Those of you who like controversial topics, we’ve got them this week! Jay-Z gaming the RIAA with Sprint to make his latest album go platinum, Spotify creating “fake music” to game their own algorithms for profit (read this article!), Soundcloud laying off 40% of their staff, and the all-female music festival in Sweden. These take up a good bit of our time. We also discuss metal though! The new Archspire song (we manage to make this controversial too), new music from Stargazer, Contaminated, and Blind Guardian’s new live album. Speaking of live, Eden went to Be Prog! My Friend and somehow thinks we care about his adventures there, so let’s listen to him talk about Leprous, Mike Portnoy playing Dream Theater songs with Haken, Anathema, Jethro Tull (lol), Devin Townsend, Animals as Leaders, etc. We then reflect on how well Vildhjarta’s Masstaden has aged. Finally we discuss something actually fun, a.k.a. Spider-Man: Homecoming! Also Ratchet & Clank, I guess. Enjoy!
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.
Fun times! This week we discuss a bunch of new music. Leprous, Tesseract, Archspire, The Haunted, Aborted, Cloakroom, and Fox Territory. Then we have some live footage from Zeal & Ardor, Spotify suffering losses, and Rolling Stone’s top 100 metal albums. Then we discuss the Transformers movies, and what makes a good villain. Enjoy!
I’m back, and so is Eden, so we have a normal episode for once! And it’s a glorious trainwreck. We talk about new music, including Myrkur, The Arusha Accord, Akercocke, Leprous, Igorrr, Fractal Universe, ZETA, The Contortionist, The Faceless, and Queens of the Stone Age. Also, Gene Simmons of KISS trying to trademark the metal horns. We have an extended discussion on bands appropriating spiritualism and eastern philosophy and then do the first part of a deep segment on Devin Townsend. Specifically Strapping Young Lad and Devin Townsend Band. This one’s a wild ride, so enjoy!
There’s nothing quite like a metal show. The palpitating thrum of bass, explosive blasts of percussion, the crackling sea of people united by music — it’s beautiful, life-affirming, and brutal. Although live recordings will inevitably fail to stack up to the real thing, they allow us to experience singular moments…
A week full of fun times! We talk about Wintersun shenanigans yet again, Tidal shenanigans, Bandcamp successes, then we talk about new music or content from a bunch of artists. Opeth, Leprous with Ihsahn, Psykup, Betraying the Martyrs, Born of Osiris, Dodecahedron, Disperse, Virvum, Six Feet Under, Arch Enemy, Quasarborn, Oni, Mayhem, Sunless, Pallbearer, Adam Young, and Mastodon. We also talk about this list of power metal in 2016, some cool people stuff. Also, take a look at this gofundme of a victim of crowdkilling (gfm link here) at a Code Orange show, and check out me and Eden’s new role-playing podcast!
How to navigate the sheer number of festivals now available for the metal fan? With the aim of helping you sort through this vast variety, we’ve compiled the following primer. It’s by no means extensive; it’s simply impossible to write about all of the festivals we would have liked to mention. We focused on those we’ll be attending and on those who have the most attractive setlists in our eyes. That being said, do feel free to share more great festivals with us in the comments and please enjoy this, our selection of festivals for 2017.
Down for some avant-garde metal? Who isn’t? Well, Ashenspire definitely are, and I’m glad to bring you their new song, “Restless Giants”, from their upcoming debut Speak Not of The Laudanum Quandary. This is a fun one, so strap in and just enjoy the ride.
Even with the hundreds of albums we come across every year, let’s face it, we still sleep on things. Especially with a large group such as ours, even if most of us on staff have listened to and obsessed over a particular album, it’s inevitable that at least a few of us won’t have jumped on the hype train. For a variety of reasons, we either dismiss certain albums when they come out, can’t properly give the time to them at first, or were simply unaware of them until someone recommends them. With that in mind, we’ve decided to make a fun new addition to our annual end-of-year lists, which is one comprised entirely of our favorite albums we heard for the first time this year or learned to love that weren’t released in 2016. Though most of these have been released in the past 5 years, there are a few that are far older, all the way to the most classic of thrash. Being a music enthusiast means constant discovery, and that includes digging back through the annals of music history. We encourage you to share your own favorite non-2016 “discoveries” this year, but in the meantime check out some of our staff’s top picks below.
Editor’s note: welcome back to our Heavy Blog Guest List feature where we give some of the bands we covered (or just adored) in 2016 a chance to publish their own Top 10 Albums of 2016. Today, we have A Sense of Gravity, a band whose praises we’ve sung relentlessly over the last two years or so. Fresh off their release of the brilliant “Atrament”, we’ve invited these Seattle locals to share with us what albums moved them in 2016. Below is their unedited list!