SPANCER / VERSUS THE STILLBORN-MINDED (s/t) Split LP
Split releases are always a good chance in discovering new groups, although I think, that both German bands are not so unknown here in the German Doom Metal underground. Especially VTS-M gained a lot of people here in Germany, and build up a small crowd of fans, due to a lot of shows including the Doom Shall Rise Festival in 2006. Maybe SPANCER are more unknown, and it's six years ago, since they released their self-financed MCD 'Countdown to Victory'. Sad to report, that the here featured track 'Me and my sword' is not a brand-new one, but a re-recorded version of one of SPANCER's very early songs. Ok, I never heard it before, so, at least, it's a new one. With the MCD they bowed down deeply before the throne of Saint Vitus, but 'Me and my sword' is a nice cross between Sleep's 'Jerusalem' album and Soulpreacher.
As a result, the song is 23:56 minutes long, and build around a heavy drum beat and constantly repeating bass riffs, which are interupted by unique guitar-sounds and a few samples. The vocals are shifting between Al Cisnero's stoner-chants and Sludge-driven madness, while the sound of both basses is always in motion. Believe it or not, but SPANCER manage to hold your interest over the whole length of the songs, and I really like it, that they have integrated some excellent samples from two German movies. Wasn't it one with Klaus Kinski? I'm not sure...The other sample is definitely taken from Helge Schneider, an outstanding German musician. Well, anyway, I better will write some words about VTS-M now, who are featured with three songs here. It's not easy to describe their heavy down-tuned sound, which is a combination out of different heavy styles, but mostly they're playing brute Sludge, with additional Doom influences.
Especially the third song 'Monuments of Failure', becomes very viscous, after four minutes plus. The track starts with the intro 'Remix of Delusion', where the band uses a saxophon, which is played together with heavy drones. Nice effect and more original, than the opener 'Vivamus ergo delebimur', that doesn't convince me. Both bands won't win any prices for orginality, but it's a chance to discover two interesting German underground bands. This split Lp with foldout cover has been released by The Skull Records and is limited to 333 copies. And one further information for all the busy collectors: it's pressed in 180g vinyl.