There are some bands more adept at riding the chaos than others in the storied history of underground music. From noise and hardcore pioneers like Steel Pole Bathtub to Man Is The Bastard to synth/indie/post-core bands like Six Finger Satellite to numerous grindcore bands like Fuck The Facts, etc.- some groups just embody the concept of "fuck it/let's really go for it" more than others. NY's Black Mesa sits proudly in that same spirit of frenzy and ferocious inventiveness, as evidenced by their recent compilation of insanely manic live performances. Whatever sub genre they throw in the emotional blender, you are bound to enjoy a deliciously nutritious smoothie of muddy sonic punk purée.
Featured StreamsMore MR Interviews
- Sarabeth from the almost too excellent Tower posted a Judas Priest song on her babely Facebook page the other night and it got me thinking how even “bad” Priest is better than everything and how I love the video for “Turbo Lover” and don’t care. It made me think how much metal or good rock n roll or hip hop deserves a fighting chance, no matter what.
Some bands settle for less than they deserve, a few beer tickets every few months at a local show or they never have any drive and want to jerk off alone with a slice of pizza as a glove because they have no fans.It’s easy to say that giving up on metal, noise, punk, rap etc is a (non gender specific) bitch move.That’s because,essentially, this is true. It’s criminal to betray an artform that gives back and nourishes the soul in so many deep ways, though in real world ways it can eat you alive.
Watching White Lung Saint Vitus Bar NYC footage today or recently listening to Give Up The Ghost/American Nightmare’s We’re Down Til We’re Underground, I was moved by the musical power enough to register on some level thanks for these examples of recently active performers who matter. Art can be limited to a time period and still have relevance.There are many short lived, amazing bands.Or time periods we love to mull over (early Metallica, Naked Raygun or Rollins Band albums hold a place in the hearts of various humans like Dave Mustaine, Steve Albini & Scott Ian, for example.)
I’ve been enjoying Dr. Dre’s Compton album (except for the murder fantasy skit as I know lots of people love to re-enact Wu Tang skit’s or whatever and just found it a distraction from brilliant flow of rest of record as well as distasteful, but it’s not unrealistic shitilly enough).There’s part of the record where the master producer Dre mentions how he doesn’t respect whiners, to paraphrase.Cuz it is tough out there, and I legitimately feel that.
The music industry is the same way.Let’s hear from members of bands like Candiria, He Whose Ox Is Gored, Circuitry, Atriarch and more on what’s kept them going. I even asked my rapper pal Mattrix what keeps him grindin’ and rhymin’ (this is a dude who has had way more first week video plays than some established rappers).
- Read More BELOW.
Well, here we are. How do I even start a review for a record this rewarding? How about by demanding you pre-order it HERE. No better compliment?
I am gonna blame Lisa Mungo from Seattle’s He Whose Ox Is Gored for almost single handedly getting me back into proggy/post-rock stuff as well as, incidentally, Stephen Brodsky’s music. I’d written Lisa a few weeks back introducing myself and asking a question and then started listening to HWOIG’s older stuff more thuroughly than I had in the past. Now I am so hooked!
As the band are touring with Mutoid Man and that Bleeder record of theirs also blew me away and has a similar workmanlike chopping drum attack paired with busy but also at times spacious guitars, I soon found myself diving into old Brodsky classics like Cave In’s Jupiter for the first time in years. God, most music really fucking sucks now compared to that stuff, doesn’t it? I mean, I am a super positive guy unless you really piss me off, but woah.
The Camel, The Lion, The Child has a (very) few rougher patches here and there but they only add to the striving humanity of this future classic. “Oathbreaker” recalls Game of Thrones as filtered through new wave hell metal, at least in my mind. Bells toll and the anticipation building hi hat simmers nerves. The cool time signatures, vox roaring at 3:41 like dub music weaving in and out plus synths equals an amazing listen. Think post-metal sci-fi meets Chicago noise or 90’s rock completely disassembled but with screams ala Botch and occasional pretty vocals, as members alternate. “Omega” (premiered HERE at Cvlt Nation) could teach some of the Between The Buried And Me wanna bes a thing or two about feel, as like Prosthetic trio InAeona or Junius the bigger feelings evoked don’t depend on overplaying. Yawning void is actually a thing on some of these tracks.
For more see BELOW.
Seattle’s HE WHOSE OX IS GORED has been raising the brows of the underground masses with their eclectic, oft trance-inducing fusion of doom, prog rock, post hardcore and psychedelic shoegaze since their inception in 2009. Following the release of their critically-adored, Bleeding Light Records-issued Rumors 7″ last year which Echoes And Dust called, “a sonic journey of crazy, intense energy,” Cvlt Nation likened to a, “frothing, boiling cauldron of doom, spilling forth expansive riffs, pummeling beats and haunting vocals,” and Steel For Brains praised noting, “For all the hazy prog-doom pretenders clogging up those atmospherics, HE WHOSE OX IS GORED offers something uniquely theirs without sacrificing the muscle of the music to arbitrary and tired techniques,” the band will undrape their highly-anticipated full-length debut this Fall.
Titled The Camel, The Lion, The Child, the eight-track, near hour-long sound exhibition was tracked at Red Room and Ex Ex Audio in Seattle by Robert Cheek (Serial Hawk, Noise-A-Tron etc.) with additional recording taking place at Avast Studios with Randall Dunn (Sunn O))), Earth, etc). Matt Bayles (Isis, Mastodon etc.) handled mixing duties and frequent collaborator, Blake Bickel, mastered the album at Dynamic Sound Service.
Both sonically and conceptually engrossing, with The Camel, The Lion, The Child HE WHOSE OX IS GORED — Brian McClelland (guitar, vocals), Lisa Mungo (synths, keyboards, vocals), Mike Sparks (bass) and John O’Connell (drums) – transcend musical boundaries with their meticulous yet organically-executed amalgam of technical guitar compositions and atmospheric synth over a pummeling rhythm section manifesting a uniquely cinematic soundscape that paints a world ready to thrash and burn.
Elaborates McClelland of the band’s latest output: “The Camel, The Lion, The Child is a cup that runs over. From the writing process and through the studio, we made it a point to make the record that we wanted. The songs grow and breathe with their own lives and personalities, and unfold with layers that surprise us to this day. The excellent engineering and mixing of Robert Cheek and Matt Bayles raised the bar, and pushed us to make the best record we could. Now, we share it with you.”
Track listing and tour dates BELOW.Add to My Radar