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Photo by Liz Ciavarella-Brenner

Strange world creator Gridfailure releases latest statement I Shall Not Survive Another Winter this coming Friday for the Autumnal Equinox! No Echo is now streaming the whole recording early alongside a short interview.

Each song on I Shall Not Survive Another Winter grows longer than the one preceding it, the record further exploring full-on post-apocalyptic dementia; a vision of Post-Sixth Mass-Extinction Skullduggery which is the concept of the upcoming Teeth Collection and Drought Stick albums and several surrounding mini-releases portraying a grim vision of humanity’s future. A nearby reality where those who have survived mankind’s override by artificial intelligence, the ecological rebellion of our planet, and thermonuclear warfare amidst our own kind strive to rebuild society, and are continually thwarted. Thriving only amidst the gutters and back-alleys of a scorched culture,GRIDFAILURE’s sound reflects this impending cross-contamination of horrors.

Check it out HERE.

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Nate Hall is one of my favorite artists and a very smart, interesting person. I always tell people he should be considered a national treasure (and I know I sound like a super fanboy) for his work, but it is true. The North Carolina sound architect is at the frontier’s edge for post-rock, psych metal and inspired, lonely folk music that cuts to the bone but also helps you find refuge when you are on the mend. Be it in USX, Uktena  or his prolific solo output (the guy just released the excellent A Year Under A False Moon earlier this year and already has another one on the way), Nate Hall is one of those people who it would be actually worth it to spend $ on for one of those full Bandcamp discographies. He can really take you to and through many different places.

Now Nate Hall has announced he is releasing The Center Of The Earth on August 31st, an album he says is one of his most important pieces of work.  “I’ve never sacrificed so much for my art,” Hall tells me. “I’ve never felt such clarity from confusion. These are songs that have always been.”

The sole single available so far as a prelude to the days away full album release is an impressive brooder called “Night Sky Humming” that opens with a tone setting pretty powerful cowboy’s lament-esque lyric: These are the words I use to tell me what I’m dyin’ from /My directions for living were all wrong…

 It is a reminder that not everything needs to be Slayer to visit some pained and troubled corners and that many weary roads and labors can bear potent fruit.

Hear the track and pre-order the full album HERE.

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I’m not just saying this to promote MY records or anyone’s really specifically, but here is a thought on art in general. Music can bring people together of many cultures. It is very hard for artists to have a sustainable career when no one purchases their art, even if they work hard. You can only get so far without support. Now, Ariana Grande or Eagles Of Death Metal have lots of fans, BUT…if fear and terror starts also cutting in to concert attendance and (unlikely, but) somehow dented it enough, that is a direct assault on culture exchange. The arts struggle enough. The whole idea of a starving artist being more valid is masochistic and puts artists at a huge disadvantage when many of them already have a lot on their plate already as sensitive or tuned in souls.

A great refutation of ideology you don’t like, be it violence or even a political movement or corporation you are against, is to vote with your dollars. Buy organic food, etc. Do what you can. I would hope the deaths of the music fans of Ariana Grande in Manchester , some with their whole lives ahead of them now stolen, might move some of you to go out and purchase a work of art, a shirt, a book, a movie, a record or something to help further the arts and to ESPECIALLY keep music, loud unabashedly alive music of any genre (except NSBM, duh), blasting in the faces of those who see it as a threat to divisions or who don’t want sexual, racial or social mores or gender roles to evolve. One love. PMA. Our hearts at Metal Riot go out to Ariana and her fans. What a sick, sad fucking senseless thing.

Here are a few recommendations of artists of different genres, races, genders and spiritual backgrounds we suggest you support and show that humanity will NOT be thrown backwards, be it by xenophobic Trumpster Divers (supporting only Arab nations you make money off of doesn’t count, Conald Chump/Trump), radical terror groups like Isis or whoever the fuck tries to front on unity and love:

