Weng’s Chop #4 (magazine review)

My quest to review the best underground cinema-related magazine made me realize I have missed so many great movies. And I forgot others I did want to watch, but for some reason I haven’t. Yeah, that’s the beauty (and probably the price as well) for our hectic lives today (at least for many of us).

Anyway, if you follow my reviews with your own copy of WCH, either shaking your head in agreement or thinking “WTF is he thinking?”, good. If not, shame on you. OK, maybe not, but you certainly miss some good reading.

That’s being said, we’re back with the review for issue number 4. Oh my, are we bulkin’ up here, aren’t we? Well, going from inaugural #0 with 52 small pages to the present behemot with 217 long pages, you know the good folks behind WCH magazine care for your intake of culture-related information.

And, to say the least, this issue is probably the most diverse to-date (easy to say, when taking into account the pagecount, but still…).

OK, so what we have here – My copy came with the cover variant B. That should tell you there are other 2 variants, but I this one I liked the most. But I’m glad they stopped doing cover variants, it’s just distracting and honestly, spending time to prepare something which doesn’t bring at much value compared to time spent. #Mytwocents here.

Originally I wanted to talk about new collaborators here, but I guess I’ll spare some words about them when we’ll get to the articles themselves, so without further ado, let’s delve to this issue’s content.

Ray Harryhausen
Ray Harryhausen

After the editorials on page 2 we are greeted with solemn stuff. In 2013 we lost another great movie icon, the stop-motion effects master Ray Harryhausen. Pages 3-6 are dedicated to recollection of many film lovers about their love for Ray and his creations. I think it’s great to leave behind such a legacy, such a wealth of cinematic experiences to indulge, to share and profess our love for.

The topic continues on the page 7 with the article by Vicky Love about Harryhausen, Bradbury and their impact on her film/book loving journey.

Movie poster for The Witch

If you ever wonder why I skip some pages, it’s because they contain full page illustrations or image introduction to next segment of the zine. That’s why we’re jumping to page 10 and we are greeted with absolutely fantastic article by Jared Auner and Timo Raita about the Finnish move The Witch.

Jared Auner I know (now) as a collaborator for Mondo Macabro, the well known and well respected film connossieur DVD/Blu Ray label for all cinema lovers (which reminds me of always-lamented-by-me state of postage rates from the good ole US to Europe, effectively barring me from getting more MM releases, but that’s life), and Timo Raita is somewhat a mystery man, but with cinema tastes like this one, you can bet he knows his stuff.

Anyway, this article is pretty long (8 long pages) and mind-blowing, as it presents stuff I haven’t been prepared for back in 2013. You know, I was more into mindless actioners, horror flicks and other B-movie stuff, so this presented quite a challenge, it’s totally different level and I still need to watch this movie.

Larry Cohen

Larry Cohen and his cinematic output is a focus of the article by Karl Kafer, a seasoned exploitation movie fan with the love of 70’s stuff. And if you are that big newbie to this underbelly of the cinema world as I was (and I still laugh about that when thinking about times back then), soon you will find yourself looking on the net to get some movies from this exploitation director. And a good one.

Kuntilanak trilogy

Lawrence Conti was another name I was not familiar with, unfortunately, his blog on Wordpress is not longer updated, but thanks to his input I’ve discovered Kuntilanak trilogy (pages 22-23), so he gets a lot of praise from me. I mean it. Well written piece and those movies I like – and again, from my personal experience, I have developed my interest in other Asian movies (besides usual Chinese, Japanese and HK stuff). I would definitely recommend to check these movies to all horror movie fans.

Pages 24-34 are dedicated to a astounding article by Andrew Leavold about his experiences while preparing the fucking fantastic (Rudolf, did you just said the F word? Yes, I did!) documentary The Search for Weng Weng. You know, Weng Weng, the midget Phillipino actor? No? Then you are in for a big big surprise! And thankfully, one of the movies he starred in – For Y’ur Height Only – was released by aforementioned Mondo Macabro label and still available (among many other great movies) from their page.

