None or Unknown
Ohio's Bes are a calamitous racket of alt-rock infused heavy sounds and have recently released the very worth your time Pieces Missing EP. Fans of Torche, Failure or even some KEN Mode will find stuff to latch on to here. I don't know how intentional it was but I hear a lot of late nineties influence in some of what this band is doing, but paired with an even more aggressive edge befitting our times. Recommended Track: "Lost It All".
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On March 8th, the Faroe Islands’ Tyr will release their eighth full-length, Hel, via Metal Blade Records. Hel is a collection of ruthlessly melodic and irresistibly compelling progressive folk metal that will immediately resonate with any who have followed the band at any point over the two decades of their storied career. For a preview of the album, the first single, “Fire and Flame”, can be heard at: http://metalblade.com/tyr/ – where Hel can also be pre-ordered or watch the lyric video below.
1. Gates of Hel
2. All Heroes Fall
3. Ragnars Kvæði
5. Sunset Shore
6. Downhill Drunk
7. Empire of the North
8. Far from the Worries of the World
9. King of Time
10. Fire and Flame
11. Against the Gods
12. Songs of War
13. Alvur Kongur
Hey metal fam. Besides work I have been spending the day discussing with people or listening to people about who really invented metalcore and driving around enjoying the new Pig Destroyer. It was good to also have an excuse to listen to Starkweather at my morning job today, though you don’t really need an excuse to hear the Crossbearer / Into The Wire reissue. “Mainline” is so fucking sick.
As for the new Pig Destroyer (which I have finally been returning to and absorbing more), I can’t imagine why anyone would be unhappy with Head Cage. There is not a wasted note on the album (despite many of them), the tones are massive and beyond devastating, the performances are manic and yet super precise but organic and adrenalized. The band sound excited with the material. And the low end is frankly fucking unreal, it sounds so heavy and awesome.
I think some people just perpetuate the myth that higher end production means a band sucks now, but that is actually toxic to bands. Not that music is gonna always make you “a living” or that should be the prime reason for making all art but if you love an artist it isn’t fair that you demand their work be super raw or commercially barely viable to the average person. It’s already fucking Pig Destroyer, lol, not SZA (who I stan). I don’t have a problem with bands I love succeeding either. I mean, you should try and pay attention to what you are hitching your wagon too as far as big companies go, but it is cool to have good music out there in the world. Every weirder band that gets bigger helps just maybe make the most mainstream heavy bands a little less shitty, haha. Did I just do what I said I hate? Lol.
Anyway, “Terminal Itch” finds a relentless kinship between guitar and drum obscenity while “Circle River” reminds me of Pig Destroyer taking a crack at noise and Melvins influences within a framework of their usual punishing aesthetic touches. I fucking loved every minute of it. “Army Of Cops” is going to prove itself to be a big song within their body if work over time as well, I’d wager. This shit will be standing after whatever dust settles, one hundred percent. The riffs on this record are fucking brutes brootal brootiful. And you HAVE to love that two minute mark hardcore break in “Cops”. It spells M-O-S-H.
Blackened Death Records have released the second edition of the important anti-fascist metal comp W.O.M.A.N. today.
Worldwide Organization of Metalheads Against Nazis II deserves support and features a killer variety of acts from Ghoul (“Nazi Smasher”) to Redbait ( “Dick Punch” studio version!) to other awesome acts we love and have mentioned in the past like Immortal Bird, Jucifer, Stormland and Suicide Wraith.
Pay what you want for over 40 songs.
— Josh (@CVRSEDBREATH) October 16, 2018
October’s Surpise (besides my Queen Taylor Swift helping register thousands to vote and endorsing a blue candidate before midterms, go girl!) was today’s This Will Destroy You second album of the year drop! Love the energy this record kicks off with, like the grandiosity of Muse channeled through something completely opposite and more underground like UOA or something, ha . Undeniable passion! Very cool! Check out the impressive New Others Part Two HERE!
