There’s a certain warmth to analog synths that many are now focused on exploring and replicating. In this young and still-emerging revival scene, known colloquially as retrowave, that brings out the best of 80’s synth music the same way Kickstarter has with NES-era video games, many are fully embracing this warmth, all the while augmenting the staple sound – the calculated and gritty urban futurism of the soundtracks for movies like Drive and Blade Runner – to work it into house music, progressive electronic, and synthpop. As a genre, it’s captivated us here at Heavy Blog – we did a starter kit on it, and I wrote an article on a notable album in the genre featuring The Dillinger Escape Plan vocalist Greg Puciatio – and it’s apparently also got the attention of the folks at Relapse Records, who are putting out the debut album by S U R V I V E (henceforth without the spaces), a synthwave/experimental electronic quartet intent on recapturing what made that vintage analogue sound so special.
Summer’s over, friends. Long days are disappearing, leaves are turning, and with it, the second big push for major releases this year is upon us. September into October tends to be a huge time release-wise, as it’s past the lead-up and meat of summer when people’s attentions are more scattered (or simply more interested in finding the best “summer jams”), and it’s still early enough that it gives listeners ample time to absorb and obsess over the music before everyone goes into end-of-year list mode. This September has certainly not been a disappointment in that regard. In particular, this past Friday, the 30th, was simply so jam-packed with incredible new releases across the musical spectrum that we specifically delayed compiling and publishing this post until after the weekend to allow our editors to wade through it all and revise our picks for the month. The albums highlighted here truly display the best of the best, both for the month and the year at large. Expect many of these albums to wind up either in our personal end-of-year lists or our aggregated staff list. 2016, you guys. What a time to be alive.
We’ve always been big fans of New York’s Pyrrhon, but there’s simply no denying that they’re kicking out some of the most inaccessible, left-of-center material in the death metal world right now. Heavily inspired by free-jazz and harsh noise, most fans of death metal’s classic material have often been a…
Progressive stoner metal is in an interesting place right now. On one hand, there’s a slew of releases being published. Bands like Family, Warm, King Goat and, of course, Intronaut and Baroness are all bringing their on take on odd time signatures veiled in thick riffs and a waft of smoke. However, there are also appears to be a certain lethargy and repetitiveness which is inherent to the sub-genre as a whole. Something about the main type of dynamic between vocals, riffs and production is stagnant, going beyond signature and style and into the realms of repetition and imitation. It’s a good thing then that we have Barishi to break the mold. Their brand of progressive stoner metal takes plenty of risks and is the better for it; Blood From a Lion’s Mouth was released a couple of weeks and is a great indication of the possibilities of the genre.
Eden’s back! This means we get to talk about stuff like Tidal, other streaming services, this article about Opeth (which gets us pretty salty), the breakup of Bolt Thrower, Portnoy playing the 12 step suite he wrote for Dream Theater, inconsistencies in promos labels send to us, then new music or news from bands like Dark Tranquillity, Downfall of Gaia, Oathbreaker, Alcest, Metallica, A Sense of Gravity, the DOOM OST by Mick Gordon, Plini, Watchtower, Riverside, Pain of Salvation, Mithridatic and Venom Prison. Finally we talk about Elvenking’s underrated The Pagan Manifesto. Enjoy!