A “fever shed” or “pest house” was a type of building used for quarantining persons with communicable diseases in the 18th century and well into the 20th. Though some inhabitants of these houses received treatment, many were left to perish within these structures. It is only fitting that Seattle noise makers Great Falls chose The Fever Shed as the title of their most sickening full-length to date. Instead of plague-stricken individuals, an abyss of psychosis and neuroses can be found in Great Falls‘ fever shed. Upon entering The Fever Shed, the listener will want to escape the chaos and insanity but will be too enthralled by what they are experiencing to even budge.
Although the band has been active for a little while now, Kowloon Walled City didn’t make huge waves in the heavy music community until the release of Container Ships in 2012. While its predecessor, Gambling on The Richter Scale, was a fine piece of forward-thinking sludge metal, it was Container Ship‘s pairing of towering sludge and noise rock aesthetic and its crisp yet punishing production that it made it a favorite among metal fans and music journalists alike. The album was a unique take on the sludge and doom genres and left everyone that came in contact with it craving more. Afterwards, the Californians went into hiding to craft and perfect the follow-up to their critically-lauded sophomore LP. Kowloon Walled City finally emerged from their studio lair this year to unleash Grievances, their long-awaited third full-length and product of nearly three years of writing. Grievances takes the foundation of Container Ships and creates something new yet familiar out of it. With this new recording, the San Francisco quartet continues to be ahead of the game.
In Greek mythology, Moros is one of the offspring of Nyx, the goddess of the night. He is said to be the personification of doom and his duty is to lead mortals to their ghastly end. It’s eerily fitting for Seattle experimenters Eye of Nix to use “Moros” as their debut full-length’s title, considering its sole purpose is to drive listeners to their deadly fate. Through genre-bending, sprawling passages of aural witchcraft, Moros leaves the adventurous metal fan in a constant state of awe and unaware as they plummet towards death.
If there is one thing that separates Cult Leader from most other bands out there, it’s how much of an inspiration they are; not only as a sonic force, but as an example of triumphant reinvention. Following the infamous dissolution of Gaza in 2013, three-quarters of the band opted to start from scratch and regroup as Cult Leader. Michael Mason, Casey Hansen and Anthony Lucero recruited bassist Sam Richards and they hit the ground running – signing with Deathwish, releasing stellar aggressive music and touring extensively. Their story is well-known by now, but what’s important to note is that it’s a transition that not many bands survive, let alone while gaining the amount of support that Cult Leader have managed to attain so quickly. Their success is impressive and rightfully earned, to say the least.
France has become (or maybe it always has been) a breeding ground for some of the most forward-thinking and devastating heavy music out there today. Bands like Death Engine, Cowards, Warsawwasraw and Nesseria have all released tremendous albums in the past few years. The country continues its onslaught of solid releases with See God; the debut full-length from Parisian hardcore outfit Lodges. See God follows the band’s 2013 EP, Walking On Hands and Knees, and while it may not differ drastically stylistically from its predecessor, it is without a doubt more aggressive
Imagine that the prehensile appendage of some unseen, Lovecraftian creature wraps around your ankles and pulls you through an interdimensional portal into a realm far worse than Hell. You are dragged, writhing in terror, through corridors of darkness where malformed beings grasp at and pick away at your flesh. This is a realm where your worse fears and anxieties are manifested and heightened. A place that acts as an intense fever dream of which there is no waking. A place where death is the only release from relentless psychological torture. This is where you are transported to while listening to Imperial Triumphant‘s Abyssal Gods. Through the use of mangled instrumentation, haunting atmospheres and a modern black metal foundation, this New York musical act creates one of the more unsettling and simultaneously awe-inspiring metal releases of the year. It’s an intensely claustrophobic record that only the most masochistic metal fans will enjoy.