Thanks to those that took the hint and stayed up with us last night to listen to the surprise… This is the beautiful black vinyl version. We’ll have it for all tour dates starting tonight in Phoenix and we left a few with @dark0perative for folks that can’t attend. pic.twitter.com/ERMXV2AQMi
— THIS WILL DESTROY YOU (@_TWDY_) October 16, 2018
Mercyful Fate (aka the band I kind of spend half the time thinking is the best metal band ever) have re-issued some of their lesser heralded yet of course worthy as heck efforts on 180g picture discs. Time in particular looks outstanding in that format. YES! Go! Purchase! Consume! And yes you can also get more well known albums like Melissa and Don’t Break The Oath in this killer format option HERE.
“You can spiral yourself into darkness with these classic Mercyful Fate albums, or you can exhibit them on your wall like I will. Either way, enjoy.” – King Diamond
Lastly, After nearly four years of absence, ENSIFERUM has announced a full North American headlining tour. Set to begin January 5th and run through January 29th, support will be provided by mighty Septicflesh as well as an additional opener still to be announced. My mouth is watering hoping it is someone really cool, especially since I missed that awesome Amorphis/Moonspell package coming through my area and wanted to cry.
Comments bassist Sami Hinkka, “It’s been way too many years since we rocked with our North American warrior brothers and sisters. So early 2019 we will set sails and head to your shores and we are not coming alone. We will join forces with a brilliant and ass kicking band, Septicflesh, and a special guest. What a way to start a new year! This tour will leave its mark on the history of metal so get your ticket in advance and get ready to mosh with us like there is no tomorrow. On this tour, we have no chance to play in every city that we would want to, so we are doing our best to return to North America for a second time in 2019. Stay tuned and see you soon!”
ENSIFERUM w/ Septicflesh, special guest TBA:
1/05/2019 Baltimore Soundstage – Baltimore, MD
1/06/2019 Irving Plaza – New York, NY
1/07/2019 Brighton Music Hall – Boston, MA
1/08/2019 Imperial Bell – Quebec City, QC
1/09/2019 Corona Theatre – Montreal, QC
1/01/2019 Opera House – Toronto, ON
1/11/2019 Harpo’s – Detroit, MI
1/12/2019 The Forge – Joliet, IL
1/13/2019 Skyway Theater – Minneapolis, MN
1/14/2019 The Riot Room – Kansas City, MO
1/15/2019 Oriental Theater – Denver, CO
1/17/2019 El Corazon – Seattle, WA
1/18/2019 Rickshaw Theatre – Vancouver, BC
1/19/2019 Hawthorne Theatre – Portland, OR
1/20/2019 Metro Opera House – Oakland, CA
1/21/2019 The Regent – Los Angeles, CA
1/22/2019 Club Red – Mesa, AZ
1/23/2019 Rockhouse Bar & Grill – El Paso, TX
1/24/2019 Gas Monkey Bar & Grill – Dallas, TX
1/25/2019 Come And Take It Live! – Austin, TX
1/26/2019 White Oak Music Hall – Houston, TX
1/28/2019 The Masquerade (Hell) – Atlanta, GA
1/29/2019 The Orpheum – Tampa, FL
1/31 – 2/04/2019 70,000 Tons Of Metal – Fort Lauderdale, FL
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There is no more Black Sabbath and there is no Abbath Assembly (a rejected name for the new Immortal?), but there is the one and only Sabbath Assembly! The stellar group, one of the best and most compelling in modern metal, have announced some East Coast looming dates. We are stoked!
@sabbathassembly is bringing the heat to the east coast this summer. Our cohorts in #Sanhedrin are along for the ride and are guaranteed to slay. Join us for these bewitching nights of music and mayhem. Photo: @thomasmphotography * * 6/14 Brooklyn NY – The Gutter 6/15 Washington DC – @atlasbrewworks 6/16 Richmond VA – @strangematterrva 6/17 Philadelphia PA – Kungfu Necktie
A post shared by Jamie Myers (@friggafrostqueen) on
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Ireland’s reigning metal kings Primordial don’t really have casual fans. You either worship the blood soaked firmament they stride over or you don’t really get it because you are an idiot or something. The band teamed with producer Ola Ersfjord, who worked on their 2016 live album Gods to the Godless. The record was tracked at Dublin’s Camelot Studios, located adjacent to PRIMORDIAL’s rehearsal room. We are sure it will be another valuable addition to their storied discography. Can’t friggin’ wait, honestly!
Visit metalblade.com/primordial to check out the video for the first single “Stolen Years.”
