In The Spotlight – Part 1

In The Spotlight – Part 1

In this new series, In The Spotlight, Death Scream will bring exposure to bands that should be getting more attention.

Usually it will take a new single or full-length studio album these days to warrant
inclusion into a Heavy Metal magazine, like Death Scream.

Not for In The Spotlight.

In The Spotlight will take into account the uniqueness quality of a band/artist and use this aspect alone as the sole motivating criteria in which we will move forward with doing an article.

The second motivating criteria to decide upon who gets included in this series will be the band themselves in reaching out and directly requesting Death Scream to do a live podcast interview.

We have podcast interviews on Death Scream, already, so bands interested can see how we operate.

Having b*lls enough to come forward plays a big part in getting ahead and somewhere-towards the-top where our world’s Heavy and Extreme Music scenes are concerned is where a band in the know wants to be.

I have always been impressed by musicians who actively promote themselves on the internet – with or without the help of a record label or any media machine that will stimulate the public’s interest and direct it toward their own band seeking to broaden horizons and widen their absolute reach, in the global marketplace.

So it is not enough to just do gigs these days, even though that is traditionally highly recommendable by most pundits, counting myself as one who feels this way also; the most traditionally tried-and-true approach to playing music of any kind
is to play it ‘live’ and play it well, they say. So I’ll say it also.

Without further ado I bring you Virus Of Koch.

So there they were, a member of Virus of Koch online one night after 12 midnight I believe, with myself and a few international others in the chatroom of The Metal Archives – Encyclopaedia Metallum. This was only probably a month to a month-and-a-half ago.

I couldn’t tell though till I asked, if I was speaking to someone that might have a band that may need some exposure in Death Scream.

As a musician myself, I know how ultra-competitive and tough-as-nails
being in the business of making Heavy Metal music can be. And daunting, to say the least.

When queried a bit further this person online, whose English and understanding was ample enough , dropped me off an email with links to the band’s music so I could check out Virus Of Koch.

I listened but was non-plussed because I didn’t give it, admittedly, even half the attention that I should have.

Now months later I have been re-checking out my MySpace listening activity, realizing that Virus Of Koch are definitely deserving of some prime exposure by our trusty Death Scream site.

I am more than a bit sketchy as to why this band who has been around since circa the mid-1990’s has only five demos available.

To this band – Virus of Koch‘s defense, though, I also think that there are bands making albums that maybe should concentrate on the demo making process a lot more carefully before jumping into recording full length albums.

Many times in exchange for a style easily pigeonholed and picked up on by a record label bands will cut back on their creativity; a not often talked about abomination, I feel, that the whole Heavy Metal/Extreme Metal- Core – etc. scene, at large, has fallen into the trap of doing and being guilty of since CDs became the norm 20 years ago.

How many bands that sound like Cannibal Corpse, Marduk or Poppy Seed Grinder, if you will, need the world have?

Creativity, originality, and uniqueness are the three things that get cut back on as a result of this apathy that exists in the Heavy and Extreme Metal scene, as I’ve just spoken about.

Let me tell you what Virus of Koch have to offer on their MySpace page –
The Silence‘- a song that is well worth the time to stop-over at this band’s page.

The rapturous strains of ‘The Silence‘, from 2002 refract onto the listener like a monolithic extreme, metallic ‘New Year’s Day‘ by U2.

I know that everybody and their grandmother can’t help but know about the lead singer Bono of U2, instantly recognized along with Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi, and Aerosmith – at least here in the United States by everyone – so you can just picture in your mind, perhaps, what happens when these quaint acts become a Black Metal nightmare.

That is how I am portraying Virus of Koch: Rock stars who have gone over to the dark side and caught up with a fever to howl at the full moon!

If you don’t follow what I am saying here completely, don’t worry – that’s ok for now. I just figured I’d put my own divine spin on things.

All kidding aside, Virus of Koch are as much as deserving cult Heavy Metal status as anyone else you could namedrop on me.

Virus Of Koch make abstract and original music that is fearless, mesmerizing, and ‘The Silence’ happens to be the best indication of what to expect from these heavy hitters.

Virus of Koch hail from Athens, Greece and made one demo a year – for five years – starting in 1998.

Imagine if you would The Shining crossed with Voi Vod – on a pitch black planetoid, somewheres, and you are on the path of beginning your walk towards understanding Virus of Koch. They are a very interesting pessimistic, misanthropic band, may I add.

What has piqued my interest in Virus of Koch is the very Greekness at the core of their Black Metal nature.

I feel that Black Metal bands from Greece are some of the world’s most ruling fearsome units.

Check out other tracks by Virus of Koch and you will, again and again, be struck by their originality.

Samael, Therion, Misanthrope, Evol, Dodheimsgard – DHG, Root; fans of all these bands take heed.

Virus of Koch started as a Black Metal band called Carrion in 1996.

Virus of Koch are perhaps one of the most sinister sounding bands ever, come to think of it.

They are creepy in the way that made Black Sabbath‘s first self-tilted LP from 1970 sound so wonderful.

And being strange and eery without being camp, crap, or boring is not easy but Virus of Koch accomplish this feat with great songwriting.

The first demo is ‘Final Laughter‘ from 1998.

The second demo is ‘Thy Azure Hast Bled‘ from 1999.

The third demo is ‘Words Of The High One‘ from 2000.

The fourth demo is ‘Enemy Of The Earth‘ from 2001.

It features the songs:

Worlds of Fire‘ and ‘Exiled‘ with a duration of a few seconds short of eleven-and-a-half minutes, total, as far as I can tell as my information is not official enough.

The fifth demo is ‘Penetrate My Ego‘ from 2002.

It features ‘Penetrate My Ego‘ and the spellbinding, stunning ‘The Silence‘ – which I just can’t seem to get enough of and have went on and on about, and of which I feel rightfully so in doing.

Why don’t you just check them out yourself?

Where Virus of Koch come up with such uniqueness is a story waiting to be told. Perhaps, all things permitting, that will happen right here in Death Scream.

I am sure with such great playing and songwriting that there are other possible projects, bands and recordings floating around by members and ex-members of Virus of Koch. I would be very surprised if there wasn’t. I hope to get caught up on all this info, also, real soon, for all the readership of Death Scream. This is a band deserving of all the attention possible to be had.

Virus of Koch were featured along with bands that play premium Black Metal from literally all over the globe with the main track ‘Words Of The High One‘ from the third demo from 2000, on the 16-band, 16-song compilation ‘My Blackest Of Souls Awakes Vol. 3′.

Ravenfrost, Frosthammer, Muskarat, and Evil Incarnate are four of the fifteen bands that they share the compilation with which, given that you are schooled enough in the Black Metal arts, should give you some slight inkling of the excellent nature of the ‘My Blackest Of Souls Awakes‘ compilation series.

Yes. The greatness of the ‘My Blackest Of Souls Awakes‘ compilation series, alone, is another dark matter entirely.

One mention about the ‘My Blackest Of Souls Awakes‘ series, though, is that Evil Incarnate are a band that are well-known in the Metal Underground over here in the U.S.A.

What else can I tell you about Virus of Koch?

They do a ripping cover of Slayer’s ‘Dead Skin Mask‘ on YouTube.

They also do Paradise Lost’s ‘Forever Failure‘ live-on-stage, in concert, at Woodstock in the year 2000.

That’s up there on YouTube also.

Virus of Koch must have taken influence from their country’s untouchably great Black Metal acts like Rotting Christ, Varathron, Nightfall, etc., as V.o.K. are pretty much untouchable also!

Yes, Virus of Koch come highly recommended by Death Scream.

– Rich Castle

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