Austerity, rain, the Eurozone. Rain. The Leveson enquiry, double-dip recession. Rain. Rupert Murdoch. London 2012. The Shard. More austerity. Rain. Rupert Murdoch again. Floods. Even more austerity. Bob Diamond... Too right: there's a lot to get you down these days. To put a positive spin on it, doesn't this make an issue of Zero Tolerance something to look forward to even more? I mean, it's literally crammed full of stuff to immerse yourself in while others worry about the failings of the entire world. Hell, it even comes with a handy CD you can stick on REALLY LOUDLY to drown out the sound of Robert Peston, the BBC's very own bringer of doom.
So on to this, our 48th edition. It's eight years ago this issue since we launched Zero Tolerance, and despite these turbulent times, we're still here - and as long as you good people keep on buying us, we'll be around a whole lot longer still. But we're not busting out the party-poppers yet. No, we're saving up the celebrations for our 50th issue, which comes around at the end of the year. So, you'll just have to make do *cough* this issue with cover-stars Testament. Hah - we didn't think you'd complain! Everyone worth their salt likes a bit of Testament, right? Well, there's one man we know who definitely does, which is why we didn't need to persuade Chris Kee to meet the band's guitarist/main songwriter Eric Peterson during his trip to London to discuss their brand-new record, Dark Roots Of Earth, an album that's hotly tipped in this issue's gargantuan review section. Anyway, having talked the hind legs off Eric, our man dashed back and penned the brilliant feature that graces pages 12-17. No doubt, Testament will be airing some new tracks when they take to the main stage at this year's Bloodstock Festival, which, at the time of writing, is just around the corner. Come torrential rain or shine, we'll be at Catton Hall for this year's festivities, complete with our flimsy Gazebo-clad stall and a horde of ZT staff. As well as reporting on the event, we'll be at the ready to help you up if you slip in the mud and land on your ass (if you're wearing fancy dress-costume, we might leave you stranded for a laugh), offer advice on which of the many over-priced and peculiarly flavourless burgers we'd recommend from one of the many trans-fat vans onsite, and we might well thrust an issue of ZT at you as you wearily shuffle past our stall for the umpteenth time. Seriously, though: if you're going, come and say hello.
One member of the ZT team will sadly missed at this year's festival: Alex de Moller, our assistant editor of the past two years, is stepping down so he can realise his dream of becoming a professional Zumba instructor. Well, he has demoted himself, right back to where he started with us way back in 2004, as a writer, but I made the Zumba bit up. I'd like to take this opportunity to say that, despite being a pain the ass, Alex has always been a constant at the magazine, even before he was offered the role of assistant ed, and his contribution has helped make the magazine what it is today. Never slow to challenge editorial decisions nor too meek to shy away from the assignments many would find too daunting, he'll be fondly missed by us all. But, much like a lingering odour, he's sticking around and will be concentrating on what comes naturally to him: writing some of the most thought-provoking features you'll find in any music magazine, ever. We salute you, Alex, you rotter. And it's on this note that I've run out of space to tell you about everything else our esteemed editor Nathan T. Birk has lying in wait for you this issue. You can find out yourself, so get stuck in!
FREE 17-TRACK COVERMOUNT CD FEATURING
Behexen | Deiphago | Alerion | Essenz | Winterfylleth | A forest Of Stars | Saturnian | Blind Spite | Shattered Destiny | Karma Violens | Bonded By Blood | Dew-Scented | Grave | Some Hate Will Last | Nemain | Nag Farm [2 tracks]
PROPAGANDANews and ZT sponsored shows
COVER FEATURETestament: Chris Kee digs around in Testament's dark roots with guitarist/main songwriter Eric Peterson
REGULAR FEATURESDublin Death Patrol | Master | A Forest Of Stars | Winterfylleth | Waylander | Hooded Menace | Gospel Of The Horns | Faustcoven | Deiphago | Coffin Texts | Katatonia | Evoken | Underground Movement spotlight with Abaddon Incarnate + Putrefaction
UNDERGROUND BLACK METAL SECTIONElysian Blaze | Manetheren | Nihasa | Epheles
POWER LINES SECTION | EXPERIMENTAL NOISEMatt Goodrich | Vile Plumage | Fordell Research Unit | A Death Cinematic
ANGER BURNING | CRUST / D-BEAT / RAWPUNKBurning Love | Negative Standards | Straightjacket Nation
RAPID FIREEssenz | Gypsyhawk | Grime | Dispersed Ashes | Purifed In Blood | Binah | Cyclophonia | Dreamfire | Designs Of Chaos | Black Tamanous | Tomorrow's Outlook
SENTENCINGAudio reviews | Live reviews
- Under The Influence | Grave's Ola Lindgren
- Decorated Careers | Gorefest
- Label Profile | Neurot Recordings
- Artist Profile | Musta Aurinko
- On The Rack | Nachtmystium's Blake Judd
- View From The Bunker column | Alan "Nemtheanga" Averill