Commenting about the album’s first single, ‘Stolen Years’, A.A. Nemtheanga added: “‘Stolen Years’ may seem like a strange choice as our lead single, and on the face of if I guess it is. It’s not a blood and thunder epic about tragedy and might and the ruin of nations, nor is it 9 minute epistle of doom. Have no fear, the album does contain those also but to open this time we chose something different. This album has some surprises and this is one of them, a short and painfully simple song which almost didn’t make the final cut if you can believe so. The video, cut by Costin Chioreanu, is about the journey involved in finally getting to that moment where you walk on stage, the song itself about that last night on earth that comes to us all, sometimes we never know when that might be, hold your loved ones tight tonight, this could be it…”Add to My Radar
Typing the title The Horse And Other Weird Tales, I accidentally wrote ‘takes’ instead of ‘tales’ and laughed. The world is full of so many bad hot takes lately and thankfully Jess and the Ancient Ones‘ new record feels like it could save people from illusions while also inspiring psychedelic spiritual autonomy and rebellion. Sorely needed!
Record number three from the powerful psych band sees the group forging ahead and sounding more like they jammed out the whole record in a powerhouse ritual bonding than ever before. “(Here Comes The) Rainbow Mouth” and “Shining” cast upbeat persistent hypnosis that loosens the limbs and brings you into the expanding lotus-like world of the Ancient Ones’ sound as they explore. There is nothing as darkly unhinged and intense as “The Equinox Death Trip” but the album makes you feel amazing and will open your mind wide. It really feels like witnessing history in the re-making, in that it sounds like vintage 60’s glory but the band are well into their own mythology.
Sheer brilliance and lightning in a bottle takes abound. Actually HOT “takes”.
“Your Exploding Heads” has an amazing almost post punk intro before smoothly transitioning into a stunning opening verse section, the group fully in control of the build up that allows for the chorus to explode like the head in the title. 9 songs and 31 minutes, recorded and mixed together with their live sound engineer made for an experience not often captured by timid bands. Clutch’s records like Jam Room or the masterful Robot Hive/Exodus capture the kind of loose and yet super in the zone feel I am trying to convey, simply from that famed band playing together live and becoming psychic. This Jess and the Ancient Ones record has a similar spirit of intuition and innovation but feels more ‘in the moment’, if that makes sense.
“You And Eyes” is maybe my favorite, a chill yet confidant boogie that just feels so cool and good. The philosophical sampled spoken word segments on this album really vibe with the tunes instead of feeling gimmicky. The experimental psych jazz meets Floyd via Big Brother and the Holding Company-esque 4 and a half minute mark section of this tune will keep you flying free and easy but tuned in. There’s a warm and bluesy feel to parts of this song that is pitch perfect. Jess’ vocal performance on this tune and really the whole album feel like a huge victory. If the act never made another record the work they have done so far would already classify them as a very notable act.
“Radio Aquarius” is a song I wish the whole American public could chill out to right now, as raw and beaten up as we are lately. It makes you feel how some of the world’s problems and mysteries have remained unsolved since, say, the Vietnam War through the present day and that there is a heart of darkness always at war with the diamond awakening of consciousness expansion. “Return To Hallucinate” will make you feel hopeful and like you can hopefully keep painting your dreams for a better world through any hardships to come if we all keep faith in one another, clap and dance. There’s also a scorching fuzzy solo in that one and brilliant keys that are super addictive.
“Anyway The Minds Flow” seems to signal to outsiders to remember that while they might feel braced against the system and the world, they are also free from the constraints of conformity and just might carve their own fate. The Catcher In The Rye is evoked and hearkens to the courage to step forward into a bold decision. Time’s river flows by and you can interact as you choose, swept up in the times or making them react to you. But we all spin on the mandala. So alone or together we all are together and interconnected anyway and might as well try and make the best of it. The best part is, this album is going to be a gift that keeps on giving new delights with every listen, revealing more lessons, layers and love.
Surrendering can be hard but magical things just might happen.
SubRosa brought their Wuthering Heights as gothic doom metal splendor to Beacon, NY tonight on an off night show from their tour with Wovenhand and wowed a lucky and modest but enraptured Sunday crowd at new venue The Platform in Beacon, NY. “Black Majesty” was indeed felt by all and I was beyond thrilled to finally witness the band live after being a fan for many years. In fact, it is crazy to think it has been ten years almost since I really fell completely in love with the Strega album and the band has since come to really mean so much to me. If the wait to see them live hadn’t driven me crazy a few times, haha, the band were still very much worth the wait to finally see live. They put on an incredible and very emotional show and I am on cloud nine.
