South Of Heaven

Part III

Welcome to another installment of South Of Heaven. Since our last meeting a lot of domestic materials have been released, some of them on really nice labels too. In fact, sometimes I'm at a loss whether or not to review these materials here or in the standard reviews section. Mostly what comes into play is the band's knowledge at the scene, their position, and sometimes fierce polemics with the Editor-in-Chief about which items should go to the top for "big" reviews. However, music and the bands themselves benefit from our exchange of opinions, because so far, we always somehow come to an agreement (especially when… we'll meet 😉). But, what more is there to say? Things are going well in the Polish country! And let it stay that way…



GAROTA - Czarne Wizje - Godz Ov War Productions

The debut album of this Szczecin horde was released in 2022 under the flag of the tireless Godz Ov War and I must admit that it is a perfect label for them. Garota's music is sleazy, repulsive and primitive black/thrash metal intended only for the toughest players. And even though at times the influences from Midnight, Desaster, and Aura Noir come out, it is presented in a more raw form. And NO, you will not find here any musical tidbits, technical plays, choirs and girls on vocals. A ruthless ride from start to finish. And although it's not very original playing, it's really good to listen to. I don't predict a great career for them but I respect their approach. After all, not everyone needs to chase fame, some take pleasure from just playing and satisfying their own musical ambitions, because I have no doubt that the guys from Garota satisfy their needs.


TRUP - Nie - Godz Ov War Productions

Also reminiscences from the year before last. Next is the Augean stable… oops, sorry Greg's. Another material from Trup and again it's very seedy, raw and wild like hell. And in the case of Trup, once again, there is great surprise as to where in this band, or more in guys who have sludge roots, comes all this pissed off attitude, rawness and simplicity in playing? Simplicity in a good meaning of course. Trup is making all this noise on simple principles, but under all this there's attention to compositions and arrangements. Or maybe, it just comes out like that for them. The album is simply titled NIE and it starts with a total killer in the form of number '29', which attacks listeners with hardcore aggression right off the bat, to move on as if nothing had happened, more chaos called '30' and then a slight calmness arrives… seemingly, because the attack stays on all the time. And after this material, they can no longer be defined as sludge/black/noise in a simple way... us reviewers… we're fucked. On the other hand, why mess around and call names when the music defends itself? At least that's how it is with Trup.


DEATH CRUSADE - Znów Płonie Niebo - Independent

Another material from the Pomeranian Death Crusade starts very innocently from the intro by Hervy, known among others from Blindead, then becomes slow and more trance-like playing that would suggest that we will have to deal with some post-metal production – tfuuuu. However, about halfway through the opener 'Szary', the band dispels all doubts and its music turns into a real hurricane. Those who know Death Crusade very well know that this is a great band that combines elements of crust, punk, d-beat and metal and they do it at a really cool level. If I will mention bands such as Discharge, G-Anx, Terrorizer and Extreme Noise Terror, I won't offend the guys from Tricity. And it's nice that it's getting better with more of this kind of playing in our country, because there has been drought for years in this field. They're playing a gig near me soon, so I'll definitely go check if they can defend themselves live!


EXUL - Path To The Unknown - Defense Records

Debut album recorded almost 11 years after the band's founding so you can immediately hear that there is not a thing wrong with it. The fact is that Exul was dormant for many years, but I guess the musicians didn't just sit on their butts but they kept perfecting their craft. This very talented Krakow band, with Zamość roots, has all the predispositions towards quickly joining the national thrash metal elite. Already on the first listen, Path To The Unknown catches your ears with sincerity of the message and downright youthful enthusiasm, which combined with really nice compositions and, as I mentioned, good musical technique, creates an explosive mixture. The seven numbers that make up this album are a truly explosive mix of American and European thrash metal, with really cool and stylish vocals. Really nice to listen to, the foot is tapping on its own, so these are probably very good symptoms in the case of such music.


ATROPINE- Sanity Desecration - Via Nocturna

We will stay in Rzeszów, but this time the attack will be more specific and more extreme, because we will listen to brutal death metal. Previously I reviewed their material a few years ago and I must admit that during that time Atropine didn't just fuck around, they worked hard on their skill, arrangements, coordination and I admit that it brought results. The second material from this Rzeszów horde brings us a really mature, a very thought through and ass-kicking piece of death metal. And what is very important, they don't forget that death metal is not just heavy noise and blasts, but also a dark and blasphemous atmosphere. Sanity Desecration consists of 9 tracks reeking of the atmosphere of old Sinister, with a nice rhythm section, cool solos and great vocals. I'm very pleasantly surprised and I keep my fingers crossed that they find a good publisher and play as many concerts as possible.


