Down.

This demo is probably one of the heaviest releases I've written about in terms of music and vocal performance.  And it's these elements I love most about it.

Musically it is raw, but accomplished and well thought out.  Some of the riffs showcased are simply sublime to my ear. The vocal delivery adds aggression and intensity that adds a great contrast to some of the music.

Fuckjar incorporate a mix of styles such as sludge, doom, groove and at times thrashy elements really well. Considering this is a name your price download on Bandcamp, it is an absolute must have. Here is an opportunity to get behind a brilliant UK metal band, at a relatively early stage of their career, and follow them as they become more and more accomplished and appreciated, which I believe they will.

Follow Them on Facebook 

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Slabdragger - Rise of the Sludgecrushers

I bought this album initially as something I might like to write about. I knew I'd like it as I'd heard some of it and all of Slabdragger's brilliant first release, Regress, on Youtube. Then I changed my mind and thought, "no I'm just going to enjoy this as a fan".

I knew by the last note of the first song that I couldn't just enjoy it, I had to write something.

It's fair to say Slabdragger are more established than the subjects of most of my articles and certainly don't need my endorsement, but ultimately the aim of this blog is to spread the word about the music I love, and listening to this album I'd think these fellas made a list of everything I want to hear in an album an made it for me. (Cheers guys). I hope to reach some people who haven't listened before and turn them onto this band.

So without further ado...


Who Are They?

They are made up of Sam Thredder on Guitar and Vocals. Yusuf Tary on Bass and Vocals and Jack Newnham on Drums (the drums on the recording are by Severin Black who has since departed). They hail from Croydon.

It is believed in local folk lore the Gods placed Slabdragger in Croydon to atone for the borough spawning the monolithic cock bag that is Dane Bowers and the disappointment brought upon the English football team of fellow Croydonite Roy Hodgson. It is said upon release of their third album Dane will be replaced as the benchmark of popularised mediocraty by a member of One Direction and England will appoint a successful manager.

Please don't make us wait 5 years this time!

Style and Sound

Doomy, Sludge metal in the vein of bands such as Sleep, Yob, Sabbath (obviously) with a nod to the mighty Pink Floyd in some of the interesting sounds used.

The full bodied, warm, heavy guitar sound is amongst the most satisfying I've heard in the genre as are the range of vocal style used. There have deep roars, shrieks and clean vocals, all used to good effect. There is very strong drum work and some nice bass solo's add to the overall quality of the sound.

Rise Of The Dawncrusher

First off there's the album art provided by the supremely talented Jimmy Pearson. I'm a huge fan of thoughtful album art and this is the best I've seen in some time.  It really sets the tone for the sci-fi adventure concept of the albums songs perfectly.

To say the album is epic is no understatement. If you do invest the time and sit down with headphones or take a long drive, you will not be disappointed. You, take note of the lyrics and you will discover the story and start to appreciate how the music is also used to tell this story.

Each track is a satisfying (cosmic) journey of sledgehammer heavy doom riffs and excellent and variant vocal delivery. It's slow, ponderous and bluesy in parts and fast and aggressive in others.

Whilst 4 of the 5 songs are over 10 minutes, what is refreshing about this album, when compared to some others who produce long songs, is that at no point does any song lose its way or give you the impression there's something been put in purely to fatten the track out. You can immerse yourself in them and wonder where the last 10 minutes have gone.

The wonderful warm bluesy opening of Mercury Blues draws you in and the track soon becomes an all out sludge fest, with riffs that head banging was made for. The pace increases towards the end which leads nicely into the more aggressive Evacuate.  I get elements of southern sludge such as Black Tusk in this track, which is a very good thing. Its the shortest song on the album, but it doesn't lack in impact or delivery.

Shrine of Debauchery's opening uses guitars and additional sounds to create a sinister cosmic atmosphere. This fits well with the theme of the lyrics which seem to be portray some form of disturbed alien cult practising their horrific rituals. Is it wrong that I love these lyrics? Probably. Anyway, if ever there was a case for how well musical delivery can depict lyrical theme, this song should be Exhibit A.

Dawncrusher Rising is a wonderful brutal onslaught that has a sublime breakdown and drum work at around 9 and a half minutes. This provides the theme for the rest of the song.

The album ends with Implosion Rites which starts with a plodding riff interspersed with heavy sections with deep guttural vocals. A great breakdown 7 minutes in introduces the second part of the track, a heavier section followed by a spaced out bluesy solo. This picks up pace before taking us back to the opening riff. Weighing in at 17 and a half minutes this really is an epic, well thought out ending to an incredible album.

