The Brooklynites Tiger Flowers have been making quite a stir in New York in recent years. The metallic hardcore outfit is slowly becoming a household name in Brooklyn, and is really starting to garner attention abroad. Partnering with Deathwish, Inc and Melotov Records for the release of their debut full length is sure to rake in more potential listeners and hopefully get the band the recognition they deserve. Dead Hymns is the name of that aforementioned full length and it is 31 minutes of blistering chaos, grumpy riffing, and emotionality.
There is very little you can do to prepare yourself for the disorienting madness that is Pyrrhon. You could study the technical death and experimental metal greats for hours on end, but you may still find yourself at a loss for words. The New York experimental metal quartet have unleashed an utterly polarizing, 54 minute behemoth that is sure to perplex and mesmerize those who allow it to enter their ear canals. The Mother of Virtues is proof that there are still boundaries to be pushed and areas left to explore in metal.
When it comes to metalcore, upbeat riffing with clean singing and deathcore chugging…I usually do my eye roll and move on to the next album submission. Yet, Quebec’s The Prestige is something I can not only listen to and tolerate….but somewhat enjoy.
As far as instrumental rock is concerned, Scotland’s Mogwai have always been in the upper echelon. The band’s continuing stylistic evolution helps them distance themselves from your average post-rock categorized band. Album after album, Mogwai add something new to their musical repertoire and create a full length that is alien and familiar at the same time. 2011′s Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will represented yet another new chapter for the band. Compared to 2008′s The Hawk is Howling, the instrumentation was more on the subdued side, but without sacrificing any of the band’s lavish songwriting. The bursts of heavy guitar mastery were replaced, for the most part, by bright selections of melody and driving, alternative rock rhythms. It was a little different but something you would expect to hear Mogwai do. With this year’s Rave Tapes, the band takes a step in a slightly new direction. Forget what you heard on Hardcore Will Never Die, because Rave Tapes is a new animal all together.
In this review Profane Existence, one the most trusted names in crust/d-beat, were kind enough to furnish me with preview copies of their 2013 Limited Edition Singles Series. With 12 7″s of some the best crust, d-beat, powerviolence, grind,Oi!, and even some folk punk; your ears will sure to never find themselves bored with this eclectic mix of all things punk.
Born out of the ashes of The United Sons of Toil, Tyranny is Tyranny is a Wisconsin rock quartet whose music is stylistically simpler and heavier than their previous incarnation. Named after a chapter in the late Howard Zinn’s classic A People’s History of the United States, Tyranny is Tyranny take their political platforms and rage against capitalism and filter them a heavy rock filter. Let It Come from Whom It May is the band’s first foray into punishing sound and hopefully will not be their last.
The drone lords have brought us another gem in the Atlanta-based blackened noise duo Outer Gods, who have recently released their debut album Light Dims Eternal out now via Domestic Genocide. Continue reading →
The Chicago experimental tyrants Locrian never want to make it easy for you. Never expect anything from this band because they will always surprise you. Their music is a intimidating chimera of sorts, drawing sounds from all over the musical spectrum and creating a beast that demands attention and will not unhook its claws from you until the final moments have been exhausted. Their previous full length The Clearing and collaboration with Mamiffer, Bless Them That Curse You, were just like that for me. Their distinctive, ever changing sound took a hold of me and kept me entranced in their gaze. So one would expect, and be correct of course, that Locrian’s new album is just as awe-inspiring. Return to Annihilation is an expansive exercise in creativity and further allows Locrian to defy expectations and categorization.
When Alice in Chains announced they were working on new material back around 2008 with new vocalist William DuVall, a lot of people were skeptical including me. I pondered how will Alice in Chains sound after over a decade between albums and with someone other than the late great Layne Staley on vocals. 2009’s Black Gives Way to Blue shattered all denial for me and confirmed that after all of these years the band still had it. I can’t necessarily compare DuVall era Alice to Staley era Alice since they are both their own respective entities. Black Gives Way to Blue showed us a band that did not want to reunite just revel in their former glory; it showed us a hard working band who is interested in moving forward. Four years later Alice in Chains give us The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here; the fifth full length album from the band. This highly anticipated record had a lot riding on it since it being the follow up to a pretty solid comeback album. So is The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here a big step forward or two steps back?
Ever since 2007’s Precambrian, Germany’s The Ocean have developed an affinity for the conceptual album. Every subsequent album since Precambrian has explored a certain set of themes which would ultimately add to that particular album’s depth. But now The Ocean has reached new depths with their new record, literally. Pelagial, the group’s highly anticipated sixth studio effort pulls the listener down into the depths of the ocean and the recesses of the human psyche. This may be The Ocean’s most ambitious, musically and conceptually, album to date and one listen to this thing can attest to that.
Within moments of this album’s beginning you can smell the thick, nostril flaring smog that would billow from the smoke stacks of some environmentally unsafe factory. A factory that resides within the ruins of a crumbling city whose own citizens brought about its own corruption and destruction. You see, Batillus’s Concrete Sustain possesses a sound reminiscent of collapsing buildings within a post-apocalyptic metropolitan city. Please put on your hard hat before listening to this one.
Back in 2010, Intronaut brought the metal world the densely textured progressive heavyweight that is the critically lauded Valley of Smoke. The sludge-metal inspired grumbles of Void and Prehistoricisms were greatly expanded into vast musical feats full of cinematic progressive rock inspired moments with nice post-metal like creamy centers. Valley of Smoke is considered by some as Intronaut’s magnum opus because of the new explorative sound they indulged themselves in. But Intronaut are not done excavating the musical ruins of old to find new sounds to incorporate into their own as their new full length album Habitual Levitations demonstrates. On their fourth full length Intronaut further showcase their impeccable qualities as talented songwriters.