LACHRYMOSE - CARPE NOCTUM
(Pure Steel Publishing)
Review by Spirit In Black
Lachrymose saw the light of day in Thessaloniki, Greece in 2013. The legendary Blackmass of Rotting Flesh, along with fellow axeman Mancer joined forces with former partner in crime named Kerk, to form a new alliance. Signing a pact with Hel (the band's shadow whisperer) the line-up was completed.
Lacrhrymose describe themselves as a Dark Melodic Doom Metal act, an accurate description in my opinion. I have to admit: the vocals are a bit of an issue for me, I'm very picky about vocals and this particular one isn't really my taste but isn't bad at all… it fits the dark music really well. Here and there you can hear a male grunt as well, whether or not in combination with the female vocals… a nice add to Lachrymose’s style of music.
Their debut entitled “Carpe Noctum” is filled with mostly mid-tempo songs that have a really heavy dark vibe sometimes. That was obviously the meaning of this band and it worked out pretty good! Even the faster songs have a touch of darkness. The sound is rather clean and with regard to this type of music, I must say that the production could be a bit rawer/darker but that is personal, I know. Also, the vocals are a bit too loud in front of the mix, maybe the band wanted it to be like this?
Aside from my bit of criticism, I think “Carpe Noctum” turned out into a decent album! Songs I personally enjoy are: 'My Shadow (A Revelation)' (this one is really awesome!),'Face of Horror', In A Reverie' (which is a duet with Thomas Vikström of Therion, ex Candlemass and is a very cool song), 'Thyella'.
If you enjoy Dark Melodic Doom Metal with (mostly) female vocals you might like “Carpe Noctum”. It's worth to check this Greek band out at: https://www.facebook.com/Lachrymose.band.official/
My rating: 79/100 (Between 70 and 79: Decent but best previewing)
LADY BEAST - II
Review by Spirit In Black
Lady Beast’s “II” is the second album from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania US based metallers Lady Beast. I must admit I haven't heard the band's debut Lady Beast from 2013 so I jumped totally blank into this album.
The whole album has a strong vibe of NWOBHM, 80's Heavy Metal, Hard Rock. The production sounds a bit raw and I don't know if that's on purpose, it does sound good. The album is filled with well-arranged songs. Some fast, some mid tempo or a combination of both. Although the style is the same through the whole album, it never gets boring. Each song has that specific melody, riff and/or rhythm to keep it interesting.
Lady Beast has a female vocalist who hasn't an outstanding voice but her vocals fits perfectly with the music. A good combination! One thing that really stands out for me, are the guitars. Many times I really liked what I heard! Some highlights of the album are ‘We Are The Witches’ (great guitar work), ’Heroes Of Our Time’ (cool mid part) and 'Banshee' (sounds angry).
My rating: 70/100 (Between 70 and 79: Decent but best previewing)
LEAVE SCARS - CHAINS OF REDEMPTION
Review by Stefan
Last week, during my review for the great new Ethernity album, I made up my displeasure about the fact that several excellent Belgian Metal bands still not been approached by a label to offer a record deal. Unfair to me but a fact’s a fact, yet I can bring the good news about Turnhout-Belgium based thrashers Leave Scars’ first full-length album called “Chains Of Redemption” that saw daylight late March 2015 through Belgian record label Spinal Records (Hell City, Drakkar, Deepshow, Powerstroke). Good bands deserve a record deal and that's it, thumbs up to Spinal Records anyway !
Leave Scars were launched back in 2005 by singer Kristof ‘’Dizzy and guitarist Filip ‘Mo6’ Verstappen (both ex-D.O.A. members), other guys (ex-Sanitarium / Hard Resistance members) were recruited but a stable line-up was not addressed. Some players decided to leave the ranks, some others entered and the good news is that Leave Scars has never lost its faith in Thrash Metal, they fought for every single inch and that’s the one and only, right spirit in my opinion. They’ve created a few demo’s and played several live performances (WOA 2009, GMM 2013, Metal Over Oostrozebeke 2013… to name but a few). Leave Scars also functioned as support act for well known bands like Fueled By Fire, Violator, Martyr, Rotting Christ, Five Finger Death Punch, Toxik and many others… every time they played to a live audience, all hell broke loose !
Benny & Marre from Metal Over Oostrozebeke and Nathan McLeod from US based Malevolence Records worked together for the release of “Perseverance 2013”, a compilation filled with songs from a.o. Kaos, T.C.F, Sanity’Rage and Leave Scars,… all bands walked the stage during the festival. The two tracks from Leave Scars entitled ‘Trapped’ and ‘The Arrival’ were just awesome and gave extra energy to every thrash fancier. Leave Scars’ way of thrash can be classified as Bay Area styled and I’m very pleased with that. Those were the days (read early 80s) this type of Metal came into my life like a ten ton hammer smashed me in the head and I still do not regret at all so far . Truth is that, when I start listening to Leave Scars’ newest effort “Chains Of Redemption”, the good old thrashing memories of yesteryear reappear and that gives a wonderful feeling within my heart and soul.
