Conjurer – Mire

Debut albums are an odd beast. Even when they’re good they tend to come with a lot of growing pains, and bands at this early stage in their career tend to lack the self-awareness to really exploit their own potential. Sometimes, this rough, unrefined approach is great. It can often…

Love Letter – Cobalt’s Gin

I distinctly remember where I heard Radiohead’s Kid A for the first time. It was on a road trip, driving with my parents and siblings to Yellowstone National Park. The mostly desolate and flat landscape surrounding most of our seemingly interminable drive from Colorado and through some of the most…

Monolith Cult – Gospel of Despair

Allow me to kick off this review with an apology. Monolith Cult’s new record Gospel of Despair was originally released in November of last year and got lost in the year-end shuffle that invariably overtakes the blog for the last few months of the year. Missing some incredible music during…

Heavy Blog Staff’s Top Ten Albums of 2017

Our staff has shifted quite a bit since we posted our first aggregate AOTY list back in 2014. From refocusing our content to implementing The Brooklyn Plan™ to publishing our 2017 AOTY list, our roster of contributors has fluctuated substantially in terms of numbers and genre preferences. This ebb and flow…

Hypergiant – Father Sky

The early 2000s brought us a wealth of riff-worshipping, bone-quaking goodness  – what has essentially become the foundation of many current doom, stoner, and sludge metal acts. Bands like Mastodon, High on Fire, and Baroness expanded upon the standard set by metal’s forefathers with more progressive tendencies, expansive arrangements, fiercer presentation, technically demanding performances, and (presumably) better strains of grass. At the same time (and likely benefitting from the same improved… *ahem* genetics), there was also a bubble of traditionalists like The Sword, Wolfmother, and Saviours who made the case that a more conventional approach was worth revisiting, reinvigorating classic sounds for a new generation of headbangers. It’s from this very specific nexus that Australia’s Hypergiant explode, harkening back to familiar territories on both sides of this early-00s coin.

Northless – Last Bastion of Cowardice

As a genre, sludge has it tough. As the oft-neglected son of the more well-established sounds of doom metal and hardcore, sludge often seems trapped in relative obscurity compared to other thriving and evolving scenes of the past few decades. Whereas, for example, black metal has consistently expanded its worldwide…

Converge – The Dusk in Us

In retrospect, it seems like Converge have always released albums in pairs. Conceding that 1994’s Halo in a Haystack and 1995’s Caring and Killing are essentially the same record; there’s the raw, abrasive coupling of Petitioning the Empty Sky (1996) and When Forever Comes Crashing (1998); the openly hostile, definitive…