Archive for the VOWS Category

VOW (7/30/2012): Autopsy – All Tomorrow’s Funerals

Posted in VOWS on July 31, 2012 by Peter S

This week’s music video if none other than “All Tomorrow’s Funerals” by Death metal legends, Autopsy. This track is off of their most recent album “All Tomorrow’s Funerals” which was released earlier this year.

No, this video doesn’t have drama or theatrics. No, it doesn’t have cinematic production quality. No, it doesn’t have a storyline or scenario that plays out. What this video does have is the purity of four scary-looking guys playing Death metal and wandering around an old building.

Sure, I love Black metal: the theatrics, the look, the image. But sometimes, the “image” takes on a life of its own and can get in the way of the music. Autopsy provides a nice contrast to that, and gets back to the core “essence” of the music.

One of the best things about this video is that it looks like it was filmed around 1988. That’s not an insult, it’s the highest compliment! They truly captured that look of that era. Great song, too. One of the best modern examples of the late 1980s-early 1990s Death metal sound. I love it. The link is below. Enjoy!

Autopsy video for “All Tomorrow’s Funerals”

Your friend,


VOW (07/23/2012): Behemoth – Ov Fire and the Void

Posted in VOWS on July 23, 2012 by Peter S

This week’s music video is “Ov Fire and the Void” by Behemoth. The band is from my ancestral land, Poland, and I am actually drinking a can of piwo (beer) as I am writing this. Na zdrowie!(cheers!) However, it’s Canadian beer so I don’t know where the hell I am… in a global sense.

I know, everybody talks about Behemoth’s video for “Lucifer” – and that is a good video – but, I don’t think that it is their best song. Musically, I prefer “Ov Fire and the Void” because it’s a little heavier, a little faster, has some nice atmospheric synth layers, and it displays more of their death metal influences. I haven’t listened to the whole “Evangelion” album, but it seems that the band is going in more of a slower, black metal direction. There’s nothing wrong with that – they’re a great band – it’s just my personal taste. I’m just drawn to the energy of faster music, regardless of the genre.

The video for “Ov Fire and the Void” has the same type of high-quality visuals as “Lucifer”. Basically, the video is about a girl who commits suicide and succumbs to evil forces in the after life. It’s very dark, the visuals are stunning, and it fits perfectly with the music.

Before clicking on the link below, be forewarned that the video is unrated. It does contain some nudity and graphic imagery (it’s not that bad, I just wanted to let you know). Children, the elderly, the infirmed, religious extremists, unreasonable people, and even pets should avert their gaze!

Behemoth’s video for “Ov Fire and the Void”   

Your Friend,

Monroe Ficus

VOW (07/12/2012): Nine Inch Nails – The Perfect Drug

Posted in VOWS on July 12, 2012 by Peter S

This week, I chose something a little different: “The Perfect Drug” by Nine Inch Nails. It’s a beautifully dark video that looks like a combinaton of Edgar Allen Poe, European Romantic literature, and a Hammer Studios film. The song isn’t my favorite from NIN, but this is one of those cases where the video does enhance the music.

Sadly, the video didn’t get much attention back in 1997. The song was on the soundtrack for David Lynch’s “Lost Highway”, which didn’t get much attention either – except from David Lynch fans. It’s funny, I remember discussing the video for “The Perfect Drug”, with a friend, and we both agreed that a video like that should be recognized on so-called Video-Music-Award shows.

Honestly, what is the criteria for an award-worthy music video? Do the visuals even matter? Does it have to be a good song? Is it based upon popularity and airplay? Is it based upon the push of record company marketing? Viewer requests? What is it? What makes a music video worthy of an award? What are the qualifications?

I never knew and I still don’t know. Well, I think it’s safe to say that most award shows – at least in the U.S. – are rooted in marketing and are a sham.

But, that’s one positive thing about the internet. You are free to search out these hidden gems on your own. So, if you desire, click below to take a look at a Nine Inch Nails hidden gem.

The Nine Inch Nails video for “The Perfect Drug”

Your Friend,


VOW (6/27/2012): Suffocation – Cataclysmic Purification

Posted in VOWS on June 30, 2012 by Peter S

The music Video-Of-the-Week for this upcoming July 4th holiday is “Cataclysmic Purification” by Suffocation. I thought with the fireworks and all, some good old explosive Death metal was in order. Suffocation is one of the forefather-bands of the modern Tech-Death movement and the guys deserve every ounce of credit for consistenly creating strong music that is faithful to their specific and unique “sound”.

Perhaps the best way to describe “Cataclysmic Purification” is: great song, great video. There are scenes of the band members playing in an old industrial building and there are quick shots of animation that are reminiscent of some of the animation in Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”. In fact, “Cataclysmic Purification” is like a gory version of “Goodbye Blue Sky” (my favorite moment in “The Wall”). You could also describe the animation as the type of thing that investigators would find in a serial killer’s notebook from high school.

Enjoy, have a happy fourth (U.S. readers), and click the link below!

Suffocation video for “Cataclysmic Purification”

Your Friend,


VOW (06/20/2012): Huntress – Eight of Swords

Posted in VOWS on June 23, 2012 by Peter S

This week, the video that’s been on my mind is “Eight of Swords” by Huntress. It’s a fantasy-inspired video that’s chock full of Pagan imagery and earthy visuals that are reminiscent of sword-and-sorcery films. Before I go on, I just want to stop and say that “Huntress” is a great band name. Isn’t it? It’s one of those names you wish you thought of when you were scrawling dozens of flaccid names on the back of your electric bill envelope.

