Album Review: Morbid Angel – “Kingdoms Disdained”

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, November 7, 2017 at 4:20 PM (PST)

Morbid Angel are back, reunited with Steve Tucker, death metal and a proper respect for the elder tentacle gods. The Morbid Disco of Illud Divinum Insanus and David Vincent are nowhere in sight and the band sound evil, fired up and hungry to recapture the death metal crown.

I don’t begrudge a band experimentation, but Morbid Angel had a near flawless legacy of album after solid death metal album. Illud just effed with that way too much and some of the vocals were just…how do I say this…goofy, hot garbage. Steve Tucker understands what the guys who made Illud let themselves forget, that while there are many bands influenced by Morbid Angel (Gojira prominently come to mind), there is no one who can BE Morbid Angel quite like the Morbid Angel. You can take the David Vincent out but I Am Morbid should take note that you can’t really do it without Trey Azagthoth. It just won’t have the same feel.  We have Igorr, Zeal & Ardor, lapis exilis or any number of all over the place stylistically bands in the underground but Morbid Angel are a precious well of slime that can not be replaced. I think about Jay Z telling people to buy his old albums if people want that him, but with Morbid Angel or Slayer it is just different. It just feels wrong when they stray too far somehow, haha.

Anyway, Kingdoms Disdained is incredibly enjoyable. Opening with the shifting and double bass heavy “Piles Of Little Arms”, the band are off to the races. The song title is almost too death metal, like a borderline early Cannibal Corpse title, but the group clearly want to prove they are back at it with no funny business.

The drums are kind of loud in the mix in places but there is a very present yet dirty quality to the bass and guitars. Rutan knocked it out of the park and he knows Morbid Angel, for sure.  Much like he has done with Goatwhore and Agnostic Front or other bands, Rutan captures their strengths and core sound and brings it up front and center to great organic result.

So, the guitar work? The first outro solo at 3:32 is brief but definitely opens a chaos portal and sets up second slogger “D.E.A.D.” awesomely. “D.E.A.D.” has CRAZY riffage, really inspired stuff from Trey that climbs the walls and will make you stare with eyes wide and mouth open at the stereo or computer scarcely believing the structure. “Garden Of Disdain” opens with a lightning fast attack before crashing into a classic mid tempo gnarly crawl riff the way only Morbid Angel can really do it. It is as heavy or heavier than anything on Blessed Are The Sick or Formulas.

While the cover art made me scared they were going to go in some modern technical death direction, the record is very old school. “Paradigms Warped” has the sort of brutal heft that lifts you out of your skin which I crave from Morbid Angel, whether they are blasting you with speed or crushing you to dust. This song falls mostly on the latter side of the spectrum, a trudge through bloody mud towards a black hole swallowing cities as double bass reigns wild. There is also some great slow and muscular bass that is quite prominent through a dissonant chordal section. “For No Master” really lets Scotty Fuller prove his worth on drums, holding down the speed and tom action stupendously. I would say this album is better than Heretic and very close if not equal to Gateways, but it is also really fresh and so far I have loved every second of it.

I don’t want to spoil the awesome finale track, but suffice to say it rips your head off and you know the Gods have returned.

 


Although there were a few bands who used corpse-like paint in the 1960's and 1970's, such as Kiss and Alice Cooper, it is debatable if they had a direct influence on the image used in black metal.


The Contortionist announce dates with Nothing More

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, November 7, 2017 at 9:35 AM (PST)

Prog-heads The Contortionist have announced dates with outspoken rockers Nothing More, a one two punch bill that is sure to thrill fans of both young up and comers. These are both bands with huge potential for rock’s future and this pairing is overdue.

“We’re very happy to announce that we will be sharing the stage with Nothing More,” says vocalist Michael Lessard. “We have continually tried to tour with bands that excite us and push us to evolve, and Nothing More does both of those things. We look forward to seeing everyone soon!”

The Contortionist’s Clairvoyant reunited the band with producer Jamie King (Between The Buried And Me, Through The Eyes Of The Dead).

Click HERE for all tour dates!

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Ozzy announced ‘Farewell’ tour. Who believes it?

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Monday, November 6, 2017 at 12:38 PM (PST)

Ozzy Osbourne is soon announcing dates for what he claims will be his last full tour, though he may do shows here and there in the future. The guy is getting up there, so I can respect that. Still, it is easy to wonder if this is bullshit. No More Tours was a long time ago in the early 90’s and his brand has only grown bigger. Money can be very tempting, not that Ozzy needs any more. But who knows. Maybe this is it!?

Metal Sucks has the full scoop HERE.

I am glad he has been playing with Zakk again, as it will give this farewell more of a merry conclusion that the Bill Ward-less Sabbath The End travesty. I’m fully in camp Ward on that one, who is TOURING with Day Of Errors alongside Witch fucking Mountain in December, which makes it look like the other Sabbath guys just didn’t want to pay Bill squarely.

Anyway, here is what the Oz-meister says:

“People keep asking me when I’m retiring. This will be my final world tour, but I can’t say I won’t do some shows here and there.”

