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We’ve got a special video premiere for you hard rock fans today! Two Inch Voices from Florida are here to bring you their big melodic guitar groove rock that Deftones , Quicksand and O9mm fans will eat up. I even hear a little bit of stuff in the guitar work that reminds me of Shift or Seaweed or something like that. The music might be a blend of emotionally searching and aggro, but the video looks like it was a lot of fun. Hey, Florida does have a lot of sunshine so we can understand if the band went for a 311 goes to the MTV Beach House kinda vibe, haha. It’s cold as fuck in NY where I am right now and I wish I was moshing and jumping around a big ass pool!

We spoke to Jeff from the band about the creation of this moment.

TIV is = Gary “Dubbz” Ferguson- Bass/Vocals, Sean McCord- Drums, Jeffery Arnold aka J Laveau- Guitar/Vocals 

What was it like to write “Downstroke”?

Jeff: Writing “Downstroke” was a blast! It started with Gary (Bass/Vocals) and I jamming on acoustics, at his house. Gary started playing this melodic staccato, riff, I knew it was something; 1.Because he’s playing it, 2.Because it moved really well. So we jammed on this for a minute or two. (this part will eventually become the verses.) So Gary asks if I had anything for the chorus, and because the drive of the song is so good, I wanted to keep the momentum going; so I chopped the riff and went full strum. This took the song to a whole other level! I love how larger than life it sounds and feels! It’s as if whatever you were feeling just lifts away. Aaaaand if you couldn’t tell the bridge/ breakdown parts are our Metal/Hardcore roots shining through. I mean who doesn’t love a little Metal or Hardcore in their musical diet? Haha. I mean really.

I digress, but yeah by the end of the night, we had the song structured and recorded. We brought the song to our drummer at the time, recorded the song instrumental; I took it home and wrote lyrics. The first thing that came to me lyrically was the chorus, “We shine/we shine like diamonds, above a blackened time!” Once that was in my head, I knew the rest of the song would write itself. The chorus means more than anything else I say in the song, maybe to me. Because we are all diamonds and sometimes the world can be dark, and extremely brutal, that’s when we have to SHINE and SHINE the brightest.

What was it like to make the video?

Jeff: Oh man, making this video was out of this world FUN! It helped that Gary and I knew what we wanted for the theme, when we finished writing the song. Haha. That throwback vibe! So we had somewhere to start, and it took us a while to get our location though. In our part of Florida, you don’t have many two story homes, and this was real important for the look of the video. After a couple months of searching and talking to people, I finally posted a sort of ad on my timeline; “Looking to borrow a 2 story house for 5 hours, to shoot a music video.” Yes this is what it said. Who’s going to respond to this, right? But what else could I do? This video was going to happen! Sure enough, not even 10 mins later, this very cool cat from the band “Things Nocturnal”, offered to help. Unbelievable! It was just like that. He invited the band over to look at his place, and we set a date to shoot right then and there. When you or anyone watches the video, they’ll see why.

The video team was led by my very good friend, (Producer/Director/Editor/The Man) Ryan Sousa of Film Native in Tampa, Fl, in collaboration with M90 Studios. Ryan and I have been friends for a while; he did Two Inch Voices’ first video “Into Oblivion”, in 2010. So when Gary and I were talking about videos for the new single, it only made sense to introduce Gary to Ryan. After that meeting, we began sharing ideas and really working together to make something wonderful. And I believe we’ve done that. We’ve made something wonderful. 

 

Reverbnation.com/TwoInchVoices
Facebook.com/TwoInchVoices
Instagram: @twoinchvoices
Twitter: @TwoInchVoices

Film Company:
Film Native: www.filmnative.com
Instagram: @filmnative

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High Cost

Formerly known as Septic Rot, the formidable NYC 5 piece now known as High Cost blew me away when I heard the advance promo of the up and coming act’s new forthcoming (Nov. 30th, Tridroid Records) Self-Titled release. It is so effin’ awesome to still get that feeling of excitement from a new band sometimes and to remember bygone days when word of mouth, the back of some zine or trusted sources was the main way to find out about extreme music, be it punk, crust or death metal.

Nowadays the internet allows us to almost know about too much and the process of separating the cream from the crap can feel like wading through seas of white noise at times waiting for a pearl of passion, but rest assured the real DIY scene is still thriving and out there. The cassette version of their debut EP contains 7 tracks on Side A and noise remixes and live recordings on side B. Lyrics deal with mental health struggles and are written by lead singer Kiki.

