Open Mind Saturated Brain

Open Mind Saturated Brain


Tuesday, 21 March 2017


GenresPunk / Rock / Post-Rock / Hardcore / Post-Hardcore / Emo / Screamo / Skramz / Metal / Metalcore / Post-Metal / Alternative / Doom / Ambient / Crust / Sludge / Shoegaze / Pop-Punk / Experimental / Prog
Related artistsCaitlyn Bailey, Game Theory, Of Wolves And Swine, Disquiet Apartment, Joop, Ang Bandang Shirley and Love In Athens.
Years Active2015-present
Song: "Eros Obfuscate"
Album: "Eros Obfuscate"
Year: 2016
For fans ofFear Before The March Of Flames, Hum, Converge, Dead PoeticCaitlyn Bailey, Pluum and I give up this is too fucking hard.
Label(s): Self Released
This post's artist is from the March 2017 Mix. This is track #1.
You can download: the March 2017 Mix#3 right here or get the new April 2017 Mix#4 here.

For all posts I have a template. At the top of the template is the band section for "genres" and there are probably 20 or so genres in there that I erase as I do the post, generally whittling that shit down to 3-8. For this post, however, I pretty much left them all in. In case you didn't know, BEAST JESUS play what I would probably label as clusterfuck-core. Each song recorded by the band hits at least 5 different genres and doesn't mix them, but instead hop from one to the next at dizzying speeds. The members come from a myriad of backgrounds including screamo (Caitlyn Bailey), metalcore (Of Wolves And Swine), synth-pop (Love in Athens), shoegaze (Disquiet Apartment) and an alt/prog band (Game Theory). To try and make band comparisons for BEAST JESUS is fucking useless, as any comparison is automatically null and void a few minutes later (at most) after making the statement. The shifts are sometimes seamless and other times jarring. Maybe this is a good stepping stone to explain the remainder of this post, as it flows thusly:

1 - Blender Analogy (no, I'm not joking)

2 - 'Eros Obfuscate' Review

So here goes the Blender Analogy aka BEAST JESUS' metamorphosis from the beginning to end of 2016. In early 2016 BEAST JESUS released their four-song EP 'In Various States of Disassembly' which is okay. I mean, I like parts of it but each song doesn't flow all that well for me. It's like trying to drink a fruit smoothie that hasn't been blended. On their own, each little genre section is decent to very good, although trying to swallow it whole just didn't work for me. But then...BUT THEEEEEEENNNN they released 'Eros Obfuscate' in very late 2016 and those fine people from the Philippines found their blade and mashed the shit outta those fruit chunks. Now it's like drinking a fine fruit blend that'll have you smacking your lips after downing it in three seconds flat.

'Eros Obfuscate' is amazing. Truly, the growth from the four-song EP to the one-song EP is astounding. Wait, did I just say one-track EP? Yep. One song...but it's 16 minutes long! The styles flow in and out, weaving more of a story and journey than a mishmash of parts. I first heard this in the first week of 2017 and immediately slapped myself in the face thrice for not listening earlier and therefore including this EP in my top 10 of 2016, which in hindsight it totally is. Are you the kind of person who fucks off after not liking a track for a few minutes? Well stick your impatient ass out cuz although this thing begins like the soundtrack to Titanic, it hits everything in the middle from space-rock to choirs and screamo to pop-punk and then over to metal and back to screamo. It's a unique beast that must have taken forever to hash out and write, because the flow of it all is so smooth you'll be amazed when you look at the timer and see you're 13 minutes into the song and haven't been bored once.

So let's run through this song that still has me salivating after more than 20 listens (that's about 330 minutes of listening to one song in only two and a half months!) later. "Eros Obfuscate" is 16:25 in length. The opening begins with somber piano and slightly lifting orchestral music that builds and hits its climax at 49 seconds, sounding much like the opening to a movie. At 1:22 the song takes quite a natural step into Disney/Titanic-esque closing of the first movement, which is kinda cheesy but it fits really well and I love it. At 1:52 BEAST JESUS pick up their instruments and create a sonic web of spacey and ethereal post-hardcore/shoegaze intro. By 2:36 the vocals sneak in with some subdued, mildly buried and whispered singing that end up being an earworm and a half. This calming and lifting section begins to resemble the last Fear Before foray into post-hardcore and is something I hum to myself on a daily basis. At 4:20 we are met with a pop-punk/emo verse that melts into crushing drums and the first of many breakdowns and just when you expect shit to get really crazy - a jazz/prog interlude. This thing explodes by 5:40 with venomous screaming and bursts of metalcore which include some sick little tap riffs from 6:00 to 6:17. At this point we are met with blatant noise atop what may or may not resemble The Dillinger Escape Plan. Just after the seven-minute mark the songs dips into what could almost be labeled death metal territory, only to have a choir lift the song out and into pop-punk territory again. Jeeeesus...errrrr, JESUS BEAST! At 8:18 the riffs start coming in hordes and bust into sick screamo breakdowns following 8:30 that remind me of their previous outfit Caitlyn Bailey. At 10:24 the song begins to break down into slower sections as it prepares for the epic conclusion, and in doing so takes on the form of now defunct-Youth Novel for 30 seconds or so. From 11-12 minutes we are graced with a beautifully passionate and earnest spoken word passage that has the vocalist sounding like they are on the verge of tears due to utter frustration. This fades into silence for at 12:18 the end begins, and it is glorious, my friends. At the 12:40 mark "Eros Obfuscate" goes for the jugular and succeeds with scary precision, as the mathy/melodic guitars crash together with driving drums, yelled vocals and eventually piercing screams. This whirlwind of amazingness hits a second wind at 13:40 but collapses by 14 minutes. The final two and half minutes consist of the transition into complete noise, a quick little breakdown, and then the death drones of each instrument. Whether or not this final part is a nod to Old Man Gloom is probably answered in an exclusive little ditty below:

