Friday, July 2, 2021

Durf's Weekly Workout # 23: July 2nd, 2021

Well holy cow, it's July already!  This year is going by much, much quicker than last year, which is a huge relief.  If you've been with us for a bit, you know that for my first post in April I did a baseball-themed sort of quarterly recap, and I said then that you should expect similar posts in July and October.  Well, as we've established, it's July, so I think you know what lies ahead.  So without further ado, play ball! 


Cy Young

Panopticon - ...And Again Into the Light

I tried really, really, really hard to be objective about this album, to the point where on my first listen, I found myself nitpicking, really reaching hard to find flaws; I reached a point where I had to shake my head and admonish myself, because my desire to be objective about my favorite band had reached a point where I felt like I was actively trying to dislike ...And Again Into the Light.  Which is pretty stupid; I love writing this blog, but I honestly give zero fucks about whether or not people think I have, like, critical integrity or whatever (Ed. Note: Uh...).  Either way, I got my head on straight and kept listening, and ...And Again Into the Light is another masterpiece from Panopticon.  It's a different kind of album for Austin Lunn, while still being easily identifiable as his work, but the changes and tweaks all work.  Honestly, after a number of repeat listens, the only issue I have is that the vocals are a little too buried in the mix, which is an admittedly stupid thing to complain about in a black metal album.  So yeah, my favorite band made my favorite album of Q2.  ...And Again Into the Light is available now on Bindrune Recordings.


 Honorable Mentions: Dödsrit - Mortal Coil, Har - Dordeduh


Musk Ox - Inheritance

This one was another no brainer, albeit without the ridiculous handwringing that accompanied Panopticon.  Musk Ox is an instrumental trio composed of a violin, a cello, and a classical guitar, and I'm nowhere near good enough a writer to put into words how awesome they are.  Inheritance is somber, melancholy, joyful, intense... it's honestly an album that you feel as much as hear, and much like ...And Again Into the Light, it just keeps getting better with every listen.  There have been multiple moments every time I've listened to Inheritance that have made me shake my head and audibly say "Wow," and if you are unfamiliar or have passed on listening to Musk Ox, you should correct that immediately.  Inheritance will be released next Friday, July 9th.


 Honorable Mentions: CROWN - The End of All Things, Manchester Orchestra - The Million Masks of God

Rookie of the Year

Fiat Nox - The Archive of Nightmares

Playing black metal, but with a lot of doomy influences, Fiat Nox is the second consecutive German band to take home my quarterly Rookie of the Year award after Kanonenfieber.  While there could be some recency bias at play (The Archive of Nightmares came out last week, which is the first time I heard it), I don't think that's the case.  Fiat Nox has crafted something extremely unsettling and haunting, using Cascadian black metal-esque soundscapes, rapid fire drums, and these riffs that are clearly black metal riffs but almost feel like funeral doom chords that were sped up five-fold.  The Archive of Nightmares is a very cool, very unique-sounding album, and I'm very excited to see where Fiat Nox goes from here.  The Archive of Nightmares is available now through Crawling Chaos Records

And now back to your regularly scheduled workout posts!


Heavy Temple - Lupi Amoris

I switched things up a few weeks ago and began starting my weeks with leg day instead of pushing it off to Tuesday or Friday, and honestly it's made a huge difference.  Leg day has always been something of a struggle for me, because I am a stereotypical basic, but over the past year I've really started getting into it and enjoying it more than I ever have before.  So I figured I'd start my week with legs and shoulders, and I really think it's been a boon to my subsequent workouts throughout the week.  Sure, trying to do a shitload of burpees during a HIIT workout on Tuesday is a little rough, but there's a weird feeling of achievement that pushes me, a feeling like I've already done the hardest part, so I can definitely handle the rest of the week.  It's like I'm a tree, and my legs are the trunk, and after the trunk does squats, the branches and leaves feel like they can sway in the breeze even harder.  Yeah, that analogy makes no sense, but it's been 105+ all week and my brain is melted.  Anyway, Heavy Temple sound like the sexy offspring of Khemmis and Baroness, and Lupi Amoris is just a whole lot of sludgy riffs-driven fun.  They have that classic "heavy metal" sound, but it sounds fresh and exciting.  Definitely a great soundtrack for a leg day.  Lupi Amoris is out now on Magnetic Eye Records.


Witch Vomit - Abhorrent Rapture

Just absolutely grimy, filthy death metal that worms its way into your brain and makes you feel like you need a dozen showers to get clean.  When paired with 70 degree temps at 4am and a raucous HIIT workout, the resulting mix of sweat covering your body is sticky enough to get you thrown out of a baseball game instantly (if you know, you know; if you don't... god I envy you).  Witch Vomit surprise released Abhorrent Rapture, and it seemed like a lot of people were really excited; I was not one of those people, because I am a fool, but I am now incredibly excited and happy that this album is here in the world.  Seriously, I felt like a gross, sweaty mess after listening to this; I put a towel down on the dining room chair because I thought I would foul it up so much the Durfette would be upset.  Abhorrent Rapture is out now on the indomitable 20 Buck Spin.


Dodskold - Ödesriket

Ice-cold black metal, Dodskold takes the fury and rapid-fire pace of all these First- and Second-Wave worshipers and then adds actual production so that it sounds like something you actually want to listen to.  Ödesriket is a tremendous ride from start to finish, and I really don't want to take anything away from it, but throughout this workout I just kept wondering how many other black metal bands are keeping themselves from sounding this good out of some ridiculously misguided attempt at sounding "kvlt" or "raw."  It's silly; Dodskold manages to sound incredibly evil and icy while still allowing the listener to differentiate between guitars or hear a rhythm section.  Novel concept, well-executed.


Bog Mönster - Hell is Full

I'm pretty sure I've covered Hell is Full in a previous DWW, but I waited until after work for this HIIT workout, and it was hot as balls and I couldn't land on anything new.  Bog Mönster's EP is absolutely a perfect ripper for getting through a physically demanding half hour in 100 degree temps.  This is easily one of my favorite EPs from the year, as well as one of my favorite workout albums of the year.  And it's only 24 minutes long, so if you haven't listened to it yet, what are you waiting for?


I can't lie to you guys: I did not work out today.  I slept like absolute shit last night, so when my alarm went off, I just wasn't having it.  And I know what you're thinking, "Dude, Durf, just write down some stuff about whatever you listened to today and we won't know the difference; it's not like you talk about your workouts every day anyway."  And you're right, except for the fact that I didn't listen to anything today.  Driving the kids to daycare and to work, I listened to the radio.  And not even, like, rock radio; I listened to Jack FM.  I heard The Outfield's "Your Love" back to back with The Wallflowers' "One Headlight," and I didn't even mind.  Those are good songs.  So yeah, no workout, no planned music, so head into your weekend with the luscious vocals of Jakob Dylan to guide you.

Well, that's the week.  There is literally no chance that when Mick asked me to write for this blog almost ten years ago he had any idea that I would get The Wallflowers some screen time.  What a world.  Hope everyone has a great and safe Fourth of July Weekend!  

- Durf

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