Lizzo: https://twitter.com/lizzo

Tommy Genesis world wide: https://twitter.com/brasil_tommy

Solstafir: https://twitter.com/solstafiroffcal

Lara Hope and The Arktones: https://www.larahopeandtheark-tones.com/

Downtown Boys: https://twitter.com/DowntownBoys

Flatfoot 56: https://www.flatfoot56.com/ 

VOWWS: https://twitter.com/vowwsband 

I am so sick of reading headlines like this. We as a race, THE HUMAN RACE, have to do better than this. A music concert is supposed to be a place where people gather to forget their problems for a few hours, not somewhere to roll the dice with your life. At times like this, I think the only thing a normal person can do is try to be the best, most moral, human they can be- in our jaded era, I believe this is more necessary than ever. For instance, this evening after I read this headline, I ran into a very loose acquaintance at the grocery store & mentioned the news. This person joked "Maybe they did it because it was an Ariana Grande show." I was too shocked to even say anything- I utterly fail to find the humor in the fact that at least 19 people are dead & many more injured, whatever you may think of someone's music. I know nothing about Ariana Grande or any of her songs, but I can guarantee that people of many different races, religions, & beliefs were at that show for the same reason- to have a good time. Some of them won't go home tonight. This is not fucking funny to me. This sort of jaded, joking, mentality is evidence to me of the continual chipping away of our humanity by the pathetically low standards of our era. We are better than this, people. It's dehumanizing, just like the freakish & twisted beliefs that allowed this asshole terrorist to kill a bunch of people they didn't know. Everything you do & say has consequences, even if you don't believe that. Make sure you do your best to think & speak with a moral heart- maybe your kindness will prevent someone from going down a dark path- you never know who you may effect positively. My thoughts & prayers are with y'all in the U.K. tonight.

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Gridfailure and Megalophobe stream “Dendritic” collab at New Noise

Posted by Metal Riot on Tuesday, April 25, 2017 at 9:45 AM (PST)
Dendritic, the new avant/ambient collaborative album by New York soloists GRIDFAILURE and MEGALOPHOBE, will see release on Arbor Day this Friday, April 28th, As the artists are currently planting trees across the Lower Hudson Valley region in conjunction with the record, New Noise Magazine is streaming the album early.

Fusing guitars, accordion, trumpet, keyboards, analog synth, mbira, theremin, harmonica, didgeridoo, trumpet, vocals, effects, and a variety of vocal styles, GRIDFAILURE & MEGALOPHOBE‘s Dendritic ebbs with hints of mellow prog and jazz, demoralizing noise/drone buildups, nature recordings captured in several countries, and more into ambient soundscapes, abstract dreamscapes, and a uniquely experimental overall sound. Guest contributions include trumpet by Mac Gollehon (David Bowie, Miles Davis, Blondie, Onyx, Duran Duran), vocals by Leila Abdul-Rauf (Vastum, Ionophore, Cardinal Wyrm) and Friederike Schüür, guitar by Liz Ciavarella-Brenner, Rob Levitt, and Christian Molenaar (Those Darn Gnomes), and field recordings from Jon Paris (Rack), and the record is completed with and immersive artwork by Emily Vanderpol of Infinity Things Studios.

Stream GRIDFAILURE & MEGALOPHOBE’s Dendritic early through New Noise Magazine at THIS LOCATION.

Find preorders for the digital and cassette versions of Dendritic which fund the planting of new trees via MEGALOPHOBE HERE and GRIDFAILURE HERE.

A video for “Niche Differentiation” is nearing completion, with additional videos from Dendritic to follow. MEGALOPHOBE and GRIDFAILURE will appear on upcoming releases from each other, a second fully cooperative album is halfway recorded, and a third collaboration is being devised, as the acts plot their upcoming live debuts.
New tracks from both GRIDFAILURE and MEGALOPHOBE appear alongside Never Presence Forever, Dusthallowed, Teeth Engraved With The Names of The Dead, and many others on Death Season Six, a compilation by the Darker Days Ahead label; pay-as-you-wish for the download and/or purchase the CD HERE.
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Junius dates with InAeona to commence soon

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Monday, April 3, 2017 at 7:17 AM (PST)

An inspired East Cost short run pairing between the melodic and yet massive styles of Junius and InAeona is just what the doctor ordered to start Spring with a kick to the crotch. Junius are supporting an excellent new record Eternal Rituals for the Accretion of Light and InAeona are between releases but keeping the juices flowing as they contemplate what new material will follow the brilliant catharsis of Force Rise The Sun (which was on our 2015 top 5 year end list, fyi). My friend Michael Guthaus’s driving and chaotic band Clover open the Kingston show.