Francis from the band gave me this explanation earlier today when I asked him about BEAST JESUS' influences: "I think we've got a lot of things revolving around a post-hardcore foundation. We have a lot of indie and math rock in our DNA, but that all comes second to the screamo, post-metal, and noise rock influences we have. Collectively, we grew up on stuff from Level-Plane, Robotic Empire, Creation, Earache, Relapse, Hydra Head, Mostly late 90s/early 00s hardcore. Oh, but also Creation, 4AD, Sarah Records, Shelflife, etc. All amazing labels. Ebullition and 31G/Gravity too. And cheesy virtuoso guitar music like Steve Vai. We do like a lot of jazz and classical stuff too. Our bass player comes from more of a college rock background, and got into extreme music later on. The rest of us all grew up in the hardcore scene as teenagers."

So there we are. BEAST JESUS and 'Eros Obfuscate' are fucking unreal. There has to be at least something in there for you, and likely, the entire thing will blow you away. I am stoked like crazy for whatever they end up dropping next, regardless of genre or length. Oh, and I've changed my mind. This is blender-core.

P.S. The band recently did a set where they covered old Caitlyn Bailey songs and it was all recorded and posted here!



2016 - Eros Obfuscate digitalEP (stream/donate/download here)
2016 - Shadowplay digital single
2016 - In Various States of Disassembly digitalEP (stream/donate/download here)


(2016) BEAST JESUS - "Eros Obfuscate" (from 'Eros Obfuscate')

(2016) BEAST JESUS - "Shadowplay" (from 'Shadowplay')

(2016) BEAST JESUS - "Velvet Thunder" (from 'In Various States of Disassembly')

(2016) BEAST JESUS - "Scoliosis Backbrace" (from 'In Various States of Disassembly')


BEAST JESUS additional links


Monday, 20 March 2017


GenresPunk / Hardcore / Grind / Metalcore / Math Metal / Sludge / Thrash / Noise / Death Metal / Experimental
Related artistsEnabler, Today Is The Day and Kenoma.
CountryDayton, Ohio USA
Years Active2004-2008
Song: "War of the Great City"
Album: "This is the Second Death"
Year: 2006
For fans ofJohnny Truant, Owen Hart, Into The Moat, From A Second Story Window, Tentacles, Buried Inside, Norma JeanBurnt By The SunConvergeBetween The Buried And Me, Warsaw Was Raw, Supermachiner, Tephra and (early) The Dillinger Escape Plan.
Label(s): Feeling Faint Productions / Corrosive Recordings / Lifeforce Records / Soyuz Music
This post's artist is from the March 2017 Mix. This is track #4.
You can download: the March 2017 Mix#3 right here or get the new April 2017 Mix#4 here.

In 2004 HARLOTS released the overly titled 'The Woman You Saw Is The Great City That Rules Over The Kings Of The Earth'. At 10 songs, it opens with a dreamy post-rock track before delving into pretty lengthy grindy metalcore with a bit of black and tech metal thrown in for good measure. The first banger is track two, titled "Babylon the Great" which is 6:26 of mind fuckery that isn't too far from early The Dillinger Escape Plan and the first From A Second Story Window EP. That last minute or so is insanely heavy and I fucking love it. This is followed by a post-everything instrumental track and then another that leans heavier towards the noise/experimental side of things. "Balancing the Limbs of Question" is the next killer tune and clocks in at 7:21. This behemoth begins much more like a metal/death metal track but the screaming and vocal variance keeps me around (instead of constant growling which drives me away). By four minutes the song has been to end of the universe and back but continues forward for three more propelled by menacing screams, incredibly powerful breakdowns and ballistic double bass...and some growls. Some. Oh, and a final demon death shriek. "In One Day Her Plagues Will Overtake Her" is devastating and reminds me at times of Owen Hart. "Famine" is a 23-second splash of acid-noise in the face. "She Will Be Consume By Fire" is another excellent example of HARLOTS just laying waste to the listener and for lengthy period of time, yet again.

Two years later, in 2006, HARLOTS put out another LP, this time titled 'This is the Second Death', which most definitely sounds like the subsequent step forward from their 2004 debut. The songs have better production, are tighter and more concise, as they generally shed the 6-7+ minute length. Right off the bat we have the band's traditional metalcore/math/grind along with new layers, including the occasional clean singing. By the end of "These are the Paths That We Choose (part 1)" the breakdowns and screaming bring about utter destruction in the last minute, is fucking awesome and will tickle the fancy of Norma Jean and Black Nail fans, as will the 1:20 mark in "These are the Paths That We Choose (part 2)". The noise tracks are present again and include the short "Moment of Desperation" and insanely long "Moment of Sickness". "Those Days Seem Several Hundred Years Ago" is a beautiful post-rock/post-hardcore song complete with violin and piano that would have Mogwai and Godspeed, You! Black Emperor fans nodding in approval until the Supermachiner-esque unraveling of the song by its conclusion. "Remote Coagulation" is a pummeling assault on the ears, "Asceticism" is 2:43 of instrumental math-metal, "War of the Great City" is my favourite from this album and takes all of the aspects that HARLOTS excelled in and somehow stuffs it into 3:04. Closer "Fall of the Matriarch" was so close to being the blog mix track, as the instrumental post-everything is breathtaking and gorgeous, and therefore not exactly the typical HARLOTS sound.

