Archive for December, 2018

Batushka Site, Page and Store Stolen By Former Member



A very serious situation has broken out in the Batushka camp. A full on sabotage has taken place and a member is trying to cease full control of the band. 

Statement and video below! 


My name is Krzysztof “Derph” Drabikowski. Most of You know me by the moniker Христофоръ, the leader and creator of the musical project Batushka. I am recording this video because I have lost control over Batushka’s website, Facebook page, webstore and as of Tuesday, even the Instagram account. This is the only way I can tell You what is happening and how my former vocalist is trying to take the band away from me. I created Batushka in the spring of 2015. I am the author of the music, lyrics, the name, the painting that you know from the album cover and the overall monk image idea. I have made the musical arrangements, wrote the melodies and recorded most of the instruments on the Litourgiya album in my private home studio. Before the finishing touches I invited Bartłomiej Krysiuk to do the vocals according to my guidelines, and Marcin Bielemiuk to re-record my drums parts on acoustic percussion. Batushka was meant to be an anonymous musical project, and from the beginning the idea was to keep the line-up unknown to the public so that the listeners could focus their attention on the musical experience itself. The album, released by Krysiuk’s underground label, became a hit. The demand for live shows from all over the world was enormous. So, I decided to, with the help of my friends, bring Batushka’s music on to the live stage. During the past two years I have written and recorded the material for the second Batushka album, and Krysiuk pressed me to release it as soon as possible. As I wasn’t satisfied with the results yet, I postponed the release of the follower of Litourgiya which followed with Krysiuk declaring he is leaving the band. On the Friday of the 21st of December I learned that Krysiuk hired musicians to produce an album that he planned to release as the new Batushka record, behind my back! He also registered Batushka as his personal trademark. Before I managed to do anything, he cut off my access to all Batushka’s media platforms, and tries to enforce some kind of censorship on all media interested in the band situation. In response I have taken legal action and have been advised by my lawyer to not say anything further. All the new pictures you see on the website and Facebook page are of Krysiuk and random people like his son pretending to be Batushka. Every upcoming festival claiming to have Batushka in their line-up has made a deal with Krysiuk and not me. I would like to kindly ask You to copy and share this message wherever You can. Let the truth be heard. As of now the only true Batushka will be that without Krysiuk behind the mic. Thank You for watching and thank You for Your support.


Music: Батюшка – “Песнь 2” from “Панихида” albumбатюшка

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Best Albums: The Crawling – Strangle Wire – Unkindness Of Ravens – Donum Dei – Lock Horns- Sixth Extinction – The Blessing Way – Zealot Cult – God Alone. – Wintriness – Gama Bomb



Our final award of the year has arrived. (Insert the sound of five people cheering) Normally we would pick an overall album, but it was too damned hard for me to pick just one this year. Last year we had ‘The Vicious Head Society – Abject Tomorrow’ which just knocked it out of the park but this time it was far too close for me personally. 

I’ve listened to all these albums numerous times and will no doubt return to them again. There were other good albums released of course, but these were the ones for me anyway in 2018. 

The Crawling – Wolves and The Hideous White

The Crawling are one of the best bands on this small island of ours in my humble opinion. Their previous album ‘Anatomy Of Loss’ was excellent and ‘Wolves and The Hideous White’ was even better. The lads have years of experience and have taken it all and created something special with The Crawling. 2019 shows no signs of slowing down for them and I expect them to continue their amazing D.I.Y approach to music videos etc. They just know how to get things done and do them right! 












Strangle Wire – The Dark Triad

Strangle Wires album ‘The Dark Triad’ can only be described as the inner workings of a man having a complete psychotic breakdown in music form. It’s a dark, horrible and nasty listen throughout and it’s absolutely brilliant! The lads play their cards very close to their chest so I can imagine they have more coming in 2019………


Unkindness Of Ravens – Beautiful Tragedies


Unkindness Of Ravens basically have their own genre. There’s darkwave, synth, doom, melody and more in there. With Beautiful Tragedies they undone themselves yet again. The title is more than fitting and it’s an absolute work of art that really comes into its own as a body of work. I didn’t get this band at first and if you’re like me. Go back and listen to them again. Absolutely brilliant band!