Kristof Van Eyck still provides the vocals, Mathias “Ath” Annys (Warbeast Remains) is on bass, guitar players in charge are Djoni Tregub (Temptations For The Weak) and Paul Aerts. Kris ‘Uncle’ Boenders still threats his drumheads with merciless sledgehammer blows. I hear a lot of enthusiasm, a good mutual interaction and witness a very good knowledge of old school Thrash Metal. The song structures reflect quality of workmanship and the guitars grab me by the throat while delivering fast, trenchant and quite technical tactics… damn right, this is Thrash Metal as it should be ! The vocals fit perfectly with this genre Metal but it would be better to get rid of the so called standard singing parts. As long as Kristof sings from the top of his lungs without reluctance, all goes perfect. The cleaner vocal use lingers on an average value and could be better in my opinion. Therefore, my advice to Leave Scars’ frontman would be: get rid of those standard vocal passages and use your throat only and predominantly in a more vigorous, coarser or aggressive manner. Most of the tracks on the new album prove that this way of singing suits him most of all and there’s no doubt he’s a real good Thrash Metal vocalist.
Leave Scars treats us to a 41 minutes long thrash feast spread across eleven tracks I enjoy to the fullest. The production (by Leave Scars) is rather dull, not too polished which accentuates the 80s character even better, my alley for sure ! Also, the cover artwork, done by Colin Marks of RainSong Design looks fantastic ! Leave Scars’ full length debut album “Chains Of Redemption” is an honorable proof that little Belgium has a big significance when it comes to worthwhile Thrash Metal albums. Spinal Records have offered this band a contract and they will not regret it at all. Killer effort recommended for fans of Slayer (Hell Awaits), Sacrilege BC (Party With God), EvilDead (Annihilation Of Civilization), Gammacide (Victims Of Science), Death Angel (The Ultra Violence), Metallica (Ride The Lightning) among others. Order possibilities via their official homepage: http://www.leavescars.com/ or via FB at: https://www.facebook.com/Leave.Scars . You can also order the album in the US via my brother in Metal called Nathan McLeod, CEO Malevolence Records right HERE.
My ratings: 86/100 (Between 80 and 89: Good in its own genre, recommended for those hooked on it)
LEAVE SCARS - CHAINS OF REDEMPTION
Review by Nathan McLeod
I shall VERY soon conducting an 'interview' with drummer 'Kris Boenders' & guitarist 'Djoni Tregub' of 'Leave Scars' here at 'Metal To Infinity'! Meantime I'm taking the 'opportune' time as a 'co-Editor' here at 'Metal To Infinity' to give "Leave Scars" a re-review of their 'sophomore' release of 'Chains Of Redemption'.
My thoughts, feelings, & opinions regarding 'Chains Of Redemption's' 'Metal To Infinity' review in April 2015 are NOT too far off base, hitting well-deserved/numerous key 'point(s) & expression(s)'.
'Chains Of Redemption' is an 'extreme' heavy, 'raw' thrash-metal CD! Talking 'Gene Hoglan / Tom Hunting-type' 'heavy-pounding', 'hard-hitting' thrash-metal with 'Blistering' guitar solo duo's !!! If there had been 'any' doubts from this Turnhout, Belgian-based artist, with the ability to take it to another level from their 'debut' release of 'The Arrival'; you'd be proven wrong!
If you like thrash-metal in the 'essence' of 'Dark Angel's - Darkness Descends', 'Forbidden's - Twisted Into Form', 'Destruction's - All Hell Breaks Loose', 'Kreator's - Endless Pain'? ALL your 'fundamental' but 'explosive' element(s) can be found on 'Chains Of Redemption': adding a 'signature' but very 'unique' vocal style that of 'Kristof Van Eyck's'.
Don't believe anyone thus far in 'other' review(s) of 'Chains Of Redemption' had pointed out the 'Randy Rhoads' (Rest In Peace) 'classical-guitar' work 'capability' on the instrumental track 'Redemption'?! It's definitely there. Aside from the track 'Redemption', other's that do stand out are 'Stay Down', 'P.B.D.', 'Devil's Room', noting the heavy-crunchy 'rhythm' held during the news-media exerpt of the ISIS group in the middle of 'The New Great Game'.
A recently uploaded 'Final Chance' track/video can be seen on the 'Leave Scars' YouTube channel. An older 'Metal To Infinity' review of 'The Arrival' can be also read right here: http://www.metaltoinfinity.be/CDREVIEWS/Leavescars_Thearrival.html . And of course, the April 2015 review of 'Chains Of Redemption' can be read right here from the 'Metal To Infinity's' "official" home page: http://metaltoinfinity.be/CDREVIEWS_IJKL/leavescars_chainsofredemption.html
My rating: 91/100 (Between 90 and 95: Surpasses the style of music, must be heard/ordered by every Metal fan)
'Leave Scars' is:
*Krystof Van Eyck: Vocals
*Paul Aerts: Guitar
*Djoni Tregub: Guitar
*Mathias Annys: Guitar
*Kris Boenders: Drums
'Chains Of Redemption' track info:
1) P.B.D., 2) Final Chance, 3) The Faceless, 4) People Lie, 5) Chains, 6) Redemption, 7) The New Great Game, 8) Devil's Room, 9) Believe Is Gone, 10) Stay Down, 11) Taste Of Blood; total run-time 41:45.
