I vividly remember that night 10 years ago plus a day: the headlines were plastered all over every single metal outlet, crying out the horrid fact that ‘Dimebag’ Darrell and three fans were brutally gunned down during a show. I was 17 at the time and A Vulgar Display of Power and Far Beyond Driven were my lifeblood, companions in the struggle against the society I felt was choking me down. In honor of the legacy that Darrell has left with is and to commemorate the pain of that night, Textures have released a cover version of ‘I’m Broken’, an iconic Pantera song. Head on over the jump to hear it.
It’s been about a month since we peeked behind the curtains to see what the Heavy Blog staff is (really) listening to. We start our three-part update after the jump.
Joining the ranks of the plethora of supergroups that have sprang up recently is Netherlands-based project Mourn, whose members include Robin Zielhorst (Exivious, ex-Cynic, ex-Blue Man Group) on bass, Thomas Frankhuijzen (March) on drums, Kas Kluitman on guitar, and Pieter Verpaalen (ex-Textures) handling vocal duties. When a band’s lineup reads like a who’s who of Dutch progressive metal, you’d think you know what you’re in for…but guess again. While Mourn’s musical direction is not completely out of left field compared to that of its members’ past projects (Textures do have their bouncy, groovy moments some times), it’s safe to say that no one would be expecting a Pantera 2.0 when checking this band out, which is pretty much what the band sounds like. They cite the aforementioned Pantera, Down, Black Sabbath, and Black Label Society as main influences, and that much is evident from their 3-song EP The Beaten Path which you can hear for yourself below:
Welcome to the second part in our ongoing series of Heavy Blog Is Heavy’s “Best Of” selections where we explore a genre of music and each of our dedicated authors pick a favorite album to share a personal experience with. For our second round, we have chosen a genre that is somewhat controversial—Progressive Metalcore. It’s controversial in that its boundaries are somewhat unclear and therefore host a slew of different bands under their wings. In addition, the word metalcore itself is enough to set many a mouth foaming.
Harnessing the aggression inherent in metalcore, the progressive end of things seeks to give it a more subtle or varied expression. Taking the normal tools of the trade; breakdowns, harsh vocals and chuggy bass to name a few, the genre further expands on them in many different ways. Sampling, peculiar structures or the introduction of unexpected genres (like jazz for example) seek to modify the basic metalcore formula. The bands on this list excel in fusing the two halves together to create an intriguing, yet still aggressive, whole.
January started the year out with a lot of promise, with new releases from Indian, Alcest, and Periphery gaining quite a bit of attention around these parts. However, what floored us the most in the first four weeks of 2014 was the first-ever proper release from Chicago newcomers Warforged. Essence of the Land is an odyssey exploring death metal, black metal, and progressive metal influences that stunned a large number of the staff group. Opeth comes to mind with the band’s dynamic use of keyboards and acoustic guitars as cinematic gateways between stretches of technical riffing and powerfully melodic brutality, or perhaps Between the Buried and Me’s penchant for epic-length songwriting and weaving a larger picture over multiple tracks.
Essence Of The Land tells the twisted tale of a dread-inducing and brooding swamp and the unknown horrors that lie beneath its surface, making it one of those surprising death metal albums where the lyrics actually add a lot of atmosphere and weight to music. So much so, in fact, that the video accompaniment that provides visuals for ¾ of the EP contains the lyrics throughout, alongside footage of the band tearing through earth-shattering riffs.
At the heart of it, Warforged’s sound presents an assortment of progressive death metal influences that still manages to sound fresh and exciting, despite dredging the very bottom of the swampy sludge they strive to recreate. And honestly, what better way to start a new year than with a new band that are reinvigorating even one of the most well-trodden of sounds?
We spoke with the entirety of Warforged to not only get a look into the creation of one of 2014’s best releases, but to get a glimpse at what’s in store for the band’s future.
That release date completely snuck up on me. But it’s here and I’m not complaining, so head over to the BEAR (I’m guessing it’s stylised like David Draiman is typing it) Bandcamp page to hear the new album Noumenon from Basick’s latest signees.
You might remember Bear (still not sure whether it’s meant to be fully capatalized or not) as the latest signing of those lovely people over at Basick Records. Well, they’ve wasted no time in promoting the band, as they just debuted a new video from the band over at Metalsucks.
Hacride fans have been waiting nearly four years for this French quartet to release details of the follow-up to their brilliant Lazerus album. And fortune favours the patient by the looks of it, as Back To Where You’ve Never Been looks set to be absolutely killer if ‘Overcome‘, which you can listen to here courtesy of MetalSucks, is anything to go by.
Dutch progressive metal outfit Textures had a critical hit with their 2011 album Dualism, and as it would appear that the group have finally settled in on a sweet spot with a consistent lineup after breaking in the United States and gaining a larger fanbase worldwide, the band has parted was with guitarist Jochem Jacobs.
Here’s the full statement made from the band via their official website:
Ladies and gentlemen, it has been a bit quiet around the TEXTURES camp lately. It is for a valid reason: After 12 years being a big part of the band, Jochem Jacobs has decided to leave TEXTURES. It is sad to see him leave, but we respect his decision fully. Since the very start of TEXTURES, Jochem has helped the band get to where it is right now and his input will always be part of our music.
“I’ve been with TEXTURES from the very beginning and have had a lot of great adventures in the past 12 years, musically and socially! It was a dream coming true, I was traveling across the world with my best friends and making music!!! What more could you want?!! Strange as it may sound, my priorities changed gradually during the years… Now the time has come for me to start doing more other stuff. There are so many things in life that gives me goosebumps!
I’m really busy producing great bands and other music at my studio and I want to focus more on that, I will keep on rocking!!!! Also, I will keep being involved with Textures and will continue producing future TEXTURES albums \m/”
It’s a big setback for the band, but we are fully determined to keep on making music. Therefore the search for a replacement guitarist has begun!
More news about this coming soon!
Bare with us guys! Remember that you, our fans, are the ones that make us want to move on at full-speed and create some more crazy music!
This news is a huge bummer because Jacobs was such a driving force in the band on multiple fronts, but while the band still holds fellow founding members Stef Brooks and Bart Hennephof in tow, they will hopefully continue their forward trajectory. Textures are promising rising stars in metal on a widely respected label (Nuclear Blast), so finding a suitable replacement shouldn’t be that difficult to accomplish. Even still, we wish them and Jacobs the best!
We shared this news with you folks before our break through various small means, but this news is too exciting we couldn’t avoid giving it its own news post. Our friends The Omega Experiment have inked a record deal with Listenable Records, home to fellow like-minded progressive bands such as Gorod, Sybreed, and Betraying the Martyrs. Perhaps the most telling of this news is that Listenable Records are a fairly major starting point for many bands that grew into being powerhouses in the genre, namely Soilwork, Gojira and Textures. Obviously, The Omega Experiment are in great company!
With this new deal comes the promise of a physical re-release of The Omega Experiment’s self-titled debut album on February 25th and increased touring as the band continues work on their sophomore album, tentatively due out early 2014. Be sure to hit the band up on Facebook in the mean time! Congratulations guys, you deserve it!