And Karl Kaefer again, this time with stuff I haven’t heard about at all except from his article in this issue. I have to admit I will skip this trilogy cos I haven’t been that much awed (there is nothing wrong with the article, just some films I am not into). But if satire si your thing, then pages 35-38 is your stuff to go to.

Helen Ukpabio, the Nigerian Christian female evangelist and witch-hunter behind some Nollywood movies.

Where the hell does Brian Harris pull the stuff out from? His first contribution (not counting, of course, editorial) to this issue is a revealing article about Nollywood (that’s Nigerian cinema, for those who don’t know) and the demonic double feature of Helen Ukpabio (pages 39-41). And that’s the beauty of it. We, who were raised with a standard cinematic outpouring, would and will probably be shocked by not so expected stuff from unknown parts of the world, but just the notion of existence of such a weird stuff makes one wonder – how good is it? How bad? Well, after reading the article I am definitely curious to find out, and I like Brian’s writing style, so you can’t lose here.

And as to empower his presence, we have another article by Brian straight next to the one we’ve discussed. Any love for The Asylum production company? Of course, now better known due to Sharknado franchise, these modern exploiteers made or distributed a lot of other movies and Brian looks into some of these. You know, bad CGI, ridiculous dialogues…everything we love in 4 pages (pages 42-45).

Joe D’Amato

Now, kids, if you’re not 18 or over, skip pages 46-59, as the article by David Zuzelo deals with late great Joe D’Amato’s porn movies output in 1990s. Great writing, great pictures and probably great movies to boot! I haven’t seen any of those, although I do have some knowledge of it (but for the modern “big budget” productions I know only Tatyana and The Pyramid with Tania Russoff). Not that I won’t check these, though! You know…for review purposes, if you know what I mean. 🙂

C. T. McNeely contributes a nicely written article about Sonny Chiba (pages 61-64) and it’s all you need to know to know (no mis-typing mistake here!) you’re gonna like it. Because, is there anything unlikable about Sonny? Yeah, I’ve thought so.

Sonny Chiba

For something totally different, Robin Bougie, the man behind a famous (or infamous, pick your side) magazine and series of books Cinema Sewer, brings an interesting look at “The Top Ten Weirdest Improvised Weapons in Film History”. I won’t spoil it, but as with many articles or reviews in WCH, now I have itch and crave these movies!!! Help!

Tim Doyle

68-82. That’s not some lower body portion of an aspiring model, but the pagecount, where you will find a long, detailed interview with Tim Doyle (we’ve already mentioned him as an artist responsible for the cover image variant B) conducted by Tony Strauss, which tells you at least one thing – if you remember the page count for Tony’s inaugural article from WCH #3 (a detailed analysis of Zulawski’s Possession), you know that Tony is really, really pedantic, so expect a lot of information presented. Myself, I can’t be delighted more.

Ryan Nicholson

And we’re not done yet! Another interview, another interesting person! This time it’s Brian Harris’ piece talking to Ryan Nicholson. Remember Gutterballs? Yeah, that’s the guy responsible for it (pages 83 and 84).

Last interview in this volume (pages 85-86) comes from Graham Rae, a seasoned (can I say, veteran) writer, interviewing Ugandan filmmaker Lubega Vincent. Definitely interesting, as I am sure there are not many Ugandan movies out to talk about, I just wish the replies from Vincent would be little longer. But hey, you can’t dictate what they have to say.

The House By the Cemetery

It’s Geek Roundable time! That’s what you can say coming to pages 88-98, where our authors and contributors speak about their takes on Lucio Fulci’s The House By The Cemetery. And within the range there is also a page about the Christian edit of the movie, which I haven’t a slightest idea about.