One reason I chose this video is because the music is actually enhanced by the visual content. On its own, the song is a solid, straightforward mix of Power, Black, and Pagan metal that is based upon the natural minor, or Aeolian, scale. If you’re not familiar with the musical terms, the song has an Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Motorhead, or old-Metallica type of sound to it. “Eight of Swords” is a really good song, but I tend to lean more towards the tonalities used in Death metal. So, I think the creators did a really good job with the video because it did “sell” me on the song.

Along with the visuals, I do want to mention lead singer Jill Janus. Her vocals have a distinct quality which is sort of a combination of Kimberly Goss and Dirty Harry, with a pinch of Angela Gossow. She goes from clean vocals, to a slight raspiness, and occasionally delves into piercing shrieks that accent the intensity of the music. In short, she one of the most interesting female vocalists that I have heard in a while. And in case you were wondering, the answer is yes. You will enjoy looking at her. What are you waiting for? Click the link below!

Huntress video for “Eight of Swords”

Your Friend,


VOW (6/11/2012): Cannibal Corpse – Encased in Concrete

Posted in VOWS on June 13, 2012 by Peter S

This week, I bring you the Cannibal Corpse video for “Encased in Concrete”, off of their latest album “Torture”. I chose this video because the visuals go hand-in-hand with the power, darkness, and machine-like nature of the band’s music. I say machine-like, because it’s amazes me that five guys can play with such rhythmic precision. Together, they sound like a finely-tuned engine and that is one reason (among many) that Cannibal Corpse is one of my favorite bands.

In the video, there are scenes of a tied-up man who is being covered with wet concrete. Those scenes illustrate the meaning of the song, which is nice, but what I really like about this video is the environment that surrounds the band. There are quick shots of spiked metal machinery, fire, walls in what looks like an old farmhouse, and a huge scary looking tree (the antithesis of the tree-of-life?  tree-of-death?). In a way, it’s like the band is playing in Leatherface’s front yard and this fits extremely well with the music… which, incidently, is like a vicious three-minute auditory beating. Incredible. Hit the link below to watch it.

Cannibal Corpse video for “Encased in Concrete”

Your Friend,


VOW (6/4/2012): Opeth – The Devil’s Orchard

Posted in VOWS on June 5, 2012 by Peter S

This week, I’m highlighting Opeth’s video for “The Devil’s Orchard”, from their 2011 album “Heritage”. What can I say? The creators of this video achieved that perfect combination of music and film.

Let me take a moment to explain. If I heard this song first, without seeing the video, I probably wouldn’t have liked it as much. Opeth made quite a departure from their old death-prog sound to a new straightforward, progressive sound – with clean vocals. It’s still great music, but the new sound really isn’t my cup of tea.

However, my initial exposure to the song was when I watched the video… and I instantly loved the music. In this case, the video actually makes the song better and I believe that goes for the video too. On its own, the video would be good, but the music makes it great. In a nutshell, the video makes the song better and the song makes the video better, or – for you Gestaltists out there – the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

I will even go as far to say that this is one of the best music videos that I have ever seen. It has a lot of dark psychedelic imagery that is reminiscent of 1970s, European occult films. Also, the music is very much in the style of 1970s prog, so its a perfect fit. Click the link below, sit back, enjoy, and slip into an altered state of consciousness – go ahead, you work hard and you deserve it!

Opeth video for “The Devil’s Orchard”

Your Friend,


VOW (05/28/2012): Morbid Angel – Existo Vulgore

Posted in VOWS on May 29, 2012 by Peter S

This week, I’m celebrating Morbid Angel’s video for the song “Existo Vulgore”, off of their 2011 album “Illud Divinum Insanus”. The video is done in the style of silent films and it’s a perfect fit for the music. Yes, I will say it again. Heavy music (at least Morbid Angel’s music) is a darn good pairing with the visuals of creepy, old silent films.

This video has a faded black-and-white appearance that simulates film age and wear, there are dialogue cards between some shots, and vocalist/bassist David Vincent is dressed up as the boo-and-hiss-worthy villain. The only thing missing is the train bearing down upon the damsel in distress. On second thought the rapid drumming, rhythm guitars, bass, and growling vocals ARE that menacing locomotive. Very cool. Hit the link below to watch it.

Morbid Angel “Existo Vulogre” Video   

Your Friend,


VOW (5/21/2012): Rammstein – Sonne

Posted in VOWS on May 21, 2012 by Peter S

I’m introducing a new weekly feature called VOW, which stands for Video-Of-the-Week. Typically, this will be a music video from a metal/hard rock band that I find interesting. I will be focusing on the combination of the music with the visuals and, of course, this will go hand-in-hand with the other dark content of this blog.

This week’s video is Rammstein’s “Sonne” (which means “sun” in German). It tells the tale of a narcissistic, drug-addicted Snow White who is abusive to her hard-working Seven Dwarves. I saw this video for the first time, this past weekend, and I loved it. I always liked the song and the twisted visuals really enhance the music. Fairly tales seem to be the new vampires and werewolves, so I thought that this video was  a relevant choice. Nothing against “Once Upon a Time”, “Grimm” and “Snow White and the Hunstman”, but Rammstein’s is the kind of fairy tale re-telling that I’d like to see. Hit the following link to watch the video. Enjoy!

Rammstein “Sonne” video

Your friend,