Even a cursory glance of our biweekly “What Heavy Blog Is Really Listening To” posts (last week’s update here) will reveal that there is a great deal of variety among our staff’s musical tastes. Due to this, we brainstormed the idea of “Playlist Swap,” another biweekly segment that takes place…
How many black metal bands in the past have proven to be truly progressive, innovative or even avant garde? You might find several bands that fit that niche. Even some big acts in black metal could be included under the Progressive black metal umbrella, such as Enslaved and Ihsahn. Let’s turn our attention to Black Hate now. Hailing from Mexico, the promising group have released an album that pushes the “black metal” label in directions seldom seen. With Through the Darkness we have an album that breathes new life into tired black metal tropes and dares to stand on it’s own. So what do they do differently that sets them apart from their peers? What can we correlate Through the Darkness with to find out what makes it unique?
Way back in 2012, Paul Mazurkiewicz (drummer for Cannibal Corpse) sat down with Billboard (via Metal Injection) and was posed an interesting question: who are death metal’s Big 4? Now, boiling any genre down to a definitive group of four is realistically impossible – as important as the Big 4 of thrash are to the genre, bands like Sepultura, Overkill, Kreator and Destruction deserve just as significant a portion of credit. So too was the case with Mazurkiewicz’s naming of Cannibal Corpse, Morbid Angel, Deicide and Suffocation as the Big 4 of death metal, which leaves out a whole slew of bands seminal to the genre’s evolution (Death, Bolt Thrower, Obituary, Autopsy, Carcass and innumerable others). Yet, in terms of balancing popularity, influence and an active status, it’s hard to argue with Mazurkiewicz’s picks; all four bands are nothing short of genre pioneers who played pivotal roles in defining death metal from its post-thrash transitional stage. However, when we fast forward to the genre’s current landscape, it’s clear time hasn’t been as kind to the infamous blasphemers from the Sunshine State as it has for the rest of DM’s Big 4. Despite being near the top of the pack in terms of influence and album sales, Deicide has experienced a noticeable fall from grace from their prime in the early-nineties. But the question is – why? What caused these luminaries to become lost?
Grindcore is probably the one metal subgenre that I’ve never gotten fully “into.” It isn’t that I don’t like it—I think Pig Destroyer’s Phantom Limb is pretty rad, and I’ve enjoyed bands that use elements of grindcore in their music (e.g. Trap Them, Cattle Decapitation, The Red Chord, etc.), but…
In just one more week, Revocation are about to drop an absolute bomb on the metal world in the form of the fantastic Great Is Our Sin. Coming off of their excellent 2014 album Deathless, this new record is an all-out assault on eardrums the the world over, sporting some of the band’s meanest and most mosh-friendly tunes to date. Take this and add a heap of atonal/experimental death metal flourishes, loads of d-beats and more solos than you’ll know what to deal with and then cap things off with a Slayer cover. Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, that’s exactly what Great Is Our Sin is, and it’s an immediately essential piece of modern metal. I got a chance to speak with Revocation’s frontman and overall guitar wizard Dave Davidson this past Monday about the album’s songwriting process, working with Marty Friedman, upcoming tour plans and a lot more.
When a band says that they play a blend of x and y metal, I tend to be a little suspicious. In my experience, most cases that claim this end up playing half x half y, rather than a true hybrid. Some tracks are x, some are y, sometimes they’ll…
I honestly never get tired of doing these premieres. Many people ask me if these ever get to be sort of a chore since I do so many for us, and the answer is no. I adore the fact that people want us to host this stuff, and the fact that they reach out to me with stuff they know I will like specifically based on my taste is really flattering. MAKE is a band that we have covered on here before, and Simon even reviewed their last record. This time, they’re set to release a new album, Pilgrimage Of Loathing, and they’ve chosen us to host a brand new song from the record! Check it out!
Picture this: a young music enthusiast (disclaimer: I am the music enthusiast), who is constantly on the prowl for new music to jam — as music enthusiasts are wont to do — finally gets around to listening to a certain band he’s heard of in a positive light quite a number of times. Said music enthusiast eventually peruses the band’s discography and searches for a starting point. Once the starting point is identified, the jamming begins: good times are had, and all is right with the world. And so I, a music enthusiast and more specifically one of Heavy Blog’s resident tech death geeks, decided to set my sights on the Australian tech death band Psycroptic, after many months of constantly being reminded that they are a band whose work was bound to match my tastes.
Back once again for the renegade master… Oops, wrong meeting. Yes, it is time for my round up of the smartest music videos I’ve seen this month. Whether it’s sleek and shiny or gruesome and garish, I’ll watch it with both eyes peeled and all of my senses involved. This time around it’s the turn of the full band performance video. Stipulations of entry into this list include all members of band accounted for on film and at least five close up shots of instruments being played. These are great tracks this time around too whereas last month I chose a great video for an awful track. Yes. It was Babymetal. I digress, away we go!
Rock and metal with a sense of humor is good and all, but with it comes the (often true) stereotype that there isn’t much to it musically. There are obvious exceptions—Frank Zappa managed to make music that was both hilarious and interesting, and Every Time I Die’s sense of humor is always fun to be around; I mean, who else could come up with a track title like “Underwater Bimbos From Outer Space”? The answer to that question is Victorian Whore Dogs, a British-based metal band who recently put out their third studio album Afternoonified last month.