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The Black Dahlia Murder or ‘The Show That Almost Wasn’t’ 10/15/17

Posted by tyrusrunyan on Sunday, November 5, 2017 at 4:43 PM (PST)

The world is in turmoil! The threat of nuclear war with North Korea looms, The Presidency is in bed with Putin and people would rather shoot one another than engage in across the table politics. There is only one thing that can save humanity, Death Metal! Come with me on a magical journey to see The Black Dahlia Murder, Suffocation, Decrepit Birth (well sort of), Necrot and Wormwitch . Click here if you would like to take the magical journey.

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Get down in the dirt with In This Moment’s “Roots” video

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Sunday, November 5, 2017 at 12:06 AM (PST)

Some people who are more kvlt bag on In This Moment because they are (gasp) melodic and poppy at times, theatrical and very popular. Guess what? They are blowing away acts much bigger than them on the regular and won me over hugely after I finally saw them live. Maria Brink couldn’t possibly be more committed to what she is doing and “Roots” is sure to win more converts as she leads her band in a song of strength and resilience. They put in 100% in presentation, a huge layered rock sound and striking energy and passion. Check out this latest cut from Ritual.

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Khemmis added to Decibel Magazine Tour, 3rd LP in 2018

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, November 2, 2017 at 2:26 PM (PST)

photo by Alvino Salcedo

Denver’s KHEMMIS have already ensured that future bards will sing their praises and adventures far into the future due to the excellence of sophomore record Hunted alone. They blend the perfect amount of epic doom, harmonized guitar, melodic and grim vocals and attention to tone into a potent and heady battle brew.

Now the band has been confirmed to take place in the Seventh Annual Decibel Magazine Tour, set to run through North America from February 15th through March 10th. This is not out of left field, since Decibel gushed about Hunted as the magazine’s pick for album of the year of 2016 (no easy feat).

Issues the band, “We’re honored to be part of the 2018 Decibel Tour alongside Wolves In The Throne Room, Myrkur, and the legendary Enslaved. We look forward to playing in a number of new cities, particularly throughout Canada, as well as returning to a number of areas we know and love. We might even include a new song from our upcoming album — the only way to know is to be there!”

Tour dates BELOW.

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Marty Friedman releases “Self Pollution” video

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, November 2, 2017 at 12:28 PM (PST)

Guitar luminary Marty Friedman has released a new video for the track “Self Pollution” from his Wall of Sound album. It starts as a technical workout that still has a gritty and rock n roll feel to it though other sections highlight Friedman’s melodic lead playing and get downright expansive and meditative before the wild stuff makes a return.

Friedman says, “This video is the first to feature my live band, with Kiyoshi on bass, Chargee on drums and Jordan Ziff on guitar. These guys (and girl) outshine me every night on tour. The video is loosely based on some of the fun ways you can pollute yourself (hence the title) and takes you from serenity to a chaotic climax, just like real life does sometimes.”

Directed by London-based photographer Jimmy Cheng, watch “Self Pollution” below.

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GODFLESH stream “Post Self” title track

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Wednesday, November 1, 2017 at 4:35 PM (PST)

Industrial metal colossus GODFLESH have streamed the title track to new record Post Self (due out Nov. 17th). Check the song out right here.

I am a lifelong fan of this band and have never criticized them, but this song sort of feels like a walk through. It didn’t light me up and make my hairs stand on end like the vast majority of their material, though I do like the 2:40 sort of more dissonant and thumpy ride out section a lot. This section kind of reminds me of Love and Hate in Dub a bit, which I have spent many hours very, very high absorbing and totally love.

While this song didn’t grab me as much as most of their stuff, it is Godflesh so you know the record will have many amazing components.

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Glorior Belli sign with Season Of Mist

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, October 31, 2017 at 8:46 AM (PST)

This Halloween is proving very black metal friendly as French black metallers Glorior Belli have signed with Season Of Mist AND Watain have a new video out.

Glorior Belli are one of our favorite dark acts and are currently in the studio recording their seventh album, which will be released worldwide in 2018.

Regarding their signing Glorior Belli comment: “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with our home country based fellows at Season Of Mist. Since 2002, Glorior Belli have played black metal in its most daring form. Now it is time for Season Of Mist to house one of our stronger efforts to come.”

More updates as we get them. Meantime, revisit their most recent masterful effort Sundown (the flock that welcomes) HERE.

 

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Sabaton announce North American tour with Kreator!

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Monday, October 30, 2017 at 1:06 PM (PST)

Heroic metallers Sabatonhave announced a very strong tour with thrash legends Kreator, both bands supporting their celebrated recent efforts.

Official press release:
Swedish heavy metal heroes SABATON are uniting with German thrash titans and label mates KREATOR for the ultimate North American co-headlining trek. The 24-date tour kicks off on Thursday, February 8. 2018 at The Van Buren in Phoenix, Arizona and will make stops in Los Angeles, Montreal, and Philadelphia before concluding at Jannus Landing in Tampa, Florida on March 10th.

