Saturday, January 31, 2009

Live Review: Jan 23, '09 Fuck The Facts w/ Titan, Rozea Haven @ AKA Autonomous Social Centre in Kingston, ON

There is something about small venues that is just better than larger ones. So when I found out how small AKA Autonomous Social Centre ( hereafter referred to as ASC) was, I got excited. When I got there and saw how small it was, I was, as the kids say, pretty stoked. Not that the lineup itself didn't have me pumped already. The ASC is quite literally, a house. The main floor consisted of the concert area, a "beverage" area and a patio. Upstairs, I believe housed at least a dozen people. In like, 1600 sqft, TOTAL. Living room venue = awesome. Needless to say, once you packed 50-60 people, a stage and 3 bands worth of gear into a 15x30 room, it gets a little intimate.

I had come right from the tattoo shop so I was in no hurry to start rubbing up against a bunch of amped up kids, so I planted myself at stage left, right by the front door. (shorts, bad choice) I could see the whole show without a) irritating my fresh ink and b) getting molested by the drunk ass (at least. probably more) chick in the Holly Springs Disaster t-shirt. Anyway, enough setup. On to the show.

First up was local band, Rozea Haven. I've seen these guys a few times now. They haven't disappointed me yet. Nothing groundbreaking about them but they are very skilled at their respective instruments. Stylistically, I'd say death metal with a bit of melody. Not In Flames type melodic death metal, but it's not all blastbeats, and it's not all fancy guitar work. The guitar work is there, it's just not the driving force. It's more of a group effort. I was very impressed with the bass player. Envious would probably be a better word. Performance wise, they have some work to do. Pretty much a "stand there and play" band. I couldn't see the drummer that well from where I was but I did see Jesse the vocalist move around a bit. Granted, the venue was tiny and full so they didn't have much room to work with, but they were no different than when I've seen them before. All in all, they got the crowd going, my ears ringing and I would show up early to see them again.

Titan!! The fist thing I need to say about Toronto's Titan is: Amp-gasm!!! Every amp they had was awesome. Orange, Emperor and Ampeg (from what I could see). You had me at Orange. I know. The 2 bass cabinets were almost as tall as I am. Each. Titan is one of those bands I have a real hard time categorizing. Crust-core? Like Black Ships (Chris on guitar was wearing a Black Ships shirt actually) or Javelina or something like that. It's got the agression and vocal delivery of hardcore but it's much rawer, grittier, dirtier, crustier, sludgier and longer. Their sound is, in a word, titanic. Pun intended. Huge sound with that heavy bottom end. The place was even fuller by the time they hit they stage but they did more with less room. It was very obvious that Titan are pros. Every member of the band had their own presence. Their performance was great and very tight. It was really too bad they were limited to a half hour set. They have been here before, and I think the organizer was really impressed with them so hopefully they will come back soon! They were worth the $10 themselves.

Last but not least, Fuck The Facts. What do you get when you mix a small ass venue, too many drunk and/or amped up kids, and an avant-garde grind band with the word "fuck" in their name? Pure.Fucking.Chaos. That place exploded!! A couple of the guys "working" the show had to hold the masses back to pretect not only the equipment, but Mel, the knee-high to a grasshopper, 90 lbs soaking wet screaming her ass off frontwoman. How sounds like that can come from such a person is beyond me. She's tough too. Whenever there was a breach in the defenses, she'd fight 'em back without missing a beat. And she kept looking directly at me for some reason. Either she thought I was creepy looking, funny looking or hot. My money's on creepy. FtF put on one hell of a show. Such a small venue is prefect for their brand of grind. Loud, fast and sweaty! They'd pause just long enough between songs for the guy behind me to yell "Yeah!! Fuckin' right!! Whooooo!!!! Play Shitluck!!! (or something like that)" Pretty damn annoying, pretty damn quick. I only saw one guy leave bleeding during the set, but he came back. They tore that place apart and left no prisoners. Can't ask for any more than that!! Other than, come back!

Friday, January 30, 2009

I forgot one!