04/17 Boston, MA – Great Scott
04/18 Baltimore, MD – Metro Gallery
04/19 Philadelphia, PA – Kung Fu Necktie
04/20 Kingston, NY – BSP Kingston
04/21 Pittsburgh, PA – Black Forge Coffee House
04/22 Brooklyn, NY – Saint Vitus Bar

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Interview: Gridfailure – Hostile Ambient Takeover

Posted by Metal Riot on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 at 2:02 PM (PST)

Gridfailure is one of our favorite current projects out there in the extreme musical weirdo multiverse, the experimental and totally mental brainchild of scene lifer Dave Brenner (ex-Theologian, ex-Heidnik) .  Since May of 2016 Brenner has already released two albums, a split with Never Presence Forever and several collaborative releases with even more on the horizon! There is really no rule book, which makes this one of the more exciting acts to follow currently.

The latest Gridfailure release Hostile Alchemy features guest contributions from a wide cast of allies including Leila Abdul-Rauf (Vastum, Ionophore, Cardinal Wyrm), Mark Deutrom (Bellringer, ex-Melvins), Jeff Wilson (Wolvhammer, Abigail Williams, Chrome Waves), Faith Ciavarella, Pete Tsakiris, Benjamin Levitt (Megalophobe), Christian Molenaar (Those Darn Gnomes), Alexei Korolev (The Company Corvette), and more. Some sections of the album sound like listening to distant jazz while drowning in a swamp, the hallucinations mounting as oxygen is cut off to the brain and you fade to black. Other songs are like the half remembered film score from a two week old nightmare you haven’t been able to shake off. This is probably the music that Morlocks in the X-Men universe screw to by candlelight in the sewers beneath the underbelly of New York City.

“As Gridfailure was spawned from creating horror music, the underlying themes of terror and impending harm are always going to be there,” Brenner says.

Read more below.

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Band Spotlight: Eight Bells

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Monday, February 15, 2016 at 2:02 PM (PST)

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Eight Bells stand out with their experimental, acclaimed sound. The West Coast band’s new album Landless explores corners of brain, heart and soul that many bands are not insightful enough to even locate. Drone, doom, old timey harmonies and more patient tempos than you can shake a stop watch at will make this appeal to any SubRosa, Ides of Gemini or Witch Mountain fan, though the group are also capable of holding their own on tour with the likes of Voivod and Vektor! This will slay year end lists and it isn’t even Spring yet.

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Boris USA Tour Dates

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Monday, February 8, 2016 at 4:38 PM (PST)
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Japanese drone/stoner/experimental veterans BORIS have announced a run of US tour dates this coming April surrounding Gensho, their new collaborative Relapse release with noise legend MERZBOW. The tour will see the band playing eight shows across the American Southwest and West Coast. A full itinerary is available below.

RIP Paul Kantner: Remember the Love Alamo, kids.

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Friday, January 29, 2016 at 12:24 PM (PST)

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I saw you, comin’ back to me…

The latest rocker who gave their all; to part this Earth yet remain in our memories is Paul Kantner of Jefferson Airplane.

Personally, I love Airplane and Starship. They were groovy and didn’t care. That’s cool.

Why are we discussing this on a metal site? Well , for one…Sanctuary’s White Rabbit cover is one of the coolest metal covers of all time. Secondly, Jefferson Airplane had a golden streak where they got everything right before grapes soured or the smooth voiced Grace of graces had problems down the road in her life. Paul and the gang were bold enough to wave the love flag instead of beating the drums of war. This alone is metal as fuck in a truer sense than basement losers listening to gore metal.

People fetishize Charles Manson, the man who almost ruined the Beatles, LSD and the hope of the 60’s peace movements single handedly. Maybe he was a frail man who started out analytical and wanting to know what was behind the veil or the Satanic power mad world behind the curtain of politics, but he ended up as a scared little murderer who needed validation from vulnerable followers that did his dirty work for him. Plus, Sharon Tate was so amazing and we were robbed of her and her friends lives in such a disgusting fashion. I personally was just writing for another site that I think the Manson murders scarred us and shoved us more violently towards the fear mongering world we live in today than people realize. Hunter S. Thompson knew. And by the way, we all know HE was an Airplane fan.

