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 between playlist updates. We randomly select two of the participants from each update, have them pick their favorite track from each of the nine albums in their grid and then send the list over to the other person to listen to and comment on. Within these commentaries occurs praise, criticism and discovery, and we hope that you experience a few instances of this last point as well. This week’s post brought staff members Scott Murphy and Kit Brown together to peruse each other’s tastes:
Tag Archive Electric Wizard
For those who missed our last installment, We post biweekly updates covering what the staff at Heavy Blog have been spinning. Given the amount of time we spend on the site telling you about music that does not fall neatly into the confines of conventional “metal,” it should come as no surprise that many of us on staff have pretty eclectic tastes that range far outside of metal and heavy things. We can’t post about all of them at length here, but we can at least let you know what we’re actually listening to.
As is demonstrated by numerous contributors including them (including Ahmed’s dedication to revisiting all of their full-lengths), our staff has been reigniting their love for the legendary Dillinger Escape Plan. Our most recent eight track explores our favorite songs throughout the band’s groundbreaking career; be sure to check it out here. Additionally, our staff is still loving Monarchy, the latest offering from Pennsylvania tech-dechers Rivers of Nihil. Yesterday’s “Bite-Sized Blurbs” post (here) hypothesized that the album will place very highly on Heavy Blog’s aggregate AOTY list.
For those that would like to participate as well (and please do) can drop a 3X3 in the comments, which can be made with tapmusic.net through your last.fm account, or create it manually with topsters.net. Also, consider these posts open threads to talk about pretty much anything music-related. We love hearing all of your thoughts on this stuff and love being able to nerd out along with all of you.
Head past the jump to see which receiving regular rotation on our headphones, stereos and turntables:
In case you haven’t been following, Singled Out is our new weekly column to round-up all of the singles and new tracks from the past week dropped by bands we cover. Consider this our weekly mix to help keep you all on top of the latest releases from across the metallic and progressive spectrums. We’ve got an awful lot of new music to cover this week from all over the place, so let’s forego the whole introductory setup today and just get to it. Let’s get singled out!
The doom riff: something with which every listener of metal is familiar with. Bands like Sleep and Kyuss mastered the art behind it long ago, and today practitioners like The Sword and Wo Fat carry on in their legacy. Many an upstart young band has tried to reach the same heights that the greats have summited, and many have failed. There’s some mystical art that remains secret even after all these years, and the ancient practitioners have done a good job of keeping it hidden.
The unfortunate effect of this is that we don’t see new bands that can throw down excellent slow jams pop up every day, or even every year. The pool of artists is small, but it’s gotten a little bigger with the introduction of Savanah by way of their debut EP, Deep Shades, a delicious doomy Austrian desert rock/metal treat.
For Fans Of is a column that takes one very well-known and popular band that our writers and readers are fans of, and then our staff write about a small group of lesser-known bands that do similar things and who we think you all might like as well and give a listen to. Check out past entries here.
Short of the obvious progenitors such as Napalm Death, you’d be hard pressed to find a grindcore band with such an immense cult following as Virginia’s Pig Destroyer. Formed in 1997, Pig Destroyer have crawled from the gutter of not-so-subtle gonzo grind (guitarist Scott Hull was previously a member of the completely ridiculous Anal Cunt) and have made themselves icons of grind by means of bizarrely catchy riffing and J.R. Hays’ strikingly poetic lyricism. They’ve worked with the likes of ISIS and Orchid and have made transformative flings in doom and drone. Pig Destroyer are fast becoming one of the most celebrated artists in underground and extreme music, and they’ve earned their spot by not only developing their signature sound, but by influencing the landscape in their wake.
What follows is a collection of bands that carry on in the Pig Destroyer lineage. This is by no means an exhaustive list, and it’s quite possible many of you will be already familiar with at least a few of these bands. But we hope that this serves as an appropriate jumping-off point for many of you and that you can find at least one new band you were not already listening to.
Stoner metal traverses a very fine line between sludge and doom metal. Pulling influences from both into the syrupy mix that makes it up as a subgenre, modern stoner metal owes just as much to the influential works of Saint Vitus and The Melvins as it does to Sleep. The genre is defined by the single most important characteristic taken from both: The Riff. A simultaneously lofty yet down-to-earth idealism, creating the perfect riff is the driving motivation of stoner metal as a collective. Many bands have tried, and some have gotten incredibly close (Dragonaut comes to mind as the closest any band has ever gotten) but the perfect riff is an elusive beast, indeed, and many bands still seek it.
Now, with their third full-length, Demon Lung are throwing their hand back into the competition to be the first band to find The Riff. Do they find it? Well, no, this certainly isn’t an end to that race, but it must be said that they get damn close. Propelled by incredibly catchy melodies, smart writing, and masterful instrumentation, this new album, A Dracula, has the potential to become a stoner/doom metal classic.
Sometimes, you don’t want something complex. While a fancy, flavorful dish bursting with spice and variety is well and good, there are times when you just need a damn cheeseburger. And musically, nothing is closer to the equivalent of a cheeseburger than sludgy stoner doom; it’s a tried-and-true perfected formula that works all the time, every time. Here, today, we have something exquisite from that very genre: a full stream of the new album from Las-Vegas-based act Demon Lung, who creates music that straddles the two genres perfectly with their gothic and plodding sound.
Richmond, VA’s Windhand are rising stars in the world of doom metal, shamelessly and effectively on a fast-track to becoming a better Electric Wizard than Electric Wizard themselves. Relapse Records picked up the act for their sophomore full-length Soma, which was a powerful play of fuzzy down-tempo Sabbath worship that went on to be one of 2013’s must-hear albums in extreme metal.
When a band includes Sunn O))) contributor Greg Anderson in its ranks, two things should be self-evident: the music will be slow and incredibly heavy. This is certainly the case with Goatsnake – for whom Anderson plays guitar – and their first album in fifteen year Black Age Blues. The band have released a new track from the album titled “Grandpa Jones,” which may be streamed after the jump:
For those who missed our last installment, we post biweekly updates covering what the staff at Heavy Blog have been spinning. Given the amount of time we spend on the site telling you about music that does not fall neatly into the confines of conventional “metal,” it should come as no surprise that many of us on staff have pretty eclectic tastes that range far outside of metal and heavy things. We can’t post about all of them at length here, but we can at least let you know what we’re actually listening to.
Numerous inclusions have received the Heavy Blog stamp of approval in one form or another. The Raven Autarchy‘s The Obscene Deliverance, Katatonia’s Sanctitude and The Crinn‘s Shadowbreather all received glowing reviews, and our pseudo-review of the excellent new collaboration between Colin Stetson and Sarah Neufeld – Never were the way she was – saw editor Nick Cusworth gushing over his current album of the year. This coming week, expect reviews for And So I Watch From Afar‘s Heirs and Leprous‘ The Congregation, both of which appear in this update and are current Heavy Blog favorites for 2015. In the meantime, stream Heirs here and read our interview with Leprous frontman Einar Solberg here.
For those that would like to participate as well (and please do) can drop a 3X3 in the comments, which can be made with tapmusic.net through your last.fm account, or create it manually with topsters.net. Also, consider these posts open threads to talk about pretty much anything music-related. We love hearing all of your thoughts on this stuff and love being able to nerd out along with all of you!
Head past the jump to see which records have been receiving regular rotation on our headphones, stereos and turntables: