Monday, May 24, 2010

Compulsion on "Territories"

link here.
Locrian's previous album Drenched Lands was an impressive combination of guitar and keyboard improvisations carrying elements of drone, noise and pitch-black industrial ambience together with a slight nod towards black metal. With Territories the core duo Andre Foisy and Terence Hannum further develop their blackened atmospherics aided by an expanded line-up, featuring fellow Chicago based musicians including Mark Solotroff (Bloodyminded and proprietor of BloodLust! label), Blake Judd (Nachtmystium), Bruce Lamont (Yakuza) and Andrew Scherer (Velnias).

Right from the off you're surrounded by the controlled feedback squeals and electronic pulses of 'Inverted Ruins'. It carries over the Locrian sound of Drenched Lands but the presence of the collaborators is obvious; in the distant holler of Solotroff and the simple rock styled drum pounding from Andrew Scherer. The doom pace is filled with stuttering synthesiser howls and industrial ambience ebbing out on pulselike throbs. The static buzz drone of 'Between Barrows', punctuated by short bursts of crashing cymbal rolls, is accompanied by some restrained sax blurt and further on it picks up some sustained tense organ drone.

Drenched Lands featured some stark and skeletal guitar work and that makes a welcome reappearance on 'Antediluvian Territory', the only track restricted to the core duo of Andre Foisy and Terence Hannum. Here spiralling shards of guitar are played off against ominous organ drone. It is wonderful stuff and way too brief. It's an approach I hope they pursue on future releases.

And while there's elements of noise throughout Territories there's a definite power electronics feel to the opening minutes of 'Ring Road' with Solotroff's haranguing holler over wavering shrill feedback and monstrous low-end roar. It doesn't stay too long in power electronics mode as it gradually leads into dense churning electronics, with some guitar improvisation and crackling textures.

One of the pivotal tracks of Territories, 'Procession of Ancestral Brutalism' starts quietly with feint feedback squeals and industrial ambience before upping the stakes with scorching black metal riffing, powerhouse drumming and screamed black hole aggro vocals spat out by Solotroff, Judd, Lamont and Hannum. 'Procession of Ancestral Brutalism' is inspired and dynamic like black metal filtered through the noise-rock of Zeni Geva or something. It may be black metal but with Locrian it is direct and resolutely shorn of the ideology or cliché.

I guess much will be written about the black metal influenced tracks on Territories but the focus of Locrian remains very much on improvisation. If it's black metal you're seeking then I'm afraid you're gonna have to wade through a lot of black atmospherics to get there. Just listen to the shared guitar improvisations that comprise the opening minutes of 'The Columnless Arcade' before it cuts to the surging metal riffing, martial snare drum rolls and distant tortured screamed vocals. As ever it doesn't wallow too long in one place as Locrian cast their net wide trawling through wigged out terrain casting off elements of black metal with post-rock tunings into dense psychedelic murk.

Given the amount of collaborators here Locrian never lose their identity; their sound is never engulfed by the collaborators. Territories is very much a Locrian record. All the hallmarks of their sound, as evidenced on their previous Drenched Lands release, can be found here. This time though with the aid of the collaborators they've been able to further explore areas only tentatively pursued before. Anyone interested in drone/doom sonics and noise/power electronics would be foolish to miss this as Territories is something of an avant metal drone fest. It's also a blast. As prolific as they are Locrian are running on a very low shit quotient and I'm already looking forward to wherever they go next. Great stuff. Released via the labels At War With False Noise, Basses Frequences, Bloodlust! And Small Doses on vinyl in an edition of 500 copies in and now on CD. For more information go to or or or

Cerebral Metalhead on "Territories"

Link here.

Ronnie James Dio is dead. I never really knew him aside from his role as a talking head in VH1 documentaries and his popularization of the metal horns. Yet the more I read, the more samples of his work with Rainbow, Dio and Black Sabbath that I hear, the more real his death becomes. While I wouldn't say that my life feels any different, I do feel more connected to the metal world because of the collective outpouring of mourning. And so I mourn, as well.

The new Locrian album Territories is ideal for this mood. The emotions it inspires are fathoms deep and unnameable. It is everything that Dio's music was not -- fuzzy, oblique, meditative, often static. There will be no holy diving to the synth and bass throb of "Ring Road." Terence Hannum, Mark Solotroff (Bloodyminded), Blake Judd (Nachtmystium) and Bruce Lamont (Yakuza), each of whom contribute emaciated howls to "Procession of Ancestral Brutalism," could learn a few things about enunciation from Dio. This music feels dry and empty, even at its most energetic. Territories is the purgatory that Dio must wait in while his afterlife is determined. Heaven? Hell? Heaven and Hell?