Clover opened the night with their awesome blend of raging hardcore-influenced raw groove metal with semi-counter intuitive smart rhythmic shifts to keep you guessing between roars and super distorted riffs. The sound in this relatively new Beacon, NY space was pretty solid despite a few hiccups. “Aurora” was particularly powerful.
Witchkiss were a rad power trio in the Electric Wizard vein with very cool effected co-ed vocals and include an ex-member of 00’s Poughkeepsie area brawlers When Dreams Die (we joked together about how hardcore dudes who are smart switch to stoner rock as we age to preserve knees and bones from injury). Witchkiss are a lot of fun and you can hear a track on their Bandcamp.
Heavy Traffic, well…I don’t even feel like writing about them much. Rumor had it they cancelled and so the show started late as a result and then the band finally showed up and claimed a prime slot, had to be told to stop playing and as a result of their tardy behavior SubRosa trimmed their set down. I had been waiting like ten years to see SubRosa and they were going to do a few rare acoustic songs and trimmed that just cuz they are nice and were accomodating. Heavy Traffic kind of came off like Brooklyn hipster indie kids trying to be loud enough to play metal shows but with Forrest Gump as a singer. If you think you got over, a lot of people actually were grumbling about it. Try to show up on time or trim your set if late, not the headliner’s time. The place had a ten pm Sunday curfew.
Clover def had a great attitude in that they showed up early, didn’t care if they opened and hit the stage fast and furiously. That’s what is up.
(Update: Day or two later I heard some more details and a counter point of view. I def got up on wrong side bed the morning I wrote this and was perhaps harsher than I needed to be. I heard a few conflicting versions of events a day or so later and it seems the HT dudes weren’t as willfully shady as I had thought. Maybe I just don’t trust any humans? No, what I wrote above was based on an early, incomplete account someone told me for the delay, etc. Also, checking out Heavy Traffic’s music more I am really enjoying “Negative Green”, so go ahead and give them a fair shake HERE. Their sound is actually pretty cool and psych influenced).
Anyway, all in all it was still a wonderful night and SubRosa’s energy was beyond fantastic. A dude from The Ditch & The Delta filled in on bass and SR played as a four piece as Kim is pregnant and not out on this tour as a result, but the band were still electric and potent.
Photos BELOW.Add to My Radar
On September 15th, Ensiferum will release their anticipated seventh full-length, Two Paths, worldwide via Metal Blade Records. Produced by Anssi Kippo, the master was recorded on tape. In anticipation of this sure to add to their already hearty legacy release, the band has now launched a fun live acoustic version of “Two of Spades” for their true fans (from their previous album, One Man Army). Frankly, this performance, especially the sing-a-long at the end is friggin’ awesome.Add to My Radar
On September 15th, Ensiferum will release their seventh full-length, Two Paths, worldwide via Metal Blade Records (order HERE now). Produced by Anssi Kippo, the master was recorded on tape, for a true analog experience. Ensiferum has now launched a video clip for the 2nd single “Way Of The Warrior”.
Ensiferum comments: “Hi folks! So here it is, our brand new video of the song ‘Way Of The Warrior’. Like our music combines metal and folk elements so does this video. It was really great to be involved in the process more than we ever have been before and the result turned out to be fantastic! We hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed recording the song and shooting the video. So turn the volume up to eleven, move your furniture a bit so that you have room for moshing and press play!”Add to My Radar
A friendly reminder that Alestorm, your favorite band of stage bashing, instrument brandishing buccaneers, return on May 26th with one of their rowdiest plunderings of the creative psyche yet, the bold and commanding No Grave But The Sea. If this isn’t your thing this won’t change your mind, but if you love your pirate metal? Consider this a serious haul. 5 albums in and the band are as ready to rock, rum and rollick as ever. The profanity heavy and pretty hysterical song “Fucked With An Anchor” alone is worth braving the high seas to purchase this dangerous album. The proud and stirring “To The End of the World” also will appeal to the more adventure and slightly less comedy minded historical metal head, sure to be a rallying cry among those who fly the Alestorm flag. The band are going to really shock some Hot Topic punks when they conquer the Vans Warped Tour this year! Pre Order HERE while you still may!Add to My Radar
Led by vocalist Jamie Myers (ex-Hammers of Misfortune), Sabbath Assembly anno 2017 features guitarist Kevin Hufnagel (Gorguts, Dysrhythmia), who has been with the band since 2011; original drummer Dave Nuss; bassist Johnny Deblase, who also played on the band’s self-titled album; and the new addition of second guitarist Ron Varod (Kayo Dot, Psalm Zero, Zvi).