Honestly this almost made my year end list and was in the top twenty five before I had to trim down to fifteen for my final list. This band has huge potential and remind me of how fired up I was when I first heard cool world engaged bands like Landmine Marathon or Disfear or other ragers.

Check out the stomping intro to “Illusion” before it explodes into raw punk and shreds you to bits at lightning speed and then devolves into an awesome Cro-Magnon stomp and by then you will maybe be smooshed flat but hooked and want more.

Let’s meet the gang! Read more below.

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My favorite albums of 2018 (Jessica Fisher)

Posted by longhairedpoet on Monday, November 26, 2018 at 9:27 AM (PST)

What a year! Calendar years for me, since I still live by a U.S. academic calendar, starts and ends on a “break.” This time last year I hadn’t really ever seen any of the Star Wars movies before, and over winter break last year I watched them all. This time last year I was finishing up my first semester of grad school and this year I’m finishing up my fourth. This time last year I didn’t believe in the idea of Georgia as a purple state, after Stacy Abrams performance in the midterm, I’m more intrigued than I’ve ever been before. I’m hoping to graduate with my Master’s in American Studies in May. When I write this piece next year, I could  be writing it as a PhD student (or an adjunct professor). I’ve made a conscious effort to listen to more new music in general, inside and outside of metal, this year, and it’s been a good experience. You can check out some of my finds and favorites over at my Medium.

My album of the year: Catharsis by Machine Head

Catharsis has been a necessary album for getting through this year. From the opening decree of “Volatile,” “Awww, fuck the world!” to the folk-punk inspired “Bastards” to the 8 minute “Heavy Lies The Crown” to the closing track, “Eulogy,” this mix of personal and political helped me process and work through my own anger and angst at the socio-political realities we find ourselves in.

Check out the rest of my list here.

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Pope Richard

Pope Richard of Blackened Death Records and numerous not so subtle projects (including the controversial and excellent Gaylord, the bleak Suicide Wraith and many more) put out our selection for best comp of the year with the vital Worldwide Organization Of Metalheads Against Nazis II.

Being as polarizing a figure as Richard is usually means you might be an edge lord, but in this case it is refreshingly because Richard is doing so much right. As if writing a song called “Varg Impaled” wasn’t enough of a gift to the scene, Pope Richard also has contributed a guest blogger year end list to us here at Metal Riot this year! Hails and thanks!

Peruse below Richard’s thoughts on 2018’s metal scene, putting out the comp and what the best albums were of the year in their estimation.

It’s mid November and the nights are long and chilly. The days are short and chilly. And I’m in London, so things are /extra/ grey. But as the SADness descends upon us like a wet and fleeting snow, we have heavy metal to warm our hearts and lift our spirits.

2018 was a huge year for metal and all of its subgenres. We have had great releases from death metal bands, black metal acts, doom metal groups, and the immense push of the new wave of anti-fascist heavy metal has /really/ ramped up. For more on that you can check out Blackened Death’s releases “WOMAN” and “WOMAN II” on our Bandcamp. We managed to raise over £2000 between both comps for Doctors Without Borders due to this massive anti-fascist metal community that is pulling together. 2019 is gonna be B I G.

But that’s enough self-aggrandizing – let’s talk about some damn ass heavy metal.

More BELOW.

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My Top 15 Favorite Underground Albums of 2018 (Morgan Y. Evans)

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, November 20, 2018 at 2:33 PM (PST)

 

Hello readers and rioters. Today is Trans Day of Remembrance, honoring those who were killed due to transphobia. I am contemplative and worked hard today but now am resting and wrapping up my year end list. We have several coming over the next few days from all enby or binary trans writers which happens to be the bulk of staff and also (guess what?!) is normal! Yep, there are all kinds of people in the world. Deal with it. 

Anyway, I like to get the lists going around the week of Black Friday so that (ugly yoke of capitalism pandering aside) you or your friends might actually buy something on here for yourself or -gasp- as a gift to others. And yes, naysayers, most writers in music media have heard a slew of Haulix promos months in advance and besides last minute album drops during weeks when most press are already on break in December, rest assured we pretty much might know what we liked already. This year it was HARD to condense because I liked so many albums and some really, really good ones did not make it. I trimmed this in half from thirty, blah blah blah. I am pleased however with the variety of styles I ended up with which reflects a semi-decent range of the underground though also is somewhat slanted towards my tastes, bigly. I really believe in these bands, though. 

