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Ghösh are raising the bar for exciting acts to follow in 2020. “Nu Junglism. Digital Hardcore.”Whatever you wanna call it, this Philly duo have a fierce and kinetic, living punk energy that is a refreshing mutation of numerous styles into an explosive and vital sound. The tracks on their Bandcamp blew me away with a fresh poetic attack and a DIY vibe of anarchic, creative freedom. Party starting and with something subversive to say. Plus an unexpected take on a Limp Bizkit classic.

I really can’t rave about this group enough. Not many acts can pry me out of my current Entombed, Pink Floyd and Sun Ra rabbit holes, but when it happens of late I am probably listening to these freak flag flyers. Please check out the full convo with Symphony and Zach below.

Scott Harris

‘I’m using a black metal format with an intro piece and ending piece (ala Bathory) and how Mortician uses their intro and outros on tracks with movie excerpts, except I tune them down for a more trippy freaky effect’. – Scott Harris

Welcome to Hororhaus. A blend of 80’s synth, horror creep, goth and black metal inspired elements, the Scott Harris helmed project released one of the best EP’s of 2020 with the low key underground banger Entrance EP. Check out a full stream below and an exclusive interview about this sophisticated mercurial marvel of murky and menacing body moving music below. It is one of the best and most haunting escapes you could take during this surreal time.

READ MORE HERE.

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Enchantya are a progressive, gothic metal group from Portugal who have been growing their fan base and making a mark on the world scene. “Mother Hope”, their latest single, is a rallying cry to remember our common humanity and to not abandon our principles or forget the fragility of our shared ecosystems. In other words, this is just the song for 2020 and great to have come out of a genre that people often just associate with death worship. Enchantya is so much more than that.

It was an honor to communicate with their vocalist Rute about her band’s coping skills during Covid-19, her musical background, the metal scene in Portugal and how she is keeping hope alive with the band and fans during this time.

Read more BELOW.

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KILLVEIN is one of those inspiring rare types of artists who seem fueled by a frenzy to create, a high level of passion that palpable in the air like when you know there will be a storm soon. The self-taught producer and multi-instrumentalist charges up everything with purposeful intent and has released a lot of material the last few years, drawing from a diverse pool of sounds ranging from hooky trap to black metal to rock.

Recently Tommy Lee of Mötley Crüe fame was impressed enough by the up and coming artist to feature KILLVEIN on two tracks from the forthcoming Tommy Lee solo release ANDRO. I heard a rowdy rock cut. “Knock Me Down” is so ripe with pent up, ready for the mosh pit bravado that it is more closely resembles an explosion than a song (while still, in actuality, being a good song).

Read our chat with KILLVEIN below.

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Bleed From Within have built upon their humble origins with each release, nowadays a powerhouse of kinetic energy and irresistible groove heavy metalcore that draws as much from NWOAHM as deathcore. Fifth album (!) Fracture is their most cohesive release yet and the metalcore standout release thus far in 2020. It is certainly an album that ought to generate a lot of excitement.

A few weeks ago I sent questions to the Scottish band’s own Steven Jones who shares thoughts about recent global events, the new album and more! Be sure also to join the ambitious group on Facebook this Friday from 7pm BST as they go live, discussing all things Fracture listening to the album, and answering your questions!

Read More BELOW.

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Stitched Up Heart are a hard rock/alt metal band who have been absolutely exploding the last few years due to their high energy, melodic power and connection with fans. With numerous top 30 mainstream rock hits, over twenty million worldwide streams and a lot of fresh eyes on them, this band is not only headed places but ALREADY somewhere many acts never reach. New album Darkness explores a dynamic range of emotions while managing to be huge, catchy and electrifying.  It is sure to appeal to those enduring angsty growing pains or older rock fans looking to feel new energy.

Singer Mixi took some time out during this crazy and horrible pandemic to talk about the new album with me, her approach and some philosophy as well as getting through this time as a planet, animal fostering and vegetarianism.

All the best to this band and make sure to check out Darkness. They sound better than ever.

Read MORE BELOW.