Somehow, just a year later, the band churned out their final LP titled 'Betrayal'. The opening track hits like a ton of bricks and lets you know from the get-go that they've changed up their vocal delivery, as the higher screams and general variety is cut back and generally replaced with lower, gutteral growls that sound a lot like the deeper side of Between The Buried And Me, From A Second Story Window and later Into The Moat. Speaking of Between The Buried And Me, the second song "Avada Kedavra" is almost identical to that very influential band in many respects, including the instrumentals. "Full Body Contortion" follows and combines multiple vocalists with both pulverizing drums and bass as well as some mathy as fuck guitars and even a foray back in to singing. "Dried Up Goliathan" is a massive venture into Neurosis, Rosetta, Tephra and perhaps even Isis territory and it fucking rocks throughout its 8:27 ascent to a very worthwhile climax. "Building an Empire Towards Destruction" is the exact opposite and obliterates everything in its path in less than two minutes. "Consensus for the Locus of Thought" is pretty screamy and fast as all hell and is without a doubt one of my favourite HARLOTS jams. "This is a Test...No Flesh Shall Be Spared" is meant for headbanging and parts definitely remind me of Johnny Truant although they throw in some melodic bits around 3:30 before descending rather hastily into the depths of hell. "The Concept of Existence" increases the amount of melody in the chaos (although not by much) and leads into the prodigious closer "Suicide Melody" that reproduces nearly every sound the band has been crafting over the years over 12 minutes.

In 2007 they also released what looks to be a nod to the dissolution of the band, as they released 'The Human War Machine' which is a demo/live album and very well recorded, but doesn't really include any unreleased material so I was a tad disappointed. In early 2008 they released 'Corellia', a single that showed the band had moved down to a two-piece thanks to the credits, so my guess is this was the beginning of the end and HARLOTS simply disbanded after this recording. The song itself is pretty damn awesome and could be likened to Into The Moat and early Warsaw Was Raw with raging...well, raging everything. It's 6:32 of absolutely blistering metal, whether you want to call it math, death or core, it's perhaps the best song ever released by HARLOTS, as well as the last.



2004 - The Woman You Saw Is The Great City That Rules Over The Kings Of The Earth cdLP (stream/donate/download here)

2006 - This is the Second Death cdLP (stream/donate/download here)

2007 - Betrayer cdLP (stream/donate/download here)
2007 - The Human War Machine demo/live LP (stream/donate/download here)

2008 - Corellia single (stream/donate/download here)

(2008) HARLOTS - "Corellia" (from 'Corellia')

(2007) HARLOTS - "Consensus for the Locus of Thought" (from 'Betrayer')

(2007) HARLOTS - "Dried Up Goliathan" (from 'Betrayer')

(2007) HARLOTS - "Avada Kedavra" (from 'Betrayer')

(2007) HARLOTS - "Savannah (live)" (from 'The Human War Machine')

(2006) HARLOTS - "The War of the Great City" (from 'This is the Second Death')

(2006) HARLOTS - "Fall of the Matriarch" (from 'This is the Second Death')

(2004) HARLOTS - "In One Day Her Plagues Will Overtake Her" (from 'The Woman You Saw Is The Great City That Rules Over The Kings Of The Earth')

(2004) HARLOTS - "She Will Be Consumed By Fire" (from 'The Woman You Saw Is The Great City That Rules Over The Kings Of The Earth')


HARLOTS additional links


Sunday, 19 March 2017


GenresInstru-metal / Punk / Post-Rock / Post-Hardcore / Post-Metal / Doom / Sludge / Prog
Related artistsKokomo.
CountryLiège BELGIUM
Years Active: 2009-present
Song: "Aegan"
Album: "Mineral"
Year: 2017
For fans ofTomydeepestego, Finger Of God, Pelican, Ornaments, Glasir, Black Clouds, (early) Disappearer, Explosions In The Sky, Mogwai, Town Portal, If These Trees Could Talk, Tides From Nebula, Goonies Never Say Die, Red SparowesGrand Détour, Maserati, This City Called Earth, Omega Massif, Mono, Watered, Carved Up, Gifts From Enola and Russian Circles.
Label(s): Self Released / Time As A Color / Dunk!Records / Revolvermann Records / Emotionally Unstable Records / Wolves And Vibrancy Records / Hackebeil Records / Puzzle Records / icorrupt Records / Salsifis Conspiracy
This post's artist is from the March 2017 Mix. This is track #10.
You can download: the March 2017 Mix#3 right here or get the new April 2017 Mix#4 here.

I'm reviewing this 3-piece instru-metal monster that is TERRAFORMER because my friend Daniel of Time As A Color sent it to me to review. He actually sent me 'Mineral' which more than surpassed my requirements for getting posted on this blog, but then I nabbed the rest of the discography and I have certainly found my new post-metal instrumental love for the next few months, having recently dabbled quite heavily into Grand Détour, Tomydeepestego, Town Portal and Ornaments. I find instru-metal bands to have lulls and relatively boring parts due to their length, but TERRAFORMER sidesteps this common pitfall and brings it on every track at every moment. Let's go through their discography, which begins a year after their 2009 inception.

Assuming my math holds up, the 'Terraformer' EP came out in 2010 and houses six songs are fantastic, especially for a debut release. The latter half of "Zephyr" is unreal, spouting riffs galore, while "Crusade" and "Leave the Ship" are very mathy and bring This City Called Earth to mind, save that dank-ass explosion that rocks the final 30 seconds of the former track. Most of these songs don't even end up hitting the four-minute mark and were likely influenced heavily by the first Russian Circles full length 'Enter', as the chug vs. math-taps sound nearly identical, especially in "Leave the Ship", the last bit of "Bot" and most of "Highway Rabbit Versus Darwin". I'll say it again, great fucking record!

