Testament’s new album, Brotherhood Of The Snake, is likely to please the faithful and even more likely to be ignored by anyone else. While the band delivers typically strong riffs and decent vocal melodies, there is nothing particularly new or groundbreaking. It is, not surprisingly to those who have followed the band for decades, simply another Testament album.
Microtonal music is a subject seldom tackled. First, it’s complex and pretty much endless, and then it’s also quite obscure, being only rarely used in day-to-day context. Therefore, it’s often never even encountered to begin with. With this article, I will try to demystify the theory behind microtonal music so you can understand it, and hopefully appreciate it. I will also hop between the terms microtonal and xenharmonic, as they are interchangeable.
As the reference to existentialism in the title might suggest, we live in dire times. In a year when The Dillinger Escape Plan have announced their own demise, in a year when The Ocean are still silent, who will supply us with the groovy, hectic, frenetic progressive metal we so long for? What voice shall break the silence and blend blistering heaviness with introspection, ensnaring our minds and hearts with its highs and lows? Luckily, Cryptodira have taken up the mantle left so empty and are stepping with a re-imagined version of “Descent”. The first half of their masterful An Unmarked Grave, 2014 debut, “Descent” is a showcase in the gritty, progressive groovy metal we bemoaned in our opening lines. Now, it gets an aural and visual treatment, with a brand new recording and mix coupled with a fresh, depressing and moving video to go along with it. Head on below and check it out in all its carmine glory.
With Heavy Blog having changed the kind of content we publish and how we publish it, we’ve decided to retire our recurring Unmetal Monday column in favor of more ongoing/mercurial coverage of unmetal genres like indie rock, alternative, EDM, and more. One of the side effects of this is that we no longer had a central place to write about new music and albums from these kinds of artists/bands in a more informal way – things we might want to talk about but not necessarily in long-form. In light of that and our tradition of combining certain metal releases into groups to form “Rapidfire Reviews,” we’ve established this semi-regular column to take three recent or upcoming releases from the world of “indie” in the pejorative sense and offer some quick takes on them. In our latest Indie Rapidfire Roundup, contributor Mike McMahan and editors Nick Cusworth and Scott Murphy offer their thoughts on three very different, yet all well-anticipated albums: La Sera’s Queens, Nicolas Jaar’s Sirens and Preoccupations self-titled debut.