Element – Peanutbutter and Jelly

Element
Peanutbutter and Jelly
1997 (no label)
Cedar Groove, New Jersey, USA

Crissie Verhagen – Vocals
Danny Papa – Guitar
Chris Lindstrom – Bass
Chris Mizzone – Drums

  1. So Happy Together
  2. Life-Line
  3. Schooldaze
  4. Hide and Seek
  5. Escape Route
  6. Coolday

This band was formerly going by Element316. They released one demo under that name, and then dropped the “316” part. After this demo, they signed to Burnt Toast Records and released Future Plans Undecided. If all of that sounds familiar, it is because Tooth & Nail Records picked up Future Plans Undecided, remixed it slightly, and made the band change names to Elemenet101. They then released a couple of albums for Tooth & Nail before calling it quits. This demo seems a bit more punk than their later releases, but still pop-oriented. The vocals are bit buried and/or mixed weird on this demo (well more so than on most demos, that is).

Industrial Evolution

Industrial Evolution
2020 Retroactive Records

The Bumpus Hounds

Eric Shirley – Vocals and lyrics
Oatmeal – Instruments and music
Wally Shaw – Recorded, produced, engineered, and wrote “Sanctuary” (as Icon Tack)
MC White E – Guest appearance on “Temple”
Stephen Wagers – Guest appearance on “Temple”

Primary Censor

Eric Shirley – Vocals
Matt Wright – Guitar, programming
Chris Spoonts – Bass, programming
Stuart Lillard – Drums
Jay Vollentine – Programming
Mark Dufour – Drums

Coarse

Eric Shirley – Vocals
Matt Wright – Guitars
Richie Laxton – Keyboards, drums

Abstain

Matt Wright – Vocals, Guitars, instruments

Disc One:

  1. The Bumpus Hounds – World’s End
  2. The Bumpus Hounds – Blind Hate
  3. The Bumpus Hounds – Temple
  4. The Bumpus Hounds – Thrown Away
  5. The Bumpus Hounds – Sanctuary
  6. The Bumpus Hounds – Sanctuary (instrumental)
  7. The Bumpus Hounds – Thrown Away (X-Propagation Re-tool 1993)
  8. Primary Censor – Judgmental
  9. Primary Censor – Negative
  10. Primary Censor – False
  11. Primary Censor – Splinter
  12. Primary Censor – Arsen
  13. Primary Censor – See
  14. Primary Censor – Silence
  15. Primary Censor – Intro
  16. Primary Censor – Subtly
  17. Primary Censor – Circle
  18. Primary Censor – Artificial Heart
  19. Primary Censor – Silence
  20. Primary Censor – Judgmental

Disc Two:

  1. Coarse – Quiet
  2. Abstain – Release
  3. Abstain – Control
  4. Abstain – Whispers
  5. Abstain – Neuroplasticity
  6. Abstain – Recollections
  7. Abstain – Isolationism
  8. Abstain – Osmosis
  9. Abstain – Indyanna

Yes, this is a new CD. But it is also a collection of demos from back in the day, so of course I had to have it. The Bumpus Hounds and their awesome brand of metal/industrial on The Pit Dug for the Wicked has already been covered here. Two Bumpus Hounds bonus tracks have been dug up here: an instrumental of “Sanctuary” and a re-working of “Thrown Away” by Brent Stackhouse of X-Propagation/Deitiphobia fame. This compilation basically covers how different bands evolved out of The Bumpus Hounds. Primary Sensor was an Austin-area industrial metal band That Eric Surrey formed after The Bumpus Hounds. They produced three demos of some killer industrial metal that gained some attention around the Austin area. A few years after that, Shirey was approached to do a song for a compilation and the result was the band Coarse (with Primary Sensor guitarist Matt Wright joining him on guitar). Wright was also approached to do a song, so he contributed one song from his new project  Abstain. There were a few other experimental Abstain songs that were added to this comp here as well. The entire 2-CD release from Retroactive Records is a great archive of early to mid 90s industrial metal, so you really should grab a copy of you haven’t yet from Boone’s Overstock.

Graphic Verses – Graphic Verses

Graphic Verses
Graphic Verses
1997 (no label)
Cincinatti, Ohio, USA

Matt Frantz – Vocals, instruments

Side 1:

  1. Hate, Lust & Depression
  2. Confliction
  3. Us

Side 2:

  1. Us (continued)
  2. Flood

Graphic Verses is one of many projects by Matt Frantz, who I believe is still active to this day (or at least recently). This album was also released on CD, which is what I used as a guide for breaking up the tracks. Otherwise, the songs pretty much flow into each other (they are all at least 10 minutes long, with one going over 20). Also, it seems that track 3 is partially on Side 1 and partially on Side 2 on tape, but kept together as one track on the CD. So there might be a slight difference there between the tape and CD. This is a very experimental noise tape, with spoken word and vocal noise played over randomly-played instruments, all of which are often layered on top of each other. This is definitely the more experimental side of noise, compared to the more industrial side of the other tapes I have written about here. You can also find some more information about this project on Frantz’s website.