Early Man - Beware The Circling Fin: Typical Early Man. Not as good as Closing In but better than most new heavy thrash inspired metal. Mike Conte's voice is kind of "off" on this but dude can shred. This EP reminds me alot of Megadeth. Alot. In a good way. It was a nice filler/teaser until a full length comes out. Closing In was released in 2005 so I am jonesin in a pretty big way.

Top Albums of 2008 coming soon. I'm almost done.
Live Review of Fuck the Facts/Titan/Rozea Haven should be posted tonight sometime.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Top EPs of 2008

I was going to wait and include this with my Top Albums of 2008 but since there isn't many I thought I would just do it now anyway.

In no particular order:

The Company Band - Sign Here, Here and Here: A supergroup consisting of Clutch's Neil Fallon (vocals), Fireball Ministry's James Rota (guitar), Jess Margera of CKY (drums), Fu Manchu's Brad Davis (bass) and guitarist Dave Bone. Considering the pedigree of the members you can guess at what they sound like. It really has a Clutch vibe so I automatically dig it. You should too.

Hayaino Daisuki - Headbanger's Karaoke Club Dangerous Fire: Superfast, vicious and really lo-fi. The production on this is just terrible (or maybe just my copy) but it gives a warmth and a really live feel. They claim to be from Japan, but the understanding is they are from NJ. Mother of hellfire, this shit is fast. Totally indechiperable vocals. "Haiiro Ikotsu Gakidou" is one hell of a song. I should mention that Jon Chang from Discordance Axis is on vocals. He is also on vocals for Gridlink (which you will see on my LP list) So, yeah, speed of light metal tinged grind. Hold on tight.

Black Ships - Low: Black Ships will have the esteemed honour of not only making my EPs list but my LPs list aswell. These boys from Montreal (metal capital of the world?) deliver some pretty serious, angry, dirty hardcore. Massive sound. The vocals really bring into the tortured soul of the band. Their myspace is pretty scarce as far is info goes, and at this time, Encyclopedia Metallum is down for maintenance so I can't tell you ABOUT the band really. If you like your hardcore raw, downtuned, without breakdowns, and really pissed should like Black Ships. I'll have more when I post my LP list. (Their full length is called Omens, btw)

Mammoth Volume - Loved by Few, Hated by Dolphins: RIP Mammoth Volume. This was the last studio release from these titans of psychedelic stoner (ish) rock. Man, I love Mammoth Volume. This album was available for free download from their website last year and consists of 6 awesome tunes. This was supposed to be Volume 1 but they announced they were hanging it up on Christmas Day. Looks like they will have a Best Of available on their website soon. I am actually really sad about this. I have loved everything they ever released. Such a unique band. Some may think otherwise but there is something there that is beyond words. I'd really like to know why they chose to disband. They don't sound like a band that struggles at all. Their music is so deep sounding that the chemistry of the band would have to be tight in order to pull it off. My guess is that it was a time issue. I do believe these Swedes lead normal lives outside the band and maybe they had to put the band on the back burner for those reasons. Well, "My Pet is Burning" is one of my favourite (if not FAVE) song of the year. I certainly hope this isn't the end of MV.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Now comes the hard part.

I have condensed all the albums that I have listened to from 2008 down to a (not so) short list of about 67-68. I should be able to get that down to about 60 without any further listening. Getting it down to 50 shouldn't be a problem. Getting it down to 40 will be pretty tough. And I don't think it's at all possible for me to get it to the 28 (of 2008) that I wanted to. I did 25 in 2005, 26 in 2006 and 50 in 2007. My exposure to new music has exploded in recent years and now it's gotten too hard to decide. Most of my friends have never heard of half the bands that make my list. And that's the metal friends, not the normal people.

Because my ipod was taking forver to sync this morning, I was only able to load 2 albums to listen to today. They would be ASRA - The Way of All Flesh, and Bison b.c. - Quiet Earth. 2 excellent albums. At least with only the 2 to listen to, I should be able to listen to them a couple times at least and get a really good feel for them.