There are a few features in WCH I really like and always read first. Now we’re coming to the first of these (unfortunately, it’s not always present in every issue, but you can’t always get what you want, remember that!), and that’s Brian Harris’ “Box Set Beatdown … Adventures in Bin Diving!”. 9 long pages of goodies, ladies and gentlemen! Brian talks about movies from some box sets and thanks to this article I’ve acquired at least one of these! So, if you are curious if there’s any value in boxsets like Grindhouse Experience volume 1 & 2, Grindhouse Experience – Eye on Horror, Grindhouse Experience – Mercs, Red Ninja Collection, Sci-fi Invasion and Scream Theater, you owe to yourself to explore the reviews of movies here. What a blast! I have only two of these, but damn, do I want them all!

Mill Creek Entertainment logo

And we’re still in the game! Pages 108 and 109 bring a helluva lot of info about Mill Cree Entertainment’s boxsets, and no matter what, I’d love to have them all, but alas…I think some are fairly out-of-print now, so good luck finding them on Ebay and such. And if you are just a newbie exploring new genres, and new movies, what’s better than a movie pack of movies you have never heard about? True, not everyone is a movie gem, but we’re in for a ride!

Stephen R. Bisette’s Spider Baby Sinema article (pages 110-117) contains another batch of reviews, and as usual, I’ve learned a thing of two about obscure stuff. And I have to mention the very nice habit of authors and editors to emphasize the titles of the movies they refer to, so they stand out, and you know, if you have 4-5 other movies mentioned in other movie’s review, then your cinematic experience is going to last quite long. Unless it’s something very very bad…but that’s another thing, of course.

A second part of Steve’s Video Store is next, pages 118-119, by Steven Ronquillo, in this intallment he talks about movies, whose titles start with “Don’t”. And as you might know, there were quite a few of those.

Douglas Waltz is the author of Mexican Monsters on Parade (pages 121-124). Mexploitation is weird, but great and I’m glad I got some movies mentioned in this article for my collection. And that’s how it should be, I hope you’ll agree…

Godfrey Ho

And now, second of my favorite featuring articles! Jeff Goodhartz is responsible for the absolutely super series of articles about the master of HK exploitation, that little guy named Godfrey Ho. And to his output is dedicated “Pimping Godfrey Ho”, reviewing some of the unbelievable output of this once very prolific director. Ninjas, ‘Namsploitation, martial arts…this guy has done them all and with an unforgettable … I hesitate to use that word, but yeah, success!

126-154. 28 pages of Indian horror cinema by Tim Paxton (with help of Cara Romano). Tim’s articles about Indian cinema are probably the best thing in the WCH. Not that I dislike other authors, but this stuff is so far anything but fantastic!!! Of course, I commend Tim for watching it all, as I am pretty aware some of the output is pretty unwatchable, but to read about that kind of movies…beyond belief! If there is a single stuff to buy this issue for, this one it is. No doubt about that.

Danae Dunning, that Goth/metal/hippie chick from Hobbs, New Mexico, U.S.A., offers her opinion on some movies with her share of reviews (150-160). I find her pick of the Christian horror double feature very interesting, as I haven’t been as yet exposed to this kind of material, and good thing is, apart from one or two movies she presents stuff I haven’t read about or known before, so that’s always a plus for me. And her. And on page 161 she writes about the three Fulci movies, read that too!

Pages 164-189 contain another section of reviews, this time from various authors and it always takes me ages to read them, as I usually jump to my phone or computer to check the availability of movies straight away. And the selection here is nothing but excellent.

Xerox Ferox book cover

Another of my fave section, OK, two sections together, is The Bookshelf and OOP: Out Of Print. So many great books, magazines and zines mentioned here, for all I will just mention the fabulous Xerox Ferox I have bought just because I have read about it here. Helpful? You can bet your last dollar on that!

And the last article for today is a long (as usual with Tim Paxton’s work) and informative piece on the Devil in the movies titled “The Exorcist Made Me Do It” he wrote with David Todarello. Great writing, great reading and again – a boatload of movies I need to watch. Damn, I need to get some potion of immortality to be able to devour all this stuff!!

And if that’s not enough for you, go solve the krisword puzzle on page 215 and get familiar with authors and contributors to this issue (pages 216-217).

