People hated this movie. I don’t think this is much worse than the latest Argento stuff, on the contrary the movie has its best spots right in my countrymate performance. Once again working with romero after Zombi, Romero doesnt want to stray from his trademark living dead thing so he opts to pay his homage to Poe right with his personal point of view of the case of Dr. Valdemar. I forgot to say this before, but this movie is basically a “split” “tribute” to the most literally sublime master of the horror fiction E.A. Poe. The movie spans for two segments of one hour each. Some good scenes of splatter deserve some attention: the decomposing woman eaten alive by the kitties and the impaled Kaitel in the second one, and the scene where the doctor is killed by wraiths that stab his chest with a tickling device for hypnotism (mesmerization would be more appropriate). The zombie at the end of the first movie is also quite interesting (see picture). Dario should have been in his medieval trip times (see “The Church”) as he adorns his episode with reconstructions of a medieval burg where the protagonist is tortured. The scene settled in this time are quite good, with paesants with oprtting theet, stained with soot and grime, and definitely down to earth. Lots of citations abound here. The protagonist of “The Black Cat” is called Rod Usher (the House of Usher os NOT a name of a Swedish DM band eheh), and the first corpse has been killed with a huge pendulum. When I was watching this movie I had a lot of Deja Vus… actually the stories were already retold on screen by Roger Corman and the unforgettable Vincent price over 40 years ago in a long serie of then B movies (Tales of Terror”, “Pit and the Pendulum”, “Premature Burial”, “Mask of the Red Death” and so on…), and we should not forget Fulci’s “Black Cat”.
Romero and Argento ended up this movie with some arguing, although I don’t know exactly what were these about. To be noted that Special Make-Up Effects are by Tom Savini

Vote: 6.8

HAEMORRAGE (Spa): “Anatomical Inferno” picLp 1998 Morbid


I should start by assuming everybody reading this mag already know HAEMORRAGE, but for those who don’t, shame on ’em, HAEMORRAGE are a great band. High class goregrinders which vigorously bring forward the dispute started by CARCASS and IMPETIGO more than a decade ago. I wasn’t immediately attracted by the band when their first CD was out but the more times rages on, the more I realize they really are the ones that deserve to stand on the top of the Gore platter. GUT and IMPETIGO are the bands that immediately spring to mind then listening to this album. Dr Obnoxious and Dr. Gore Grinder keep on butchering all through an highly varied an interesting release, that while wide-ranging and blessed by several kinds of different vocals (sometimes I think you can associate this style to EXHUMED), presents a raging intensity. Gore, guts, blood, intestines, splatter and horror with two covers of DOOM and REGURGITATE. Great stuff. PS: Intro by Ross of EXHUMED. The family isn’t that big in this genre meseems eh.

Vote: 6

ZAVORASH (Swe): “Za Vorbashtar Raz Shapog” tape 1997 s/p [demo]


Just wished this band had a fairly comprehensible printing. The fonts on the tape sleeve are so badly printed to make my eyes dizzy. Anyway, this band plays the kind of obscure Black Metal I finally come to like. Too bad my interest wanes as fast as it comes. I love the cryptic vocals and the sick feeling they can create in an otherwise pretty sterile genre.

Vote: 6.6

VEXED (Ita): “Abyss of Agony” tape 1999 s/p [demo]

VEXED (Ita):

What an hatred starts to grab my chest every time I listen to
this breed…honestly this stuff is so crappy it doesn’t even
belong to a genre… Holy Shit please somebody beat the shit
out of this pile of shitty garbage. I am curious to know who is
going to buy this tape because if somebody likes this mockery
of metal…black I speculate.. please warn me and I’ll send
him the money for a McRib at McDonalds.

Vote: 1

SEVERE TORTURE (Hol): “Baptized in Vaginal Liquid” tape 1999 s/p [demo]


Who oh! Whan I heard that this band featured members of CENTURIAN I was pretty thrilled to heed their arte. Contrary to my expectations, this band prove themselves to be a square foot beneath CENTURIAN’s uncontrollable severity. Sure, the band is fucking brutal, and the vocals deep and guttural, and the whole sound sounds far more American, but even if that’s more than enough to gain a fully deserved vote, that fails to keep the level I was expecting from a band supposed to be even more cruel than CENTURIAN. Well cornering these considerations, this is an good demo band though completely forgettable. Riffs are fast and drumming frenetic, and the whole demo spews a perverse way to express Death Metal in a very classic but a bit predictable manner.

Vote: 7

PENIS LEECH (Ita): “Eternally Encrypted” tape 2000 s/p [demo]


The cheap embossing Photoshop trick on the logo might be a bit disturbing (it is for me ehm) for DIY maniacs, and the glossy covers shows the material is not garage stuff. But. The band itself is definitely NOT cheap. A short history lesson : PENIS LEECH have existed in one form or another ever since 1995, when they had an almost entirely different line up (including the actual NATRON singer), starting up as a Grind core band, the music got increasingly heavier, more technical and big as the years rolled on terminating in one of (in my opinion) leading Death metal bands in my country. I think that on a purely technical perspective, this demo is shocking, the recording is as neat as any latest BROKEN HOPE album, the vocals have the guttural, stomach wrenching curl of NECROPHAGIST and DYING FETUS, and yes, if I can indulge on this last band, I think some of the vocal patterns could be fairly referred to them, especially when it gets more slamming and pounding. PENIS LEECH play Death Metal, they don’t give a fuck to hide it, and they play it the American way, and so fucking well they could submerge 99% of the actual American scene in their poo and pee. A genetical abomination made up of DEEDS OF FLESH and FLESHGRIND the riffs are big and complex, thick as a puke ejected after a paella meal, kinda remind me even of SUFFOCATION at times, when everything stops and start again with a concatenation of mind spanning melodic (again SUFFO school) solos and brutal meat chomping blasts, but I repeat, everything performed much better than your average rapcore American clone, this band actually don’t just strike the floor of the stage with their feet while performing, they have catchiness and professionalism… I have heard only two bands in all of Italy that play this particular untainted kind of Death Metal (NATRON some years ago and not UNDERHATE), and PENIS LEECH is definitely the third voice in the field (and beat me now, maybe the best one as well). Two thumbs up, damn fucking great.

Vote: 8.3