Recorded at Atomika Studios - Vossem, Belgium. Produced by Leave Scars. Engineered, mixed, & mastered by Marc De Keyzer & Timo De Prins at Atomika Studios - Vossem, Belgium. Cover art by Colin Marks of Rain Song Design - London, England. Layout by Celine Corbie, Bianca Sommen, & Kris Boenders.
'Chains Of Redemption' purchasing info:
Up to date Leave Scars news & contact info:
Additional Leave Scars info:
*Metal Archives: www.metal-archives.com/bands/Leave_Scars/109775
LEAVE SCARS - THE ARRIVAL
Review by Nathan McLeod
'Bloody' fucking heavy! Action does speak louder than words when it comes to 'Leave Scars' from 'Turnhout, Belgium' & their brand of 'thrash-metal'. I'd been meaning to review their debut CD 'The Arrival' for quite some time now. Better late than never. But back to the 'bloody' fucking heavy! 'The Arrival' is 'extremely' 'heavy' & 'brutal' as 'thrash-metal' should definitely be.
Taking a 'listen' back to their 'Unit 731' demo & forward to their 'Chains Of Redemption' CD, I'd say 'The Arrival' is the 'utmost' heaviest of the three (3) releases from 'Leave Scars'. My belief with 'Unit 731', 'Leave Scars' was 'inventing' themselves musically, years later with their 'Arrival' CD & letting all 'Hell' break loose, onto their 'Chains Of Redemption' CD & more 'defining' themselves. Yet though having the 'ability' to maintain 'composure' with each release.
As I had mentioned in their review of 'Chains Of Redemption' with some musical 'description(s)' of 'Destruction & Kreator', there is an 'immense' presence of 'German' 'thrash-metal' appearing on 'The Arrival', moreso than on 'Chains Of Redemption'. Additionally I hear more 'Obituary' influnces with this CD.
What I had mentioned 'musically' about 'Leave Scars' on the 'Chains Of Redemption' CD review, it all is 'applicable' on 'The Arrival'. There's a bit more of an 'intense' 'hard-core' edge with 'The Arrival'. Say a bit of 'Nuclear Assault' here. End of the day, long of the short, 'Leave Scars' delivers 3/4 of an hour of "brutal-kick ass-in your face-intense-fucking heavy-thrash metal" with 'The Arrival'!
Normally I'd have some 'qualms' over 'gritty' sound & or 'unpolished' production, but 'Leave Scars' take this 'gritty' type sound they have 'emulating' the 'old-school' 'thrash-metal' sound of the 1980's heard on 'We Have Arrived', 'Welcome To Hell', 'Flag Of Hate', & 'Eternal Nightmare'. And happen to enjoy this 'old-school' sound.
I know 'Leave Scars' are presently writing new material for a 'follow-up' CD to their 'Chains Of Redemption' release. I truly cannot wait to hear some new material from these guys as we are 'rapidly' approaching the end of 2015.
A 2013 'Metal To Infinity' review of 'The Arrival' can be viewed here: http://www.metaltoinfinity.be/CDREVIEWS/Leavescars_Thearrival.html ... Recent 'Metal To Infinity' review(s) of 'Chains Of Redemption' can be viewed here: http://metaltoinfinity.be/CDREVIEWS_IJKL/leavescars_chainsofredemption.html & http://metaltoinfinity.be/CDREVIEWS_IJKL/leavescars_chainsofredemption2.html ... A recent 'Metal To Infinity' interview with 'Djoni Tregub' & 'Kris Boenders' can be viewed here: http://metaltoinfinity.be/INTERVIEWS/leavescars_2015.html ... And a 2013 'Metal To Infinity' interview with 'Kris Boenders' can be viewed here also: http://www.metaltoinfinity.be/INTERVIEWS/Leavescars_2013.html
I basically can't say there is one (1) 'bad' track on 'The Arrival'. If I'd have to give the 'viewers' what I believe are the more 'notable' tracks? A bit hard, but here ya go: 'Kill Your God', 'Trapped', 'Reason To Kill', 'The Arrival'. Slainte,
My rating: 88/100 (Between 80 and 89: Good in its own genre, recommended for those hooked on it)
'The Arrival' tracks:
I) Intro II) Painted Scars III) Reason To Kill IV) Unit 731 V) The Son VI) Pulverize VII) Plague VIII) Trapped IX) World Betrayer X) Kill Your God XI) The Arrival - total run-time 44:02.
'Leave Scars' is:
*Dizzy - Vocals
*Djoni - Guitar
*Paul - Guitar
*Ath - Bass
*Nonkel - Drums
Produced, mixed, artwork & design by Benjamin Peters. Photography by Katrien Versmissen.
*Metal Archives: http://www.metal-archives.com/bands/Leave_Scars/109775