For those of you that are just tuning in and finding out what Monday Morning Mayhem is all about; Monday Morning Mayhem is a safe haven for metal heads. It is a playlist for dreary Monday mornings. It is something else to listen to on the way to work other than that awful rubbish they play on the radio. And whether you are just tuning in or you are a current reader, below are some more bands to add to that playlist of yours. So read on, and please enjoy!
Start the day off with the blackest cup of coffee you can make while listening to one of the blackest and darkest bands you can find. Mortuus Umbra is that incredibly dark band that I am speaking of. While listening to Catechism there is nothing that you can do other than succumb to the darkness. It swallows you whole engulfing you in shrouds of darkness and chaos, and while the fiery flames of darkened hell fire flick at your skin you realize that there is nowhere to go, there is no escape from something so bleak and dark. Catechism doesn’t get off to a blistering start, so your descent into madness is a slow one at first until Mortuus Umbra kicks into high gear playing that chaotic unfiltered style of black metal that everyone has come to know. Instead of everything being completely skin peeling all at once, and instead of the music sounding like one sonic wall of noise, Mortuus Umbra refines their brand of noise making everything coherent and cohesive. There are four songs present here on Catechism and each song switches from pure blasphemous destruction, to a slower more brooding darkness. Mortuus Umbra displays a great ability to create bleak soundscapes, making you feel as though you are either going through hell or being dragged down to hell. The musicianship along with the song writing ability is great, and this four track release is a must hear for anyone even remotely interested in black metal.
Transitioning from the utterly bleak and dark, to utterly grotesque and destructive I bring Traumatomy to your attention. Monolith of Absolute Suffering is their newest album that sports eight head splitting songs. As you can probably conclude from the cover art, there is nothing in here other than a terrifying assault on your ear drums. Nothing here slows down save for the occasional slam, but even those aren’t that slow. Slamming brutal death metal has to be one of the most colorful genres in metal, and while the artwork is certainly a part of that, the musicianship and the lyrics are also a huge part of that. Being one of-if not the most-disgusting genres out there is something to be proud of. Slamming brutal death metal is something to be reckoned with as it has grown exponentially over the last ten or so years. With that being said, Traumatomy is a great example of what slamming brutal death should be. They mix in equal parts of death metal, brutal death and slam elements to create something entirely raw, visceral and completely punishing. If for whatever reason you are curious as to what pain feels like through music, then just listen to Traumatomy. The blasting brutality leaves you full of puncture wounds, bruises and permanent brain damage. Imagine your head being held up to a circular saw that is cutting and chipping away exposing your brain until you die from excess bleeding or shock from all of the horrifying pain you are being put through. Then imagine your body being even further emaciated, being torn limb from limb and thrown in a putrid dumpster somewhere in the most disgusting part of town. That is what slamming brutal death sounds like. And for Traumatomy, that is what they embody, they embrace the sickness, and on their newest release Monolith of Absolute Suffering the musicianship is great, the vocals are incredibly guttural, and the slams blast and crack your limbs leaving you helpless. Pick this up if you dare, but you’ll be glad you took the beating for it.
Continuing the trend of unrelenting and punishing metal, we continue the trek to Dallas, Texas where Chemicaust is found. As Empires Fall is Chemicaust’s new release which features five songs that rip and tear while playing an accosting brand of thrash infused death metal. With Chemicaust you get everything that you love and crave about thrash metal with just a little bit more oomph, which is where the death metal comes in. Every song here thrashes and writhes, creating a certain controlled chaos sound. As mentioned you get every aspect of thrash metal that you love, so with that being said you get the tumultuous drumming, the fiery riffs and flaming guitar solos. The death metal intensity comes in with gravely roars and the occasional more stomping riff. Whichever way that you decide to slice it, each song is whiplash inducing, neck cracking goodness. Through the five songs on this release you feel as though you’ve gone through the ringer, then back in for more punishment, because you’re that sick and because this brand of thrash is intoxicating. Pure fury, and an unrelenting desire to make you headbang is what makes up Chemicaust, and if you are in the mood for a good headbanging time then these guys are the right fit for you.
Jumping from the U.S. over to Germany we end the list with a band called Kaltetod and their release Zwang. Kaltetod plays a mystifying brand of black metal. The band itself is mysterious and that carries over into their music. However, black metal is all about the occult and mystique, so the more mysterious the better. As bleak as black metal can get, Kaltetod reaches that level. With a lo-fi approach to their music, Kaltetod holds true to traditional black metal stylings. Each of the four songs are dissonant treks across barren wastelands, and to make it feel even more like a trek, each song save for one surpasses the eight minute mark with one surpassing the eleven minute mark. When black metal is talked about, words like cold, dissonant, and bleak pop up a lot and that is because black metal is meant to make you feel alone and cold in the world, it isn’t meant to be inviting. And if those things among a few others is what black metal is meant to be, then Kaltetod embraces each of those elements and created Zwang. Zwang embodies what the black metal forefathers had meant black metal to be, and they meant for it to be as disparaging and cold as possible and Kaltetod hits all of those marks on this release.
I hope this week’s Monday Morning Mayhem has provided you with enough info to help with the Monday morning slump. Enjoy, and keep headbanging!