*prognotes: Mastodon’s Crack the Skye, Part III

Welcome to our third and final part of our notes on Mastodon’s Crack the Skye. For any who have just joined us, or if you’re looking for a refresher, don’t hesitate to check out part I and part II from last week. We ended part II having just looked at “The Czar”, and that near 11-minute epic is followed by the magnificent “The Ghost of Karelia.”

*prognotes: Mastodon’s Crack the Skye, Part I

*prognotes breaks down and analyses your favourite metal and progressive concept albums lyrically and musically. Read other entries in this series here.  Welcome to another edition of *prognotes! Today we’ll be looking at the crown jewel of Mastodon’s brilliant discography: 2009’s masterful concept album Crack the Skye. Broadly speaking, the…

A Gift to Artwork: Mastodon

A Gift to Artwork breaks down and analyses your favourite album artwork to see what it communicates to the listener and how it interacts with the music and lyrics. Read other entries in this series here. A couple of months ago we did a lengthy *prognotes series on Mastodon’s Crack…

Heavy Blog’s Top 50 Albums Of 2016

We wrote a pretty big check to ourselves when we closed off 2015. Publishing not only a list which proclaimed the triumph of 2015 but also a whole editorial dedicated to the idea of “The Golden Age of Metal”, we set ourselves up for disappointment. Like the rest of the music establishment which, in numerous places implicit and explicit, was apparently ready to join in the social lynching of 2016, we were well positioned to find it a sobering, dreadful, faith shattering year for music in general and metal specifically. Except it was nothing of the sort and we cannot stress our amazement at metal/music journalism’s reaction so far. 2016 was an absolutely fantastic year, building on the trend of solid and often groundbreaking releases from established acts and simply astounding, out of left field releases from virtually nameless bands. Sure, it had its disappointments for us from huge bands we had expected more from (although signs of their demise were certainly forthcoming) but, overall, it was a year which will surely be remembered in our circles as one of the best years for music in general.

Deep Dive – The Occult In Modern Day Metal

“The occult” is a term that gets thrown around quite a lot these days. It’s mostly used to describe a certain aesthetic, one laden with candles, burly cloaks and pentagrams. It can also be used to connote an eerie or bizarre, a sense that something is off. That shouldn’t be surprising; after all, “occult” comes from the Latin “occultus”, something hidden or secret. However, the occult is also a field of study, a body of knowledge and a sociological term which underwent plenty of historical permutations to finally end up with the meaning and context is bears today.

Unmetal Monday – 2/22/16

Like the grand majority of modern metal fans, our tastes here at Heavy Blog are incredibly vast, with our 3X3s in each Playlist Update typically covering numerous genres and sometimes a different style in each square. While we have occasionally covered non-metal topics in past blog posts, we decided that…

What Heavy Blog Is Really Listening To – Playlist Swap – 2/5/16

Even a cursory glance of our biweekly “What Heavy Blog Is Really Listening To” posts will reveal that there is a great deal of variety among our staff’s musical tastes. Due to this, we brainstormed the idea of “Playlist Swap,” another biweekly segment that takes place between playlist updates. We randomly select two of the participants from each update, have them pick their favorite track from each of the nine albums in their grid and then send the list over to the other person to listen to and comment on. Within these commentaries occurs praise, criticism and discovery, and we hope that you experience a few instances of this last point as well. This week’s post brought staff members Scott Murphy and Karlo Doroc together to peruse each other’s tastes: