Friday, Dec. 5 Metallomusikum hosts a Krampusnacht concert of black metal blasphemy at The Sidebar. Bands include Dweller in the Valley (Frederick, MD); Ravn (Richmond, VA); Death Shroud (Radford, VA), Archael (Fredericksburg, VA) and Athame (Hagerstown, MD/Falling Waters WV). Check out the event page here.
Don’t know what a Krampus is? Perhaps you don’t really want to know.
Krampus is a pre-Xian era concept of a goat-like beast that has become known as an entity that punishes bad children. When the Xians came along, they turned him into the sidekick of St. Nicholas. Children who were good got presents. Bad children were beaten with a birch branch and stuffed into a sack and taken off to who-knows-where. In heathen times the Krampus may have been a symbol for an initiation rite. Perhaps today’s youth could use a good dose of Krampus fear in their lives.
The legend of Krampus pervades in many forms throughout Europe, and it is starting to catch on in the US, which of course turned it into an excuse to drink and run through the streets. There are some more pagan-style Krampus celebrations, such as the Krampuslauf in Philadelphia. For the most part though, I think Americans see it as a chance for second-Halloween.
Either way, the bands playing Krampusnacht are the best at what they do or I would not have booked them for my little Xmas Devil gathering. Check out some tunes below and make your way to 218 E. Lexington St. Baltimore by 8 p.m. on Friday. If you don’t, you-know-who will be waiting in the alley with a sack to carry you off.
Recently, Derek and I attempted to record a podcast reviewing three albums. from regional bands The recording was done in a hurry and the gain was too high, so the sound is pretty bad. We sound completely adorable and not too drunk, but I won’t force you to suffer through listening to it because of the quality. (If you really want to hear it, the link is here, but it will not be included on MixCloud podcast stream.) We did want you to at least be aware of some of our comments on these recordings. The drink of the evening was vodka and Taco Bell limeades.
The idea behind these this reviews is that we listen to the albums and give our immediate first impressions. Of course, we may go back and listen to these albums again in the future, but, in general, first impressions are the most important, so that’s what we are going with
Myopic – Beyond the Mirror’s Edge (Grimoire Records); three-piece from Takoma Park, MD.
- “It started out kind of sludgey but they hit all kinds of things in four songs. Really seemed to be exploratory and all over the map …”
- “Last song started out good but I don’t remember much about the rest of it, went in weird directions.”
- “Lot of hardcore and post rock/metal elements”
- “Felt like the first song was kind of a weak start but liked the second track much better.”
- “Hate it when I band starts a song with feedback…that’s becoming cliche to me.”
- “Iron Towers was good. Backstitch had a lot of cool parts but seemed a little too long.”
- “Last song had what we call a ‘circus breakdown’ but overall pretty good.”
We both liked the album overall and would like to see this band live.
Iris Divine -demo (self-released); three-piece from Centreville, VA.
- “It’s not for me, because I didn’t like it.”
- “It has a very nice production value.”
- “It was very proggy, sing-songy, that kind of thing.”
- “I lot of people will really like this recording, so I don’t really feel bad saying that I do not.”
- “I felt like it was Dream Theater worship.”
- “There are people in the metal community that love this kind of stuff, but I find the vocals cloying…too sweet.”
- “Give Iris Divine a shot, but it’s not our thing. Buy it or don’t.”
We have seen Iris Divine live at The Sidebar. While it is not our favorite genre of music, we recognize that this is a well recorded, well executed work.”
Dweller in the Valley- Breath of the Void (Black Mess/Grimoire Records); trio from Frederick, MD.
- “I liked it.”
- ” I have no input other than I can’t wait to see them live.”
(Poor Derek, I realize I barely gave him a chance to talk about this band!)
- “I hear a little bit of hardcore influence but this is definitely black metal.”
- ” I feel like this is a live band. Dane Olds is really angry when he sings. Maybe his is not an angry young man, but he just comes off that way and the music is incredibly aggressive…righteous indignation.”
I have seen this band live, but Derek has not. The goal is to get him out to see Dweller, where the drummer is also the vocalist.
Visit us again soon for more random record reviews.