Locrian's last album Drenched Lands soundtracked Chicago's urban dystopia with improvised windscapes and scratchy feedback. Half of Territories thaws out the desolation by setting its improvised electronics against warmly-recorded, Ulver-like black metal storms from Judd, Hannum, Locrian's Andre Foisy and drummer Andrew Scherer (Velnias). "Procession of Ancestral Brutalism," is really inspired black metal, and I hope to hear this expanded band record a whole record like it someday. But the two disparate styles feel frictive, especially when the latter erupts out of nowhere a few minutes in to "The Columnless Arcade." It's too Dio-like, its regal drum patterns and repeated harmonies clenching triumph from the jaws of horror. I am gratified that such bold improvisers as Locrian are taking steps away from their discomfort zone, even more gratified that they're putting Bruce Lamont's saxophone to good use (his layered braying on "Between Barrows" threatens to steal the album). I don't want to be woken from my drone-drenched reverie by blastbeats though. Too much emphasis on rhythm. Give me more organ, more queasiness. Let me mourn for Dio in improvised peace and quiet feedback.

-Etan Rosenblum

Audiodrome on "Territories"

Link here.
I Locrian tornano con Territories, frutto di una serie di collaborazioni con pezzi della scena "pesante" di Chicago, la città dove i due vivono.

Blake Judd dei Nachtmystium porta in dote un po’ di riffing black metal, Bruce Lamont degli Yakuza regala il proprio sax, Mark Solotroff dell’etichetta Bloodlust!, esponente della scena noise americana, qui è un interprete vocale marcissimo e sofferente, infine alla batteria compare Andrew Scherer dei Velnias, altro gruppo black metal di cui già tempo fa i due Locrian caldeggiavano l’ascolto. Lamont, non dev’essere un caso, già era apparso in Assassins dei Nachtmystium e forse in qualche modo Terrence e André avranno voluto vedere cosa succedeva se partecipavano anche loro al gioco delle contaminazioni. I Locrian non copiano Skullflower o i Sunn o))), per quanto ci troviamo a quelle latitudini musicali, ma come Anderson e O’Malley qui mettono una scenografia, preparano un po' di costumi, le luci e l’idea generale, poi lasciano spazio ad attori di prestigio. Per dare un’idea di Territories bisogna pensare a uno sfondo di cemento, ferro e plastica, ottenuto con drone e rumorismi chitarristici più suoni di synth scassati. Su questo sfondo può apparire Solotroff, che non assomiglia né ad Attila né a Dubin, fermo restando che in “Inverted Ruins” - come loro - più che cantare "performa", recita. Può essere poi la volta del commento desolato del sax di Lamont o delle sfuriate della ditta nera Judd/Scherer. Gli attori si dividono anche la scena e in alcuni casi addirittura spiazzano tutti in positivo (eccezionale il dissonantissimo Lamont di “The Columnless Arcade”): non c’è mai la sensazione di avere a che fare con una sorta di underground all star game dove si vede la prodezza del campione ma non la squadra. Il gioco è in mano ai Locrian, il che significa rappresentazione di periferie squallide, acque inquinate e degrado, più la testimonianza gridata di chi incontrano nel loro girovagarci.

Come Drenched Lands, ma diverso e più ricco di situazioni, quindi proprio consigliato.

-Fabrizio Garau

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Land of Decay Related: TEMPLE OF THE IMMORTALS / Zine

For those of you who so graciously supported our first printing endeavor New Rites a few months ago and maybe even followed up with a purchase of Black Arts or even Profaned Missive for Fan Death Record's DNA TEST FEST III, maybe his first collaboration with Elijah Burgher in Cataract of Fire & Blood (which we have a few copies left) prepare yourselves for Temple of the Immortals.

Locrian member Terence Hannum has continued his series of publications. We have a limited quantity of his new zine Temple of the Immortals, more info below:

ATHANASIA. ETERNAL. Fifth in a series of zines,Temple of the Immortals is a compact collection of details of ritual drawings, performance spaces, and fragmented xeroxes of temple architecture in an intimate edition.

