We do our best at Heavy Blog to bring you all the best new music we’ve been listening to, but there’s only so much time and so many things you can say about a band or album. Moreover, sometimes all you need is an elevator pitch to know whether something is worth checking out, which is why we’ve developed our revamped Hey! Listen to This! column where our writers can come together to recommend you all the things that have taken their fancy, but who don’t necessarily need a page-long sales pitch to go with them. Less time writing means more time listening – for us, and you.
Amos Roddy – Citizen Sleeper OST
Citizen Sleeper is one of my favorite games of 2022 but its soundtrack is almost as good as the game itself. Dreamy, post-Earth vibes are created with a masterful hand on this ambient, electronic masterpiece. Whether they are allowed to unfurl, resulting in lush, electronic soundscapes, or chopped up for a decidedly darker edge, the tracks on Amos Roddy’s excellent soundtrack are evocative and expanseive, even if you haven’t played the game (which you really should).
Greylotus – Dawnfall
I don’t know what a Drewsif Stalin is, but apparently this is his new band – along with Equipoise guitarist Sanjay Kumar – and, if it’s anything to go by, I should probably get on checking out his old one quick smart. Dawnfall is an album of luscious prog metal with a chunky deathcore twist in places. Maybe it’s just all the purple, but this really reminds me of that first Dessiderium record, except brighter and less abrasive. In a year stacked with awesome prog releases, I genuinely think this might be one of the best. (Thanks to Trent for pointing it out.)
Tishina – Uvod…
I find most melodic death-doom tends to overstay its welcome with its tendency to lack in dynamics, especially on the tempo side. Perhaps benefiting from its only 30-minute run time, this new project from Serbia avoids that issue through strong song-writing and memorable guitar leads, and remains a compelling listen from start to finish.
Hornwood Fell – Sgr A
Italian avant-black/death with a spacey vibe and nicely used synths that bring to mind a short form version of Ion. The atmospherics will satisfy all the space cadets, but don’t be fooled, Sgr A is as aggressive as all your blasty faves. If Immortal brought their frostbitten talents to the unfathomably chilly depths of space and took Carl Sagan along for the ride, I’d bet they’d sound a lot like Hornwood Fell.
Green/Blue – Paper Thin
This is simply S-tier garage/post-punk featuring one of the Blaha boys from The Blind Shake. Blaha’s signature surfy shimmer really hits the spot this time of year, wonderfully glistening amidst Paper Thin’s eerie/dreary lo-fi production – it’s one of those perfect juxtapositions that makes no sense and still feels oddly familiar and right – especially when you got this sucker cranked. Green/Blue has that DIIV-y, dreamy flavor on lock, but ramp things up with a charging rhythm section that can lend some real oomph, even in their modestly paced ventures. If you got 25 minutes (and maybe even some of your favorite buds) to burn, you’ll likely find yourself stuck on Paper Thin’s plethora of hooks.
Dessication – Cold Dead Earth
If “nasty” is a component in your music that you appreciate, then look no further than Dessication’s Cold Dead Earth. They blend the swagger and stink of doom riffs with the caustic edges of blackened influences, funneling their influences into music that just feels bigger, dirtier, and nastier than anything else around. Add in some ethereal vocals to create a sort of angelic counterpoint to the whole thing, and you have an intriguing and effective album on your hands.
Two Brothers – Star Thief
The clean vocals might take a bit to get used to, but it’s worth looking past them if that bothers you. This is a a very eclectic and experimental display of post-hardcore, midwest emo, and sassy mathcore. Fans of Fear Before The March Of Flames and Circle Takes The Square definitely take note. The unexpected synth and flute usage are a nice bonus too.
Vermilion Dawn – VVitch Den
Impressive, epic progressive deathcore debut FFO Fallujah and soaring leads. Come for the 90s horror synths, stay for the galaxy-churning riffs. Old fanatics of The Faceless and The Contortionist will have plenty to gush over here, too. This one could end up being a dark horse at year’s end; the more you listen, the more it sucks you in.
Iron Tomb – Vile Retribution
Old school Birmingham crossover with modern polish. This is how you do cavernous death metal right – by not hamstringing it in production. Vile Retribution sounds like you’re being beaten to death by a demented biker goon, and you love every sick, ass-haulin’ second of it. Get run over by Iron Tomb right here.
The Wind Covenant – Conjuration
Progressive tech metalcore seems to have run its course, but there’s still plenty of enjoyment to be wrung from the once boundary pushing sub-genre, especially when it’s done this well. I don’t know where The Wind Covenant cut their teeth, but this debut EP showcases the polish and songwriting chops of a far more established act. I’ll definitely be keeping an eye on them from now on.
Atlantis Chronicles – Nera
What’s the deal with these guys? Do people know about them? Was I meant to know about them? Seems like they’ve been around a while and they sound like the kind of thing readers and writers of Heavy Blog would have been onto long before I stumbled across them on a random Spotify playlist. As for what they sound like: Remember that time Lamb of God’s Chris Adler played drums for Protest the Hero? Like that, except less like that, than what you probably thought it was going to sound like before it happened.
Chatpile – “Slaughterhouse”
Forthcoming single from the album God’s Country, which comes out July 29. Some of the most compelling angry, sludgy noise rock you’ll find.
wthAura – Voidcation
New stuff from the best modern math/nu-prog artist.
Verberis – Adumbration of the Veiled Logos
Dissonant black metal featuring Ulcerate drummer Jamie Saint Merat.
A Concrete Future – Remnants of Times to Come
I don’t listen to a ton of prog, but this has some rad riffs and solos and kept my attention.
Voidward – Voidward
High-octane psych metal resplendent with riff worship and no-fucks-given, gloriously excessive guitar solos.