Saturday, January 17, 2009

Volition, Whitechapel

Volition - Volition: When I first started listening to this I immediately thought of Crowbar. It has a similar tone and that slow pacing. There was no "wow factor" at first (that's later) but I was enjoying it. As a couple songs rumbled by, I had to double check to see if in fact, it wasn't the same track. As I am waiting for some variation to happen, I'm falling alseep. But then there's a change! In the vocals anyway. They go from a passable low-end rumbly growl to this, this, screech. It sounded like some whiny 10 year old crying to his mommy because his sister out a dress in his G.I. Joe. Terrible. It hurt my ears. When the vocals changed back I thought it was over. But that kid came back. Yeah, it broke up the monotony all right, because it made my go the next album. Horns down.

Whitechapel - This is Exile: Not bad really but it seemed sort of manufactured. I could hear alot of genre mixing but it wasn't really doing it for me. Very Hot Topic. Maybe it was just me but the vocals didn't sound genuine. Well, the didn't sound real I should say. They sounded effects laden. It they were all natural, kudos to that guy. But I really have no desire to hear this one again. Horns down.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Trivium, Transistor Transistor, and Testament

Testament - The Formation of Damnation: Remind me again why Testament was never as big as "The Big 4" of thrash? Because musically, they are just as thrash-tastic. And Chuck Billy is probably a better vocalist than Jaymz, Mega-Dave or whoever happened to be singing for Anthrax. This is the first Testament album I have heard front to back and since I own all the albums by Metallica (except Some Kind of Monster), Megadeth (studio anyway), Slayer (I might be missing an EP) and Anthrax ( I think), I should probably start working my way through their back catalogue. Horns up!

Transistor Transistor - Ruined Lives: When I first started listening to this I was kind of wishy-washy about it. But when I was driving home, as soon as I got the slightest but pissed off (gas pedal is on the right, fuckwad!) it clicked. Now, whether it was coincidence that the album got good at that moment, or if I just had to be in the right mindset, I won't know until I listen to it again. And I will be listening to it again as it impressed me enough that is just might make my (not so) short list for Top Albums of 2008. It's a band I could see myself in. The vocals are adequately pissed off and the riffing is simplistically punk-derived enough that I could actually play it. Horns up!

Trivium - Shogun: Good rebound album. Their last album (name escapes me at the moment) was a step backwards. It was technically good but vocally plagiaristic and lyrically silly. Trivium have seemed to have matured on Shogun. The aggression is back in the vocals and the guitars are shred-erific. It's a tight, tight album. Did Jason Scuecof produce again? Matt Heafy and Co.should be a force for years to come. Horns up.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Six Feet Under

When Six Feet Under first got together, I thought they were the shit. I thought Chris Barnes' voice was soooo cool. At this point, I had never listened to any Death, Obituary or Cannibal Corpse. So Six Feet Under was basically my introduction to death metal. (How fuckin' sad is that?!) I was still firmly rooted in "Big 4" thrash, Pantera, Nirvana and Marilyn Manson. I don't think I had discovered Sepultura yet. And I had yet to completely abandon radio. I bought all their albums for a few years. Up to and including Graveyard Classics (maybe even Graveyard Classics 2, I'd have to check) But then something changed. Changed with me that is, not 6FU. I think that is a big part of the problem. They never changed. I had fleshed out my death metal collection with bands such as Impaled and Jungle Rot but I still hadn't listened to Cannibal Corpse. (Don't worry, I just smacked myself) This metal sin has since been rectified.

Over the last few years,though, I have been able to listen to an increasing amount of metal. Mostly due to an increase in availability (Thank you High Speed internet!!) and exposure. As I listen to more and more death metal, I have come to realize how much Six Feet Under sucks! I mean really, they just keep pumping out the same crap every album!! Their newest beer coaster, Death Rituals, is so bad I couldn't even finish listening to it. When really, I have heard it before. Recyled riffs riddle this predictable piece of dog turd. I swear, Chris Barnes just plays cut and paste with his lyrics. He has become somewhat of a parody of himself. Especially the screeches. Ah, they are hard to listen to.

The metal community demands more quality these days and in such a competitive and elitist market, you have to evolve or die. You can't keep spitting out the the same albun over and over again and expect to hold on to your fans. So to Chris and Co., it's time to change things up or you just might find yourselves (wait for it!) six feet under.