5.5" × 4.25" / 32 pages. Xerox zine on black, white and gray papers. In black envelope with black xerox on the cover. With black & white sticker. Edition of 48.

$7ppd (US) / $10ppd (world)
Please send payment to: landofdecay (at) gmail (dot) com

PS: Terence's zines will also be in an exhibition titled Self Publish, Be Happy in London, UK at The Photographer's Gallery Curated by Bruno Ceschel June 5th and 6th, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Locrian "Territories" Review from The Sleeping Shaman

Link here.

In order to fully accommodate the full scope of their vision, the core duo of Locrian – Andre Foisy and Terence Hannum – have enlisted an ensemble of players from the various outer reaches of musical extremity and four, count 'em, FOUR separate labels so that the vastness of 'Territories' can be fully unleashed upon the unsuspecting world at large. As excellent as their last full-length, 'Drenched Lands', was, 'Territories' is, well, a whole 'nother territory. The sound world created herein is truly expansive, spanning Locrian's usual pitch-black droning minimalism, through to black metal on an epic scale, taking in meditative post-space-rock guitar and icy synthscapes along the way, and often ALL of the afore-mentioned at once.

The four collaborators that Foisy and Hannum have recruited for 'Territories' are Mark Solotroff of Bloodyminded, on vocals and synths, Blake Judd of Nachtmystium, on guitar and vocals, Bruce Lamont of Yakuza, on vocals and sax, and Andrew Scherer of the unknown-to-me Velnias, on drums. These four help to flesh out the sound of Locrian, allowing them to function almost as a 'band', in real-time. The additional members and instruments allow for a greater, more well integrated, palette of tonal variety, and a more obvious use of dynamics.

Opening track 'Inverted Ruins' has the spine of a pulsing, ebbing skeletal synth throb and funereally paced drums, overlaid with layers of minimal yet piercing feedback and choppy, skittering insectile electronics. Beneath this Solotroff spills slow-burning throaty bile about the collapse of civilisation, whilst adding further sonic weight to the juddering processed synth tones that cloak him. The track ends, collapsing under its own weight into nothing but a heavily delayed synthesizer squelch, stuttering into empty space. 'Between Barrows' is a dead-black organ drone exploration, with the saxophone of Bruce Lamont hoving into earshot between dense fog-banks of shimmering cymbals and echoing ambience, like a ship lost at sea and sounding its mournful horn into blank space in hopes of a reply. Two minutes into the third track 'Procession of Ancestral Brutalism' is where everything changes, as the full-on black metal guitar assault of Nachtmystium's Blake Judd explodes out of the black hole of sound that preceded it. An icy blast of trebly BM riffing, ala Wolves In The Throne Room, and full-tilt blasting drums blare out of the speakers, whilst the anguished screaming vocals of Solotroff, Hannum, Judd AND Lamont let rip from what sounds like an echo chamber several miles below the earth. This in turn then opens out into a space of throbbing, surging bass notes, and whirling guitar, the drums punching and splashing in emphasis. Sounding at once arctic, organic and totally venomous, the track is unlike anything Locrian have done before. Fourth track 'Ring Road' is another dark, throbbing exploration of the lower depths, along lines of the opening track, but DENSER and, dare I say it, DARKER. The squalls of electronic skree and the blocks of analogue synth in even more abundance. Next track 'Antediluvian Territory' is what COULD be construed as a 'meditative' guitar piece, with plangent, delayed guitar lines and chiming harmonics ringing out in a way reminiscent of Robert Fripp....that is if it wasn't for the indefinable air of impending dread being conjured up by the accompanying collossal bass drone and the snake-like hissing ambience. Meditate to THIS and say hello to nightmares and cold sweat.

'The Columnless Arcade', the final track on 'Territories' is where everything that has gone before comes together in one kaleidoscopic auditory hallucination. Echoing, delayed and heavily processed syhths and electronics whirr and endlessly collapse into a vortex, from which emerges that icy black metal blast once again, whilst enormous bass notes judder and depth charge below the serpentine mass of sound. Solotroff howls as the guitars entwine in a post-psychedelic black metal tangle, chiming and swooping at each other through acidic delay like Helios Creed by way of Enslaved, and it has that same feel to it as the serpentine guitars of Beefheart's 'Kandy Korn'. At once fragile and epic. The track is cosmic in the truest sense, and a fitting ending to such an all-enveloping piece of work.

