Metal Bulletin Zine (est. 2006) is a metal music zine (Seattle region), online and on paper. 160 issues so far.
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Saturday, February 10, 2018
Rotting Sky (review by MMB)
February 9 2018 (re-release)
Sentient Ruin Laboratories
Black metal can often be harsh on the ears enough as it is, but this entity decided to raise the level of abrasive several notches higher so that the music reaches near the breaking point between something that sounds like songs and something that is close to noise. It does not sound good or even “good” and that is most likely on purpose, to make it be so bad to be enough to be good. If you listen to music on an old cassette tape (or maybe when it is a copy of a copy of a copy) that is worn out there are hissing sounds and noises that go along with the music. Then, if you turn it up, you will hear the music better, but the hissing will get louder, too. Rotting Sky is like that.
This sounds really terrible, so horrendous that it is a lot of fun. I think that one way that the artist meant for this to be heard is very, very loud at earsplitting volume so that you can hear the music under the noise, a traffic jam of industrial drone noise crashing into a huge 18-wheeler of black metal on fire barreling down the highway.
I can’t believe how good this actually sounds. I think there are some reasons that explain why this is good. First of all, the pace of the music is uptempo and driving. The songs do not go crazy trying to have 137.3 tempos in it. It does sound good for headbanging and it sounds like rocking going on, just wrapped in a big barbwire blanket of painful distortion. Second, the intention of having songs is not lost. You would think that this would sound like a potpourri of indiscriminate garbage cans banging into each other, but it doesn’t; ok, well, it does, but there are songs going on here. For instance, the track “White Angels” breaks out a guitar solo right smack in the middle of the ugliness and chaos. I should say: I believe that it is a guitar. Maybe. You never know with these kids and their fancy computer software.
There is no doubt that this is as ugly as metal music gets, without descending into totally disorganized screaming and pounding instruments blindly in garage or bedroom studio. You probably know better than I do what genre this is. I don’t, and I don’t care. Anyway, if you want to lose some of your hearing, listen to this. This recording will be the best worst thing that you hear in a long while.