In 2012 'The Sea Shaper' was released and, for the most part, it moves away from the math-taps and heads toward heavier, brooding instru-metal along the lines of Pelican and Omega Massif. The most obvious bangers are track 4 "Whale" (imagine the audio equivalent of a Moby Dick death match), track 9 "R'lyeh" (a very groovy time) and track 11 "Anacharsis" (the hardest and most demonic song they have written to date, and quite possibly the best). There are also some short one-minute tracks that aren't just straight up noise, which is nice. Those shorts songs are opener "Ahab", "Trail of Lena" and "Dragon Poulpe". Although not as gripping as their debut, this is still an excellent release that shows much growth.

In 2013 the band released a single song on the 'dunk!sampler #1' compilation called "Lupa". It's a very good track and worth checking out, as it permeates from the speakers with massive riffs and the sinking feeling that you are floating in space, not unlike Rosetta. TERRAFORMER was busy in 2014, releasing another LP titled 'Creatures' which takes later Russian Circles and mashes it together with Tomydeepestego, creating a very mature yet volatile beast, best exemplified on the aptly titled opener "Beast", the soaring and majestic "Kelpie" as well as the epic "Géants". "Alecta" concludes the album and even includes some well placed vocals just before the three-minute mark, which give the entire thing a very Fall Of Efrafa feel. Also in 2014, they released a collaboration project titled 'Euryale' with members of the band Kokomo with varying degrees of success, as the sound takes on a deeper, Mono-esque feel which both helps and hurts the general TERRAFORMER sound. Regardless, this is a good listen and one for when you are in need of more relaxation than TERRAFORMER normally gives you.

I initially set out to write only a review for 2017's 'Mineral', but the entirety of TERRAFORMER's catalogue was sick that this became a much more involved review than I had set out to do, but hey, now I know about a really awesome band because of it. So, the new LP opens with "Aegan", a pummeling onslaught of palm-muted guitars from the self titled EP era of Pelican and gets pretty head-bobby at 1:40 or so but doesn't let up its gravitational grip until the 8:26 conclusion. "Adamantine" follows with beautiful, sweeping movements that share many qualities with early Russian Circles, hidden gem Finger Of God as well as Gifts From Enola with astronaut-ready sounding swirls captured from six minutes onwards. Third is "Amethyst", a relatively quick look into the TERRAFORMER sound at a mere 4:55, and is likely heavily inspired by Pelican's 'City of Echoes' material. There are playful guitars on "Penelope" after the first minute, followed by a splattering of both chugs and eternal reverb riffs. The song weaves in and out of different branches of post-rock, post-hardcore and post-metal which settles itself over the final four minutes with cool palm muting, and expansive/spacey guitars that again bring to mend 'City of Echoes'. "Epoch" has the allure of Red Sparowes as the song traverses the audio equivalent of massive and stunning canyons, capturing both the dark and violent shifts of time as well as the smooth, polished elegance of weathered stone. Closer "The Ether Shell" brings wave after wave of dreamy, instrumental, sonic europhia in instru-metal form. Truly an excellent LP.

Also released in 2017 is the recently premiered 'Watered split' 12" (stream here) that has TERRAFORMER at their densest, manifesting some seriously subterranean sludge with occasional glimmers of hope. "The Sierpinski Triangle" is a perfect example of this while "Antennapedia" is a droning mirror of the German masters Omega Massif.

I noticed that the band is going on tour starting in April 2017 so be sure to check their Facebook page to get caught up on exactly where they are playing. Until it's finalized, I last saw this:

1/04 : Strasbourg (F), Diamant d'Or // + [IntoTheTide]

2/04 : Hannover, Glocksee // + Binoculers + RADARE

3/04 : Berlin, Schokoladen

4/04 : Göttingen, Juzi

5/04 : Münster, Baracke

6/04 : Hengelo (NL), Innocent

7/04: Karlsruhe, P8 // + NYOS

8/04 : Liege (B), Insert Name Festival // + Mars Red Sky + more

9/04 : Wiesbaden, Sabot // + Syberia



2010 - Terraformer cassette/cdEP (stream/donate/download here)

2012 - The Sea Shaper cassette/cd/12"LP (stream/donate/download here)

2013 - dunk!sampler #1 (stream/donate/download here)

2014 - Creatures cd/12"LP (stream/donate/download here)
2014 - Euryale collaboration project w/Kokomo 12"EP (stream/donate/download here)

2017 - Mineral 12"LP (stream/buy here)
2017 - Watered split 12"EP (stream here)

(2017) TERRAFORMER - "Adamantine" (from 'Mineral')

(2017) TERRAFORMER - "Aegan" (from 'Mineral') official music video

(2017) TERRAFORMER - "Amethyst" (from 'Mineral')

(2014) TERRAFORMER - "Géants" (from 'Creatures')

(2014) TERRAFORMER - "Beast" (from 'Creatures')

(2014) TERRAFORMER - "Generation Noir" (from 'Euryale')

(2013) TERRAFORMER - "Lupa" (from 'dunk!sampler #1')

(2012) TERRAFORMER - "Anacharsis" (from 'The Sea Shaper')

(2012) TERRAFORMER - "Whale" (from 'The Sea Shaper')

(2010) TERRAFORMER - "Zephyr" (from 'Terraformer')

(2010) TERRAFORMER - "Leave the Ship" (from 'Terraformer')


TERRAFORMER additional links



Order 'Mineral' 12" from Time As A Color / Dunk!Records

Wednesday, 15 March 2017


GenresPunk / Hardcore / Screamo / Emo-violence / Skramz / Grind / Metalcore
Related artists?.
CountryChicago, Illinois USA
Years Active2016-present
Song: "black as midnight on a moonless night...pretty black"
Album: "Black Nail"
Year: 2016
For fans ofLetters To Catalonia, .gif from god, Me And Him Call It Us, Celebration, Republic Of Dreams, Caust, Swan Of Tuonela, Mothlight, The 21st Agenda, Crowning and Vein aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Structures // Agony
This post's artist is from the March 2017 Mix. This is track #2.
You can download: the March 2017 Mix#3 right here or get the new April 2017 Mix#4 here.

