This year’s iteration of The Summer Slaughter Tour — which features headliners The Dillinger Escape Plan and support from Periphery, Animals as Leaders, Norma Jean, Cattle Decapitation, The Ocean, Revocation, Aeon, Rings of Saturn, and Thy Art Is Murder — is likely the most exciting tour I’ll have a shot at seeing in 2013. Sure, the death metal elitists and deathcore fanboys aren’t all too stoked on this year’s iteration of the annual trek, but I find it impossible to NOT get excited over a bulk of this lineup.
What makes this tour so excellent from my perspective is that they always seem to hit the appropriate secondary markets for me. Knoxville, Louisville, Cincinnati, or Columbus tend to be hit by Summer Slaughter. Sure enough, while not incredibly extensive yet (dates are still waiting to be announced) the tour at least manages to pass through the midwest/southeast. Dates are as follows:
Last week, we reported that Rings of Saturn had won the fan voting contest to open up this year’s Summer Slaughter Tour. It was a controversial win, because the polls had stayed open longer than the tour had reported and the band only narrowly beat out runner-ups Thy Art Is Murder by 1% — just a handful of votes. It was close, but Rings of Saturn got the nod at the end of the day and were added to the Summer Slaughter roster.
Touring in support of their latest album Pinnacle of Bedlam, the legendary Suffocation have recently embarked on a headlining tour, featuring support from Exhumed, Jungle Rot, and Rings of Saturn. As usual, our East Coast-based photographer Maclyn Bean attended his nearest spot in New York at St. Vitus to capture the show! Check out the photos below:
Last week, the year’s biggest extreme metal tour Summer Slaughter announced their lineup (which includes headliners The Dillinger Escape Plan and an array of other Heavy Blog favorites like Animals as Leaders, Periphery, Cattle Decapitation, The Ocean, Revocation, and more) while letting fans vote on who they wanted to see open the show. After a neck-and-neck race between Thy Art Is Murder and Rings of Saturn, it looks like Rings of Saturn have won by a slim 1% of the vote.
01. New Born Porn
02. Infant Annihilator
03. Devotion to the Child Rape Syndicate
04. Anal Prolapse Suffocation
06. Embryonic Fetish
07. Immeasurable Foetal Mutilation
08. Torn From The Womb
10. Pinned Down and Fisted
11. Flayed and Consumed
12. Bathed In Placenta
13. The Palpable Leprosy of Pollution
14. Decapitation Fornication
15. An Exhalation of Disease
16. Paedophilic Supremacy
[Self Release/Total Deathcore]
Thanks to the internet and inexpensive studio equipment, there’s an increasing surge of bands that are built almost entirely as an online presence first and foremost. This movement seems to flourish in the realm of deathcore in particular, where bands like Slice the Cake get more attention than many touring bands. One such band, Infant Annihilator, have quickly gained notoriety across the internet sparked by a viral music video and a sense of irony and dark comedy that is welcomed by this community of deathcore fans. The group’s first album The Palpable Leprosy of Pollution was highly anticipated, but the reaction so far has been mixed, and rightly so. Infant Annihilator first made their name online through simulated gay sex among its members, which just goes to show how seriously they take themselves. While having a carefree attitude and the ability to make and take jokes is an admirable trait, the carelessness shows through the music as well.
It was only suitable that we kick off things in the avant-garde metal week by starting with the genre’s progenitors and capital influences. However, that’s done with, and now we move on to examine a more modern form of this type of music. Or, to be more precise, one of its modern forms. Without a doubt, avant-garde has seeped into nearly every corner of the metalverse, and it is barely possible to talk of it as an established genre rather than a loosely defined aesthetic. Even if you consider our own playlists, does it really make sense to lump Queen and Gorguts into the same genre? Do they really have anything in common other than breaking boundaries and being ‘weird’?
But break boundaries they do, and so do the countless bands they have inspired. So then, when looking at contemporary avant-garde metal, what would be a good place to start? There might not be a clear one, so instead I’ll just talk about the style that strikes the closest to my heart: death metal. While not as suitable for abrasive experimentation as grindcore or black metal, there is certainly an unhealthy dose of avant-garde death metal that is up for grabs. Heck, there’s probably too much of it to go into detail about every band. That’s why I’ve chosen four albums in particular by the bands that stand out as the weirdest, most unique, and of course, most interesting, in the whole bunch. Hopefully at least one will blow your minds.
01. Objective to Harvest
02. Galactic Cleansing
03. Shards of Scorched Flesh
04. Feast Upon their Bowels
05. Faces Imploding
06. Peeling Arteries
08. Fruitless Existence
09. Immaculate Order
[Unique Leader Records]
For a band so young, Rings of Saturn have become strangely notorious in such a short career. The last thing the already controversial genre of tech-death needed was a band with roots in deathcore born out of the technological age in both digitally processed aesthetic and a chaotic, unfiltered attitude. In that regard, Rings of Saturn are a product of their environment, aligning themselves firmly on the overindulgent side of the genre of technical death metal (a la Viraemia and Brain Drill) for their debut album, Embryonic Anomaly. It’s easy to see how a band as extreme as Rings of Saturn can be so polarizing at first glance.
