Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Exclusive Interview - Katherine Shepard (Sylvaine)

 If you've been looking for an alternative to Alcest on your shoe-gazey/dream-poppy/black-gazey/what-ever-the-hell-the-hip-term-is-now-ey black metal playlist, Sylvaine is the perfect cure for that itch. Masterminded by Katherine Shepard, the solo project boasts opulent soundscapes that are just as beautiful and endearing as they are introspectively morose. Through the modern marvel of our time that is "The Internet", I was able to have a chat with Katherine about everything related to the project's beginnings through her latest album, Wistful. It was a fun conversation that brings to light her musical upbringing and the evolution of her tastes.

Along with a track from her new album, listen in on the conversation we had after the break!

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Morningside - Yellow


The soft and bittersweet consonance of post-rock, the droning of depressive doom metal, and progressively-minded arrangements are three elements that shouldn't sonically "play nice" on paper. Moscow's own The Morningside shows with their latest album, Yellow, that not only can the aforementioned elements co-exist in the same thought but that they also can be separate components that make a much greater whole, one that is truly unique.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Ghoul - Dungeon Bastards

Do you want over the top? Carcass worship? Horror movies? If you said yes to all of the above then you will absolutely love Dungeon Bastards; Ghoul's fifth album and first in five years. The band who also moonlights as Necroticism loving band Impaled, have been using Ghoul as their main vehicle for some time now and will be shedding blood with Carcass, Crowbar, and Night Demon in the near future. The band's previous album Transmission Zero was a bit of a disappointment for those who were expecting them to continue along the path established with their classic Splatterthrash.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Revocation - Great Is Our Sin

When it comes to advanced technicality, Revocation are certainly one of the most popular bands that comes to mind. There have been mostly highs and a few lows in the band's catalog, with one particular low being their self-titled release three years ago. With Deathless only a year later, hope was restored to the band's faithful following; a technical album with hooks and some super album art to boot. Great Is Our Sin was then given to us 2 years later and it is primed to be Revocation's magnum opus, but is it really?

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The Granulating Durftanic Mills: Random Musings on Carcass, After Shows, and Chicago Metal Festivals I Did Not Attend

On any given day, I have a lot of thoughts, most of which are incoherent nonsense like "Who picks up more chicks/dudes: killer whale trainers or helicopter pilots?" (orca trainers, hands down).  Occasionally these thoughts slip into coherent nonsense, which is an interesting and scary change of pace; interesting because it's nice to think about things, and scary because I have this blog with which to share my musings with the world, where they will remain online forever and undoubtedly become the basis of future societies.  On with the thoughts!

Friday, July 15, 2016

Russian Circles - Guidance

Chicago native instrumental act Russian Circles has always demonstrated the rare, almost contradicting dynamic of keeping their musical output interesting while keeping their formula relatively simple. Behind the thick bass grooves of Brian Cook, the varied guitar stylings of Mike Sullivan, and the stupidly-tight drum work of Dave Turncrantz, the band has managed to keep each release equally unique while also maintaining a pleasant familiarity. Guidance is certainly no exception to this trend. By dichotomizing the volumetric peaks and valleys of their sound, Guidance serves as a prime example of how seamlessly the band can weave the ominous with the tranquil and everything else in-between on the emotional spectrum.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Hammers of Misfortune - Dead Revolution

Hammers of Misfortune continue to tow the line for so many great metal bands; Slough Feg's affinity for all things Celtic, the keyboards of ELP and Yes, and the absolute storm of guitar work which pays homage to Queen's Brian May's harmonics, then puts them over the top. It has been 5 years since their spectacular 17th Street was released and not a moment too soon. Dead Revolution continues where the band left off; making music for everyone in the rock spectrum, that just so happens to be metal. The band has been busy with many side projects such as Vhol and Vastum as well as adding a new bassist and a drummer in the interim. So how does this all shake out into one package?

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Podcast #7: "The Lost Episode Avenged"

In this episode of the Brutalitopia podcast, as the title suggests, Mick, Durf, and Tom are joined by "former" guest Keith Spillett. The mastermind behind The Tyranny of Tradition, Keith takes the crew on a journey through the inner workings of The Tyranny of Tradition, baseball, guilty pleasure bands, and dozens of other side-tangents.

Listen in after the break!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Noire - The Tracks of the Hunted

Noire is a self-described progressive black metal band from Winnipeg, Manitoba, and until recently, I had never heard of them (this was rectified, as most of my musical ignorances are, by the good folks at No Clean Singing, at which point I immediately fell in love with the cover art).  Shortly thereafter, the band's new EP The Tracks of the Hunted showed up in the ol' Töp inbox, and I gave it a listen.  I then immediately wished it was 40 degrees colder, overcast, with a frigid arctic wind chilling me to the bone, because that weather would fit the music on The Tracks of the Hunted so much better than this silly summer sunshine.

Friday, July 8, 2016

We'll Do It Live Fridays: Pelican - "March to the Sea"

I may have mentioned that I work in construction.  After a full week of hearing everyone on a job site (myself included) screaming "motherfucker" this, "cocksucker" that, and various other epithets, obscenities, vulgarities, threats, and general nonsense, it's nice to kick back with some music that is blissfully word-free.  Plus it's never not a perfect time for Pelican, and this song owns.  Enjoy your weekends, folks.