The most common feedback we get from our readers about this site and why they continue to follow us (aside from our dashing good looks, obviously) is that they come to us to find out about bands new and old they might have otherwise never been introduced to. We pride ourselves on being able to act as a human music recommendation service to all of you, which is why we already have features like our very popular Listen To This! series of columns. When thinking about ways we could take this further though, we came upon the idea for this column. For Fans Of is essentially a distillation of this in its purest form.
The concept is simple. We take one very well-known and popular band that our writers and readers are fans of, and then we write about a small group of lesser-known bands that do similar things and who we think you all might like as well and give a listen to. So, for example, in this case we’ve chosen Converge (more on them in a second). These are not meant to be exhaustive lists, and it’s quite possible many of you will be already familiar with at least a few of these bands. But we hope that this serves as an appropriate jumping-off point for many of you and that you can find at least one new band you were not already listening to.
Recap: Neurosis‘s Steve Von Till is gearing up for a solo album, seeing release on May 12th. The last single released from it was heart shattering but it seems as if Von Till was only gently leading us into this devastating release. The latest release, ‘In Your Wings’, turns the pain dial up to 11, leaving our hearts bleeding and aching. Head on over the jump and, as always: bring tissues.
Italy’s premier sludge metal band, Ufomammut, have been one of the most prolific artists in the genre ever since they first came onto the scene in 1999. It’s hard to imagine that the band is actually about to release their ninth full-length album, yet here we are already. Following up their ambitious 2012 double album, Oro: Opus Primum and Oro: Opus Alter, band members Urlo, Vita and Poia have returned with a modest six-song, 46 minute outing that pummels just as much as it soars through the cosmos. Ecate, a name possibly derived from the Greek goddess of the underworld and witchcraft Hecate, is just as much a psychedelic journey as it is an auditory beating.
Many fans of the blog will doubtless know the name Scott Kelly. The mastermind behind not only Neurosis but countless collaborations and Neurot Recordings has recently announced that on March 24th, his wife Sarah woke up unable to walk or see. She was promptly admitted to a local medical center, but as of March 30th, doctors are still unable to make a diagnosis. Her eyesight has improved significantly, but she is still reportedly unable to walk.
You know this dance by now folks: this is Heavy Blog’s Best Of! This time, we’ll be tackling one of our favorite genres, doom! 2014 was an excellent year for this most-excellent sub-genre and you might know editor Eden Kupermintz (praise be onto him) has dubbed it as The Doom Revival™. However, we don’t limit our Best Of lists by time. Below you’ll find our own selections of what we consider to be some of the finest samples of doom out there.
Doom is a complex and varied genre to be sure. It contains both a penchant for the slow and feedback’d but also a devotion to emotional capacity and melancholy. Thus, you can find many things within it: crushing droning, sadness-lined guitar leads and abrasive vocals. We’ve tried to cover as many aspects of the sub-genre as we could, but obviously some things must have gotten through the cracks! So, as always, sound off below with anything we might have missed.
And remember: it’s OK to not like thing. Let’s get to it!
So, it appears that alongside my fabled Doom Revival™, we’re now enjoying an ancillary movement. After Windhand‘s Cottrell (review to come this week!) announced that she’ll be releasing a solo album, comes Neurosis‘s Steve Von Till with his own solo release. It appears he has decided to go in a similar path, relying on folk/blues guitars and his own magical voice. Head on over the jump to dive into his somber melodies.
Last week we reported on Italy’s psychedelic sludge connoisseurs Ufomammut‘s first North American tour, with support from blog favorites Usnea. An effort to generate excitement in their seventh full-length project Ecate, the band has continued public intrigue with the debut of the album’s first single, “Plouton.” Head past the jump to hear the track:
The long overdue new record from post-metal act Minsk promises to be one of the more enchanting records of 2015, and our collective anticipation grows as news rolls in. The Crash & The Draw is being spun by label Relapse Records as…
[…a]n instant contender for one of the most forward-thinking metal records of the year, each cascading movement is a crucial sonic passage through dark and light. At once crushing, hallucinatory and at times, spiritually illuminating, tracks ebb and flow with a pastoral elegance and tangible urgency. Only furthering the record’s captivating allure, The Crash & The Draw is a thematic continuation of the group’s long-standing attraction to alchemical and esoteric ideologies, with marked nods toward the thought and writings of perennial inspiration, Kahlil Gibran, and the espoused words of Hermes Trismegistus, the fabled author of the Corpus Hermeticum and other sacred texts and serves as a fitting audio soundscapade for those souls devoted to the manifestations of Neurosis, Rwake, Yob, Isis and the like.
Of course, there’s the desire to take the label’s assessment with a grain of salt, but given that the album is produced by Sanford Parker (Wovenhand, Lord Mantis, Indian, etc), the quality of the Relapse ouvre, and some of the new music samples heard in the new album trailer (after the jump), I’m inclined to take it at face value.
It sure seems like supergroups have been popping up left and right over the past few years, but this one may just be the best pairing yet. With one of the weirdest band names out there right now, The Legend of the Seagullmen is the new project featuring Brent Hinds (guitar and vocals, Mastodon) and Danny Carey (drums, Tool) and will be produced by film director Jimmy Hayward, who Hinds had worked with on the Jonah Hex movie. Check out some new tunes below!
Atmosphere can make or break any media; from an album, to a video game, to a haunted house, what creates the worth and enjoyment of the experience is its atmosphere. In music, especially metal, atmosphere can be an enormous part of the equation. Masterpieces like Agalloch’s The Mantle and Neurosis’s Times Of Grace are triumphs of the atmospheric qualities that can imbue the genre. And it is this attribute of metal that the newest EP from black-sludge-grindcore band Dead in the Manger, the 26-minute gut punch that is Cessation, uses to its utmost advantage, creating an incredible musical and emotional experience.