SMASH SKULLS, First Step to Destruction (2009, demo)

The skull:
Heads up, budding skull scholars! Here we see the formation of the Master Skull from which all other skulls are born. This image depicts the theory posited by most eminent skullologists, a couple of which are on staff here at Big Dumb Skulls as members of the Council of the Elders of the Skull. In this artist’s rendering, the Master Skull is shown originating through something akin to the Big Bang, wherein energy appeared from seemingly nothing in an instant, after which many crucial cosmological events take place. As the theory goes, its magnetic force pulls all newly formed matter toward it, using all manner of boulder and meteor to construct its spooky visage. Since it is, as is known, the intent of all skulls everywhere to cause untold amounts of destruction, this theory is known amongst skullologists as the “First Step to Destruction.” Were it not for this most critical event, many metal bands would have nowhere to turn to artistic inspiration and, in turn, we would not have a blog about skulls, so please give this most important of skull-related events your strictest attention, study and reverence.

All right, class dismissed.

The music:
This is fairly competent re-thrash rehash, although the vocals are absolutely terrible. The dude has no power or presence, blathering into the microphone as if it just doesn’t fucking matter who sings or how well or poorly they do it. Musically, again, it’s competent, but never have I heard such aimless arrangements. It’s like they just got riff ideas and laid them down like train tracks in the order they were conceived. That this Portugese band sounds like a third-rate English thrash band circa 1992 should tell you everything else you need to know. If they spent more time honing their songwriting skills, and not showing how well the drummer can balance while standing on top of his drum kit, they might just kick themselves up a notch to being worthy of comparison with second-rate English thrash bands circa 1992. Here’s hoping.
— Friar Wagner


DISHARMONIC, Infernal Messengers (2001, demo)

The skull:
It’s hard to tell from the crappy low-res image (this cover seems to have been scanned and posted to the internet only once) but it looks like a bad screen-cap from a shitty old horror movie. Or maybe it’s just a smiling skull hanging out on some rocky European beach. His infernal message is, “Party hard!”

The music:
While the internet can offer at least a 200×200 pic of the cover, it has nothing to offer if you’re interested in the music on Infernal Messengers. I guess this is the true dream of every cult black metal band, to be so obscure that no one has ever heard you. Mission accomplished, Disharmonic! The band released a full album, evidently on CD, a couple years later, and that also hasn’t even attracted the interest of mp3 pirates. So fucking kvlt. Anyway, Disharmonic are the kind of band that wears bullet belts and bandoliers, while brandishing an axe. And of course, corpse paint. You know they weren’t gonna skip the corpse paint. But yeah, bullets and blades. It seems that if you’re going to carry a few hundred rounds of ammunition, you should perhaps forgo the axe and carry a gun. But that’s not how Disharmonic rolls. Obscure and stupid is a way of life.
— Friar Johnsen