I'm gonna go listen to the new Testament now.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Here's what folder I put these albums in

As I try to figure out what albums will make my Top 40 or so of 2008 I put them into one of 2 folders. NOPE, or I KNOW it's good. Here is how I shifted some of the latest I listened to:

Scott Hull - Requiem: NOPE
Shai Hulud - Misanthropy Pure: NOPE
Soilent Green- Inevitable Collapse in the Presence of Conviction: NOPE
Mammoth Volume - Loved by Few, Hated By Dolphins Vol. 1: I KNOW it's good
Saviours - Into Abaddon: I KNOW it's good
Rotten Sound - Cycles: I KNOW it's good
Soulfly - Conquer: I KNOW it's good
Pitch Black Forecast - Absentee: I KNOW it's good

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Samothrace - Life's Trade

Here is my short take on Life's Trade by Samothrace. The first time I listened to this I was not in a good place. I was really down and just feeling bad. So, this was just what I needed (?). It sounds depressing. I didn't want to listen to something fast or happy or even something angry or violent. So as far is slow depressing metalgaze/doom goes, this is top-notch! Or if you were stoned, top-notch! Unfortunately, I am neither stoned nor depressed so it wasn't really doing anything for me this time around. It is a good album, it just falls in that "I need to be in the mood for it" category.

Pharoah, Sahg

Pharoah - Be gone and Sahg - II, pretty much both get a Horns down. Not because they suck, but because they are nothing special. Pharoah is that 80's metal vibe and Sahg is more 70's rock. Neither offers anything to keep me interested. Pretty boring review even. I am just trying to get through to the end of my list so I can start on the Top 40 (or 50). It might take a while to decide.

Paganus,Pyramids, Russian Circles

All three albums get the same review

Paganus - Paganus
Pyramids - Pyramids
Russian Circles - Station

Must be really stoned to enjoy. Slow and boring. Horns down.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Melvins, Origin, Merciless Death

Melvins - Nude With Boots: It was alright. I like the first few tunes but then it just drifted into background music. Nothing really pulled me in. I really don't care if I never hear it again. Too much better stuff out there for me to care. Stonerwitch is the only Melvins albums for me. Horns down.

Origin - Antithesis: The most brootal death metal album of the year. Sometimes I wonder what demons are possessing them. It's almost too heavy! nah, that's not possible. Try and headbang to this and you will break your neck. Fucking awesome! HORNS UP!

Merciless Death - Realm of Terror: Passable neo-thrash. Good musicianship. Vocals are kinda weak. It's fun to listen to but there is better out there. (Toxic Holocaust) Horns up based on fun factor and an urge to do air guitar.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Krisiun, Norma Jean, Meshuggah, and No Age

Krisiun - Southern Storm: Excellently executed Sepultura cover = Automatic Horns UP! Sepultura is an obvious influence as the cover is right in the middle of the album and it fits right in. If this album is an accurate sonic interpretation of a southern storm, I am happy up here in the Norther Hemisphere, because this Southern Storm is devastating! Horns up!

Norma Jean - Vs. the Anti-mother: I shouldn't like this. It's Christian screamo. But, for some reason, I do. I think it's the great tone, the song that sounds like Helmet, the catchiness and they have a really long song. Horns up.

Meshuggah - Obzen: I like Meshguggah, I really do, but I really have to be in the mood for them. And I seldom am. It's too herky-jerky. I can't lock into anything. I have to think too much. If it came around on my ipod, I wouldn't skip it, but it wouldn't be my first choice. Horns up based on musicianship and tone.