71TONMAN - Of End Times - Transcending Obscurity Records

Once again, we are hosting this Wrocław band that keeps climbing up from album to album in every aspect, however, it operates in such a niche that despite releasing material on such a respected label as Transcending Obscurity it is still deep underground. Even though from material to material, their music is becoming better, more mature, more original. Well, apparently this is the fate for some people... The important thing is that guys do their thing all the time, not caring if they are patted on the back or not. Of End Times is a 4 terribly heavy songs, each lasting about 10 minutes, rolling like a hundred-ton roller. Supposedly this is sludge/doom/death metal, in which you can hear elements from older albums of Unholy, Evoken and a few other greats of the art of sound crushing, however you can hear that 71Tonman has made progress these last few years and also trampled its own path. And that's what makes me happy the most and that's why the boys deserve the respect.


Deimoon - The Nocturnes, First Act: The Hour of Wrath - Independent

Deimoon is a French-Polish project in which one of the musicians of the extremely respected Taranis is involved. And I can honestly tell you that you can hear it, because the music contained in the debut material is very interesting, dark, mysterious, original in its own way. And who knows if Taranis still existed, maybe they would play this kind of music. Maybe it's more melodic, even bordering on a gothic atmosphere, however, in my humble opinion, it is much more interesting than what, for example, Samael plays currently. Strong statement? Maybe so, but despite all I dare say that the music of both bands is significantly different from each other's I claim that Deimoon is currently able to offer more than the Swiss. And back to the music on The Nocturnes, the atmosphere borders on black, doom metal and gothic music. And it certainly is material worth wider attention.


CHOROSZCZ - Rojenie - Independent

The debut album of a one-man project from Poznań. Choroszcz was created by TB and works generally in broadly understood black metal with trips towards sludge and some other twisted areas. It is a project rather in the style of experimental black metal, more trance, avant-garde, than those who are very direct and raw and brutal worshippers of the devil. Anyway, just look at the cover and song titles to see that it is closer to Furia or Kły than to bands cultivating the cult of the goat. But I must say that Rojenie is quite interesting material, where you can hear that TB contributed to all the ingredients that make up this material. I wonder what will be the next step?


UKĆ - Przemijanie - Seven Gates Of Hell

The debut solo album of Łukasz Sarnacki aka Icanraz, known for drumming for so far a million bands so I will only mention Corruption, Hermh, Devilish Impressions or Abused Majesty. It turned out that Łukasz is also quite good at playing other instruments and singing. And in terms of workmanship, the workshop is really good, however, musically speaking, it's not that good. And I understand that Łukasz wanted to present many faces, many emotions on this album, however, overall it's just bland. There aren't clearly marked lines where specific emotions can be heard, such as pissed off, pain, sadness, joy. You can only guess all this, and in my opinion for such an experienced musician these mood fluctuations should be clearly audible. Still, kudos to you Łukasz for undertaking such a task and maybe I am wrong here and I do not understand this project…


NIGHTBOUND - Howling of the Night - Independent

Another material from the increasingly dynamic capital metal scene. The debut EP of Nightbound is pure, classic, if not true heavy metal, to say the least, paying homage to bands such as Manilla Road, Pentagram, or In Solitude. My heart rejoices that young people cultivate the traditions of truly ambitious heavy metal, which wasn't always in the headlines, but one that always had influence on what was happening in the scene. I'm glad that another one is growing nearby Armagh and several others, a talented classic heavy metal band.


VENEFICES - Incubacy - Independent

New Venefices EP created by former members of Bestial Raids – Desolator and Sadist brings us 5 tracks of musical destruction! I love their approach to extreme death/black metal. And although it is definitely different here than on Bestial materials, you can still feel class and repulsive sulfur smell. The concentration of the devil on this material exceeds all permissible standards. I really regret that there is no Bestial Raids anymore, but if Venefices spreads their wings more, then my regret will be much less. Definitely top class black/death metal extreme in its most raw and dark version!


CRIPPLING MADNESS - Władcy Nocy - Putrid Cult

The second full length of deathrashers from the Lublin region brings us confirmation that this is a band that knows exactly what this style is about. Very real, obscure and raw thrash metal served to us on Władcy Nocy is like … well… music to my ears. For a long time I haven't heard such cool material on the national scene that would refer to in such a direct way what was happening in the thrash scene at the turn of the 80s and 90s. Old Sepultura, Quo Vadis, Chakal and the list could go on... Anyway, listen to the likes of 'Lśniące Zimne Ostrze' or a number like that title track, which could easily be included on "Beneath The Remains" or "Schizophrenia" and there would be absolutely no shame. Apparently nothing original, but a lot of fun and I honestly admit that I prefer bands such as Crippling Madness, which maybe aren't very original, but they know exactly what they want to play rather than the bands that are trying to reinvent the wheel and are looking for the lost Grail. Death to false Metal!


Thanks for checking this one out. Find more bands and metal in the previous editions of South Of Heaven.
Part I -
Part II -

Entered: 3/11/2024 1:40:28 PM