The scale of 'Territories' is vast indeed, and such a project on such a scale could have easily failed and fallen into the trap of throwing TOO much into the mix, but it has succeeded effortlessly. 'Territories' is a triumph of sound, and deserves to be heard by EVERYONE of an adventurous musical leaning. Especially those of us who do not usually care for black metal.

* Label: At War With False Noise / Basses Frequencies / Bloodlust! / Small Doses
* Website:

Monday, May 10, 2010

Locrian "Territories" Decibel Review

Locrian "Territories" At The Quietus

Link here.

Although 'Locrian' can refer to either a member of the ancient central Greek tribe, the Locrians, or a musical scale used primarily by jazz and death metal musicians, this has nothing to do with Chicago's 'post-industrial noise' duo Locrian. To be perfectly frank, on first listen Territories is a pretty bloody arduous listen, but here perseverance is the key. What at first comes across as unstructured, poorly executed racket recorded in an oil drum by a monkey with learning difficulties, eventually it reveals itself to be an intense 50 minute drone odyssey; the multitude of seemingly random clicks, glitches and oddities making for a deceptively textured and engrossing album.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Locrian "Territories" Review from The Sound Projector

Link here.


Last year I was very pleased to discover the music of Locrian, a Chicago duo who seemed to be doing something exciting with their excessive amplified guitar and electronic sludge-drone, overlaid with Black Metal elements and wallowing in supernatural paranoiac slime. For Territories (AT WAR WITH FALSE NOISE ATWAR073 / BASSES FREQUENCES BF23/ BLOODLUST! B!147 / SMALL DOSES DOSE85), the duo of Foisy and Hannum have supplemented their power with players recruited from Nachtmystium, Yakuza, Velnias and Bloodyminded – all gloom and hate merchants to a man. The addition of vocals, synth, drums, sax and an extra guitar has certainly made the Locrian overall sound a lot thicker and, in places, more textured and detailed. I feel however that some of the relentless and obsessional qualities that they exhibited so convincingly as a two-man act have been slightly compromised by the need to co-operate with these other bloodthirsty musicians. ‘Procession of Ancestral Brutalism’ is one example of the new band dynamic, but in spite of its killer title it’s not much more than identikit Black Metal. However it would be churlish to deny that overall, this is an album of horrifying power, particularly on the slow and broody cuts like ‘Ring Road’ which over ten agonising minutes of painful squalor and heavy monotony soon convinces you of the presence of imminent disaster. Vinyl copy of this item known to exist, unless sold out by now.

Locrian "Burying the Carvinal/Exhuming the Carnival" tape review @ Chain D.L.K.

Link here.


This is the third thing I have reviewed by Locrian and so far I have found them to be a mixed bag. That said, this has been a much more enjoyable release, taking the best elements of “Drenched Lands,” such as their ability to create a heavy atmosphere, while taking what I saw as the weaknesses of “Plague Journal,” which is it’s stripped down repetitive minimalism and turns it into a strength.

“Exhuming the Carnival” brings in heavy bass drones with guitar that, while remaining fairly simple throughout, develops an increasing sense of urgency. At first I thought that it would quickly become boring, but it remained strangely compelling. Very nicely done. “Burying the Carnival” takes a more ominous approiach as occasional yelling blends with guitar over a noisy, dissonant droning background. This track shifts throughout, which keeps it interesting. At one point, it is almost as if there is an Yngwie Malmsteen solo in the middle that doesn’t really seem as out of place as I thought it would. The guitar gets increasingly dissonant as the oppressive drones close in on you. Overall, this is the best I have heard from Locrian. Out of all of the releases, this is the one I would start with.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Lociran April 2010 Semaphore Studios Photos

Sorry Steven...where were you?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Currently Listening...

Neil Jendon's "Cities in Flight" CD from Bloodlust!

HIGHLY HIGHLY Recommended!


a Sleepers 3" CDR from He Of The House records. It's called "Mavet Perach...Schön Verrück" and it's pretty bleak and disturbing. Not quite sure how to describe it, but really good nonetheless.

Also, a review of the first Locrian studio recording "Plague Journal" at Chain DLK. It's cool to find reviews of a 7" that we released over two years ago. If you'd like a copy of this 7", then contact Bloodlust! since there are only a few left.

We still have the Neil Jendon, André Foisy, and Dead Letters Spell Out Dead Words tapes in stock so order away if you're interested.