BLACK NAIL is fucking awesome. Releasing but six songs over two EPs, every song is a direct punch in the gut. I recently premiered their new EP 'A Meeting of Bliss and Trauma' in late February 2017, only to have this review already line up for March of 2017. Therefore I'm going to review the older 2016 'Black Nail' EP and then do some shameful copy/pasting. Observe.

The debut 'Black Nail' four-song cassette EP begins with "black as midnight on a moonless night...pretty black" which is almost relaxed sounding for BLACK NAIL, but by 40 seconds the murder riffs come out full force and lay waste to the remainder of this slasher track. "here's a list of my demands and every regret i've ever had" keeps a steady and intimidating pace for as long as they can...which explodes into chaos by the one-minute mark. "the vultures are waiting to pick yr bones" is another one of my favourites, as it creates madness early but keeps it all in check with some really tight stops and starts. By 40 seconds the songs shifts into demonic mode and at 56 seconds the band rains down death upon the listener. Closer "i wanna die like god" is the band's lone foray into 3+ minute material, clocking in at 4:41. It broods and festers for the first minute with plodding bass and yelling before picking up the pace with some crazy-ass drumming and general sound not unlike my beloved Crowning. The song slows down again soon after and layers increasingly emotional spoken words over building instrumentals that eventually collapse under their own weight at 2:45 and the track disintegrates into a pool of thick, black and poisonous sludge.

The original premiere of 'A Meeting of Bliss and Trauma' was posted on February 24th, 2017 and here is the relevant synopsis:

"The explosiveness and sheer intensity is overwhelming and will leave fans of Me And Him Call It UsLetters To Catalonia and .gif from god in a euphoric state. Opening track "Holding a Moth by the Wings (Hands for Scissors)" is an eerie and feedback saturated homage to Me And Him Call It Us, combining poisonous vocals with crushing instrumentals. The songs speeds up substantially at 1:18 and disintegrates into black hole breakdowns by 1:30. The final track on the EP is "It's Not Just a Feeling, You are Being Watched", which is a mere 1:53 of forehead slapping awesomeness. Opting for a faster opening and scathing vocals amidst here and there mini-breakdowns, the song goes fucking ballistic at 1:38 and will have fans of .gif from god and Letters To Catalonia on their knees praying to the gods of spazzy, metallic screamo. Seriously this song is one of the best you'll hear in 2017."

So there you have it, the screamy and grindy metalcore is as unrelenting as it is pummeling, with the band opting for panicked chords, chaos and murderous breakdowns. The band will be touring in March to SXSW with the band Tweak. Insanely stoked to hear anything else the band touches and I hope ZBR will be involved in some way, cuz that'd be sick.



2016 - Black Nail cassetteEP (stream/donate/download here)

2017 - A Meeting of Bliss and Trauma cassetteEP (stream/donate/download here)


(2017) BLACK NAIL - full set

(2017) BLACK NAIL - "It's Not Just a Feeling, You are Being Watched" (from 'A Meeting of Bliss and Trauma')

(2017) BLACK NAIL - "Holding a Moth by the Wings (Hands for Scissors)" (from 'A Meeting of Bliss and Trauma')

(2016) BLACK NAIL - "black as midnight on a moonless night...pretty black" (from 'Black Nail')

(2016) BLACK NAIL - "the vultures are waiting to pick yr bones" (from 'Black Nail')


BLACK NAIL additional links



Tuesday, 14 March 2017


GenresPunk / Hardcore / Emo / Emotive Hardcore / Screamo / Skramz
Related artists: The Minor Times, Carved Up, Fighter Hayabusa, Nationale, Five Stars For Failure and The Sea,The Sea..
CountryPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania USA
Years Active2016-present
Song: "Snowball Wit"
Album: "Demo"
Year: 2016
For fans ofTen Grand, Light The Fuse And RunLautrec, Heritage Unit, Funeral Diner, Portraits Of Past, Wow, Owls!, Ladder Devils, Aim Of Conrad, Forstella FordFour Hundred Years and Twelve Hour Turn aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Parking Lot Records
This post's artist is from the March 2017 Mix. This is track #5.
You can download: the March 2017 Mix#3 right here or get the new April 2017 Mix#4 here.

KING SLENDER was sent to me last year by Matt to review. It took me awhile to get around to posting it, but I expect they'll be coming out with something new soon so perhaps this'll work out well. The Philadelphia emo/screamo hardcore band have crafted an excellent debut 'Demo' EP that certainly turned a few heads, and with this review turns a few more. Drawing influences from Shotmaker, Julia, Four Hundred Years and Spirit Assembly, KING SLENDER also boast members of heavyweights like The Minor Times, Carved Up and The Sea, The Sea so I'm guessing that readers of this blog will eat this up.