Instagram @unkindnessofravensband and @wolftraprecords


Donum Dei – Contribute To Chaos 



Donum Dei sadly called it a day this year, but they did deliver with their debut album in a big way. The lads were highly rated by those that knew them, but it just never seemed to happen for them. They really should have become a lot better known than they were, but success is never a given. A great band that left a brilliant album before they left. 



Lock Horns – Molṑn Labé



It’s almost criminal that Lock Horns are not far better known than they are. They have a solid following in Belfast, but outside that… Everything they have released has been of the highest quality and easily one of the best up and coming bands on this island. They have UK based management as of now so I hoping that 2019 sees this band move to the next level and beyond. They have all the tools! 





Snapchat  lockhofficial


Sixth Extinction – X And Why? 


Clonmel based Sixth extinction went big when they decided to record their debut album X And Why? Rather than use a local studio and producer they headed over to Denmark to work with acclaimed producer Tue Madsen. The results speak for themselves! They released a truly great album and hopefully they will hit new heights next year!  



The Blessing Way – From Empty Plates We Dine



The Blessing Way is the brainchild and creation of one man. Mr Ollie Gill. He had been working on this album for quite a while and the finished product is fantastic. It’s a concept album based on the film Interview With The Vampire and does it more than justice. Easily one of my favourite albums released this year! 



Zealot Cult – Spiritual Sickness 



Limerick based Zealot Cult finally released their long awaited debut album Spiritual Sickness this year and they firmly delivered in the process. The lads are a true old school death metal band and heavily influenced by bands such as Obituary and Morbid Angel. I personally love that era and the bands belonging to it, so naturally this was one of my favourite albums of the year as a result. A top class release and a band that should be a lot better known!



God Alone. – Poll na mBrón



Cork based God Alone. are a band firmly on the rise. All aged under twenty years old and already they have won the best band competition at MammothFest in the UK. An amazing achievement! They released their debut EP last year and in 2019 their full length was unleashed. A truly great band with a huge future! 





Wintriness – From Light To Absolute Darkness


Wintriness is the brainchild and creation of one man. Mr Jordy Thompson. A remarkable achievement all round when considered this album was composed by one man. This is melodic black/death metal at its finest and an album a full band would be extremely proud of… The project is now on hiatus and  it’s highly likely this material will never be performed live as initially planned. At least he kept this project going until the album was released. It’s also a shame it’s not better known but hopefully this piece will introduce a few people to it. A top class release and again the fact one man composed it is amazing!  



Gama Bomb – Speed Between The Lines



Irish thrash legends Gama Bomb returned in 2018 and what a return it was! Everything I loved about them was back and turned up to ten once more. An album that’s just enjoyable and will make you happy. Also top class drinking music… The album also has a track called ‘Kurt Russell’. That’s an obvious album of the year straight away! Great to see the lads back and firing on all cylinders once more. 


Apple Music:…

Follow GAMA BOMB!…


That concludes the list of our favourite albums this year. If you disagree, I’ll fight you to the death armed only with a rubber duck! A foul and awful death awaits! 

Here’s to 2018. Another whopper year for Irish metal and I expect 2019 to be of equal quality. It always is… We have amazing talent on our little island! 

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Best Band: God Alone.

Best Band: God Alone.



Time for our penultimate award of 2018 that nobody cares about. We still have your best albums list to come. I couldn’t pick one, so it’s albums… Spoiler, these lads will on that list too. So make sure you check out that list when it drops. I notoriously take the piss out of our awards, but there’s some amazing stuff coming in that one. 

God Alone came to my attention last year like many others. A bunch of young lads from Cork aged between 16-18. How do I talk these kids up was my original thought….? Turns out I didn’t have to! They were raw of course but the talent and potential was so obvious a blind man could see it. 

Fast forward a year after they won our Best New Band award (nobody cares about), they’ve jumped a level outside everyone’s imagination. Their own too I can imagine. 

They entered the MammothFest competition in Cork this year with the hope of getting their name out further and possibly a final appearance in front of Steve Dickson, MammothFest director. Not only did they win that competition. They went over to Brighton and won the whole Best Band competition. An amazing feat as they were up against some amazing bands and highly experienced musicians.  They are all under 20! Just let that sink in… 

They then dropped their debut album “Poll na mBrón” and that more than lived up to expectation. It’s a brilliant album! In our album of the year lists which is coming next. 