SABATON’s Par Sundström comments, “We are excited to return to American grounds after the last successful tour. Teaming up with our friends in KREATOR, we are able to play larger venues which allows us to bring a bigger production than we ever brought into America.”

KREATOR’s Mille Petrozza states, “Hordes! We return back to North America alongside the mighty SABATON! It’s a true European invasion and we can’t wait to be back!”

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Album Review: Entheos – “Dark Future”

Posted by Metal Riot on Sunday, October 29, 2017 at 12:15 PM (PST)

Dark Future by Entheos, the group’s second full length, sees an expanding of experimentation and some awesome musical passages. Sadly it is also marred in places by weird choices and some sort of done to death djenty stuff. The sort of robot frog vocal approach at times can be super distracting from dazzling progressive passages that otherwise might lift you up and away.

Admittedly, Veil Of Maya or Whitechapel may have lost some ‘brootal bro’ fans who didn’t like when the group expanded their vocal templates, but it made them much better bands. On a song like “Melancholia” Entheos uses the screams to excellent effect, but in other places they just seem to be trying too hard. You shouldn’t be consistently feeling like a record would be more interesting as an instrumental than with metalcore vocals. “Sea Of Symmetry” feels like it succeeds more at what parts of Job For A Cowboy’s Sun Eater grasped towards, but the vocals again feel like the least amount of work went in compared to some of the insanely cool stuff other members are doing. In all honesty though, the kids who follow a lot of bands like this won’t care – though more attention would perhaps give the band more longevity and an expanded reach. Not that they need flowery melodic passages, but try to at least differentiate yourself from any dozen other screamers out there.

The tricky intro to “Suspended Animation” kept making my ears strain to hear the cool stuff from under unintelligible not even that intense kind of compressed sounding yargles. “The World Without Us” breathes a bit more and as such is a good choice for the single, but in other places it is just a super distraction from otherwise pretty killer musical passages. The solo section of “Suspended Animation” literally makes your damn ears feel relieved. The high pitch screams are a lot better, but an acquired taste. And meanwhile the rhythmic stuff and bass lines are so dope! If your ears are getting tired and you end up not remembering any lyrics but feeling kind of annoyed, that freakin’ sucks. As a result, this pretty stellar workout that would be getting a 3 or 4 out of 5 for effort and skill has the vocals bring it way down to a 2.5 for just being obnoxious and scene-core sounding.

RIP Pilgrim’s Jon Rossi

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Friday, October 27, 2017 at 2:43 PM (PST)

Very sad news today. Metal Injection reports that Pilgrim‘s Jon Rossi has died at the age of 26. This is a damn shame. So much life ahead of the dude and in a well loved and influential act as well. Our thoughts and hearts are with his family and friends. Pick up our favorite Misery Wizard in tribute (gotta love that “Astaroth” Cathedral-esque guitar march). What a shame. Rest in power.

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Metallica‘s “Spit Out The Bone” was a highlight of Hardwired…To Self Destruct for many thrashers (my faves are probably still “Moth into Flame” and “Atlas Rise”, if you must know). But yeah, this live version of “Spit Out The Bone” is lively as hell and gets the Oct. 24th London O2 crowd roaring with enthusiasm. You’d think it was an older classic!

Check it out HERE. Rob and James in particular ripped this bad baby up!!

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Orphaned Land’s “Unsung Prophets & Dead Messiahs” art and info

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, October 26, 2017 at 4:08 PM (PST)

Orphaned Land are a special group within the family tree of metal, just so inspiring, unifying and cinematic. Today’s great news is that the band will release their new studio album Unsung Prophets & Dead Messiahs on January 26, 2018 via Century Media Records.

Jens Bogren once again took over mixing and mastering duties of what turned out to be the band’s best and biggest production so far. “Unsung Prophets & Dead Messiahs” will feature a guest appearance of guitar virtuoso Steve Hackett as well as guest vocal appearances by no other than Hansi Kürsch (Blind Guardian) and Tomas Lindberg (At The Gates). It will be very interesting to hear these capable men in the context of the band’s larger than life sound! The great album artwork was created by Valnoir.

Singer and frontman Kobi Farhi comments: “We are thrilled and so happy to finally reveal you the great artwork of Unsung Prophets & Dead Messiahs! Our music has always been a combination of anger, tragedy, protest and joy. We can’t wait for you to hear the 13 brand new tracks of this album. As always it will be very eclectic, no song sounds like the other and the whole album is a one big musical journey. We feel that this album takes our feelings to a new level of anger, protest and tragedy. The cover speaks for itself and it was made as tribute to the way governments design their money. Enjoy!”

Read more BELOW.

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Gwar’s Mike Derks needs our help.

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, October 26, 2017 at 11:47 AM (PST)

News broke today that Gwar’s Mike Derks is battling a bone marrow disorder. Balsac the Jaws of Death is a hero to many, the riff spewing glue that holds Gwar together. Let’s hope the metal and punk community will come together and try and help Mike. Gwar have certainly been through enough the last few years!

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