"Twelve" opens with a very obvious and unique twist on emotional hardcore. There are sprinkles of Ten Grand, Lautrec and Twelve Hour Turn amidst the mixture of punk, hardcore, emo and screamo that creates a blend that blasts my taste buds in a myriad of ways, especially the final 30 seconds when things get insanely intense. "Snowball Wit" is my personal favourite. It begins with a quick quote before rocking some really sleek 90s emo with dark and menacing undertones, although the head-bobbing conclusion from 1:40 onward warrants Funeral Diner and Portraits Of Past comparisons. Woowee! Finale "Drunk at the Water Park" is not just a great title, but a bouncy and rhythmically pleasing adventure into bass-led, dancey and screamy hardcore punk rock.

The cassette EP was released by Parking Lot Records and limited to a mere 50 copies so if you dig this and haven't picked one up already get on that. Damn ass excited to hear more tunes from this new band.


2016 - King Slender cassetteEP (stream/donate/download here)


(2016) KING SLENDER - "Snowball Wit" (from 'Demo')

(2016) KING SLENDER - "Twelve" (from 'Demo')


KING SLENDER out of print mp3 discography download / additional links


Monday, 13 March 2017


GenresPunk / Post-Hardcore / Emo / Emotive Hardcore / Screamo / Skramz / Post-Metal / Ambient / Experimental
Related artistsCease Upon The Capitol, Dolcim and Altar Of Complaints.
CountryNashville, Tennessee USA
Years Active2014-2015
Song: "Don't Let the Cat Out of the Box"
Album: "Subjects//Rulers"
Year: 2016
For fans ofCease Upon The Capitol, Altar Of Complaints, Gillian Carter, Monte Ida, Portraits Of Past and Dolcim aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Zegema Beach Records / IFB Records
This post's artist is from the March 2017 Mix. This is track #8.
You can download: the March 2017 Mix#3 right here or get the new April 2017 Mix#4 here.

SUBJECTS/RULERS fulfilled something I never thought I'd be able to do, and that's be involved in something related in some way to Cease Upon The Capitol, a band I've been in love with ever since hearing their song from the almighty 'Emo Apocalypse' 12" compilation. Cease Upon The Capitol was screamo. Dolcim was dark post-screamo and SUBJECTS/RULERS is an extension of the two with the incorporation of longer, dreamy ambient bits and dreamy post-rock, which could probably be assumed come thanks to their Altar Of Complaints bloodline. In the Best Of 2015 Year End List I slammed this down as #15 and stated that the band's "scathing US screamo intertwines with spacey/shoegaze riffs but always stays rooted in hardcore." I've personally found the band enigmatic in their sound, as one listen doesn't allow the listener to uncover all of the layers that are happening. Even the second and third time I hadn't grasped the wonderfully constructed beast that is 'Subjects//Rulers', but goddammit I got there, and it was more than rewarding. Unfortunately at around that same time SUBJECTS/RULERS were forced to call it a day as guitarist/vocalist Matt needed to move away for life sustaining reasons (aka job). Thank the almighty, gender neutral god of science that they managed to collect 8 beautiful and brutal songs that made up the self titled cassette, which may or may not be titled 'Subjects//Rulers' as that's what is on the tape. Regardless, every song is a banger so I'll quickly do a song-by-song overview.

Opener "Of Milk and Wine" boasts the obvious and unique guitars of Matt Strickland, who also tackled those shredding screams and played in both Cease Upon The Capitol and Dolcim. The song chills out a bit at 1:20 but returns to screamy/dreamy form just after the two-minute mark. "Surely You Must Be Joking" sounds much different than its predecessor but does follow a similar route of aggressive, serene and then aggressive again but the juxtaposition of beauty and destruction is even more prevalent, with the final 30 seconds sounding like the tearing of the space-time continuum. "Godel, Escher, Bach" begins with some light and jammy instrumentals that bounce around in some dim light before someone throws the switch at 57 seconds and shit gets raw and fuckin' noisy, and also includes some of the best drums on the record. My personal favourite and the most sonically direct (despite its five minute length) is "Nice Death Ray, Buddy" so I put this epic track on the Zampler #8 'I'm Doing My Part' compilation cd. Probably the most Dolcim of any of the songs, it's very heavy but seamlessly blends the spacey and experimental drive from Cease Upon The Capitol that hits perfection at 1:11 with monstrous and otherworldly post-hardcore riffs that collide with Matt's wrenching screams at two minutes, only to explode and completely deconstruct itself. The second build begins around three minutes and gets all supernova again around 4:30. Holy moly, I love that song. The B-side is corked with "Don't Let the Cat Out of the Box", a cool song with both Matt and Roy tackling vocal sections, with Matt laying down the heavy shit first and Roy yellin' to close it out. I find the opening to be extremely engaging and probably my favourite instrumental section on the record, which shifts to the lighter and looser half at about 1:20. The guitar tone, yet again, speaks to me and reminds me of the amazingness that was Cease Upon The Capitol, but just like the entirety of the 'Subjects//Rulers' album, their sound is one of maturity, growth and introspection barely touched upon with those 2000s Cease Upon The Capitol releases. "The Uncertainty Principle (on the nose)" is probably the most positive and uplifting sounding tracks, but that's not to say it's not a screamo song...wait, that's a double, there, that's better. The track has a very powerful and deliberate last half that is easily one of the highlights of the record. "Your Number is Up" echoes and reverberates in a slow spin that continually picks up speed until 1:05 and then detaches from gravity at 1:40 with some space-nightmare screamo. Wowza, let's call this "space-nightmare screamo", what a genre! Hmmm, maybe not. Closer "Famous Last Words" begins pretty proggy, with isolated bass upon which twinkly notes and subdued drumming are slowly layered. By 1:26 everything is jolted to life and the jam continues albeit much heavier, only to change course again and again throughout the remaining three minutes.

