A new Inter Arma release is always welcome. 2014’s The Cavern was a stunning record that topped my end of year list, and although 2016’s Paradise Gallows didn’t ascend to the same heights, it was an album that I still deem as an essential listen, (and in hindsight should definitely have been higher up on 2016’s list). Continue reading
Sludge heaviness mixes with psychedelic hypnotic grooves to create slow, torturous music that takes the listener on a tour through forgotten swamps, populated by hideous witches, (do you see what I did there?).
Deep growled vocals act as a guide on this foul journey, paving a path through the murk with sheer force of diseased will. Continue reading
I like Usurpress. Both their split with Bent Sea and their last full-length, Ordained, were very enjoyable, and now they’re back with a new album that features a very good cover.
But what of the music? Usurpress are not a normal death metal band, including elements of crust, sludge and progressive/psychedelic music in their delivery, as they do. Continue reading
A brief overview of Future Echo Returns – doom, sludge, psychedelia, stoner, feedback, atmosphere, synths, heaviness, riffs, leads, solos, metal, songs. More than anything this last one; this album is about songs. Damn good ones too.
In addition to the songs themselves, Slomatics are all about the Continue reading
Cough. It’s a funny name for a band. Still, I’ve heard worse, a lot worse.
If you’re a fan of bands like Yob, Electric Wizard, Sleep, Candlemass and the like, then you’ll probably already know that Cough create the kind of repetitive, hypnotic doomscapes that you’re gonna love. Continue reading
Combining elements of bands such as Neurosis, Light Bearer, (who they share a member with), Isis, Converge and No Anchor, The Nepalese Temple Ball have created over an hour’s worth of exploratory, expansive music on Arbor.
This is a diverse album that’s full of different influences and styles, all collected under the widely variable Post-Metal umbrella. Doom, Progressive Metal, Hardcore/Post-Hardcore, Sludge, Psychedelia…even a hint of Black Metal…these are all gathered by the band and melted down to form the songs on Arbor. They have a wealth of skill at doing this, it seems, and Arbor is much more accomplished than it probably should be for a début album.
Lots of different moods and feelings are covered, but the overall impression for me is one of a strange apocalyptic landscape where the world is drowning a chaotic, messy death.
This is music that’s non-standard, atypical and not afraid at all to do its own thing. The band are clearly walking the path that they want to and should be commended for doing this and exploring such rich musical possibilities. This has resulted in a quality album full of interesting areas to explore, with plenty of diversity and depth to attract and hook the listener. This is assuming you like challenging, interesting music of course. If all you’re after is more of the same, then move along now.
The Indian scene seems to be endlessly fresh, exciting and innovative; you’re never quite sure what to expect from the multitude of different bands that are based there. The Down Troddence are a perfect example of this; based on the name and album cover I wasn’t given much clue, even the brief description that I did have didn’t really tell me much.
What we get here is groove-heavy Thrash with interesting melodies and influences from a multitude of other genres interspersed within the heaviness.
The vocals remind me of the ones that Pitchshifter used on their early releases, only raspier; they share that same strange, rhythmic, mechanistic and unusual quality that Pitchshifter used so well in the beginning. They sound robotic, inhuman and characterful all at the same time. Odd but effective.
Musically it’s well-played modern Thrash with melody, leads, solos and added effects and keyboards. As well as the odd Folk influence they also incorporate aspects of psychedelia and Industrial sounds into the songs. Taken all together this adds up to an interesting and quite varied listen that has a modern Metal core but has enough elements of older Thrash and other influences to keep things really interesting.
So, take old Pitchshifter, add a dollop of Devildriver, throw in some classic Thrash, and then mix in a pinch of Folk/Psychedelia/Industrial sounds and you have a recipe for How Are You? We Are Fine, Thank You.
Unexpected and gratefully received; this is an album full of joys and with a lot to offer. Another victory from India.