I know this review is loooong and probably boring, but Weng’s Chop, this astounding, amazing publication of love for the movies and related stuff deserves to be treated with that kind of respect. And if people preparing each and every issue spent days working on it, a few pages of unashamed appraisal won’t hurt. Who’s with me?!

A father to two little perpetuum mobiles called kids, Rudolf is a main force behind The Rubber Axe webzine, a bookworm, musick lover and a movie fan - not to mention his virgin forays into the comics and board/card games.

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Drowning: Lost City Riders (a 2008 TV movie review)

Lost City Riders, well, its title, has caught my attention almost immediately. I admit, I am a sucker for “lost city” stuff.

I’ve watched the movie once before, but I don’t remember anything of it, which is usually a bad sign, however, with the plethora of movies (and other spare-time-killing activities) available, that’s not really something to go along with – and you probably agree, you remember movies from your childhood, but hardly something you’ve watched a month ago on Netflix.

That might have to do something with the overall quality of the modern cinema, but I guess I am digressing here a bit..so let’s get back to our flick.

The movie was directed by Jean de Segonzac, mostly known for directing episodes of various TV series, and starring James Brolin, Ian Somerhalder, Bettina Zimmermann, Jamie Thomas King, Elodie Frenck, Michael Mendl, Jeremy Crutchley and Benn Cross,

Well, Lost City Riders is not a movie you’re gonna remember. A co-production between German TV channel ProSieben and Sci-fi Channel (before its rebranding to SyFy Channel), you’ve seen the plot rehashed a million times before (and couple hundreds after 🙂 ).

The global warming caused the flooding of the Earth, only 10 % of the surface is habitable, and we’re encountering our – you’ve guessed it – Lost City Riders, a family unit (a guy with two adopted sons), raiding the submerged buildings for profit.

Our family unit planning the entering and escaping.

Unbeknownst to his two adopted sons Jack (Ian Somerhalder) and Thomas (Jamie Thomas King), their stepfather John Kubiak (James Brolin) is on the mission of finding the legendary scepter of Sobek, Egyptian god of Nile, who – according to legend – controlled by it the rising and falling down the waters of the great river.

And as it’s usually the case, he’s not alone! Enters Nicholas Filiminov (Ben Cross) as a nefarious businessman trying to claim the scepter for himself to – well, you’ve guessed it again – make money!

Our villain Nicholas Filiminov (Ben Cross) confronting Giovanna Becker (Bettina Zimmermann)

To complete the picture, we have Bettina Zimmermann as Giovanna Becker, Jack’s old love, and because it would be bad to leave the other boy alone, here comes the rescue in the form of Elodie Frenck (Cara Cahill).

You know how it plays, right? Yes, it’s pretty straightforward, with a bad underwater CGI effects, the story doesn’t allow for any twists or surprises, but the scenes in the Chinese cave (yes, we are all over the world, from Vatican to Dresden to Chinese cave system) with the secret room built in it got me in stitches. The acting there was on the level I’ve expected it turning to a scene from a adult video movie any second! Anyway, don’t shoot at the pianist for the piano not being in tune, as they say.

Putting the rod into the hole…or something like that.

I am not sure if it’s me getting old and more tolerant of everything, but I myself was surprised to actually watch the whole movie without any interruptions. I think I can safely state it was due to the level of watchable silliness on the TV screen, quite certainly unintentional by the creators of the movie.

But it’s about entertainment, right? In that case, they’ve succeeded.

Not that I’m gonna re-watch it any time soon (if ever).

Official trailer:

Fragment Soul – Axiom of Choice (a review)

The link for these Greek doom melancholics arrived to my mailbox a long time ago, and I’ve almost forgotten about it. Yes, I know. Im am irresponsible sometimes.

However, I’ve started my spring cleaning also in my accounts and so I’ve come across Axiom of Choice – and what a beautiful album it is.

4 long compositions in 3 seconds over 42 minutes, that’s the progressive doom dessert from Greece. No feta cheese, though, that’s for sure.