Surrealistic Pillow, the title alone makes my loins feel lysergic and the head start to daydream. Love it.

It was so cool once to learn about Flower Travellin’ Band from my friend Laura Pleasants of Kylesa or to once upon a time discover the stoner rock sub genres that are more retro like The Golden Grass,Purson and Jex Thoth, albeit with an emphasis on picking back up an old torch yet without making the same mistakes of yesteryear.

It doesn’t have to be cool to be miserable. Anthrax wrote “anti-social” but actually want to have happy lives, for example.

Yeah, let’s not fetishize the murderers. We think it is edgy but while it is cool to psychoanalyze things or listen to Church Of Misery or the newest Wreckmeister Harmonies or Nick Cave’s Murder Ballads or whatever, but if it is dwindled into essentially a fashion statement devoid of meaning we are in trouble.  Or we might as well put Che Guevara and Trump faces on every other frisbee and sell em out of the same tent at the county fair.

Death Valley ’69 by Sonic Youth and other smarter trips through the underbelly aside, it is cooler to push the “WE CAN” culture. Take the seediness out of the underground and look at pot as medicine, meditation as research, kindness as strength, acceptance as a test of Manhood.

Doing speed or carving nazi symbols on your face and being a dipshit might make for good TV, but you’re still a dick. Martin Shkreli can claim altruistic goals but still perhaps to be strapped to a chair and forced to watch Philadelphia and Dallas Buyers Club over and over Clockwork Orange style until he admits he has been acting like a dipshit robber baron Oliver Queen playboy without the redeeming Green Arrow side. Fuck you, dude.

The shit that Jefferson Airplane and San Fran held up triumphantly in the flower power daze of hopes and dashed dreams. But remember, flowers grow back. You just need good soil.

Whatever happened to wishes wished on a star?

 

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Melvins to headline Temples Festival

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Monday, January 25, 2016 at 6:49 AM (PST)

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Temples Festival have announced grunge godfathers The Melvins as the Saturday night headliner. The fest line up this year is pretty damn forceable, featuring Jucifer, Acid King, All Pigs Must Die and many more great bands.

Statement:

Patrons of Temples Festival,

First and foremost, thank you all for the patience you’ve kindly extended of late.

Without further ado, it’s with great pride with which we finally announce our first Temples 2016 headliner, following on from the likes of Neurosis and Sunn0))) as our Saturday night headliner, please welcome (the) Melvins to Temples Festival 2016.

The Melvins will headline Saturday, June 4th alongside a diverse and tasteful selection of artists – for what’s set to be one of the heaviest & most memorable days in the history of Temples Festival. With over forty bands now announced and many more (including two headliners) still to be unveiled, we’re firmly on course for another monumental weekend.

As ever, we’ll be under-selling the overall capacity of Motion to minimise the strain on each room and ensure we can offer the most comfortable experience possible for each of our Patrons. We have secured a number of tasteful caterers for 2016 which includes an array of vegan and vegetarian options, and once again we’ll be offering a fairly priced Ale and Cider bar for the drinking contingency among us – this time, featuring a bespoke Temples Festival ale.

more below.

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Album Review: Pinkish Black – “Bottom of the Morning”

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Sunday, November 8, 2015 at 3:39 PM (PST)

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Pinkish Black‘s Bottom of the Morning is a decidedly low key but brilliant
release from Relapse and the Texas based band. Much more akin to the (current
tour mates) Zombi side of the label than the Suffocation side, PB are an
artful and smart band who create often lengthy but never boring synth based
band with droll vocals which nonetheless have an insistent emotional impact.

The title track is a cool dream that whirls like slowly whipped cream around a
vertiginous yet repetitive refrain, building and taking away in layers
including at times rising to a fuzzed out stomp. Much of the music snakes and
teases this way, somewhat akin to Krautrock or electronic Radiohead but
perhaps not as minimalistic and with more of a cultish (and cultivated) sense of menace.

Maybe if Mark Lanegan was really into Tangerine Dream? I dunno.

The songs are actually deceptive in that they
have a lot more elements than you might at first remember, since a casual pass
is more hypnotic than “woah, go back to that part!” in general. But every song
has numerous rewards from horn sounds to cinematic 70’s art film style
disorienting textural key strokes or almost imperial moments of august and
celestial import. Some of it is even oddly No Wave.

