Welcome to yet another installment of the “Signmeto” Unsigned Band of the Week feature, which is a profile of a band I’ve discovered on the “Sign Me to Roadrunner Records” website. You’ll find a huge variety of material here; each week you’ll have the opportunity to listen to a few songs from a different band you might never have heard before. My hope is, you might find something you really dig, and then when they explode in popularity and sell a million records, you can scoff at all the bandwagon-jumpers, saying you’ve been a fan since the beginning.
This week we’re talking about Chtonium, from Uddevalla, in southern Sweden near the Norwegian border. If that artwork above didn’t contain the word “THRASHMETAL,” I’m guessing the look of the logo and flaming skull might still have given you a pretty big hint about what direction we will be heading today!
First formed in 1999 under the name Conspiracy, the band released a total of four demos through 2006. The name was changed to Chtonium (to avoid confusion with other similarly-named groups) in early 2007, a change which coincided with a lineup change, leaving guitarists/songwriters Andreas and Björn the only remaining original members. Another demo was released under the new name, but soon after, more band members departed, once again leaving the two founders to carry on as a two-piece from 2008 through the present (bringing in others, as needed, for live performances and recordings).
Chtonium have offered two songs on their Signmeto page: “Deadly Parade” and “Killing Device.” Both serve as examples of good old-fashioned thrash, with a hint of death metal influence as well. As you might expect from a band whose only fulltime members and songwriters are both guitarists, the riffs and solos are all pretty impeccable here. In the first song, I thought the drum part was mixed a little too prominently, especially considering that it sounds very basic and mechanical. That took away from my enjoyment slightly, as it served as a bit of a distraction through much of the song, but soon the raw power of the guitars and vocals (especially the wailing scream through the end of the song!) won me over. The second song is either a little dirtier and grittier, or it is mixed better, or perhaps the drums just sound a little more alive here — maybe a combination of these — but in whichever case, I spent more time focusing on the doomy/thrashy riffing here, which is quite enjoyable and likely to get your neck muscles some exercise. I’m sure that’s something everyone can use on a Monday when perhaps you’d rather not be back at work yet… I know it’s the case for me!
Go check out these songs at Signmeto Roadrunner Records, and if you like what you hear, you’ll surely be interested in keeping up with what the band has in store for the future! You can do this in several ways, including Facebook, Myspace, or Reverbnation.
I hope you enjoyed this post – please feel free to share your opinion in the comments below! Until next week… if you happen to stumble across something you’d like to share (or if you are in a band and are trying to get your music heard), just write to me at my Signmeto “scout” page. Thanks for reading!