MIDNIGHT MIXTAPE MASSACRE – Carl Davis (Krysthla) Print E-mail
Written by Mark Ashby   
Sunday, 04 February 2018 04:20

East Midlands metal monsters Krysthla grabbed 2017 by the scruff of the neck when they released the highly impressive ‘Peace In Our Time’ album, widely regarded as one of the year’s best extreme metal offerings from any band in this here Über Kingdom of Rock ‘n’ Roll. Despite hitting a bit of a roadblock in the latter half of the year, when Wayne Minney was forced to step down from the drum kit on medical grounds.


Now, with new sticksman Nick Plews (also of Aghast) firmly ensconced in the line-up, the band are getting ready to do the same in 2018… But first, bassist Carl Davis recently visited URHQ and, during a trip to our rather plush bog, left his iPod lying around, so we, of course, did the honourable thing and had a sneaky listen to what makes up his playlist:


Guns N’ Roses – ‘Welcome To The Jungle’


This is pretty much the track that started my love of guitar music. Our house was having building work done, and this song came on the builder’s radio. I literally saved my ass off to be able to buy ‘Appetite For Destruction’ on cassette and it blew me away. I knew right then that I wanted to play guitar and be in a band, and that’s pretty much where I’ve been ever since. This album, quite literally, started it all.



Metallica – ‘Master of Puppets’


After listening to ‘Appetite…’ for a while, it didn’t take long for me to go back and look for other, heavier, music to listen to. Metallica had released this album just the year before. To my mind, it’s still their best work and is probably the first proper ‘metal’ album I got into. When I got a chance to see them in ’92 on the ‘Black Album’ tour, they literally tore my face off.  Awesome stuff back in the late 80s and early 90s.


Led Zeppelin – ‘The Song Remains The Same’


In all fairness, there are probably at least 20 Led Zep songs I could have chosen as their back catalogue is mind-blowingly superb. One of my all-time favourite bands, and there’s not a lot to say that hasn’t already been said. Let’s just say, to my mind, genius.



Machine Head – ‘Old’


For me, by the time 1994 came round, there had been a marked decrease in records being released that really hit me hard. I had gone back through the 70s and 80s and found some of the best music around but the supply of new bands and albums was definitely on the slow down. Then Machine Head came along with ‘Burn My Eyes’ and that changed in an instant. I suppose ‘Davidian’ would be most people’s choice from this album, which is a great track, but personally, the opening riff on ‘Old’ takes it for me. There’s got to be a mention for ‘Blood for Blood’ too, which is a screamer.



Meshuggah – ‘New Millenium Cyanide Christ’


I’ll admit it, when I first heard this I was utterly steam-rollered. Meshuggah had created a monster with ‘Chaospehere’, which sounded like a bludgeoning but razor sharp, mechanical attack on the senses. Again, there are a plenty of their tracks I could have chosen and the selection could probably change on a daily basis, but this one is always right up there with their best.



The Undertones – ‘Teenage Kicks’


This may surprise a few people but I also have a real love for many punk and new wave bands. This track really encompasses everything I’d look for in this type of song, and for all its simplicity, it’s still superbly written, and has really stood the test of time. If it’s good enough for John Peel, it’s good enough for me!



Pantera – ‘Suicide Note’ (both parts).


You can tell that, in this era, Pantera really did have the bit between their teeth and meant every last breath of what they were doing. I was lucky enough to have seen them live at what was pretty much the pinnacle of their career, and they were loud, dirty, hostile and just heavy as all hell. Just the way metal should be.



Strapping Young Lad – ‘Detox’


Once again, I could have picked from a vast fistful of tracks that Dev has produced over the years, but I’d say Strapping on ‘City’ were pretty much unstoppable. It’s still possible to put this album on now, some 20 years after its release, and be taken back by its sheer ferocity. I would love nothing more (other than a reformed Led Zep with Jason on drums) than to get to see Strapping live one more time.



Decapitated – ‘404’


OK, not only is it hard to select just one track from these guys, but even choosing which album to choose from is a feat in itself. Both ‘Carnival is Forever’ and ‘Organic Hallucinosis’ are supreme death metal albums, and essential listening for anyone into their heavy music. I’ve gone for ‘404’ simply because I love the way it’s so direct. It’s literally laid out on a plate – here’s the riff, you know what’s coming, and then it’s just utter death and you want to smash everything around you into atoms. If you have any pets, remove them from the room before putting this record on.



Gojira – ‘Silvera’


As I cast my eye back over the above tracks, I realised there’s hardly anything from the last 10-15 years on here. That’s not to say there hasn’t been some outstanding music released, it’s more because I have tried to stay faithful to the original task which was to create a mixtape of tracks that I love and have forged my musical taste over the years. The latest Gojira album is, however, outstanding and proof that it’s still possible to write fresh sounding music without having to go completely insane with technicality, timings or arrangements. Sure, its clever, but to all those people who say ‘It’s all been done before’, here’s solid proof that really, it hasn’t….





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