Hello, hello and welcome to the eighth (!!!) 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 picks a favorite album to share a personal experience with. As has become the norm for now, we break away from genre limitations once again to explore a different group of albums. This time, we explore a tricky feat to pull off: an excellent debut album.
Often times, debut albums fall into two categories: either they are not mature enough and leave a sense of disappointment after they’re done or they are amazingly well performed, forever setting the bar high for whatever band released them. Many a debut album spelled the birth and death of a band, as all future releases would always be compared to that original, majestic iteration. That being said, there are plenty debut albums who have launched successful careers, laying the first stone in the path of a band’s career. Which is which on the list below? That is for each of you to say. Let’s get started!
For their first full studio release, Skyharbor‘s two-disc Blinding White Noise created a sonic shockwave that reverberated around the world receiving plaudits at every turn. They made enough of an impact to have their second funded by their fans so they really must have felt the pressure when constructing it. We are therefore delighted to report that this Indian-British combo have knocked it out of the park.
Remember how back in school the kids whose last names started M-Z could show up later than the rest of you because it took a while to call the roll that far? That’s kind of how our two-part look at what your Heavy Blog is Heavy Staff is (really) listening to for the first weekend of November works. The stragglers show off their 3×3’s after the break.
It’s been a great month of a great year for music and those of us privileged to write for Heavy Blog is Heavy have had our players working overtime. But what have we really been listening to since the start of October? The first half of our answers after the jump.
French progressive metal band Uneven Structure released one of my favorite albums of all time in 2011. Februus is a back to front masterpiece, taking the Meshuggah-lead djent movement and pushing it into the ethereal with cinematic soundscapes and an overall sense of wonder and passion. To me, the record is perfect, which is why three years feels like an eternity when it comes to waiting on a follow-up. The guys in Uneven Structure understand this, and they’ve been kind enough to hand us a scrap of new music in the form of a guitar playthrough of a 20-second segment of a new song, ‘The Scent.’
Uneven Structure have been hard at work writing the follow-up to their absolutely stellar debut Februus, which came out back in 2011. We’ve heard a few snippets from the record, all around maybe 20-30 seconds, but today we got a glimpse that’s over a minute long, and it’s just fantastic. It’s super groovy and filled with atmosphere and, if included on the record, will definitely be a standout part. I’ve jammed it numerous times already. You can hear the snippet at the Soundcloud link below.
Uneven Structure, as well as being masters of crafting huge and atmospheric Meshuggah-ian riffs and creating some of the most beautiful music videos around, are massive cockteases. There’s no other way to say it. I’m counting this as the third time we’ve heard snippets of new music from the band, but it’s hard to be annoyed when they sound this promising — the latest tease comes in the form of a two and a half minute long video that shows off groove, delicate atmospheres and even some blastbeats throughout. See for yourself:
02. On My Way
03. As It Is Above
04. So It Is Below
05. Another Me
06. Ground Shift
10. Wheels In Motion
11. The Signal
12. Verum Infiniti
While it may be better known for the release of some seminal ‘djent’ albums by the likes of TesseracT, Uneven Structure and Vildhjarta, another highlight in 2011 was the unexpected emergence of Circles, a band of Melbournians who, with their EP The Compass, not only won the plaudits of critics across the globe, but introduced to the style a refreshing degree of unpretentious accessibility. Fast forward two years, and the band have now returned with Infinitas, an album of powerful ‘djent’ anthems which thankfully retains the infectious accessibility of The Compass, but is also heavier and more aggressive than its predecessor. At the same time, Infinitas demonstrates an increasing sophistication in Circles’ song writing process, and again proves the band to be one of significant promise.
In what may be the most imaginatively titled post I’ve ever done, I bring you the news that tech-minded Frenchies Uneven Structure have begun to tease the follow up to 2011’s Februus. It’s not much and the quality honestly isn’t that great, but I guess that adds to the mystique of it all. So head over here to the band’s Facebook page and check it out for yourself.
Basick Records are definitely one of the better labels out there right now, especially in terms of forward-thinking progressive metal. Their lineup includes bands such as The Algorithm, Uneven Structure, Dissipate and Glass Cloud, just to give you an idea. Anyways, they’re now doing a new promotion called ‘The Summer Of Discovery’, and it sounds like a pretty good deal.