Hey! Listen to Idle Hands!

A while ago, I wrote about one of my favorite bands operating as part of the traditional heavy metal revival, Spellcaster. Since then, sadly, the band has disbanded, leaving a denim-jacket wearing hole in my heart. Luckily for me, Gabriel Franco (who played bass for Spellcaster) has forged Idle Hands from out of the molten wreckage of his former band. Idle Hands are still very much inside the traditional heavy metal definition but channel a much darker version than Spellcaster; they tend to err on the side of ballad rather than the epic proclamations of power that were Spellcaster’s stock and fare but, to be honest, that approach might even be better than the original. Head on down below for your first taste!

Mantar – The Modern Art of Setting Ablaze

Despite being just a guitar and drum duo, Mantar still sound just as massive as their modern sludge metal brethren. On their third album The Modern Art of Setting Ablaze, Erinç Sakarya (drums, vocals) and Hanno Klänhardt (vocals, guitars) continue their consistent trend of dropping an abrasive slab of blackened, crusty sludge every two years, all…

Release Day Roundup – 1/26/18

Each month, we always seem to come to the same conclusion when it comes to our Editors’ Picks column: Friday release days open the floodgates and unleash a seemingly endless stream of quality new music. But while some of our Editors and Contributors sit down gleefully each week to dive into this newly stocked treasure…

Tribulation – Down Below

Of the comments on our post outlining Music Journalism’s Top 25 Metal Albums of 2017, one in particular provided an opinion that’s plagued the metal community for quite some time. The commenter criticized Heavy Blog for being too focused on “wanting to like what’s different as oppose to just listening to an…

Pyrolatrous – Teneral

Metal is a fairly incestuous genre of music, particularly within its more extreme margins. Band members jump from one project to the other with relative ease, and change styles seemingly at the drop of a hat. Super-groups pop up and dissipate regularly, new band members come and go between releases,…

Kvlt Kolvmn // June 2017

Well, it’s been a minute, but we’re back with a vengeance for another installment of Kvlt Kolvmn! Hope you didn’t miss us too much. But hey, who am I kidding? Of course you did. You may notice a different, less handsome and syrupy voiced face attached to our beloved Kolvmn this month. I know, major disappointment. I will be assuming the writing of this column for a bit, but never fear! I will try my best to live up to Scott’s sterling reputation for excellent black metal picks. That’s why we’re here, and what I intend to deliver to your anxious ears. Because it has been a few months since our last installment, we’ll be covering releases from both this and last month that are worthy of mention. So buckle up and prepare yourself for some black metal madness!

Black Anvil – As Was

On previous albums, Black Anvil’s blackened thrash always seemed to fall into a state of limbo. Triumvirate hit the black-thrash-for-the-masses nail on the head, but for what little progressive tendencies they exhibited (to be honest, this is definitely more Metallica-level progressivism than it is Dream Theater), it lacked the dynamism to make it truly interesting. They might as well have gone the route of a band like Skeletonwitch and cut the fat entirely in favor of a more lean and mean approach. In comparison, Hail Death felt like an overcompensation. More Watain-like in terms of progressive arrangements, the experimentation was worthwhile, but the record was hampered by too many forgettable moments, leading to inflated songs that felt like they were long for the sake of being long. While both albums are still damn good in their own right, it felt like the band had yet to find the balance that would showcase them at their best. As Was mostly reconciles this imbalance, and also brings some interesting new elements into the fold.