Saturday, July 23, 2011

cauldron born

So I'm back in Australia for those of you who are interested, and ready to resume as close to a normal life that I can (I'm actively looking for a new job though, very tired of the current one), which will hopefully include some sort of regular posting schedule on this here blog. I won't lie though, I didn't really miss this thing while I was away. I did miss records though, and music. Upon my return I was greeted with a stack of records near knee high, so I am certainly not short of post fodder. What may be of a surprise though (it was somewhat to me anyway), is that I didn't buy a single record on this trip. Unlike my 2009 trip to the USA, which I detailed extensively on here, none of it revolved around music of any kind. I didn't attend any shows, I didn't even go to any record stores (not necessarily because I didn't want to though, I did plan to hit up All Ages Records in London but I ran out of time). The majority of my time in the UK was spent tripping around the west midlands where my girlfriends family are based. We did all of the standard tourist type stuff while there (castles, old towns, museums, food, drink etc), and we also managed to trek north (Bradford) for a party, stay in a beautiful hotel on the Welsh coast, as I mentioned, visit the capital of London, and stay in Paris for two nights. Two things that I noticed about England during my stay: the ratio of (at least) tolerable people to fuckheads is far greater than that of Australia, and life is infinitely cheaper in that part of the world. Apart from the cost of petrol, which is ridiculous, and except for London, everything, from food, accommodation, real estate, shopping etc is cheaper. I mean everything. Even after the exchange rate. I get the impression though, that it is all relative to some kind of extent. From what I can tell, in general, the average salary is lower than what we get here in Australia. With that in mind though, we have decided to make a move to Britain to live on a permanent basis in two years or so, when my girl finishes her study to become a school teacher, and we have saved some money. Her being of British citizenship will obviously make my bid for residency alot easier, and her father has already offered to house us and to sponsor me in employment/visa etc if need be. I'm kind of fond of the idea of turning this blog into something that resembles Dobek's, except obviously it will be about an ex-pat Aussie record nerd living in the United Kingdom. I'll start spending ridiculous amounts on old Revelation Records presses, register a proper domain address, buy a sick camera and everything.
So as I mentioned, I didn't go to any shows on my trip, for various reasons, not just because I didn't want to. One show that I was really excited about seeing leading up to the trip was something that was originally supposed to happen in a practice room in Nottingham, but then was moved to a larger venue in town; the original line up was sludge merchants Thou (from the US, last show of their European tour I think), partners in crime Moloch and Rot In Hell. Then RIH announced the short notice departure of their singer Nate, their drop from the bill and the cancelation of the show. Knowledgable of the fact that I now wouldn't be able to attend said show anyway, as I had to drive north for this party I mentioned earlier (a family gathering of the girlfriends, people she hadn't seen for years, no way we couldn't go), I wasn't too bummed about the turn of events (other than the fact that Nate had left RIH obviously). Then a week or so later the show was rescheduled at the new venue, and touted as Nate's final ever set with the band. To rub fucking salt in the wound too, Leeds scumbags, Mob Rules were also added to the bill. You can't win em all I guess. Fuck you.
The impact will kind of be lost for some of you if you read Jack's blog, as he's literally just posted about this same record (with the same title and everything), but this is the record that was launched at the show, the Rot In Hell/Moloch split 7". Pressed by Feast Of Tentacles, this is a copy on red that I was quick enough to snag via mail order from the label a day or two after the show. Only 100 were pressed on this colour, the remaining on black. I kind of assumed that these would have all sold at the show, but as it seems, assumptions can often be way off, as I know of at least two other bloggers who also obtained this record on red by means of mail order.
What you get here is a recycled card sleeve with single colour screen, with recycled inserts and a recycled dust cover. It's simple and effective and reminds me alot of the Caulfield LP from last year for more than a few reasons. As I mentioned in that post, I was quite fond of the simplicity of that records layout, and for the exact same reason, I am really liking this. With that in mind though, I am a little (for lack of a more appropriate word) surprised that this record didn't come with some kind of personalised 'cvlt' book, or insert, or something, as has been the story with all of the more recent RIH releases. There's something about the understated classiness (again, for lack of a more appropriate word) of the simplicity of a plain screened sleeve though, you can't beat it.
Music wise we get one track from each band here. The RIH contribution "Cauldron Born" is what you'd expect from the band: heavy metallic hardcore. It's got an acoustic lead-in that progresses into some feedback, then a slow bass beat, then it kicks off. It's fast and massively aggressive. It's got the crunch and leads and as you'd probably expect, a cool break. One of the better RIH songs that exist. It's such a shame that Nate's left the fold, but it's the perfect song to exit the pack with. The Moloch song, "Sibillia", like the RIH song, doesn't at all stray far from this bands established approach; slow, meandering sludge. I've always liked to compare these guys to Iron Monkey for various reasons (style, geographic origins, the singers vocal style), and I'm not changing my tune here. Fans of this bands previous work won't be disappointed with this one. A little side note; I read somewhere that one of the guys in this band, possibly the singer, I can't quite remember, runs Feast Of Tentacles.
Rot In Hell have gone on record in a number of places to say that they are not hanging up the towel yet. They are reportedly in search of a new singer, I just hope they find someone GOOD. There are some massive boots to fill. Before Nate's departure there was talk of at least two new releases this year; a split 7" with Canada's Column Of Heaven, and a new 7" EP, "A Murder Of Crows" on A389 Records. Who knows what exactly will happen with the mentioned split, but on their blog, Breadman, RIH's bassist (I think it's him running the bands Tumblr in Nate's absence now anyway) has said that they still plan to record for the EP as soon as they can find the right frontman. So it sounds like they've got the music ready, they just need the vocals and lyrics. Nate, just do the vocals goddamn it.

Quick note: Our Aussie friend whom we stayed with in London will be putting 6 copies of my zine, Downsided #5 (Crowd Control interview) in at All Ages Records in the coming days, when she gets the chance. Grab one for something like a pound.


Jack said...

sorry to have got in there first with this one dude... i guess it's the benefit of living a few hours from the bands instead of the other side of the world.

POI Nx16 said...

Boardy also left RIH with Nate.