Black Metal, Babes, Booze: Come to “Peep & Destroy” Featuring HARASSOR, WINTERTHRALL, COBRA VENOM

APESHIT is teaming up with our metal-loving, party pals Shred Savage (@livviesmalls) and TotallyLikeDuh (@totallylikeduh) to throw a sexy metal party we are calling Peep & Destroy. The party goes down Sunday, March 27th at Cheetahs in Hollywood!

Born of a series of #blackmetalhistorymonth tweets, we have invited our friends in HARASSOR, WINTERTHRALL, and COBRA VENOM to help bring this party to life.

Peep & Destroy will feature live peformances from the aforementioned bands as well as demonic dancers, a corpsepaint face painting booth, prizes from Blood is the New Black, and drink specials. DJ SaraTea (@saratea) will be spinning metal tunes and TotallyLikeDuh will be snapping photographs.

Peep & Destroy [Facebook event page]
21+ $10 at the door
9pm @ Cheetahs in Hollywood

HARASSOR 10:30pm
WINTERTHRALL 10pm
COBRA VENOM 9:30pm

Come bang heads with us! Bring your friends and spread the word!

DREAMING DEAD – Within One

With current and former members of EXHAUSTED PRAYER and WINTERTHRALL in their ranks, L.A.’s own DREAMING DEAD have delivered an impressive, well executed debut of quality metal on their debut Within One. DREAMING DEAD‘s sound is a well balanced mixture of blackened death thrash that borrows freely from each of those genres and combines them into a seamless, potent blend. “Stairs into the Vortex” alternates between chugging thrash and blistering blast beats from drummer Mike Caffel. In contrast, “Putrid is the Sky” with its misleading title offers up melodic, elegant passages that highlight the band’s dynamic prowess. “Cursed” the counters with some strong DISSECTION-worship, complemented by vocalist axeshredder Liz Elliot‘s harsh vocal rasps and electrifying Jon Nodveidt-inspired solo that sounds a long lost track from The Somberlain. Epic closer “Manslaughter” offers the album’s centerpiece. It’s a song that covers a variety of peaks and valleys; from its subtle, ominous intro, monstrous power chords, and twisting riff arrangements before arriving at an OPETH-inspired climax. All in all, a strong debut of carefully arranged and plotted songs that bode well for the future of the underground L.A. metal scene. (Ibex Moon Records)

DREAMING DEAD: Dreams Within

While most young bands never end up leaving the local circuit, Los Angeles’ DREAMING DEAD broke out of the L.A. bubble with their sharp, DISSECTION-like metallics, dedication, and hard work. Led by talented frontwoman, Elizabeth Elliot, who’s both a vicious screamer and masterful shredder, DREAMING DEAD has already toured the U.S. in support of their debut album, Within One. Their perseverance continues to pay off as the band are currently on tour with NILE, IMMOLATION, and KRISIUN. Before the band hit the road, APESHIT spoke to Elizabeth to find out more about DREAMING DEAD and how they came to be.
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WINTERTHRALL – Stormraven

One of the best underground bands from Southern California quickly follow up their debut album, Nightmares for the Sleepless, with the Stormraven EP. While their debut was relatively straight forward in its raging metal approach, Stormraven explores the more subdued, melancholic, and doomy side of the band. Opening track, “I,” sets the tone with the sound of rain and its acoustic folk guitars followed by a doomy deluge of heaviness. The song also contains strong melancholic melodies, tortured vocals, and a massive feel to it all. Second track, “II,” is a fantastic classical guitar piece – the kind that would make John Zwetsloot smile. “III” opens with a fantastic acoustic section that has a dark metal/folk feel before erupting into the thick lava of middle era KATATONIA-like death/doom metal. The guitar solo that comes in mid-way adds strong charisma to the song. “IV” is probably the song that resembles OPETH the most with its acoustic and electric peaks and valleys. The last song, “V,” ends the release with plenty of despair and emptiness. Stormraven succeeds on many levels, one of which is the strong thread running through each song and how it seamlessly forms a cohesive whole. It’s also great to see the doom and dark metal side to the band. The use of acoustic guitars only adds another dimension to WINTERTHRALL‘s musical expression, much like how DISSECTION, OPETH, AGALLOCH, and DARK TRANQUILLITY have all utilized acoustic guitars to great success. With two solid releases under their belt, it will very interesting to see where WINTERTHRALL decide to take the listener on their next release. (self-released)

WINTERTHRALL – Nightmares for the Sleepless

Three years after being recorded, WINTERTHRALL‘s debut album, Nightmares for the Sleepless, is finally here. While the band are from Orange County, California, they sound as if they born in Sweden in the mid to late 90’s. Their style of extreme metal draws much inspiration from the sound that bands such as DISSECTION, DARK FUNERAL, NECROPHOBIC, NAGLFAR, and DAWN helped forge. There’s a thread of darkness, malevolence, and melancholy running throughout Nightmares for the Sleepless. In addition to the blazing melodies and fevered pace, there are plenty of dynamics such as the use of different tempos, a strong sense of feeling and atmosphere, and most importantly, catchiness. Tasty riffs can be found all over Nightmares for the Sleepless and there are even interludes that are reminiscent of early OPETH and middle era-KATATONIA. The cover of CARCASS‘ “Death Certificate” is a great homage to one of the greats and will surely warm the metal hearts of faithful extreme metal fans. The album is solid in its quality, performance, and consistency. While we live in a current era where much of underground metal has been demystified and commercialized for mainstream metal consumption, WINTERTHRALL keep it true and deliver a strong album that is purely underground. (self-released)

DREAMING DEAD (fka MANSLAUGHTER) – Through the Eyes of Insanity

From the musical cesspool that is Los Angeles, emerges one of the better bands in the local metal scene. The band is comprised of Elizabeth Schall (vocals, guitars, bass) and Mike Caffell (drums) who are notable for their former and current work in THE IRON MAIDENS/WINTERTHRALL and EXHAUSTED PRAYER, respectively. Stylistically, DREAMING DEAD play a varying mix of melodic Swedish death/black, thrash, and death metal. Lead track, “Cursed,” sounds as if it was plucked out of the vaults of mid to late 90’s Swedish death/black metal, complete with blazing melancholic melodies. “Shadows in the Dark” has sweet riffs that provide plenty of active and busy rhythmic movement. “War Machine” has a strong dark tone that only becomes more ferocious towards the song’s conclusion. The EP’s final song, “Manslaughter,” explores a more subtle and melancholic side of DREAMING DEAD with its clean electric guitars. But that peace is eventually broken when the song transitions into a fireball of energy that carries a good feeling of finality. Elizabeth Schall sounds a lot like DEATH‘s Chuck Shuldiner but more specifically the Evil Chuck from the band’s early days. She also provides some nice lower growls ala DEICIDE to help layer and accentuate certain vocal lines. Drummer Mike Caffell lays down a solid performance with plenty of busy drum work that provides for some nice ear candy. With the solid songwriting and musicianship on display here, DREAMING DEAD‘s first full-length, which is scheduled to be recorded next month, should be an even stronger statement of the band’s arrival. (self-released)