No Age - Nouns: It's just noise to me. Shitty noise at that. I've tried to listen to this a couple times but I just can't make it past the first track. I can't even finish the first track. The rest of the album MIGHT be better but if you start with such crap, you don't deserve to have me listen to any more. I am not even going to give this a horns down because it doesn't deserve horns. If I was throwing the horns while doing a one-armed keg stand, that would be horns down and WAY cooler than this piece of crap. I'll give it the Finger.Down.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Kingdom of Sorrow, Hail of Bullets, Legion of the Damned

Kingdom of Sorrow - Kingdom of Sorrow: I think alot of people gave KoS a bad rap before they heard a single note. I think people are kinda sick of Jamie Jasta. Good for them. I'm not. I still like Hatebreed. So couple JJ and Crowbar Kirk and it's a recipe for goodness. This album leans for towards the Crowbar than the hatebreed but not quite as slow as Crowbar. At times, I had to listen hard to tell which one was singing, but then Kirk would sing and I would know it was him. But JJ does a pretty impression. I like it when albums sound fun and make me bob my heard and stuff. While this album may not be as good as the sum of it's parts, it's better than HELLYEAH! Horns up!

Hail of Bullets - ....Of Frost and War: This makes me think of apocalypse. As much as I don't really listen to lyrics, I can hear the war themes. I picture tanks running over things and bombs exploding. The vocals are....different. I can sense desperation in them. Is that on purpose? I've heard Russia mentioned a couple times. I am gonna guess this is based on WWII, and with some research, I was right.The members of Asphyx, Gorefest, Houwitser and Thanatos have come together to create a pretty damn good death metal record. Enjoy. Horns Up!

Legion of the Damned - Feel The Blade:
Speed-death again. Pretty stock sounding. The vocals are a little on the black side. Not really impressed. Nothing to bring me back. I've moving on. Horns down.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Lair of the Minotaur, Kataklysm, A Thousand Knives of Fire

Lair of the Minotaur - War Metal Battle Master: This is how metal should be done, people. Wicked blend of style without it sounding too planned. I can hear influences without it sounding too obvious. It pummels, it destroys, it slays. No sappy lyrics, no pretty parts, just pure ass-kicking aggression. I loved every note. Look for this beast near the top of my list. Not to mention the video they made with with the naked zombie chicks. HORNS UP!!!!

Kataklysm - Prevail: I call this speed-death metal. Faster than your regular death metal but not overly technical. Makes me want to circle headbang. It's not full throttle the whole time though. "Blood in Heaven" has a militaristic type feel to it. I wish I could listen to this louder. It would be better louder. I don't really want the album to end. I'm going to give this a Horns UP, but I don't expect it to make my Top 40 of 2008. (which is turning into a Top 50 because I can't decide)

A Thousand Knives of Fire - The Last Train to Scornsville: Boogie rock. Vocals aren't very good. I heard them do a song on one of the Sucking the '70's compilations. I guess they are better when they don't write the song themselves. Very "Sweet Home Alabama is the best song ever!!!" Kid Rock would really like these guys. The gratuitous us of the word motherfucker on "She's Yours" is the best of this. Too country-ish for me really. Although I would enjoy this after a beers and some Jack. I'm gonna give it a Horns down.

Iota, Jex Thoth and Jucifer

Iota - Tales: Plodding, nice paced groove. Great tone. Can't quite pin down who they remind me of. Sleep at bit, but not the vocals. The jammy parts (plenty of them) remind me of Clutch and The Bakerton Group. Oh hell yeah, baby! Maybe an apt description would be Clutch meets Monster Magnet. Love it. Horns up!

Jex Thoth - Jex Thoth: Psychedelic doom. Transcendental female vocals. Brooding Keyboards. I get sucked right in. Dark and ominous. Engrossing. Definitely a mood setter. I should suggest something from this album to MetalSucks for one of their Saturday Night Songs To Get Stoned To. The kind of stuff that makes you feel stoned just listening to it. Probably best listened to without distraction. In the dark. Horns UP!!

Jucifer - L'Autrichienne: You will never hear another band like Jucifer. Ever. How Amber and Edgar, the eternal nomads that they are, come up with some of this shit is beyond me. Drugs have to play a part. They go from quiet pretty songs, to Veruca Salt like pop-grunge, to flat-out grindfests. Truly amazing. I say them live once and it just blew my mind. They played mostly the hard and fast stuff but that's okay. I would like to have heard a more diverse set but when you have the biggest wall of amps I have ever seen behind you, you have to use them! I fuckin' love Jucifer. When I am able to edit this with an internet connection, I will post a link to a live review I wrote on my personal blog. If you haven't guessed, HORNS UP!!!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Hemlock, Humanfly, In Flames and Intronaut

Hemlock - No Time For Sorrow: Front to back, solid metal. Pretty good metal vocal range. Death growl, black screech and screaming. Vocal hooks galore! It's just awesome. I have listened to this one quite a few times since it was released and the biggest reason for that is because of how fun it is to scream along with. I like to have fun when I listen to something. Wicked shit. Horns way up!