We have been thrilled by the group’s endeavors since the early albums, yet not they continue to evolve and excite as a far more progressive and at times heavier beast than when they first arrived, steeped in interpreting the hymnody of the Process Church of the Final Judgment. One of the most consistently good and unique bands in modern rock and metal, Sabbath Assembly are no mere faux-cult or yet another pretend wizard band. The new album Rites Of Passage draws from much deeper wells and is one of their most dynamic releases. The songs on Rites of Passage include stories of losing one’s religion (rather than initiation), dissolution of a relationship (rather than marriage), and managing the dementia and physical decline of a loved one (as more profound than a funeral rite).
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Helsinki heavy metal band Ensiferum may look like they need a little more sun, but that is because Finnish people are usually pretty darn pale and also because the respected band recently entered the Astia studio in Lappeenranta, Finland to begin work on their seventh full-length, produced once again by Anssi Kippo (Children Of Bodom, Impaled Nazarene, Entwine etc.)! Set to be released September 2017 via Metal Blade Records, the quintet has now issued an update about the recording process for the follow up to the bloody excellent One Man Army from in the studio.
Sami Hinkka (bass) comments: “Hi, folks! Greetings from the Astia studio!
For this album, we wanted to catch our live energy on a totally new level with the best possible sound. So every song was played together while recording drums. Most of the bass lines were also taken from those live takes to guarantee the maximum groove. There are songs on the album we recorded without a click so get ready for some serious rocking, people!
Since Anssi Kippo is such a studio wizard, he has synced his legendary Otari MTR-90mk2 2” 24 -tape recording machine (recognizable, for example, from Metallica‘s ‘Nothing Else Matters’ -video) with his computer, so we will record drums, bass, rhythm guitars and lead vocals on tape, and the rest that can’t fit on the tape, we’ll record on computer. Also the mixing will be done the analogue way on tape to make sure that the sound will remain as raw, punchy and as unprocessed as possible.
The second week is almost over and we are perfectly on schedule: drums, bass lines and half of the rhythm guitars are done.
We are doing ~12 hour long days, so unfortunately this time there won’t be ‘beer of the week’ or any fooling around video diaries, but there will be plenty of time for that after the album is done and the touring starts again. 😉
Stay tuned for more news! Cheers!”
Before the album’s release, European fans will be able to catch Ensiferum at various festivals this summer. See below for all dates, with more shows to be announced soon!Add to My Radar
Outlandish and mysterious Icelandic rock band SÓLSTAFIR are streaming the second new track off their new album Berdreyminn. The album closer titled “Bláfjall” is streaming now both at the indie music outlet Brooklyn Vegan and metal site Invisible Oranges.
It seems the Guðmundur Óli Pálmason situation, though certainly stressful for all parties, did not stop the remaining members from creating new, strong art. This latest song is more driving than recent material with am interesting, proggy/classic rock bent. The vocals seem more pained. I can’t stop listening to it, frankly. Very cool.
Regarding the new track, SÓLSTAFIR vocalist/guitarist Aðalbjörn Tryggvason comments on the personal meaning behind the track and its intent: “The meaning of ‘Bláfjall’ is blue – as in a black, black mountain, and it revolves around man’s battle against his own mind and those inner demons that often lead to self-destruction and harming one’s loved ones. I have myself struggled with alcoholism and it remains a never-ending battle and continuously walking further up a mountain in foggy darkness. But this is also about hope, because there is a way out, but you have to grab that rope when it comes swinging towards you and hold on to it as tight as you can. Everybody can end up lost on the black mountain, or ‘Bláfjall’ in this case.“Add to My Radar