Twitch – Silent Chaos

Twitch
Silent Chaos
1997 Rodent Dog Records
Quinby, Virginia, USA

Voideth – Vocal type utterances
Voideth Pessimisticoth – All sounds and sonic manipualtions

Vulnus Degradorium – Additoinal Programming

Side 1:

  1. Worm
  2. Manson
  3. Plan
  4. Waffle

Side 2:

  1. Silent
  2. The Lord’s Prayer
  3. The Beautiful People

Twitch was another noise / experimental act with several releases in the 90s. This one veers a bit more towards industrial than other noise / experimental acts. The distorted vocals, repetitive rhythms and found noise aspects (sometimes with TV or band clips that you recognize) really add to that vibe. Of course, the “vocals” are often noises and random vocal sounds as well as actual vocals, so this is still more noise than industrial. This was at least the second or third Twitch demo that I know of (Thank You – My Dear No One was released in 1996 and Reject #1 in 1997, but I don’t know if it was before or after this one), and it was followed by many more.

Antestor – Martyrium

Antestor
Martyrium
1997 Morphine Records
Jessheim, Norway

Martyr – Vocals
Pilgrim – Guitars
Vemod – Guitars
Gard – Bass
Armoth – Drums

Side 1:

  1. Spiritual Disease
  2. Materalistic Lie
  3. Depressed
  4. Searching
  5. Inmost Fear

Side 2:

  1. Under the Sun
  2. Thoughts
  3. Martyrium
  4. Mercy Lord

So Antestor is pretty much a legend in the extreme/death/etc underground. But for those that are not familiar with the story of this album, let me fill in a few details. It was actually recorded in 1994, but not released until 2000. This tape from 1997 is considered a “bootleg” version as there were only 50 or so made. It seems like the label saw them as “pre-release,” though. Their sound is kind of a mixture of death and doom metal. They are still going to this day. Before this they had a demo called Despair in 1993, and before that they were known as Crush Evil. Some of the songs in the middle of this tape are in a different order than their later official release, but otherwise they are the same versions.

Mercy Rain – You Will

Mercy Rain
You Will
1997 Springwater Records
Wenatchee, Washington, USA

Jonathan Johnson – Lead Vox, harmonica, keyboards
Tom Moser – Guitar, bass, backing vox
Darik Peet – Guitars, bass, backing vox
Owen Barnhart – Drums

Side 1:

  1. You Will
  2. Babylon Blues
  3. Sorry to Say
  4. Child Once Again
  5. The Light is On

Side 2:

  1. Lions of Judah
  2. Days Light
  3. Rocking Moon
  4. Crossroads
  5. Another Day

Yes, the cover and band name makes this look pop or even Celtic pop. But the guitars come raging in from the beginning, and you have a full on commercial metal band here. Well, still with a hint of late 90s in the first song. The next song is bit more on the heavy alternative side. The rest of the songs seem to bounce around the hard rock / alternative rock / grunge rock arena. Well, if grunge rock didn’t sound depressed – this is still more upbeat that most grunge ended up being. There are also some slower ballad and acoustic moments and songs here and there – a pretty nice mix. I think this was also released on CD as well.

Bionic Jodi – Prelude to a Disc

Bionic Jodi
Prelude to a Disc
1997 Backbone Records
Huntington Beach, California, USA

Jason E. Lohrke – Vocals, BGVs
Bob Morley – Guitars, percussion, BGVs
John Oliveria – Bass guitar, BGVs
John MacElwee – Drums, percussion

  1. Ultra Lime
  2. TDL
  3. Down
  4. 11th Floor

So after Asight Unseen dropped the “A” to become Sight Unseen, it seems the lead singer and bass player decided to drop the whole Unseen thing and go in a different direction. I remember the first two tracks from this release being on several comps back in the day (mainly “TDL” I believe). But I don’t think the full disc ever came out. Hopefully I am wrong – I would like to hear more. Being that his is alternative rock with the same vocalist as Asight Unseen, comparisons between the two bands are going to be obvious. This is mid-to-late 90s alternative rock that doesn’t veer into emo or indie rock. A few more aggressive moments like the song “TDL” seem to reach back to the times that Asight Unseen almost went metal on their first album. Not sure what happened to the band or the members after this.