Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Brutally Short #3: Sloth, Dragged Into Sunlight/Gnaw Their Tongues, Morier, Bloodlust, Demenseed

Sloth - Slow as Shit (self produced)
Dragged Into Sunlight / Gnaw Their Tongues - N.V. (Prosthetic)
Morier - Two (self produced)
Bloodlust - Cultus Diaboli (Iron Blood and Death Corporation)
Demenseed - Granite Forest (self produced)

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Exclusive Interview - Kevin Starrs (Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats)

This past Saturday, I made my way down to Wrigleyville in Chicago to catch up with Kevin Starrs, frontman of the UK's Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats. I was lucky enough to see them live at their very first U.S. performance at Marlyand Deathfest XII two years ago. But considering that they are still relatively new to touring the states and their new album "The Night Creeper" is fantastic, all signs pointed to seeing them play live again as being a good move. In the short but sweet interview I had with Kevin, we chatted about the band's current tour, Uncle Acid's sound and imagery, and the band's anonymity.

Check out the interview after the break!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Scale The Summit - V

While instrumental music in the overarching realms of rock and metal over the past decade or so has given birth to some truly phenomenal bands, it's easy to cave by classifying these bands as simply "instrumental". If you asked a metal fan who some of their favorite instrumental bands are, it might not be a surprise to hear them mention bands as stylistically divergent as Animals As Leaders and Explosions in the Sky in the same breath. One band which has woven a unique patch in this instrumental tapestry, however, is Scale the Summit. The band's technical prowess blended with warm and organic rhythms has cemented them a spot in the upper echelon of the current progressive metal scene. Without fail, Scale the Summit reveals a new depth of complexity and honing of craft with each release. SPOILER ALERT: Their newest release, V, is the band's fifth album (shocker), which takes the listener through familiar, yet welcome territory. Like a mixing pot with their four previous albums thrown in, V represents a cumulative pinnacle for Scale the Summit.

Horrendous - Anareta

Horrendous are a death metal band that seemingly came from nowhere and have brought forth a strong resurgence of death metal new and old from the northeast. Their debut The Chills was a fine slab of death metal that hinted at things to come and then Ecdysis changed things up and unleashed the fury and power of death metal riffing that could easily be found somewhere within 1991. Luckily merely a year later they have blessed us with Anareta, which changes things once more and shows the band evolving on the songwriting front as well. Well how does it stack up against the others?

Friday, September 11, 2015

Concert Review - Foo Fighters Live at Wrigley Field

There's something about growing up with a popular band, hearing their singles on the radio, watching as their lead singer becomes a ubiquitous media presence, that sort of makes you take them for granted.  You begin to lose sight of everything you love about them, and start focusing on the things you don't.  They change, or try something new, and resentment grows.  It happens in every relationship.  I've been a Foo Fighters fan for going on fifteen years, and I'll admit to having those feelings.  "Is this really one of my favorite bands?" "Are they even trying anymore?"  "Why does Dave Grohl always talk about his love for metal despite only making ONE fucking Probot album?!?"  It just seems it's a part of human nature to focus on the negative parts of things you hold so dear.  Fortunately, sometimes there are moments that grab hold of you by the ears, pull you in close, and scream in your face "YOU'RE A FUCKING MORON; YOU KNOW YOU LOVE THIS SHIT AND THIS IS WHY!!!!"  Grohl and his fellow fighters of foo's concert at historic Wrigley Field two Saturdays ago was just such a moment.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Ghost - Meliora

When previously unknown and enticingly anonymous Ghost debuted in 2010 with the critically lauded Opus Eponymous, the heady idea of artistic progression was evident from the word Satan. The rhythmic hooks, confidently creepy vocals and firm reimagining of vintage hard rock blended seamlessly with the on-the-nose satire evident in each verse and chorus. The incorporation of keys, organs and subtle choral elements smoothed the edges. It was the feeling of it all, however, that made Opus the most confounding hit of that calendar year. Nobody could figure it out, and yet the joke was an inclusive one. It was the artistic equivalent of diverting the attention of your judgmental grandparents, who sort of once listened to Blue Oyster Cult and Jimi Hendrix, away from your black t-shirt with an upside down crucifix by telling them you understood the 70s better than them.

Fast forward five years. Ghost have released their third full-length Meliora, and now, for the first time, the joke of infernal comedy is on us, and it is wonderful.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Exclusive Interview - Eric Schnee (Organ Dealer)

Heavy metal is alive and well in the state of New Jersey; take for example Northern New Jersey's Organ Dealer. Their vicious deathgrind takes the listener and slams their face into the pavement. Luckily their drummer Eric Schnee did no such thing to me on the pavement across the street from their recent show at The Clash Bar in Clifton, NJ. Being the nice dude that he is we talked about the influence of Jon Chang on his style and subsequent band they played in, the New Jersey scene and just metal in general. Have a listen to the calm before the storm.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Brutally Short #2: Sadistic Ritual, Undergang, Chelsea Wolfe, Hope Drone, Organ Dealer

Reviews for Brutally Short #2:

Sadistic Ritual - Edge of the Knife (Unspeakable Axe)
Undergang - Døden Læger Alle Sår (Dark Descent)
Chelsea Wolfe - Abyss (Sargent House)
Hope Drone- Cloak of Ash (Relapse)
Organ Dealer - Visceral Infection (Horror Pain Gore Death)

Check out the reviews after the break!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Exclusive Interview - Steve Von Till (Neurosis)

The other night, Mick and I were able to sit down with Steve Von Till, singer and guitarist for music legends Neurosis.  It's been a few days, but I still can't fully comprehend that this interview actually happened; Neurosis needs no introduction around these parts, and for my money they are the most influential band in heavy music over the past 30 years they've been a band.  We spoke with Steve about the band's longevity, how they manage to continually produce consistently excellent material, and some changes he would make to elementary curriculum if given the chance.  Check it out below, and be sure to catch Neurosis on their current US Tour, their first major tour in the country since the turn of the century.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Lychgate - An Antidote For The Glass Pill

Black metal can be an enigmatic beast; from it's Norwegian origins to USBM to anywhere else in the world, it varies from band to band and continent to continent. Enter the UK's Lychgate and their 2nd full length, An Antidote For The Glass Pill; a thoroughly horrifying album in the best way possible. Organs are a major piece to this quintet's sound and they at times can sound like a more mysterious Mr. Bungle. The overarching atmosphere is that of say playing some of the original Resident Evil games without a strategy guide; never knowing what lurks around the corner.