The Fort Worth band are very interesting and anyone who enjoyed the soundtrack
feel of Goblin Rebirth’s record or who likes rock a bit more brainy that still
has a certain moody allure will dig this. It’s like an at times challenging
and hallucination frought semi-grandiose withdrawal from some womb-like Philip
K Dick-esque state sponsored pill of conformity. Challenging but in the end it makes you
wiser and glad you shed the brainwash. The songs take on a landscape of their
own, even when they drift into almost background music at times due to a
lulling nature of some of the more repetitive parts (“Brown Rainbow” has a
particularly hypnotic march) you suddenly are swirled right back into the dead
center of this oddly all seeing eye.

Eye of Nix premiere new song “Blood In The Fire”

Posted by longhairedpoet on Tuesday, November 3, 2015 at 11:13 AM (PST)

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Seattle drone metallers Eye of Nix have premiered a new song “Blood In The Fire”.

“Blood In The Fire” comes off of the upcoming album Moros which will drop on November 6.

Check out “Blood In The Fire” and Eye of Nix tour dates here.

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Last night writing the delightfully awesome Bridge Laviazar of Prosthetic’s 2015 standout act InAeona, things were going well until she threatened to kill me if I listed her band as “Goth Metal.”

I was telling her how I wish we had a post-metal category on the drop down menu of this site and was trying to figure out what to categorize her band’s amazing, spacious and heavy, outer space meets a little bit industrial racket. We were going through the categories you can choose from on this site and none seemed to really fit.

“If you put us as Goth Metal I will find you and kill you,” she…joked? I told her there were worse fates than sitting in a coffee shop somewhere and having a blue haired amazon run in and decapitate me. In fact, my friends would think it was pretty fitting and probably just shrug. We finally settled on “no genre”.

However you choose to describe the East Coast trio, which also includes James Dunham and Dave Soucy, they have a massive and awesome sound. Force Rise The Sun is one of the years best records. I wont say where it sits on my year end list yet because the end of the year is still a few weeks away, but let’s just say it is absolutely in the top 5 albums of 2015 for me.

Read my chat with Bridge BELOW.

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www.confrontational.net

 

Confrontational is a European darkwave project that is turning heads with ass kicking new record A Dance Of Shadows. The album features mastermind Massimo Usai charting a dark yet infectious as a zombie bite (but much more fun!) course for the dance floor. With cover art from Branca Studios and a sound akin to the best 80’s horror and action cinema soundtracks that never existed but sound like classic cuts, Confrontational is much more interesting than the 800th metalcore band to hit up my email for coverage. In fact, I had to seek this dude out because I was so intrigued by the project.

Turns out we had some similar tastes and a mutual pal or two. That’s the power of the underground!

How did this studio whiz get Monte Pittman from Madonna’s band (and ex-Prong), Darren Travis from fucking Sadus and horror legend John Carpenter’s own son Cody Carpenter on this release? The music is just that fuckin’ cool!

A Dance Of Shadows is out on bandcamp now HERE and you ought to go support it!

Read our full Confrontational interview BELOW.

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Relapse Records announces new Boris, Merzbow collab “Gensho”

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 at 9:40 AM (PST)

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I was just bitching about being unsure how on Earth I will whittle down my year end list to a reasonable number this year in the face of so many rad records when news broke about Relapse releasing a pending new collaboration between legends Boris and Merzbow. Seeing Boris live ought to change anyone’s life and I even got to chat with Jim Jarmusch about how cool they are once when I waited on him at a restaurant I used to work at, The Depuy Canal House. Anyhow, thankfully Gensho, the new collaboration, does not street until next February so I don’t have yet another contender for my year end list. After August every year I start freaking out counting down to December and become impossible to be around.

Anyway, any decent weirdo worth their salt knows Merzbow is a noise legend and Boris know no limits when it comes to creativity. In a noise rock/avant pop climate where awesome stuff is being done again by bands ranging from JC Satan to Tearist to Pigs and Fad Nauseam, it is rad to know some of the scene stalwarts are still cutting their teeth on pushing boundaries as well. Deets on Gensho can be read BELOW.