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Thrash act BONDED released a pulverizing debut Rest In Violence back in January via Century Media that you will want to make sure you get to hear a little of before it burns your skull to cinders. It is actually now a German stamina test to see how much of the record you can withstand before your ears burst into flame, at least in my quarantined imagination. This album will make you feel passionate about the bonds in your life, keep the fire in your step and help give you the will to fight through the clouds in your mind.

Formed by scene veterans Bernd “Bernemann” Kost (Guitar) and Markus “Makka“ Freiwald (Drums) in 2018 after their exit as longtime members of SODOM, musical partners Marc Hauschild (Bass) and Destroy Them / ex Suicidal Angels member Chris Tsitsis (Guitar) were quickly added to the ranks in order to continue working on new own song-material as well as to develop the concept for a new entity, which was finally completed with the addition of Assassin frontman Ingo Bajonczak (Vocals) and consequently named BONDED.

Get to know this amazing project and read our exclusive new interview with Bernemann BELOW!

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Dark Fortress social distance by staying 666ft. apart and of course dwelling in dark fortresses.

Dark Fortress have sculpted a new masterpiece of black metal drenched with the blood squeezed from a death metal shroud. Spectres From The Old World is a significant piece of work and surely due a lot of attention from the metal community if there is any justice left on this plague-ridden rock.

The band was just forced to cancel release shows due to Covid-19 in March but we are pleased to publish at last a recent conversation with musical genius Morean (also of Alkaloid and Noneuclid renown) about the new record to help lift some of the sting or perhaps steer people towards this great 2020 Century Media release if they were unaware. (Buy merch HERE)!

MYE. Spectres from the Old World is an intense and powerful album, highly anticipated by fans. I loved the album title. Do you think we are always haunted by the past or sometimes we actually forget it too quickly and repeat tragic things? It is also good to know where things come from, like musical styles. Some older bands like
yours and also God Dethroned come to mind as having great new music this year, still fighting for the dark metal legacy!

Morean: As a species, that’s definitely true. Just look around you and what mankind is discussing right now. I remember that at the turn of the century, I felt like the human race might be at the eve of an evolutionary quantum leap. Now, twenty years later, it’s obvious that the monkey part of us that throws feces at the monkeys in the other tree is not actually that far in the past. At the same time, we can transform the Earth into one giant telescope to take pictures of black holes, land probes on comets, genetically engineer organisms and so on. I think our technical evolution is so far ahead of our mental and emotional evolution that it’s still a big question if progress will have the upper hand in the near future, or if we just go to some dystopian Mad Max-like society, only postponing its last degenerate breath. Time will tell, but we’re far from being able to relax about it. The “old world” of this album is something else entirely though; it refers to the universe of the previous album, where the protagonist has transformed into a being of pure light and reincarnates here as the sentient fabric of a newborn cosmos, in great agony. It’s black metal after all.

Read MORE BELOW.

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Drain’s CALIFORNIA CURSED is gonna wreck your world in the best way

It is a depressing time in music right now with all the Coronavirus valid concerns causing great tours from Car Bomb to GosT to Gruesome and Krisiun to be taken out behind the shed and put to bed. I figure everyone is feeling pretty down and it sucks that I can’t stop thinking about Tom Hanks having to self-quarantine back on the island with Wilson. Not far, man. Seriously though, much love to everyone.

Seems like a good time to get people psyched on some tunes they will soon be able to stream in the coming weeks once some of the best albums to listen to in early Spring drop. Here are five selections for records to check out in the coming months as we rock our woes away. We can still bond together via social media about music while we remember to please wipe our phone and tablet screens often so as not to affect elderly and immunocompromised loved ones.

Ok here are my choices for the coolest things coming out in upcoming weeks! Read more HERE.

Live Drain photo by Sam Jameson

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Doom dealers Warhorse reared their handsome heads to make a very special appearance at the legendary Middle East in Cambridge, MA on January 16th. Hell Bent and Ritual Blade were also part of the riff ritual and we are pleased to offer you good folks some photographic evidence courtesy of Petra Dollet. Check out the gallery of this awesome night below.

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Pleased to report that there is still more metal and hardcore content to throw your way as we head towards the end of this insane decade. Our new contributing photographer Petra Dollet shot legends Obituary, the hungry False Prophet, respected ragers Extinction AD and the wild High Command for us at the quite recent Palladium Upstairs night of the run and here is a gallery of hate splattered visual impressions for you die-hards RIGHT HERE. Looks like it was an awesome night of heavy antics!