After disbanding the members were still active in talking about the band, so they did a big interview over at IDIOTEQ (linked here) and also answered seven questions in the mega 24-band Zampler #8 interview, also conducted by IDIOTEQ (linked here). As one of the two people who loved this enough to put it out, I feel like it's in my best interest to now post a link to purchase the tape via Zegema Beach Records here and IFB Records here. <3



2015/2016 - Subjects//Rulers cassetteLP (stream/buy here) [buy cassette here]


(2016) SUBJECTS/RULERS - "Nice Death Ray, Buddy" (from 'Subjects//Rulers')

(2016) SUBJECTS/RULERS - "You Surely Must Be Joking" (from 'Subjects//Rulers')

(2016) SUBJECTS/RULERS - "Don't Let the Cat Out of the Box" (from 'Subjects//Rulers')

(2016) SUBJECTS/RULERS - "Your Number is Up" (from 'Subjects//Rulers')


SUBJECTS/RULERS additional links


Buy cassette from ZBR / IFB

Thursday, 9 March 2017

***2017 OMSB mp3 Mix #4 (April)***

April 2017 mp3 MIX #4
 => ***DOWNLOAD HERE*** <=
...and updates

Wow, 9 days late this month. There are a myriad of reasons for that, but the primary one is that my wife and I sold our house. So, we are moving. We are moving out of Ontario for sure, and likely out of North America. Hopefully we will end up in New Zealand, but until I have a visa in my hand it's not for sure. What does this mean for the blog? Nothing. It's all the same, except Dave's concert reviews will be coming from wherever he ends up (hopefully Dunedin!). What does this mean for Zegema Beach Records? It means there will be two Zegema Beach hubs, or should I say two Zegema Beaches. The primary work and planning will follow me wherever I go, so Zegema Beach is going international. The Canadian/North American hub will remain in Ontario (Cambridge, to be exact) with my good friend and fellow screamo lover Nate Downey. We recently did a podcast that will be airing in March so watch for that.

The other reason for the 9-day delay was the premieres, interviews and podcasts, which ate up a lot of my time. Check out the summary with links further down in this post. Please note there is a release show for THE WORLD THAT SUMMER (the band I scream for) and their/our split 10" with Sweden's Nionde Plågan. Besides TWTS the illustrious Terry Green will be playing as well as two acts I have yet to see, Never Trust A Wizard and Toucan Slam. Check out the facebook page here.

And lastly, here's the tracklisting for OMSB mix#2 that was reviewed in February.

1) UNDER A SKY SO BLUE - "The Poverty of Modern Life"

2) PREGNANCY PACT - "You'll Get Used to the Cold"

3) I AM ALASKA - "Death in a Silent Picture"

4) REMOTE - "Fading Away"

5) VIVA BELGRADO - "Erida"

6) STOP IT - "When Doves Cry"

7) UNDERDARK - "Bank of Roses"

8) ROBINSON - "The Great City of Desolation"

9) THANK GOD - "Ice/Age" (review by Jesse Mowery)

10) ORNAMENTS - "Aer"

Much love,

Dave / OMSB / ZBR


ZBR Store/Bandcamp

10" (pre-order here)
(listen here)

UNDER A SKY SO BLUE 'The Spectacle Provides' EP
cassette (pre-order here)
(listen here)

7" (pre-order here)
(listen here)

CROWNING 'Funeral Designs' EP
cassette (order here)
(listen here)


***Interviews/Live shows coming up this month for sure:
- I don't know

***Interviews/Live shows/premieres posted last month:
- BLACK NAIL exclusive EP premiere
- DWELLER ON THE THRESHOLD - album premiere
- THE WORLD THAT SUMMER - exclusive song premiere
- YOUTH NOVEL interview
- PODCAST #16 w/Mike Norman

***The following page have changes:
- nada

As always, on or around the 1st of every month, I will be posting a ZIP file with songs for the upcoming month with ALL specifics deleted from the tags, so unless you already know the band, there is NO information regarding each track.

During the following month, I will post reviews for those bands and link the tracks to the review so you can associate the two together. This way you can listen to a new song/band and have little-to-no bias. Below, I have re-posted the March mp3 mix that is used for this month's reviews.

The new OMSB mp3 Mix #4 contains ten tracks including but not limited to:
*-* new stuff from ex-Mara'akate, Phoenix Bodies and Brighter Arrows
*-* a new black-metal meets shoegaze band
*-* that new Loma Prieta band a few people are talking about
*-* that pre-Loma Prieta band everyone is still talking about
*-* the best Nintendo-hardcore song ever


Any bands/labels that are interested in having their stuff reviewed, please email with "Open Mind Saturated Brain" as the subject. Please keep in mind that I don't review everything, just what jives with the blog. I will, however, listen to everything you send me. I would recommend emailing with an idea for a song/album premiere 2 months prior to that song/album release date for a much stronger chance at being reviewed on this blog. Bands that have already had their discography reviewed can also submit new albums for review if they include song/album premieres.