You might know already that my musical tastes are all over the place, and although some might argue it won’t allow me to concentrate fully on a particular genre, I think it gives me an opportunity to enjoy music without too much of a comparison.

And therefore I can enjoy Fragment Soul and their work of art for what it is. And it’s a beautiful, melancholic, gloomy collection – however, not a depressive one, I’d say. It’s something you would play during the rainy day, laying alone in your bed and just floating in space of your thoughts and memories. For the fans of Draconian it might be pointed out, that Heike Langhans collaborated on this album, and there’s also a guest person – Egan O’Rourke from Daylight Dies.

I like it a lot. For a seasoned fans of the doom genre it might not be earth-shattering, and I’m not gonna argue it is. But if you want to spend 42:03 minutes of your life with an aural balsam for your ears and soul, this might be something you might like to check.

Album stream: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XQupuFFlbOo

Malauriu – Malauriu (a 2022 album review)

Recently I’ve lent my ear to some nice black metal releases, so when I’ve got this promo from Italy for a review, it’s been only a matter of time when it will attack both my ears.

…and the day has come.

Malauriu are certainly no new-comers, haling from the Italian underground since 2013. I am not familiar with their previous output, but with the opening track, “Morto Era L’oro”, it is clear what they meant by “a new chapter of experimentation between dark ambient and Mediterranean sound”, which was the description they’ve used in the promo e-mail. Well, they haven’t lied.

The album contains 4 long compositions, the shortest one clocks in 10:52 (“Corpo Tempio), the longest will stay in your aural orifices for almost 12 minutes (11:50 long “Specula”).

A mix between ritualistic darkwave and a poetry reading, lyrics in Italian, along with the music itself, evoke the best moments of watching Italian horror/occult/supernatural movies – minus the video segment, of course.

Not much of a black metal per se, nevertheless, this is right in my comfort zone, as I’ll never say no to the atmosphere inducing soundscape.

The album will be released on April 1st, 2022, in a CD and digital format via the Italian label Nero Corvino, so if that’s your kind of music, you definitely won’t go wrong getting it.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/malauriuofficial

Costectomy/Nyctophagia – “Drone Hunting Missionaries For Sport” (a 2021 split review)

After some time spent checking not so usual music with my other webpage Indokult, dedicated to the Indonesian music , I’ve started craving some more unhinged underground music again. To be precise, good old goregrind and gorenoise. No, I won’t call it a “fix”, haha, but truth is – sometimes it’s just what the doctor has ordered. You know…going full circle and so forth…

Now, with the genre selected, the next important question was – with so much to choose from, what to play? For that, I’ve checked a Olga Lazarus’ new label Strangulation Furrow on Bandcamp. You might remember Olga from the interview I did with her for the Rubber Axe webzine here. Since then she’s relocated to the USA and started a new label, it’s only logical to show her some support! Yes, freaks, some support!!!

Olga is a busy bee and so far she has released some nice releases (mostly tapes, but also a CD and a 7” EP), plus she’s printing the t-shirts herself. Talk about some dedication here!

So, with that being said, I’ve chosen to review a split between Costectomy and Nyctophagia titled “Drone Hunting Missionaries For Sport”. 14 groovy tracks in total.

A tape version from Strangulation Furrow label

First to offer the putrid sonic fruits is Costectomy, which is Chud’s (Ulcerated Offal, Cystoblastosis, ex-Hit-Run Drivers etc.) project based in Eliot (Maine, USA). 6 tracks in total of great sounding goregrind (yes, the aforementioned groovy kind), enriched by the samples from the horror/gore movies, exactly the way I like it. You know, I love intros/outros! Damn, thinking about that, I am pretty much easily pleased, haha! Well, it’s true. However, when you are faced with stuff like this, that’s not so hard. Great stuff here. Oh, not to forget, the last song is a cover of Dysmenorrheic Hemmorage, “Affliction”.