My musically astute 3 year old asked me, when playing the first song, "is this Rock 'n' Roll," so I told her yes it is. She then demanded I play it again when it finished. It's the only CD I've played her that she's been remotely interested in  (although she is partial to a bit of The Trooper by Iron Maiden). I don't know if this little story is a sign of it's quality, but it certainly endears the album to me even more than the undoubted quality of its content alone.

If you don't at least buy this release (you really should), you should give it a listen in its entirety on Youtube. You will not be disappointed.

Buy it: Bandcamp/Label 

Follow them: Facebook/Twitter

Label: Holy Roar (check out the subscriptions via bandcamp, great value if you like their output)
((I do not work for Holy Roar, it's just good value and a great idea))

Thanks for reading.

Monday, 4 July 2016

Buffalo Theory MTL - Skeptic Knight

Who Are They?

They are Buffalo Theory MTL. The MTL is short for Montreal, their home town and also close to where I bought an Eel skin wallet, the quality of which has never been matched, from an Aboriginal Canadian shop when visiting family in Canada at the age of 11, but that's another story.

Their members are Anton Parr (originally of Brazil) on vocals, Yannick Pilon on guitar and vocals, Pat Gordon on guitar, Gary Lyons on bass and Brian Craig on drums.

All members are seasoned metal artists who have graced the stages along with the likes of Korn, Marilyn Manson, Suicidal Tendancies and the almighty, glorious Testament (I am a bit of a fan!)

It's safe to say, these guys can play a bit.


They are a Stoner, beer chugging, fun time metal band through and through. Their music has all the awesome riffage and crash symbol smashing delivery you could ever ask for.
Taking this all into account, it'll be no surprise to my regular readers that I'm a bit if a fan!

The drum work is worth mentioning on it's own to start. I get the impression Brian's past work may have been in some more speed orientated and more aggressive metal. Whether this is correct or not, the drum work is something I particularly enjoy in their music. Whilst there's all the behind the beat stuff I like to hear, some of the speedy fills and rolls (I'm not taking about sandwiches but I am getting hungry) add a real intensity and grit to the songs.

This does not take away from the performances of any of the other guys though, there is quality writing and performance in every song I have heard. There's not a single boring riff or pointless solo, everything has it's place.

What ultimately sets Buffallo Theory MTL apart from many Stoner bands for me is the vocal delivery, which unsurprisingly given Anton's heritage, has a Brazilian thrash feel and at times a classic Punk influence that goes hand in hand with thrash. It's a different and refreshing addition to the genre.

EP: Skeptic Knight

Skeptic Knight opens with the almost locomotive chugging of Conspiracy in Paronaland. The vocal delivery harks back to Johnny Rotten in parts.

Punishment is more thrash meets Stoner and they make little chilled but occasionally ADHD babies. Every time I hear the opening I pull the grimacing "fuck yeah" face metal heads pull when they're really into a riff. When I'm in company people think I'm constipated, but in fact I'm just enjoying the pace, aggression and class delivery of this song.

Get On It sounds like an invite to come and get drunk, and it seems lyrically that was the intention. The riff, randomly, initially reminded me of Prisonsex by Tool, just faster and more upbeat. Whether I'm completely insane or not with that comparison, what it does have is a tempo, riff and lyrical repetition that works in making you want to get up and  groove and shout the lyrics back at Anton at the same time.

The title track, Skeptic Knight, has a classic Doom intro, before breaking into a snare driven headbanger. The riff is king in this song, it's impossible not to get pulled physically into the rhythm of the song and want to head bang like a chicken at feed time.

Psychic Enclosure has a clear groove feel. There's no unnecessary fills or attempts to drag this out. Its short, sweet to the point, with a good solo. The very last note leaves you expecting, and wanting, more.


The EP is a grower. On first listen I enjoyed it but was most taken by the brilliance of Punishment. It's still my favourite song but the other tracks, probably mostly Psychic Enclosure and Get On It, grow in stature with every listen.

It's well worth the £2.92 outlay on bandcamp. I'd also suggest you pick up their Triple Single EP Murder Trilogy for what ever price you wish to name as it's another excellent release. Murder Trilogy is 3 songs, 3 languages and spawned this excellent video.


Find them and Follow Them: Facebook/Twitter