Editors’ Picks: March 2017

We like to joke around here pretty constantly that the amount of quality music out there in the world for us to consume and critique is magnitudes more than we can possibly manage, that we are drowning in a sea of music and are suffering mightily for it. We are all the “Why can’t I hold all these limes?” guy.

What Heavy Blog Is Really Listening To – 3/31/17

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. 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.

Unmetal Monday – 3/28/16

Like the grand majority of modern metal fans, our tastes here at Heavy Blog are incredibly vast, with our 3X3s in each Playlist Update typically covering numerous genres and sometimes a different style in each square. While we have occasionally covered non-metal topics in past blog posts, we decided that a dedicated column was warranted in order to more completely recommend all of the music that we have been listening to. Unmetal Monday is a weekly column which covers noteworthy news, tracks and albums from outside the metal universe, and we encourage you all to share your favorite non-metal picks from the week in the comments. Head past the jump to dial down the distortion:

North – Light the Way

In the wake of The Ocean’s highly successful Pelagial, a new strain of post metal was born, one which flirts with the antics of stoner and doom. Feeding off the latter of that seminal 2012 album, this style of music utilizes delay-ridden techniques in conjunction with fuzzy feedback and hoarse vocals to create its emotional impact, blending both atmosphere and visceral assaults. North, fresh off the tour with Intronaut and the aforementioned band (a tour being wrapped up next month), belong to the lower end of such a style. Their Light the Way attempts a blend of more ephemeral guitar lines that might echo So Hideous or Junius and feedback drenched chords that belong on a Earthship or Lo! album, or any of the sister projects that make up The Ocean Collective.

But does it work? Yes and no: every track, on its own, is a solid and well thought out unit, expertly weaving between the two styles. However, something about the album structure doesn’t click and the tracks tend to blend together. It takes several listens to tell them apart and, even then, one finds himself drifting into a a sea of sameness as lead after fuzzy riff crashes down upon him. Let’s start with the good however.

InAeona – Force Rise The Sun

Genres are fickle beasts. We crave proper tools for identification and organization, and more often than not, things fall neatly into place. However, when a piece of media aligns itself too comfortably with a single set of established confines, it’s taken as generic and derivative. We’re all guilty of it.…