Mantar – The Modern Art of Setting Ablaze

Despite being just a guitar and drum duo, Mantar still sound just as massive as their modern sludge metal brethren. On their third album The Modern Art of Setting Ablaze, Erinç Sakarya (drums, vocals) and Hanno Klänhardt (vocals, guitars) continue their consistent trend of dropping an abrasive slab of blackened, crusty sludge every two years, all…

134 – Getting Stale

I promise this episode title isn’t about the podcast itself. I think this is one of the better episodes in a while, in fact! We discuss a bunch of new music, including Krisiun, Epica, Born of Osiris, Anaal Nathrakh, Daron Malakian and Scars on Broadway, and Erra. Then some happenings, like Kvelertak getting a new vocalist, Matt Tuck of Bullet For My Valentine and his terrible hot take, The Ocean (not to be confused with Oceano, Eden) working on a double album, Eden’s Alkaloid prognotes, and me meeting a fellow metal musician and discovering his awesome band Cartilage. Along the ride, we discuss how modern production is ruining death metal (I promise it’s not “old man yells at clouds”), the DC cinematic universe, and more. Also, we do cool people time with Enter the Gungeon and Middle Earth: Shadow of War DLC, and me waxing poetic about puzzle games, including The Spectrum Retreat, (The) Portal 1/2, The Talos Principle, The Witness, The Swapper and more. Enjoy!

An Ode to Spring – Metal, Thematics and Politics

Since the vast majority of Heavy Blog contributors fall on the left side of the map (shocking, we know), focusing on the latter seems like the way to go. Criticizing the other side of the political map is easy enough; taking a hard look at your own camp is where things get tricky. Thus, let us turn our eyes on one of the most typical leftist refusals to engage: the retreat. There are few places in the cultural world where this retreat is more obvious than in music and, more specifically, in metal. Even more specifically, the current throes which are black metal is undergoing are even more lucrative for our needs. There, leftist retreat is alive and happening right now, both because of the virility of the claims on the other side (read: the amount of black metal that’s truly awful) and because the themes of black metal have already been declared by the larger, more abstract “left” as anathema in the past.

Tribulation – Down Below

Of the comments on our post outlining Music Journalism’s Top 25 Metal Albums of 2017, one in particular provided an opinion that’s plagued the metal community for quite some time. The commenter criticized Heavy Blog for being too focused on “wanting to like what’s different as oppose to just listening to an…

What Heavy Blog Is Really Listening To – 9/15/17

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.

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

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.

Fight the Fight – Fight the Fight

Fight the Fight are still in the earliest stages of defining their own sound, despite many years of playing together under another moniker, but they’ve certainly nailed something here that is a combination of metal and emocore style punk (think At the Gates meets A Day to Remember). There are some really sweet melodic hooks in the choruses especially in the lead track.

Hey! Listen to Vardagshat!

Sweden’s Vardagshat don’t fuck around. Sharing many members from the fantastic Totem Skin, Vardagshat take a sleeker and simpler approach – play loud and fast crust. They don’t spoil their sound by chucking it into the blender with five other totally unrelated genres, but instead follow the lead of fellow…

The Metal Industry’s Top 30 Albums Of 2016

Last year I took it upon myself not only to organize and compile our own staff’s AOTY list, but to take things one insane step further and compile a bunch of lists from major metal or metal-covering publications and websites into one MEGA AOTY list to rule them all. Eden and I then analyzed the list and made some (mostly snarky) comments about the metal journalism industry and how they approach these sorts of things. Though I still 100% stand by what we wrote there and the conclusions we drew from it, I was really interested in seeing how well some of them would stand up to another year to use as a data point. Thankfully, this year I had a lot of help in all of our list-making efforts thanks to fellow editor Noyan, who put a ton of work into coming up with the method we ended up using to aggregate our lists (if you haven’t already, you should absolutely read his post delving into the nitty-gritty of that methodology) and then did the actual number-crunching.