I had an intense year. Was part of making an awesome psych folk/indie album with my partner and I am really proud of her and it. Also finished a collab record due out next year with Gridfailure and my solo project Walking Bombs that features some nuts guests like Mike Score (All Out War), Brett Netson (Caustic Resin) and many more amazing people TBA in 2019 (stay tuned). I stopped HRT after a year and am living more non binary than a fully binary transition. Losing my parents house and some other mental health factors led me to decide to be super mindful of my moods right now and I have been mostly successful and am feeling more level than I have in half a decade, thank God. I might in the future take estradiol again but I also lost my father only a few years ago and it weighs on me so I also stopped electrolysis because the resemblance of our faces is one of the last tangible things I have of him. It’s complicated, I don’t know. Love you all though.

But through all that and some other challenges music remained a wonderful blanket and refuge or a brittle, cathartic ice water bath both invigorating and frighteningly emotional as we live under fucking Trump. Let’s NOT ever have as stupid a President again, Ok? This is toxic on a world level. 

Anyhow, here are my favorite top 15 of 2018 for Metal Riot. Support the arts and your friends and say no to the nasties out there. – Morgan Y. Evans

1. My album Of The Year: Soft Kill – Savior

From tragedy comes one of the most elegant and inspiring, beautiful albums you’ll ever hear. Cold and warm completely blur into one emotional high and low and high and low and we’re dancing on glass. Treasure your moments and create fearlessly the art and world you want to live within. Crucial.

Read more top picks below.

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Jørgen Munkeby of Shining is a road warrior and so perhaps his range of experiences has allowed him to learn how to see the humor in the following crappy situation you’ll read about in a second. I had hit him up as part of our preliminary year end coverage to see if he had a
“road story” worth sharing that was funny from this year, considering his band has been tearing it up live in support of awesome new hard rock album Animal. Turns out he had plenty to say but it wasn’t anything a band would usually laugh about. This guy has a good attitude, even when complaining, hahaha.

I’m currently midway on a 6-week release headline tour for Shining’s new album
Animal in Europe. All shows have been great, and it’s been absolutely awesome to see
how well the new songs go down with the audience. We usually open our set with the
songs “Animal” and “My Church”, and from right from the start we see more people singing
along than we’ve ever had in our shows before, which is amazing! But the funniest thing that has happened -or maybe craziest is a more correct word? – is what happened after I broke the neck off my guitar in a show in Marseille, France, last week!

All of the instruments I use, except my saxophone, are pretty new and cheap standard
stuff, because I want to be able to get the same stuff quickly from any store or backline
rental company in case it is delayed by an airline or breaks down on tour. My two guitars
on tour has been a Gibson SG Standard and an Edwards SG guitar, which is basically a
cheap but great Japanese copy of the Gibson SG. The neck of the Edwards guitar
actually broke on the last brutal and physical note on a song during a show in
Netherlands two years ago, but was later repaired.

On the last note of our song “The Madness And The Damage Done” during our Marseille
show last week, I felt that I had been a bit controlled during the whole show because of
a bruised rib I got during a show in Paris a week before. I was missing a little bit of action and physicality,so I decided to make the last note of the song a big and aggressive one, and I raised my guitar high before the note and signaled to the band that we were going to play a heavy ending when I brought the guitar down. But during that heavy downward motion my guitar snapped in two pieces just like it had done two years ago.

Read More BELOW.

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Time falls back: Four October recommendations

Posted by longhairedpoet on Sunday, November 4, 2018 at 12:01 PM (PST)

Another month has passed us by. The time has just fallen back, meaning shorter and darker days are upon us. The situations we’re in seem to get darker, too, with each passing day. If you’re here reading this then you, like me, probably turn to music to deal with the shit going on in the world. The sun continues to rise and set, and for those of us who see it rise and see it set, we have an obligation, a duty, to do our best to make the world suck a little fucking less each and every day. Hopefully these four albums can be your soundtrack for that.

Check out the four albums I enjoy the most this month here.