Like chuggawuggas? Like meedlyweedlies? Then the new Rings of Saturn record Dingir should be right up your alley. After an apparent pre-pro version of the album leaked online, the band gave a resounding “fuck it” and decided to give away their album to fans for free via Total Deathcore. The band had this to say:
Here is the official album version of Dingir streamed in high quality. There are many reasons as to why we decided to stream our new album in its entirety before its scheduled release date. One big reason is because we are dealing with legal issues right now which unfortunately WILL push back the release date of Dingir from Nov. 20th to Feb. 5th.
The second reason is that a very poor quality, unfinished, and unmastered, pre-production version of our album went viral across many metal blog spots, torrent sites, and youtube this morning. It is unclear whether the original poster thought that the pre-production version of the album was the actual album, or if the original poster leaked it maliciously. In any case, If you guys are going to listen to a leaked version of our album, we would much rather you listen and jam out to the ACTUAL high quality finished album, rather than a low quality unfinished product. If you DID happen to upload the pre pro version to your Youtube channel (chances are that you did since our video is the first video of the actual finished album) we ask that you please take it down now that the actual album is up streaming because we don’t want to confuse people.
The third reason is that we know you are all tired of waiting for this, we are also EQUALLY tired of waiting, and we know that our true fans will continue to support the band, pre order our album, buy our merch, and come out to our shows. If you ARE in fact a true fan of Rings of Saturn, or you like what you are hearing, or you want to see us come to your town our city, then you will share this video EVERYWHERE, you will show all of your friends, and you will pre order and actually still buy our album when it does come out on Feb. 5th because a band’s first week album sales dictate what tours the band gets on, what slots they get, and where they are able to go. If you want to see us play in Europe, or Australia, or come back to Canada, or back to your state, then you will pre order Dingir or pick up your copy within the first week of its release. We are only able to keep doing this because of your guys support. We will keep everyone posted on pre-orders and new merch from this page. Again the new release date for Dingir is Feb. 5th and remember, SHARE THIS VIDEO and Enjoy!
You can stream the record below:
I’ve never been able to get into Rings of Saturn prior to Dingir, and while I have yet to sit through the whole record, it’s already their best work yet. I’ve seen a few mutterings of general disappointment (ie., butthurt) from folks, but if you think Dingir isn’t as good as their older material, you’re dumb and we can’t be friends anymore. At least Dingir has been listenable — their older material has leaned towards obnoxious. This one shows promise, though.
Dingir will be available for purchase on February 5th, 2013 on Unique Leader Records.
I’m sure I’m not the first to make this assertion, but death metal, and especially technical death metal, can get pretty convoluted. Bands tend to do more of the same rather than take strides and make their own signature sound [You can say that for most genres, really - Juular]. For this reason it’s normally extremely hard for me to get into newer death metal. I always tend to lean towards older bands such as Cannibal Corpse, Death, Morbid Angel, — before they sucked— Suffocation, and the like. Though, there are some newer bands that do stuff I dig, like Obscura for example. They took the technical aspect and merged it with the slower, more traditional death metal style that I love. The Faceless incorporated cleans well into their music, and Rings Of Saturn made breakdown-filled technical death metal with awesome highs. Be that as it may, I will, for the most part, always rely on older stuff to entertain my needs.
Which brings me to Kamikabe, a Pittsburgh based band that’s been around since ’03, but have only one record out, Aberration Of Man, on Unique Leader Records. It came out at the tail end of August this year, and a friend had told me about them, and I instantly loved what I heard. It’s not the most amazing thing in the world, but they blend tech, traditional death, and even some progressive elements into their music, which is something that any music fan should appreciate, especially those looking for a fun new release that really gets you going. You can stream it from their Bandcamp, but I highly recommend that you buy it, seeing as it’s only $9.99, which is around the same price you would pay for it on iTunes. Also, hit them up on Facebook to stay tuned for tour updates and such.
Rings of Saturn are one of those bands that I always hear people fawning over, but could never get into. The production was never really all that great (how can something be simultaneously over and underproduced?), and between the wank and breakdowns, their previous material was pretty much devoid of any soul. Even still, they managed to have moments of promise that kept me checking back to see how they were faring. The sampler for their sophomore album that was released earlier this year left me with some cautious optimism as much as a sampler could. Production and songwriting (from what we heard of it) seemed to point towards a major improvement that left me intrigued.
So now, three months later, we now have details surrounding the band’s sophomore album, titled Dingir (Sumerian for ‘god’ or ‘sky’). The tracklist is as follows:
Objective to Harvest (4:06)
Galactic Cleansing (3:28)
Shards of Scorched Flesh (3:08)
Feast Upon their Bowels (3:35)
Faces Imploding (5:51)
Peeling Arteries (4:05)
Fruitless Existence (3:13)
Immaculate Order (4:37)
Utopia (Instrumental, 5:25)