The rest of the release belongs to Nyctophagia, currently an 1-man unstoppable grinding machine from Ohio and if you can count on your rotten fingers, you know that means 8 tracks left to enjoy!

Unlike Costectomy, Nyctophagia plays more of a little faster death/grind, more of a bulldozer than a groove, however I can’t complain here neither and so won’t you. Really, what’s here not to enjoy?

The split is over almost in no time – which is probably the only negative I can say about it. For those collectors of the physical release, this was released in 2021 on a pro CD-R by Costectomy Records (but according the info it’s already sold out) and Olga’s label has released it on in a tape version. Go check and grab it while you can!

Bandcamp: https://strangulationfurrowrecords.bandcamp.com/album/costectomy-nyctophagia-split

VA – Gorenoise megasplit vol. 1

It’s been quite a while since I’d reviewed anything gorenoise related. Gorenoise Megasplit volume 1, the compilation I’m going to write a few words about, was sent to me by our friends in the Italian label Nosevomit Records quite a long time ago, and I am ashamed to have waited for so long before reviewing it. Well, time to wait is over, let’s have a look how ugly this boy turned out to be!

Opening the compilation is Italian gorenoise project Bronchospasm with the track “Pneumoconiosis”, the cool 4:05 track and it’s quite interesting, not the typical blasting sh*t I’d expect, it’s more like an experimental noise track, with drums beats here and there, but straight away, I am impressed and I need to check this project little more closer. And, by the way, they are associated with this little record label: https://www.facebook.com/unauthorizedsurgeonsclub/

The second to dissect is another Italian pathology combo – Conforming To Survive – with the three tracks, “Severed Mutation of the Upper Limbs”, “Gnawing the Intestines” and “Cursed Flesh Grimoire”. Rehearsal recording, with a rather goregrind/noise chaos, and again, I am revelling in this! Building from the shortest track to the longest one (which clocks in 3:39), there’s plenty of filth to like here!

But then…it’s a gorenoise proper! American project Hydroencephalocystocele steals the show with its “13 Traxx Untitled” and for all those looking for a really cool gorenoise, now it’s the time. Bubbles and noise, what can go wrong, right? I’d welcome more variability here, but otherwise, can’t complain.

Mucopurulence’s section opens with a cool intro, which intro-duces (lol) us to to f*ckin awesome goregrind track “Copro Corpse Copulation”. This stuff raises the dead! Mucupurulence hails from Finland and because they kick ass, they offer 5 tracks here – Copro Corpse Mutilation, Putrid Bile of Shit, A Collection of Colons and Entrails, Ceaseless Violent Defecating, Choking on Swollen Tongue and Vomit – all the future classicks, I am sure! Not too long, not too short, they are perfect! I really enjoy these, and the song titles remind me of the times we used to come up with the most insane titles too!!!

This nice compilation closes with 5 gorenoise tracks (Adiction, Another Disease; Ear Atrocities, Head Hole, Inhuman Glass and Taenia Solium) from Saccopharynx. This Mexican project offers an interesting mix of blasting drums, bubbling, gurgling vokills…and probably even a kitchen sink thrown in for a good measure, and it works.

The whole compilation can be heard on the Nosevomit’s Bandcamp, and what’s even better, you can get a CD-R of it too!!! What are you waiting for then?

https://nosevomitrecords.bandcamp.com/album/gorenoise-megasplit-vol-i

Where fire burns eternally: Eternal Kingdom of Fire, volume 5 (digital promo review)

Those of you who read the Rubber Axe regularly, will might recall the review I’ve written for a previous release of this compilation series, namely volume 2.

Well, time flies and a few days ago a new batch has arrived to my mailbox, this time it was the latest invocation, namely the volume 5.

10 bands, 10 songs. However…what songs these are!

Opening this compilation tape is Winter Eternal from Greece (lately of Scotland, according to available information) with the song “Crown of Stars” (also on this project’s 2021 full length “Land of Darkness”). F**king brilliant tune, I can hardly think of a better opening. Interesting, well thought of, well played. And a well received here, that’s no doubt about that. I like the use of instruments and the melodies.