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By the time the thunderous intro to “Shackled To The Burning Earth” from Denver band Glacial Tomb‘s outrageously good self titled debut (Gilead Media) hammers home with a bigger scowl than Kirk Windstein stubbing his toe, listeners are coming into the home stretch feeling exceptionally rewarded. It is so cool that a handful of bands this year (Un and Forn come right to mind on the ‘extreme’ circuit of underground metal) have managed not only to create great works but to shatter limitations so well that you are too busy experiencing their records as powerful works of art and energy to notice they upended some genre lines. For Glacial Tomb, doom flirting sludge and Gorguts loving death blur into one perfect storm with clouds of melodic guitar cutting through these intense moods like pain-charged lightning gathering around a dark mind. This is an outstanding fucking record I already hold in very high esteem. It should be on everyone’s short list for must purchase in 2018.

More BELOW.

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Scotland’s Bitter Lake is doing things right. The one man black metal project is slowly building up buzz, focusing on releasing cool music rather than hype and improving with each passing moment. I like the cold and methodical yet emotional nature of the project, like impending entropy captured in a burst of constrained, conflicted emotions.

This is an exciting time in metal as a lot of bands are shrugging off genre constraints and finding out who they are for themselves. The left wing black metal coming out is exciting and more than overdue to surpass the tired edgelord tropes of the genre that have always ben laughable if they weren’t so harmful.

Let’s get into the interview with Bitter Lake (who is also running a microphone raffle HERE) and talk about new song “Siberia”, Veganism and more BELOW.

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Fall brings the cool embrace of a life worth living

Posted by longhairedpoet on Sunday, September 30, 2018 at 5:46 PM (PST)

Photo Credit: Spinesplitter

In the eleventh hour, I bring you my September wrap-up. Holy fucking shit September was one hell of a month. Fortunately, the new music has been good inside and outside of metal. Whether you’ve been trying to avoid Supreme Court-Senate-Nomination-Bullshit, or you’ve been raising all the hell about it you can, whether you’ve been working with survivors in an emotional time of need, or doing your best to survive on your own, whether you’ve been writing to cope, or just playing your show to get through – September was rough as shit.

I’m glad to come back at the end of every month, especially on months that this is the only post I write for Metal Riot, and share with y’all what I thought was really cool throughout the month.

Check out the four albums I enjoy the most this month here.

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“Not caring sucks; I’m here for bands that want to talk about what matters to them, what causes they care about, what they’re listening to, whatever. Everybody’s going through it, let’s go through it together.” – W.

Redbait from Missouri declared their intentions clearly within the first few pummeling moments of “We Refuse” on their recent Red Tape EP. The band are loud, clearly pissed and pack a potent political message in this timeline of complete mass stupidity. We need bands who are actively trying to make the world a better place and spreading awareness more than ever. The punk and metal scenes used to be a place where you could find out about dissent and activism and it was encouraged, believe it or not, for bands to use their podium for something other than selling merch or drinking beer on stage. “Smoke In Your Eyes” is one of the more powerful songs I have heard from any band in the underground in the last few years and I am thrilled this group is jumping into the trenches at full speed.

It was a pleasure to break through the thick fog of gullible fact resistant mental soup we are indoctrinated with on the daily and speak to a band who are decidedly intent on upending the bigotry, greed and sexism of our American disgrace. In short, this band is exactly what myself and likely many others who love punk and metal need right now in order to feel like they aren’t completely losing their minds. Read more HERE.

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Stormland is the Gundam-centric death metal brain child of my friend Justin Pierrot. One of the most supportive and friendly people I have met in the Twitter metal-verse, Justin has just released his labor of love Songs Of Future Wars to the unsuspecting masses. He is a creative and enthusiastic individual who cares about the experiences of others and has also been very kind to me in moments of depression, so I thought it would be great to find out more about his own experiences and what led to this brutal yet personal and metaphorical album that is dressed up in stories about giant robot suits.

Read more below.

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JULY’S BEJEWELED DAGGERS: 4 Faves Of The Month (Morgan)

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Wednesday, July 25, 2018 at 5:07 PM (PST)

Hi readers. Since 2018 started Jessica and I have been doing monthly recap lists of whatever four records got our attention the most. This could be a matter of personal taste or something about a work that struck a chord or matched a moment well, but it is less a critical rejection of other works not featured than an embrace of albums that proved themselves the most compelling to me during this July. So take it as one of those “staff recommends this cd” sections you used to see at Rhino Records only much cooler, duh. Very happy to say that everything on this list features performers playing their hearts out.

