BOLZER "Aura" 12"

DEATH KARMA "A Life Not Worth Living" 12"
ZOM "Multiversal Holocaust" 7"

By Dr. Abner Mality

Iron Bonehead Records from Germany specializes in the filth BELOW the filth...the deepest layers of the Satanic death metal underground. The word "production" is anathema to these guys. They scour the universe for the most wicked and depraved and usually releases the results in the forms of 7"'s, tapes, splits and other non-traditional forms. Thus we have the 3 releases I have chosen to illuminate this time around.

Let's start with the best of this sick bunch. That would be Bolzer from Switzerland, home to Celtic Frost. I love the dank cosmic darkness these fiends create. It's primitive yet surprising, with twists, turns and a feeling like being pulled into a black hole at the center of a nebula. Elements of old Bolt Thrower, Celtic Frost and even the whacked extremity of Wormed all creep into the sound. Anybody recall Mithras? That English band achieved some of the celestial destruction Bolzer does with these three tracks. "CME" is crude riffery, the most obvious tip of the hat to Frost. "Entranced by the Wolfshook" surprises with a very triumphant, soaring sound...unique and penetrating! Last track "The Great Unifier" is a monster that is almost psychedelic doom at times. This is a band that needs to get a full length out PRONTO!

The Czech Republic's Death Karma are a much more typical and therefore less interesting band. This is super dirty black thrashing death that will appeal greatly to fans of stuff like Massemord and Vulgar Darkness but is of limited memorability. The sex samples are utterly embarassing. The band strikes hard with final track "DeathKaos" , which is pretty blistering, but "A Life Not Worth Living" is far from essential.

That leaves a two-tracker from Ireland's Zom and if you're into total tuneless insanity like Deiphago and the wilder Impiety, then dig in. To me, a lot of it sounds like a trashcan full of hockey sticks falling down an escalator while distorted vocals howl and gibber in the background. I did enjoy the sample of the Outer Limits episode "The Galaxy Being", however, and if these guys ever decide to invest in a decent production, they might get somewhere.