Humanfly - II: I haven't yet grown out of my QUALITY metal-gaze faze. Nothing wrong with some good hollerin' over great quitar work. Tortured screams, death growls, and straight up yelling. Hard hitting and huge sound. No hurry here, man, we gots lots o' weed. I mean
time. Horns up!

In Flames - A Sense of Purpose: This is the first In Flames album I have actaully listened to and it's awesome. Can you say hooks? Vocal and guitar hooks everywhere. I've listened to this many times and I will listen to it more. Very melodic metal and the singing is incredible. I doubt I will go back and check out their back catalogue though, as I wouldn't want to be disappointed by anything. That and I don't have time. Many spins = Horns UP!

Intronaut - Prehistoricisms: I used to like Intronaut. I think Void and Challenger actually made my Top of XXXX lists. Not so much anymore. Too proggy. boring. I hate the bass tone. Hate it. Lots of other critics like it but no matter how many times I try to like it, I just can't. Maybe if I was really stoned. But in that case, I'd listen to Sleep or Monster Magnet (old) or ....... Horns down. Sorry Intronaut, you lost me.

Half-Makeshift, Harvey Milk, The Haunted, Helm's Alee

Half Makeshift - Omen: Track listing: Omen I, Omen II, Omen III and Omen IV. How boring is that? About as boring as the tracks themselves. This is confirmation that my my ambient/drone phase is over. Super boring. They might want to try Full Makeshift sometime, or maybe even use the right shit, take the time and do something real. I'll remember this when I am having trouble sleeping. Horns down!

Harvey Milk - Life....The Best Game in Town: This is fucking terrible. I can hear some potential in it, but's it crap. Worst singing I have heard in a long time. Kudos for not using Auto-tune on them, but sorry, you suck. Noisy post-rock shit. Just not doing it for me. Horns down.

The Haunted - Versus: Why don't I remember liking this the first time I heard it? I know I liked Moronic Colossus though. Peter Dolving is awesome. I can see why so many other vocalists try to emulate him (myself included now) I've never been a big one for labelling, but if you want to call this melodic death metal, then fine. But I don't really hear the death metal in it. Melody yes, and
metal yes, but I don't know about the death part. Start to finish, this album is damn solid. I am going to need to listen to this some more to figure out where in my Top 40 of 2008 it will fit. Iron Mask is a wicked track. "Leave me the fuck alone!!!!" HORNS UP!!!

Helm's Alee - Night Terror: Not sure how to describe this one. I want to say Neur-Isis but since I don't listen to either of those bands, I can't. I might be listening to some Isis later though. Kinda metal-gaze-y I suppose. Nothing really grabbed me about it. Some female vocals in there to spice it up though. I am not going to give this one a horns down, but I am in no big hurry to hear it again.

The Evpatoria Report, The Famine, Graveyard

The Evpatoria Report - Maar: I think I am growing out of my ambient/drone phase.This is just boring to me. If I wanted to listen to Explosions in the Sky, I would. Horns down.

The Famine - The Raven and the Reaping: I was kind of busy when I was listening to this so I wasn't paying close attention. But, it's pretty straight ahead metal. No -core. It flows more than alot of the stuff I have been hearing lately. I liked it. It's worth another few spins but I don't think it will make my Top 40 of 2008. Horns up.

Graveyard - Graveyard: Retrosytled heavy rock. Reminds me alot of Witchcraft and to some extent Mammoth Volume. Acoustic sounding guitar and stuff. Old school 60-70's feel. Like Witchcraft but not quite as doomy. Horns up!!

Grey Daturas, Gridlink, and Hackneyed

Grey Daturas - Return to Disruption: Showed promise at first with some good drumming but then it deteriorates into noise. Just noise. It isn't so much an album as it is a collection of noise with some songs thrown in. I can just imagine if they tried to throw vocals in there! Horns down.

