Album Review

Sujo & Sun Hammer – Fistula (Inam / Music Ruins Lives, 2012)


Sujo & Sun HammerOSD (Inam / Music Ruins Lives)

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Two of the awesomest noise dudes joining teams for a record of absolutely killer fucking drones. Fistula takes on the minimal and the harsh, devastating abrasion and delicate clicks, working in both of Sujo’s & Sun Hammer’s own styles. This is a massive album, huge walls of speaker shredding noise that soothe the inner beast, blissed out darkness, a desolate, frozen tundra that hasn’t seen snowfall in months, white noise that turns in on itself, unnerving high end with bleak industrial feedback, hints of Sujo’s metalgaze balanced out with Sun Hammer’s bleak subtleties, these guys work incredibly well together, pushing for sounds neither have done on their own, coming up with something that’s a shining star in both of their catalogues. In short, fucking essential. Sujo’s home label Inam is taking care of the CD, out any day now, and Music Ruins Lives is indulging all you tape nerds sometime in the near future.

Album Review

Book Of Sand – Mourning Star (Music Ruins Lives, 2012)


Book Of SandFits And Starts (Music Ruins Lives)

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It’s been at least a couple years since I’ve written about Book Of Sand (How Beautiful To Walk Free), or his previous doom project Light (A Million Dead Beneath The Ice and Life Is Meaningless & Goes On Forever, so I’ll forgive you if you don’t remember him. But only partially because this dude has always been the fucking best. Don’t forget it. His new one, Mourning Star, is packed up all sexy-like courtesy of MRL and might be his best one yet. Black metal doesn’t even begin to describe this beast. This dude is a master genre bender, using black metal as a melting pot to throw in everything from doom to neo-classical. There’s so much going on that it’s hard to get your brain situated, raw discordant riffs starting off mostly in synch until they devolve into a sloppy mess of noise, furiously relentless drums, tortured screams, drunken lurching doom, slow & massive, burnt & charred Americana guitars, caked in ancient dust and disintegrating before your eyes, atonal strings turning a blackened nightmare into a ghostly eulogy, xylophones plinking away in some distant room in the corner of a rotting mansion, at times atmospheric and ephemeral or in your face and undeniable, but always churning your stomach, brutal, tasteful, and wholly fucking original. Book Of Sand is at the top of his game, Mourning Star giving you everything you want from 21st century black metal. He’s fucking doing it and you fucking need it.

MUSIC RUINS LIVES


Tom VourtsisGhost Doze

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When a new Music Ruins Lives release comes out, I tell myself that I’m gonna review it. Because MRL are my pals, because sometimes they offer it up to me ahead of time for (p)reviewing, but mostly because every release is balls to the wall AWESOME. Taking a quick inventory, I’ve only written about one of their 7 releases (or 10+, depending how you count). That’s a pretty shitty ratio when every album is top fucking notch.

Since I’m 9 deep in MRL reviews and would never have time for all of them, I decided to do the next best thing. Mash ‘em up in a big MRL dedication post.

So Music Ruins Lives is run by two dudes, one of which is Thom Wasluck of Planning For Burial. The other is Michael Britten, who I only know from his coolness on Twitter/Facebook. MRL kinda started as an outlet for a physical release of the Have A Nice Life demos, Voids, but also for getting devastating shit out there like the killer PFB/Lonesummer Split, unheard of weirdo metalgazer Airs, and the mysteriously strange droney Greys. The last two releases have gone soft, with Bad Braids‘ tape of psych folkness and a new Tom Vourtsis CD that’s even better than his free gorgeous static ambient album The Driver. But the two upcoming albums are shifting gears again, with the dark n droney Sequences/Isolated Existence split and Life In The Dark‘s double disc of glorious gloom.

There is so much to love about MRL, not including the fact that they’re one of the most consistently kickass labels running right now, but everything they do is made by hands of fury, limited and hand numbered. They’re even amazing enough to post the sold out albums for free downloading, or nice hi-fi tracks if you want to chip in a few bucks. That’s including the HANL demos, the PFB/Lonesummer split, Airs, Greys, and the PFB single, all for you. There’s the “Negative Series” which is unofficial stuff, like the bonus Lonesummer live set that came with the PFB/Lonesummer split if you were one of the first 30 pre-orders, which you can now download for free. And you can preview the tunes before you jump in.

They’re doing it so right. They’re doing exactly what you would want from a label and they do it while releasing the BEST fucking music. Everyone throw money at them, please, I want them to stick around.