by Gerry Mak in New Music on Saturday 12 July 2008

The nice thing about black metal is that it’s so hard for it to be co-opted. Between its often extreme ideologies and its inherently abrasive sound, it’s hard to imagine anyone trying to sell you a pair of sneakers with it. Even as some bands like Dimmu Borgir and Cradle of Filth have wormed their way into the mainstream, the vast majority of black metal fans and bands out there are happy to stay in the filthy pits of the underground. A prime example of such a band is Singapore’s Istidraj. These guys prove that prohibiting chewing gum and banning Beatles songs really don’t make people more passive and well-behaved. These guys make metal so freaking harsh, it’ll make even the most hardened hescher’s knees buckle. This is what punk was supposed to be about.