Gridlink - Amber Grey: Fuck yeah! I do believe all or most of this band is also in Hayaino Daisuki, who fucking rule! This is my kind of grind. Relentless, vicious and with screaming-like-your-life-depends-on-it vocals. I can't understand a single word but who cares!!
Horns UP!!!!!!

Hackneyed - Death Prevails: I read somewhere where someone said that Hackneyed's name suited them because they are hacks. Not true. Sure, there is room for improvement but they are pretty damn good for teenagers. Pretty good regardless of age. Straight up death metal here folks. A couple of track seem kind of lost but I will cut them slack. Germany has done well with these lads! Horns up!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Grand Magus, Acacia Strain, The Cast Pattern, and The Endless Blockade

Grand Magus - Iron Will: Pretty standard Grand Magus. Stoner-tinged rock. Like St. Vitus Light. It's good to listen to but I think they have done better. I'll give it a Thumbs Up based on pedigree.

You know what I just realized? This is a metal blog and I am using Thumbs. Screw that. HORNS!!!
So from now on, it's Horns Up or Down. Hell yeah!

Acacia Strain - Continent: They've been labeled death-core and they don't like it. But it hard to describe them any other way. Breakdowns and death metal vocals. GOOD breakdowns and GOOD death metal vocals. There is nothing wrong with any sub-genre as long as it's done well. And Continent delivers. Horns up!!!

The Cast Pattern - The Cast Pattern: And when a sub-genre is not done well, it's The Cast Pattern. Too much chug-noodle-chug-noodle-scream. No melody here anywhere. Sounds very high school. Horns down.

The Endless Blockade - Primitive: Would you call this post-hardcore? Whatever you want to label it as, it fucking kicks ass. Grindy parts, doomy parts. Melody and wicked screams. This is the sound of a band who knows what they are doing. They've taken all kinds of elements and melded them together very nicely. This will get many more spins. Horns Up!!!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Grails - Doomsdayer's Holiday

Grails - Doomsdayer's Holiday: I want to give this a thumbs up based on the album cover. But alas, I can't. I liked the first couple tunes alright but then it just didn't go anywhere. Too slow. I like slow but this just didn't work for me. Thumbs down.

Fear Falls Burning, Fucked Up, Ganon and Ghostlimb

Fear Falls Burning - Frenzy of the Absolute: Burning? More like smoldering. And where is the frenzy part? One of the most boring things I have ever heard. Just weird noise. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz........... What? oh, sorry. I fell asleep just thinking about it. Thumbs down!

Fucked Up - The Chemistry of Common Life: punk-tinged indie rock. Might keep me half-interested if I was at a bar. Not a concert, just them playing at a bar. Other than that, I really don't give a shit if I ever hear it again. Not my thing. Thumbs down.

Ganon - As Above, So Below: Another snoozefest. Not as slow as FFB, but just as boring. I tuned it out around track 2. Sound like it's supposed to be like doomy post-rock but it just falls flat. Bad mixing too. Thumbs down.

Ghostlimb - Bearing & Distance: Not bad. Not too boring. But it sounded like those high school kids that open for good bands. Flail away and scream. That's about it. Since I could care less if I ever heard it again, Thumbs down.

Dagoba and Deadbird

Dagoba - Face The Colossus: If you are going to share your name with a planetary system in the Star Wars Universe, you better be good. But since the Star Wars planet is spelled Dagobah, and Dagoba refers to a dome-shaped building built over relics of Buddha, the expectation get lowered. Which is good because they don't really live up to them anway. They should be ashamed to come from the same country as Gojira. Boring crap. "The World in Between" is just unlistenable. Would someone please turn off the sap-tap? Grow these dudes some balls? They just sound too whiny for me when they aren't growling. Nothing special about the music either, at least not enough to make me see past the vocals and lyrics. Thumbs down.

Deadbird - Twilight Ritual: Doomy stoner metal. Well done. Not much to say really. If you like doom/stoner then you should like Deadbird. Thumbs up.