Diablo Swing Orchestra – Pacifisticuffs

Five years after the release of the acclaimed Pandora’s Piñata, Diablo Swing Orchestra (DSO) are back with their fourth full-length offering: Pacifisticuffs. If that’s a title that’s hard to take seriously then you’ve come to the right place, as DSO are anything but. Their music is fun and care-free, so…

All Pigs Must Die – Hostage Animal

When you try and cage what was never intended to be caged, a primal rage can be brought to the surface. Trapping an animal can lead to the unlocking of something deep inside that lets it know it was never supposed to be kept from its freedom. Though the vicious All Pigs Must Die are free to roam the hellscape of life, it would seems that they’ve found a way to channel this cage induced rage on their latest album, Hostage Animal. Their latest record is the sound equivalent of chewed, worm cage bars, sleeping in the blood on the floor of your cage that’s leaked from your teeth when you’ve gnawed on the metal for too long and being prodded endlessly by those who only seek to harm you.

Hey! Listen to The King is Blind!

What exactly qualifies as “metal” can be a contentious issue. As any dedicated listener knows, the label itself accounts for a wide spread of sub-genres—ranging from softer, more atmospherically-inclined fare such as post-black/gaze and folk metal; to the frantic, bombastic realms of speed and power metal; and onto the spasmodic worlds of math- and grindcore; and even the bleak, all-encompassing, sonic oppression of drone and funeral doom. Many of these sub-genres remain contentious, and what is considered metal, or even just heavy music can shift and change depending upon what circles you frequent. Then again, there are those bands who (for any number of reasons) simply ooze the ideal of heavy metal, no matter which way you look at them, so that their status as a nothing less than a fucking heavy metal band cannot be denied. The King is Blind are one of those bands.

The Metal Explosion: 1983 – 1984

Metal, like any current history, is a neverending story — a songbook perpetually revising its denouement in the storm of new releases shattering our ears and expectations by the month. But as exciting as it is to experience the history unfolding before us, that work is already done by listeners and blogs like this one on a daily basis. Vitally important and critically overlooked, I think, is the history of metal — the first chapters yellowing in the forty-odd years since they were bound in black and leather. This post, then, will serve as a continuation of this article detailing the early days of metal, and particularly the incredible importance of Iron Maiden’s The Number of the Beast to the fledgling genre.

The Devil’s Roots: LaVeyan Satanism In Metal

In America during the 1960s, times they were o’ changing. Rock n’ roll was huge, Beatlemania was runnin’ wild, the Civil Rights Movement was changing the world, hippies were doing drugs and having sex all over the place, and other countercultures that opposed televangelism and conservatism in favour of individualism and free thinking were suddenly more popular than ever. Times like these also afforded men like the Church of Satan’s founder Anton LaVey to become mainstream celebrities, both feared and adorned, and if there’s one man that was essential in the emergence of Satanic philosophy becoming known in the public consciousness, it’s Lavey.

Hey! Listen to House of Lightning!

House of Lightning are back. Where were they? Who knows? Who cares? What’s really important is that they’re back with a new full-length since their 2014 debut, Lightworker. Consisting of members from Torche, Wrong, and Floor, these dudes don’t mess with Frankenstein-esque genre experiments or tomfoolery. Instead, they invest their talents into the piss-and-vinegar energy of an in-your-face blend of metal, rock, and punk.

Hey! Listen to Victorian Whore Dogs!

Rock and metal with a sense of humor is good and all, but with it comes the (often true) stereotype that there isn’t much to it musically. There are obvious exceptions—Frank Zappa managed to make music that was both hilarious and interesting, and Every Time I Die’s sense of humor is always fun to be around; I mean, who else could come up with a track title like “Underwater Bimbos From Outer Space”? The answer to that question is Victorian Whore Dogs, a British-based metal band who recently put out their third studio album Afternoonified last month.

Can This Even Be Called Music? 苦しみ (Kurushimi)

The Southern hemisphere’s island-continent of Australia has lately been the unholiest of breeding grounds for music, and the label Art as Catharsis has been hand-picking the most beautifully hideous flowers for years to make an ever-growing bouquet of the most obscene kind. They deal with all sorts of music, mostly metal – post-metal, drone, shoegaze, black metal, you name it – and jazz, but always with an experimental twist to it, and often blending various styles and blurring the lines between the genres. Most recently, I’ve come to absolutely love it through bands like Instrumental (adj.), Dumbsaint, Serious Beak, We Lost the Sea and, today’s topic, Kurushimi.