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Top 5 2019 Critical List : Jessica Rae Fisher

Posted by Metal Riot on Monday, December 16, 2019 at 11:20 AM (PST)

Jessica Rae Fisher

The following is the personal list of year end album top 5 favorites from frequent yearly Metal Riot contributor Jessica Rae Fisher, aka Longhairedpoet. Much appreciation to Jessica for your support of the metal scene. \m/

Motionless in White – Disguise

Motionless in White brought the heat this year with Disguise. Chris Motionless brought some disgusting vocals. The stand out track for me was “Thoughts & Prayers.”

Thy Art Is Murder – Human Target

Thy Art is Murder never fail to disappoint and that is no less true this year with Human Target. The album starts with the brutal title track, but the album hinges, for me, around “Death Squad Anthem” and “Make America Hate Again.”

Ashbringer – Absolution

Ashbringer’s Absolution is probably the most “one of these things is not like the other” of my picks for this year, but the soundscapes that the band creates on the album, especially in both parts of “Eternal Separation,” are undeniably amazing. With tracks ranging from just over 7 minutes to 10 minutes 20 seconds, this 1 hour and 8-minute album is a marathon and not a sprint. Let each track envelope you in itself. It’s well worth it.

Counterparts – Nothing Left to Love
“Wings of Nightmares” really brought me into this album. These Hamilton, Ontario, Canadian hardcore metallers won me over this year with their combination of punishing instrumentation and emotive lyrics. Also check out “Paradise and Plague.”


Upon A Burning Body – Southern Hostility
Upon a Burning Body pushed through to stand out this year with Southern Hostility. This follow-up to their 2016 effort Straight From The Barrio has a strong opener in the track “Southern Hostility,” faithful to UABB’s style. Other standout tracks include “King of Diamonds,” “Burn,” and “Soul Searcher.”

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The excellent Incident Report: UC​-​0791227 propelled the one man Gundam-themed death metal machine known as Stormland from British Columbia into the ears of quite a few more death metal minded folks.  Justin from Stormland also performed the music on one of my favorite songs “Miracle Drug” on one of my own albums released this year and is just an awesome dude and supportive, real friend. Homie can also really wail the shit out of a guitar and is growing stronger with each release (“Contact” fucking slaps). This project really has legs to be a cult favorite if the releases continue.  Fallon Bowman and Jacob Frebe even make appearances on the recent EP.

Anyhow, we know Justin lives and breathes music and family and so we thought he would be the perfect choice for our Guest List Year End list this year. Here are my dude’s personal choices for his favorite 5 releases of this dwindling to a close insane year.

Justin’s picks: 

1) Allegaeon – Apoptosis. It continues to blow my mind the leaps that Allegaeon makes from album to album. You can practically hear the “level up” chime whenever the first single for a new release comes out. The songcraft and musicianship are always ace, and both guitarist Mike Stancel and new bassist Brandon Michael shine throughout. Apoptosis is a magnum opus of an album.

2) Babymetal – Metal Galaxy. While far more overtly pop than Metal Resistance, it’s still a strong,strong album. Yes, singles like “Elevator Girl” and “PA PA YA” are strong, but they’re not the stars. Deep cuts like pop radio-ready “Brand New Day” and the powerfully groovy “Kagerou” are where the album shines.

3) Ithaca – The Language of Injury. Beyond proclaiming themselves the new Masters of the Alarm Clock Riff, Ithaca’s debut longplayer is one of the most emotive albums I’ve heard all year. The rage and despair are palpable on songs like the title track and “Better Abuse.” It won’t shock me to see Ithaca become a staple on my personal AOTY lists for years to come.

4) KMFDM – Paradise. This came out of nowhere for me. I was not expecting new KFMDM in this, the year of our Lord, 2019. And yet here we are, and here it is. And it is good. It’s probably the strongest album, front to back, they’ve put out since the 1990s. It will make you smile, it will make you dance, and it will keep you angry at the ongoing fascist creep going on in our world.

Yup, KMFDM, as always, is Antifa.

