The genesis and purpose of this post is quite simple: it feeds off of our re-occurring “Hey! Listen to This!” segment in which we tell you, quite emphatically, to listen to this band or that. Often, those posts are an outlet for a wide variety of ideas: albums that aren’t substantial enough or recent enough to enjoy a full review, a discovery we’ve made or a band we want to shine a broader light on rather than on a specific track or album. However, I’ve personally found myself utilizing that segment to also discuss bands that don’t exist anymore or albums that have long faded from the public eye but which I feel are still influential, important and, most of all, excellent. To be honest though, that’s not really what those posts are about. And so was born Heavy Rewind, where we will look back at bands or albums that are defunct or forgotten and see what’s life to gain from them.
Tag Archive Pain of Salvation
Confession: Persefone‘s Spiritual Migration is a modern day masterpiece but I hadn’t owned it until a few days ago. I rectified my mistake via bandcamp and lo and behold, upon purchase I was recommended a few bands by the good people at Persefone. Of course, I listened immediately and one of them really caught my ear: a band by the name of Boil. These guys play a type of alternative metal that rebounds between the influences of Leprous to those of Pain of Salvation and Deadsoul Tribe (a criminally underrated band which we’ll talk about soon). The overall result is this dark, violent and sleek dark metal creation that relies on familiar foundations for its power. Head on over the jump for your first taste.
Hello everyone and welcome back to this, the second part of our most recent *prognotes feature. In case you missed it, we kicked off yesterday by looking at the first chapter of Remedy Lane, one of Pain of Salvation‘s best and most important albums. We explored the initial set of characters, their motivations and issues and the problems facing them. We stopped right after the tragic “A Trace of Blood”, shedding light on the tragedy that underpins the whole story. Let’s jump in into the initially more uplifting Chapter II below. As always, don’t forget to jam the album in the background for the added connection and context. Let’s get started!
Honestly, it’s hard for me to think of Pain of Salvation as a veteran band; in my eyes, they’re always starry eyed children, screaming defiance at the sky, drowning in their own pretentious and yet engaging lyrics. But the truth is, they are a veteran band: their brilliant debut, Entropia, came out in 1997 and the number of their releases crossed into double digits in the past few years. And you know, for the most part, every single one of those albums is great; I can’t think of one that I don’t like in some way. Even my nemesis, the ever-loved BE, with its annoying, mashed up Latin and its pseudo-philosophy, has some tracks which are close to my heart. However, even such a long time fan as I cannot deny that there was some quality about the earlier albums, some wild savagery, that will forever crown them in my mind.
While this is mostly true for albums even earlier than our subject for this post, Remedy Lane is perhaps the most intriguing album in their repertoire: doubling up with The Perfect Element, it serves as the crossing over point from their earlier, wilder works and into the more conceptual, progressive works of their later career. However, as much as I love The Perfect Element, the predecessor to Remedy Lane was already much more contained and mature; it lacked the unhinging, raw pain and experimentation of the previous two albums. But in Remedy Lane, I often feel that a perfect balance was struck; a conjoining of the ferocious agony that fueled the band in the first place and the conceptual sophistication and musical liquidity of their later works. And so, we stand at the precipice, the first step down this road that is memory, sex, growing older, dying, loving, hating and, finally, depression. I’ll try and lead you through this often twisting maze of a story. Stream the album, play your copy, borrow it from a friend; just make sure the music is playing while you read. Enjoy.
Even a cursory glance of our biweekly “What Heavy Blog Is Really Listening To” posts (last week’s update here) will reveal that there is a great deal of variety among our staff’s musical tastes. Due to this, we brainstormed the idea of “Playlist Swap,” another biweekly segment that takes place between playlist updates. We randomly select two of the participants from each update, have them pick their favorite track from each of the nine albums in their grid and then send the list over to the other person to listen to and comment on. Within these commentaries occurs praise, criticism and discovery, and we hope that you experience a few instances of this last point as well. This week’s post brought staff members Eden Kupermintz and Mark Valentino together to peruse each other’s tastes:
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.
The clear highlight from this week’s update is New Bermuda, an album that almost everyone at Heavy Blog has listened to at least a song from since it began streaming at NPR. Considering how divisive Deafheaven is, we decided to capture that by allowing staff voices from both sides of the fence to be showcased in our review of New Bermuda. While both reviews are well-written and argued, they differ starkly in tone, with Ryan praising the album as a triumph (here) and Simon arguing that the album does a passable job at an already established sound (here). Check out both reviews and let us know what verdict New Bermuda most deserves.
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.
Head past the jump to see which receiving regular rotation on our headphones, stereos and turntables:
Contrary to what some people might think, top notch progressive rock did not descend into a shame spiral after the 1970s never again to see the light of day. It is a sub-genre that has survived for nearly fifty years and somehow continues produce surprises all around the world every year. It has always been a niche market populated by a small, discerning crowd but that never stopped bands from passionately pushing themselves to ever more creative frontiers. One of these bands is California’s Spock’s Beard, a prolific band that’s been on the prog scene for more than 20 years, presenting a more subtle style of prog that comes with a tangible songwriting ethos. 2015 sees the release of the band’s full-length number twelve The Oblivion Particle, a sixty six minute feast of soaring keyboards, retro synths, intelligent drumming and very catchy main riffs and vocals.
You read that right! Blog-wide beloved prog darlings Caligula’s Horse have indeed signed a worldwide record deal with Inside Out Music. This label is the home of our benevolent overlord, Devin Townsend. They also hold current favorites Leprous and The Safety Fire. Check out what the band had to say in a statement posted to Facebook below.
While concept albums are almost a staple of progressive metal, most bands only commit to that idea lyrically and not musically. It used to be more common in the older days of the genre with bands like Dream Theater and Pain of Salvation, but it’s admittedly difficult to write music that can be developed over the course of an entire album as a single piece. Enter Native Construct, a group of students from the Berklee College of music (just like Dream Theater). Spearheaded by guitarist Myles Yang, Quiet World is their debut, and it manages to not only have great individual tracks, but those tracks also come together and flow with each other with masterful ease. Spanning many genres, boasting a style of composition both classical and metal, Quiet World is an instant prog metal classic.
I’ve been waiting for this album for 3 years. When they posted their playthrough video of a demo version of “Chromatic Aberration” 3 years ago, I was immediately hooked on this band consisting of Berklee students called Native Construct. Now, lo and behold, the album is done and they’ve posted a playthrough video of a full track titled “The Spark of The Archon”, and my, it’s some delicious prog goodness.