1. Twilight Fauna’s Where Birds Sing My Name takes the top spot for me this month. The latest from Paul Ravenwood and drummer Josh Thieler of mighty Slaves BC is a beautiful and soul baring effort, dynamic and stouthearted. From straight up banjo songs to arrow sharp black metal that feels like blood is flowing through it rather than pretension and cold-pose, this is a fitting companion to The Year the Stars Fell. The Green and yellow splatter vinyl is too dope to comprehend with my mortal mind. We are lucky to have this project in our metal midst to remind people that records handled with personal reverence can still move mountains and bring oxygen to fatigued forms.

2. Berlin’s Maggot Heart are honestly so fucking cool I can’t take it. The new record Dusk To Dusk was almost my number one pick of the month but my heart succumbed to my East Coast loyalty that Twilight Fauna instilled. But yeah, Linnéa Olsson is so talented and chill and her latest record with her post The Oath + Grave Pleasures outfit is perfect anarchic post punk with a low key metallic sting that should make most American rock bands feel fucking hella embarrassed in comparison for the weak crap they are putting out. The songwriting on this is unreal, especially the manic “Medication” and galloping “Blood Envy” coming to mind as just phenomenal tunes. Recorded in Stockholm in 2017, it cements the potent creative bond with drummer Uno Bruniusson (mainly of the much missed In Solitude fame). I can’t recommend enough surrendering to this record and letting the modern world’s stresses seem like they can be relieved and defeated by the spooky and catchy but semi-detached vocals, rolling and thundering but kind of punk drums and absolutely alive guitar and bass performances. I bought this faster than anything that came out all year. Please please please support them cuz I need them to stick around.

3. With all due respect to Ordinary Corrupt Human Love and some of the other moving or ambitious records out this month that did not make my July list, Mutilation Rites going more death metal was a no brainer for me. And I mean no brainer in a zombies ate all the brains but still want more cuz they are in a death metal frenzy type of no brainer. Chasm from Gilead Media and the NYC scuz rebels of Mutilation Rites continues the bands feedback and buzzsaw /slow burn attempt to become Hades’ official house band. “Pierced Larynx” gives me intense feels of glorious dread and death dirge. It has a more punk rooted crusty underbelly amidst the slower Exhumed and blackened talons in your throat vibes. The monumentally metal drums that pound through the intro to “Post Mortem Obsession” that set up the roaring chaos to follow had me in awe. 6 songs but all fairly lengthy and they all slap. Like Hooded Menace or Black Cobra, the band keep the core elements of what makes them work but tweak their approach slightly with each outing just enough to keep it fresh but familiar. It is intense but not to the point of being silly, just vital and brilliant. This was my fave DM album of the month, all very due respect to Coffin Birth .

4. Birds In Row’s We Already Lost The World takes my fourth and final spot on the list for July. I feel like it is an important record people will remember in years to come. It has a post hardcore infused edgy and kinetic insistence that many albums fail to manufacture, cuz you can’t fake that shit. This French band, currently already supporting fucking Neurosis and Converge, have long term potential and most importantly great songs. “Love Is Political” is just a great song name and the song tears at scabs. “We vs. Us” reminds me of some of what I love most about Cave In and Modern Life Is War in one unexpected fell swoop. Personal War made a buzz but this is gonna take them to the next level. I don’t know how to sum up adequately the mixture of transcending pain the music and artwork stirs up, but this is well worth checking out and surrendering to the barely hopeful cacophony of.

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June Wrap-up: My 4 favorite albums this month

Posted by longhairedpoet on Saturday, June 30, 2018 at 2:35 PM (PST)

It’s been sunshine and metal time this June. If you haven’t had a chance to hear the four albums that make my list this month, you’re going to want to go and check them out!

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June wrap up: 4 favorite records of the month (Morgan)

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 3:58 PM (PST)

Hey everyone. June has been a completely crazy month but there was a lot of brilliant stuff released. Let’s get right to it and look at my four favorite releases of June 2018 Below.

Gruesome takes top spot for me this month. The cover art for Twisted Prayers is so damn metal and also summarizes the complete disgust I feel for the so called God fearing power hungry fascist monsters trying to turn us into zombies in a new crusades.

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