Wednesday, 8 March 2017


GenresPunk / Post-Rock / Post-Hardcore / Emo / Emotive Hardcore / Screamo / Post-Metal / Ambient / Prog
Related artists: Ànteros.
Country: Córdoba SPAIN
Years Active2012-present
Song: "Erida"
Album: "Ulises"
Year: 2016
For fans ofLa Parade, Rinoa, YarostanÀnteros, Vi Som Älskade Varandra Så Mycket, Via Fondo, Shizune, Rainmaker, Past, Young Mountain, Envy, State FaultsDaïtroArktika, Ephemera, Nous Étions, Les Deux Minutes De La Haine, Trachimbrod, Corea, Dip Leg, Standstill, Sed Non Satiata, Evylock, We Never Learned To Live, Captain, Your Ship Is Sinking, Bymyside, Monte Ida, Careless, Mihai Edrisch, Mahumodo and Döda Löv aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Tokyo Jupiter Records / Walking Is Still Honest Records / Aloud Music Ltd / Dingleberry Records / Koepfen Rec / Shivery.MMXII.Productions / Samegrey Records / Upwind Productions / Sad Panda Records / Lost State Records / Unlock Yourself Records / Mosh Potatoes / Bookhouse Records / Ancient Injury Records / Fueled By Salmorejo
This post's artist is from the February 2017 Mix. This is track #5.
You can download: the February 2017 Mix#2 right here or get the new March 2017 Mix#3 here.

From Spain, VIVA BELGRADO play a beautiful mix of post-rock and screamy hardcore much like early Spanish screamo pioneers Standstill and ex-bandmates and friends in the now defunct La Parade. The mixture of massive sounds, emotional talking/screaming and atmosphere aren't far off from Envy and Mihai Edsrisch as well as newer bands such as Yarostan and Vi Som Älskade Varandra Så Mycket. Things never get too quick or heavy, but the perfectly composed song structures and wildly entertaining fingerprint of the band makes them prodigious in sound. In 2012 they released their 'Demo' that showed unreal potential, as songs like "Conflagración" are vintage VIVA BELGRADO, with swells of instrumental post-rock and screamy post-hardcore.

In 2013 they released what I might be inclined to say is my favourite VIVA BELGRADO release, the 'El Invierno' EP. The five tracks are some of the longest yet densest material the band has written. Opener "Catedrales" is firing on all cylinders by the one-minute mark and includes some unreal and piercing guitars that drive the imposing wall of sound into and over the listener, leaving them in awe and utterly crushed simultaneously. The song takes a chill pill before two minutes but comes back full force by three and fucking own those licks, goddamn. Cándido Gálvez shows his phenomenal talents with haunting screams and mesermizing spoken vocals in Spanish that drip with emotion. All that in the first song! "Reykjavík" follows and, as per early VIVA BELGRADO, includes a dreamy intro followed by booming bass and shredding Spanish screams amidst lush and inviting guitars and drums. "El Gran Danés" is 2:38 of a glimpse into the band's future, is this faster and shorter sound is one the band adopted in full by 2016. The closer "Terminalia" gets me excited just before two minutes with dreamy, swirling guitars that lead to breathtaking crescendos of post-hardcore and screamo, with obvious comparisons to Young Mountain, Rinoa and We Never Learned To Live.

It was around this time when I first heard VIVA BELGRADO thanks to my friend Arvid in Vi Som Älskade Varandra Så Mycket and Serjio in La Parade. I got their compilation cd also known as the 'Viva Belgrado' cd that issued both the 'Demo' and 'El Invierno' with two unreleased tracks with fantastic spoken word segments that, again, use a flair so unique, pleasing and passionate that I can't not post them below. I was pretty floored in general and eventually was in line to help with their 2014 gem 'Flores Carne' but following a job fiasco I had to back out, a necessary move that I still regret to this day. This 12"LP looks beautiful and sounds even better, with "Höstsonaten" begins with guitars that bring Mihai Edsrisch to mind and then gets groovy as fuck by 1:20. "La Reina Pálida" is also worth mentioning, as it embeds the hooks nice and early with crunchy and wailing stops and starts.

'Ulises' was released in late 2016 to critical acclaim in the screamo community, I'd like to think. Again boasting serene art and nearly 10 killer tracks was one of the best of the year for sure. "Pleiades/Pasaportes" is an excellent track, riding out those sexy bass riffs with permeating waves of sonic bliss, but it's track five, the dancey and screamy romp through Spanish hardcore known as "Erida" that steals the show on this LP. I simply cannot wait to hear whatever the band releases next, as I know it will be jaw-dropping.

I'm excited to go to Europe, as perhaps I'll get to see the band play, as Jimmy from Old Soul told me in our podcast (linked here) that VIVA BELGRADO kill it every night, regardless of audience size or venue. So if you haven't checked them out do so or jam a few bombs on youtube, linked here.

I love you, VIVA BELGRADO.



2012 - Demo EP (stream/donate/download here)

2013 - El Invierno EP (stream/donate/download here)
2013 - Viva Belgrado compilation cdLP (stream/donate/download here) [buy cd/300 here]

2014 - Flores Carne cd/12"LP (stream/donate/download here) [buy 12" here]

2016 - Ulises cd/12"LP (stream/donate/download here)


(2016) VIVA BELGRADO - "Erida" (from 'Ulises')

(2016) VIVA BELGRADO - "Pleiades-Pasaportes" (from 'Ulises')

(2014) VIVA BELGRADO - "Höstsonaten" (from 'Flores Carne')

(2014) VIVA BELGRADO - "La Reina Pálida" (from 'Flores Carne')

(2013) VIVA BELGRADO - "Catedrales" (from 'El Invierno')

(2013) VIVA BELGRADO - "Terminalia" (from 'El Invierno')

(2013) VIVA BELGRADO - "Reykjavík" (from 'El Invierno')

(2013) VIVA BELGRADO - "La Doulou" (from 'Viva Belgrado')

(2013) VIVA BELGRADO - "Culto A La Ceniza (Epílogo)" (from 'Viva Belgrado')

(2012) VIVA BELGRADO - "Conflagración" (from 'Demo')


VIVA BELGRADO additional links