5) Memoriam – Requiem for Mankind. A tighter album than 2018’s The Silent Vigil, Memoriam knocked a minute or two off the average song length for a leaner and meaner third release. This is death metal the way I likes it: With stomp, a bit of melody, and a sense of constant forward momentum.

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Metal Riot’s Top 15 albums of 2019.

Posted by Morgan Y Evans - Walking Bombs on Wednesday, November 20, 2019 at 5:10 AM (PST)

Immortal Bird deserve to thrive

 

Hi everyone. As usual, I am inclined to post my AOTY list a little on the early side to hopefully get capitalist metal scum to buy more of these masterpieces in advance of the holiday season. I also am very busy doing important shit like going through a hellish move to get away from a slumlord, petitioning Marvel to reinstate Julian MacMahon as Dr. Doom in the MCU , etc. I have also been busy being furious that the entire Metal Riot Twitter account was deleted by vengeful Melanie Martinez and Foxygen stans just because I said that my gf Globelamp and I are not part of a god damn murder plot against stupid Foxygen and that anyone who thinks that is an idiot (FYI: their official twitter tweeted and deleted awhile ago “she tried to kill me and isn’t done”…complete evil nonsense). She has dental records that her teeth were knocked out, geniuses. It wasn’t from no one. The Melanie stans also hated that my gf stood up for the woman who accused Melanie of assault. Everything is wack. Not a good look to support Foxygen, to put it nicely.

Sorry I dropped some F bombs, Twitter! I notice you still have Richard Spencer on there with a god damn turkey emoji dogwhistling Native American genocide, you trash! Sorry I stood up for my abused girlfriend and want some losers to leave us alone. I do apologize to anyone inconvenienced and will continue to do my best to support lots of bands, though I am disgusted by the Twitter platform so not sure I will be replacing the account.

Anyway, it has been an intense year so I sure as hell hope these impeachment hearings gain some traction. Quick shameless plug. I was honored to release two albums this year with my Walking Bombs project via Nefarious Industries, the war, hate and capitalism themed Suicide By Citizenship and the non binary themed Sphinges Sibling Selves and Queens.

I am still in awe of the assembled allies who took part in these albums, from Gridfailure to members of Tad, Caustic Resin/Earth, Cycle Sluts From Hell, Kylesa, All Out War, Globelamp , The Beautiful Bastards and more. I will remain very thankful for years to come for these releases, which helped me express myself during a very hard personal year where my gf and I were battling Foxygen legally and dealing with DARVO. Thank you EVERYONE who checked my records out this year or did a premiere. More to come in 2020!

The following are some of the musical powerful albums by others that really resonated with me the most this year.  Well, I mean they are the ones cloests to the hard rock, metal and punk genres. I also listened to lots of Tamaryn, Kerli and Jenny Lewis, as should you all. Bless you cool cats and let’s all keep the faith, I value you all and thank you for continuing to support the site. In the next few weeks before the end of the year we will also post short lists from other staff and guest artist favorite list contributors to continue our year end celebration. Stay loud and proud! Love, fangs and headbangs, y’all. Today is trans day of remembrance as I write this and let’s make the world brighter.

Read the Year End List BELOW.

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“Going dark” in theatre speak means a show is closed down whereas it is “lit” when the production is up and running. Some things manage to be both lit and embrace the dark at the same time (Kerli’s recent confident electro-spooky wub wubbing  “Where The Dark Things Are” track from the awesome as hell Shadow Works album comes to mind). Tribulation, one of the most darkly theatrical and grandiose yet no nonsense musical bands in any era of metal, certainly also could count as both “lit” and very dark, indeed. You might even call them creatures of the night.

Now Tribulation are unveiling their first official live album, the marvelous new Alive & Dead at Södra TeaternThis is a major moment for this acclaimed band from Sweden who have wowed so many with their deep dives into the inner fears of humanity.  Invited by ex-Nirvana 2002 vocalist and curator Orvar Säfström, who served as master of ceremonies, Tribulation’s first-ever Södra Teatern (Southern Theatre) main hall gig was a very special night of black celebration.

Founding member Adam Zaars took the time to speak to me through mists of swirling terror (actually through email) to attempt to illumine what the chemistry, moment and import of this release means to the frighteningly talented band behind it. Read MORE below.

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