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(Left to Right) 2009 Demo Cassette, 2009 Demo Test Press, 2010 Fell Voices Split LP, 2011 S/T LP

In celebration of receiving my copy of the Test Press of their 2009 Demo, i’m just going to do a post reviewing and showing pictures and sharing lossless copies of Ash Borer’s discography. They are one of my favorite bands in the last couple of years, playing raw cascadian black metal in the same vein as Wolves in the Throne Room but grittier, and the first item of my collection I purchased was a second edition cassette of their 2009 demo, limited to 100 on red cassette. Their demo is really powerful in its production, sounding akin to Paysage d’Hiver, which conjures up a bleak and desolate picture of their music, but (unlike Paysage d’Hiver) it has really memorable riffs and the melodies that they produce work really well in connecting with the screams and howls of the vocals. The demo itself is comprised of 2 tracks (both of which are repeated on each side of the cassette), and progress through serene passages, making the contrast between the heavy distortion and pounding drums even greater, and these sections build extremely effectively (reminiscent of Godspeed You! Black Emperor). One of the best modern day black metal demos, which grasps immediately with stunning riffs and well thought out progression.

Second Press, Limited /100

The next item is one that I covet on CS, which is now impossible to hunt down, but I do own it on the 1st Edition Press from Gilead Media (which is a great label, and just repressed Krallice – S/T which I strongly recommend picking up), and that is their 2010 Split with Fell Voices (I am not going to really discuss Fell Voices, as I do not own all their material, but I will say that their side on this split is superb). On this the production is a bit cleaner, but only the slightest amount, and continues from where the demo left off: one 23-minute long track, again full of changes and spectacular riffs, but this time with alot more progression within the riffs themselves, as they are more drawn out. This is great, as it gives the vocals and drums more room to act in, with the double bass giving out a deep rumble and the great expanse of vocals correlate with what the guitars are doing at any given time. Tremolo picking on full and slower guitars mixed in as well, which as well display the vast surroundings in their sound, and more crescendos and blast beats but I feel that their side of the split is just the logical follow on from their demo, but the increase in length gives it a more interesting span with various different ideas that Ash Borer experiment with throughout.

1st Edition, Limited /750 180g Black Vinyl

The next piece is their 2011 S/T album, which I also got from Gilead Media, and managed to get the extra limited version. This is another step forward for the band, and again sees them going even more extreme in pace, both faster and slower, than their previous efforts. This band are just made of riffs and it gets slightly annoying at how good they are in comparison to the genre as a whole, not many bands get close to what Ash Borer create and everything that they have ever put out has been stellar. The drums on this LP show that they have been been produced slightly better, with alot more punch and distinction between the hits, as before they had a tendency to blend together, which has its pros and cons, whereas this new production makes the sound heavier.

1st Edition, Limited /323 on 200g Black Vinyl (Part 2)

Lastly, the very reason I wrote this all up is to show my new prized possession – my copy of the 2009 Demo Test Press, of which only 10 were available, and I happen to have #2. Its alternate cover is one of the most bad-ass things covers I have ever seen, and is far superior to the standard edition:

#2/20 (10 not available for sale)

So the moral of this post is – check out Ash Borer, one of the very best bands in the USBM scene at the moment and all of their material is worth listening to, ill even share the 2010 rehearsal CD-r here.

To stop links being taken down, follow and message me on twitter for passwords, all the files are lossless except for the rehearsal CD-r. Enjoy.

Stay Swimming.