Russian strikeforce Ophidian Malice, on the other hand, take no prisoners and relentlessly bash the listener with their furious black metal vibe. “Saviour” is the song from their debut 2021 full-length “Disgusting Ritual” and it definitely shows the band in the good (un)light.

So far, I am really enjoying the comp.

With Skorbvstr, the raw black metal ferocity from Kentucky (USA) we have first exclusivity here, as I think their song “Diskusjonen er avsluttet” is available here only. I might be wrong though. I am little surprised with the use of, what is it Norwegian language?…but the guy might be from Scandinavia, so there’s that. As for the music, I have to admit I am starting to develop a certain liking for the raw BM (which, as many might know, is not one of my favourite subgenres), and there are some elements I really enjoy here.

“Pain Enshrouded Dirge” from Desecration Rites is our very next song, and the second longest offering from this compilation. I’d say there’s a certain inspiration from old Burzum (which is not a bad thing, what do you think?), and even it delivers the goods (so to speak) even with the simplicity of melody, riffs and hypnotic drumbeat. Well, you know…the old school, the good way.

Alpgeist hails from Bavaria (Germany) and presents to you their hymn “Moor in der Todtenau”. Yes, I can definitely say I like this approach a lot more than the raw BM subgenre. Dark, melancholic and melodic, I really like the guitar riffs here…the whole song is one welcoming energy boost in my current depressive mood. Can a black metal song be viewed as a positive booster? I’d say so, so this applies. I am really loving this one.

Zmyrna can be classed as Alpgeist’s neighbour, as guys come from Czech Republic, and their “Pagus Maledictus” offers yet another fascinating look into the black metal subgenre – guys not only sing about mystical stuff and medieval life, their music also evokes the fires of the dark ages and the suffering through the ages. This song is certainly a weird one, very unexpected, but as I’ve said – fascinating (in a good sense). The song itself comes from their only material to date, the 2021 self-titled EP.

And now, ladies and gentlemen – the longest track of this compilation. Necrodes and “Swept Away”, from its 2021 full-length “Isolation”. Wow, what a vocal! Imagine maniacal, hysterical cries with some gurgling and you might start to have an idea. Although, I guess the best bet is to have a listen. However, I think more of DSBM than atmospheric BM here, but that’s just my opinion. Unfortunately, these days I am rarely fond of long compositions and I’ve got a little bored here, sorry.

Necrocarnation hails from Germany now, but from what I could find, they are from Argentina, and on this nice compilation they bring to your attention their black/death metal sacrifice with their song “Antarctic”, which is also the opener of their 2020 EP “Fragments of Dark Eternity”. And I have to say, I like this stuff! Especially vokills, which sound really killer! Kudos to the compiler, as I really welcome the diversity of the subgenres while still being true to the black metal genre as a whole.

Finnish duo Svartheim play strict black metal, which might sound a little generic nowadays, but I think they are aware of that, so they enrich their song “Vaiettu” (which comes from their 2021 full length debut “Black Metal Finland”) with the interesting dual vocals. And it works. Personally, I don’t really give a damn about similarity between songs or bands – if I like it, I like it, period. And Svartheim would be on my playlist. It’s simple, yet effective.

And the last band to enjoy from this compilation is Necro Forest from Croatia, with the song “Hate Divison”. Raw black metal, with little NSBM leaning, I’d guess. I am little disappointed with the sort of a ripping off Mayhem’s “Freezing Moon” in the beginning of the song , because when it starts properly, it’s not bad at all! But I think Norwegian legends have their impact on many bands…it’s not that big of an issue, but I thought it would be good to mention that. Also, likeable song.

So, that’s all, folks. Good, bad? Well, for me, undoubtedly a great compilation. I think I can safely say – I can play this without skipping a song. And that’s quite a feat.

Get it from Ancient Cult Records, while you can. Get in touch with the label via e-mail: aniquilacionsatanicapro@yahoo.com

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