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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Zac's "Double Dose": The Hounds of Hasselvander / Yakuza

The Hounds of Hasselvander: The Ninth Hour 

What an excellent name for a doom outfit! The Hounds of Hasselvander is a classic style doom-metal project started by Mr. Doom himself Joe Hasselvander. Mr. Hasselvander is kind of a big deal and carriers quite a lot of history having played drums for Pentagram, Raven, and Blue Cheer. The Ninth Hour is the debut album for Hasselvander's Hounds and is heavy like a black-hole. Playing two basses and Hasselvander's experienced "skin" smashin' The Ninth Hour is earth-shattering. Listeners will find Hasselvander's angry vocals proclaiming expected lyrics for the doom genre, like heavy and witch and a NWOBHM flair through the guitars. Check out my favorite track Salem below, with its excellent Eastern-tinged intro and percussive crunch. Need a copy for yourself? Black Widow Records can help you out!

Eric Cabana - Bass 
Joe Hasselvander - Vocals // Guitar // Drums (studio) 
Martin Swaney - Bass 
Paolo Alegri - Keyboard 
T.C. Tolliver - Drums (live)


Yakuza: Beyul 

Yakuza have been decimating the boundaries of damn near every genre of music since 1999. Well, these Chicago natives sure as hell have not slowed down or changed direction when the subject comes to progression in metal, let alone music entirely. Beyul is Yakuza's sixth studio release and may be seen as an orphan among previous releases. Beyul is certainly too experimental to simply be labeled progressive metal yet too metal to be labeled experimental. Listening can be overwhelming and chaotic, but not Neurosis-like overwhelming or Dillinger Escape Plan chaotic. Beyul is a completely new leviathan. Acquiring it's namesake from ancient Buddhist teaching, Beyul is known as a hidden valley much like a paradise or utopia and becomes more easily accessible as earth nears her end. I believe this knowledge is pertinent going into such a vast listening experience. Listeners will be flashed with moments of hardened vocals, chants, and spoken words as well as a grind-core pummeling, easy listening jazz interludes, thrash guitar solos, thrash saxophone solos, and the doomiest of depths. Honestly, the best opinion I can provide with Beyul is expect the unexpected. Sound tempting? A copy can be had from our friends at Profound Lore Records.

Bruce Lamont - Vocals // Clarinet // Saxophone 
Ivan Cruz - Bass 
James Staffel - Percussion 
Matt McClelland - Guitars // Vocals

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