Free Flush Vol 16
Sweet 16, what have we got today. Let’s see, let’s see… a mix of leftist hardcore, genres with the “post-” prefix and regular metal. Shocker. To me, every Free Flush article feels like the first one because I log on here so infrequently that I forget how to even write the damn thing. If you’re new, I’m Melinda (aka Carcassbomb) and these are new Bandcamp albums with the Name Your Own Price tag and I also maintain a wiki of free Bandcamp albums which I hilariously titled the Free Bandcamp Wiki 2022 over at the site I’m from, Noob Heavy. That’s right, I don’t actually go here, I just come here at lunch time for the cafeteria.
I made a Free Flush playlist, it’s not all inclusive as some are Bandcamp exclusives and Bandcamp still doesn’t support playlisting, but it’s a good summary of the stuff I’ve covered in the… years? Oh god has it been years already? I need a fucking job or something.
…But the Shadows Have Foes – A Great Variety of Morbid Symptoms
Every year I end up with a handful of hardcore AOTYs by May, what a good genre still. Remember that Huntress Of Stars sludge project I was raving about the last two times they dropped a free album? Well this is their neocrust side project and it’s quality. Not surprising from a musician I’ve respected for a while now due to their whimsical horrific story telling utilizing every guitar pedal ever made. Here we get more explicitly anti-capitalist antifascist than ever. The album title wasn’t joking when it literally said “A Great Variety Of Symptoms” and why would it be – that’s what the album is about, except the condition we are identifying symptoms for isn’t a bodily one as much as the condition of overbearing backbreaking capitalism and the hordes of bootlickers who prop it up like a reverse Sisyphus, they love the boulder those sickos. This is an angry poignant moody album at it’s core with great guitar layering and a couple of vocal quirks that stick out nicely. …But the Shadows Have Foes is when spite and defeat hold hands.
Abraham – Débris de mondes perdus
A post-hardcore band from Switzerland with so much more in common with post-metal than your average modern folk and emo-centric post-hardcore band. Using post- metal hypnotism to deliver hard-hitting hardcore spikes of energy. Bombastic and soaked in aggressive emotion communicated in a raw abrasive manner. It’s like a fever dream full of hate. Even the clean vocal moments have malicious undertones, nothing is done here for the sake of beauty, it’s more of an engaging dialogue. One of the best albums to be made free in 2022 and just generally. You won’t know whether to mosh or cry but you’ll mosh either way. I can hear how easily this style could tip more into full blown screamo and yet they manage to show restraint sticking to a more metal sound.
SOM – The Shape Of Everything
How can I use the terms “Radio Doom” and “Doom Pop” while still convincing you that it’s a really good listen? You’ll just have to trust me, or better yet trust SOM, they know what they are doing at this point, this isn’t a debut album. Shoegaze and doom are always a good choice together but SOM has upped the ante a bit by shifting the slider away from “unmarketable doom made by nerd punks” and brought it closer to “Music for shareholders who actually feel things”. But not all the way, there exists no shareholders with the capacity to feel in the crude amounts The Shape Of Everything demands. Similarly vibed to Deafheaven‘s latest Infinite Granite, although without the nods to black metal. A well crafted, pleasurable album best listened to while experiencing a crucial moment in life’s development, the more crucial the better.
MÖLAG BAL – Temples
Antifascist black metal is no question the best black metal genre but throw on references to Morrowind (or at least Elder Scrolls in general) and you’ve got my complete attention. Mölag Bal is the Daedric Prince whose sphere is the domination and enslavement of mortals and who has unfathomable levels of greed for souls. An icon to rival that of any real life demonology and mythology, and certainly a comparison to draw in the modern age where living feels like an elaborate trick by Mölag Bal to harvest the suffering endured by our very souls. Untold quantities of deliberate human suffering makes for perfect black metal fodder. Musically it opens with a very nice synth intro before revealing the raw black metal grit this release focuses on. Vocally it has both gravel-munching harsh vocals and shrieking harsh vocals with the latter having a couple of moments to really show off. An album not yet heard by many which is a shame as half of the proceeds from this go to “charitable organizations primarily BLM, First Nations Reparations and Ukrainian Refugee Funds.”
Preamp Disaster – By The Edges
Dynamic is a word music journalists enjoy using and I try not to overuse it, however, Preamp Disaster has actually achieved a dynamic sound that incorporates the heaviness and growling of metal and the finesse and elegance of post-rock among some other stoner-orientated styles. It’s just as likely to inspire a daydream as it is to get you pumped, it all depends on how much caffeine you’ve had. The most clear comparison I could make is the band Isis, which for many people is enough said.
Greed Worm – Hell Is Real
Do you hate living in society? Do you experience apathy in the face of total annihilation by the hands of the state? Then you might be a “VICTIM OF DEMOCRARY”. We are all guilty of greed in some fashion are we not? While not all of us play into the insidious, poisonous world of avarice-style greed (some of us are more into weed greed), some manage to do it so well that it exploits and hinders the entire human race—like religious institutions, political institutions and other forms of institutions whose entire existence is based upon the hoarding of wealth using some kind of horrendous system to maintain that income. This is what Greed Worm is yelling about and shouting at and just generally not having a good time dealing with. Retweet if you relate. Angry tunes that revolve around the punk style delivery of one liner social commentary lyrics, more of the good stuff if you’re that way inclined. Love the “fuck around find out” crop top in the band pic, I fucked around and found out about a new band I like.
Anna Sage – Anna Sage
Heavy hitting hardcore/metalcore with a very crisp production quality, far less raw than we usually get here at the Free Flush. It often has that crescendo chaos Converge feeling when the guitars and vocals reach their heaviest and most unhinged, while at other times it emphasizes the more emotional side of the vocals which are no less loud in volume. Most of the hardcore stuff on here is very direct with its finger-pointing and social commentary, and Anna Sage certainly has that present but to a lesser degree and with a focus on introspective feeling in relation to the innate negative experiences of modern living. This is the more emo version of the same hatred lyrically, though the execution of the themes is more traditionally heavy due to how metal-influenced it all sounds. There’s a guitar bit a little before halfway through “Loveless” that brings a lot of groove to the song. They are well written songs that work just as much out of context as on their own, feeling isolated in that they each have a beginning and end rather than trying to flow seamlessly together. Like a diary full of anger, each day is distinctly shit for its own reasons despite contributing to an all-encompassing shitty whole. Good stuff.
GoreSkinCoffin – Release My Suffering
I don’t like black/death as a genre much and I don’t know why specifically, but it turns out if you make that black/tech death then I’m all ears no fears. It doesn’t hurt to throw in a grind element either, basically if you want me to enjoy black metal then you have to filter it with as many other genres as possible. Call me a poser if you want but I legitimately do not claim to be a fan of black metal so that wouldn’t make a whole lot of sense would it? GoreSkinCoffin takes the fun spooky atmospherics of black metal and uses them effectively with intestine ripping death metal resulting in a grand sound. They sound like a much bigger band for how underground GoreSkinCoffin actually is, really competent stuff that shows promise of brilliance (or at least fierce competition) in the future.
Throwe – Forfald
Blackened hardcore. It’s black metal and it’s hardcore and it’s unrelenting on both fronts. There’s not a whole lot to say about it, you’ve got your meat and you’ve got your potatoes and you can pour your grandma’s gravy over top, that’s a fucking meal I don’t care what anyone says. It has the more intricate guitarwork of metal, the mosh factor of hardcore and it’s all tied together by a vocalist capable of expressing something bordering on both at the same time. Shrieks for days. 7 fat tracks to burn down barns to.