Where will 2019 take them? I’m going to make any predictions. If they keep growing at this rate, Bloodstock, Donnington etc etc await by 2020 at the latest. The sky doesn’t seem to limit for these lads. They’ll probably get past that too… 

All things considered, there was no other band that came near their achievements this year and when you consider their age… 

Congratulations lads. That’s two awards you’ve won from us. Hopefully the next ones are from sources people actually care about! 

I also hope everything keeps going as it is for them. It’s great to see a bunch of young lads with a dream get to this level in such a short space of time. 


Jake O’Driscoll – Guitar/Vocals 
Cian Mullane – Bass/Vocals 
Jack O’Hanlon – Drums/Percussion/Vocals 
Seán Thompson – Guitar 
Dylan Kelly – Synthesizer 

Recorded and mixed by Ronan McCann at Groundfloor Studios Cork. 
Mastered by Matthew Corrigan of Ghostking is Dead.


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Best Single: zhOra – Ruthless Bastards

Best Single: zhOra – Ruthless Bastards



In this our highly anticipated (by nobody) best single of Irish metal in 2018 we had many options. Hedfuzy, Snowblind and Withered Fist come immediately to mind. In the end it was an obvious choice for me personally. 

I got into zhOra around five years ago and loved their energy and vicious heaviness. A city could be powered for a day if their stage energy was harassed. They were an absolute juggernaut. As we all know, nothing can stop The Juggernaut!

I tried so hard to get into their last material and direction, but it just didn’t feel like the same band to me. I love prog, but this was zhOra! Where was that unrelenting energy and sheer heaviness. 

With this single the band have fused all the best aspects of their time. The progressive aspect is there as is the sheer vicious heaviness and energy that got me hooked on this band in the first place. 

The lads have a new album en route in 2019 and I expect that to be one of my favourite releases next year. 

Up Tipp !!! 




Instagram: @zhoraireland


Twitter: @zhOramusic


Recorded, mixed & mastered by Mick Richards at Trackmix Studios, Dublin.

Directed and edited by DOCK (



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Best EP: Bailer – Bailer

Best EP: Bailer – Bailer



We now award our one of our most coveted awards that nobody wants. The award for best EP. An EP is like an album but the band were too lazy to record an actual album and release a few tracks instead. Which can be for the better in some cases, but in this particular situation it leaves you wanting more. The first rule of showbiz. If they’re not booing you and throwing shit at the end, you’re on the right track.

On that note, Steve from MammothFest was so impressed by the lads when he saw them live earlier this year he added them to the festival line up. They also destroyed KnockanStockan this year so their name is spreading. Even as far as Russia where they toured this year. 

People with sense already regard this band as one of the best in the country so it’s no surprise they are continually growing. No doubt 2019 will continue their legacy and the bigger festivals will hopefully start taking notice. They’re knocking heavily on the door now so lets hope they just kick that fucking door down in 2019! 

Hopefully next year they get awards from sites that people actually give a fuck about too! 

Alex O’Leary – Vocals 
Chris Harte – Guitar 
David Cleere – Bass 
Sean Conway – Drums 

All music written and performed by BAILER. 
Recorded, mixed, and mastered by Aidan Cunningham. 
Artwork by James Sheridan Art.



BAILER’ out now on all platforms



Apple Music:





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Withered Fist Release First Single ‘This Is My Mountain’



Withered Fist in a new project by Justin Maloney (ex-Acrid Nebula, ex-Two Tales of Woe) and Carl King (Two Tales of Woe).

Their first single ‘This Is My Mountain’ inspired by the glorious mortal remains of St. Istvan. Withered Fist bring you slowness, heaviness and melody in equal measure.

If this track is anything to go by, then this will be one of the better releases of 2019. At a running time of 8:42, we are treated to an excellent melodic doom song with many dynamics. 

An excellent track and a great way to end output in the Irish scene for 2018.



The EP is released on January 1st and can be preordered now via Bandcamp. 


releases January 1, 2019 

Recorded in Debt Valley, Tipperary through July 2018 by Justin Maloney 

Carl King: Vocals 
Justin Maloney: Instruments




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