Thursday, May 27, 2010

Maryland Deathfest

So it's times like these that I'm giddy as a school girl (I think I've said this before, keep an eye on what drives me like that).

I'm heading down to Baltimore tomorrow for America's biggest and best metal fest. There's a bunch I'm looking forward to, but I'll just include some of my favorites in order to enlighten, remind, or simply spread the gospel.

Gorguts, Coffins, Sodom, Autopsy, Capitalist Casualties, Wolfbrigade, Eyehategod, Incantation, Repulsion, Magrudergrind, and Gridlink.

Here are some links I've borrowed, as uploading all of this would kill me. It's mostly death metal here, excited to see a lot of the bands I don't know.

Gorguts- Obscura
Avant Garde, weird, super technical death metal that's all over the place. Atonal and dissonant as hell, nothing sounds like this.

Coffins- Buried Death
Death metal, slow, and as heavy as heavy gets. An homage to old metal stalwarts such as Incantation, Winter, Hellhammer, and others. One of the best bands around, hands down.

Sodom- Persecution Mania
Sodom, thrash, Sodom, thrash, if you look under Thrash in Webster's i'm sure you'll find Sodom. I don't know what else to say, one of the best things to come out of Germany.

Autopsy- Severed Survival
Another death metal essential, incredible basswork and riffs. Apparently MDF has been bugging Autopsy for the past 4 years to play, it's about time. Great production, things fell apart a couple of albums later and that's where Abscess comes from.

Capitalist Casualties- Subdivisions In Ruin
If you know power violence, then you know CC. It's like Minor Threat and hardcore, this is mandatory. They've got more releases then you can shake a stick at, enjoy this one.

Wolfbrigade- In Darkness You Feel No Regret
Defenders of the d-beat (borrowed from Disfear), originally wolfpack. Stalwarts in Swedish hardcore, if you don't know them then where the hell have you been?

Eyehategod- Dopesick
The epitome of sludge, one of my favorite albums of all time. Dirty, grimey, hopeless and heavy, Dopesick is NOLA's most important contribution.

Incantation- Onwards Towards Golgotha
Along with Autopsy, a similar slow death metal band of the glory days. Few albums are as heavy as this, pretty atmospheric for a death metal band.

Repulsion- Horrified
Duuuuuuuuuur, one of grindcore's finest moments. Saw these guys back in june play the whole thing, super excited to see it again. Sloppy, organic, geniune, and awesome, Horrified is a piece of music history.

Magrudergrind- Rehashed
A nice mix of power violence and grind, Rehashed is where Magrudergrind belongs. Spazz like vocals, great songwriting and excellent production. Not to mention they are awesome live.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Misery Index - Heirs to Thievery

Released: 2010
Label: Relapse Records

Heirs to Thievery sees Misery Index streamlining and shortening their assault, a slight nod to the philosophy of their grindcore roots. Lyrical ammunition is once again pointed at political and social cancers from materialism in “Plague of Objects” to the New World Order conspiracy (“The Illuminaught”). 2008’s Traitors received a heavy dosage of groove in its songs. Heirs to Thievery pumps it up to a near-fatal injection. When massive gravitational forces aren’t heaving your helpless ragdoll of a body to and fro (“The Carrion Call”, the middle riff of “The Illuminaught”) , it’s the steel-soled boot of all-consuming imperialism and impending doom trampling you deep into the ground (“The Seventh Cavalry”, “You Lose”) or bombs going off in burning broken streets (“Day of the Dead”, “Heirs to Thievery”) . Misery Index wield sound like a weapon, and manage to do a hell of a lot of damage.

Heirs of Thievery, like its predecessor Traitors, is very much quintessential modern death metal. It’s a music very much fixed in the present, in the now, and in the chaos and strife of this modern age. It doesn’t transport the listener to an alternate universe where the Old Gods slumber or into the treacherous depths of a fiery, cavernous hell. Instead, Heirs of Thievery forces the listener into the reality of dystopian human civilization. A reality of car bombs around the block, of the invisible hands of corporate despots strangling you, of world leaders forcing you onto your knees, of collapsing skyscrapers, of whole nations burned into steel and concrete skeletons in a single great white flash. Welcome to the modern apocalypse. The end is not nigh, the end is now.

Pre-order it here.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Blood I Bleed - Massgrav - Split

Blood I Bleed MySpace
Massgrav MySpace
Type: CD
Release: 2010
Label: SelfMadeGod

This split presents two bands playing the same genre in different ways. First up is Blood I Bleed, a band who went from Never Heard Of 'Em to Can't Get Enough Of 'Em status in one trip to Grind And Punishment. They play 11 songs, including three from their previous incarnation My Mind's Mine. And they get right down to business. The tone is metal, the approach is thrash, the final product is a relentless grind of hyperblasts over riffs bordering thrashcore. They also have a barrage of crust riffs at their disposal. There's an odd slow passage or two, most notably the final track, and the band gathers their strength between a fair amount of well-placed feedback. Mastered in the middle of the mix are full throated screams with an extra helping of gravel. This is worthy ear candy for anyone who likes the punk side of grind.

Do I dare even assume you have never heard of the next band? Listening to Massgrav is like finding a handful of early 80s 5" punk singles - but unknowingly playing them at 45 RPM. They are not simply tuned like a punk band, they sound like the fastest punk band you have ever heard. They are also accomplished musicians who grind and thrash with the best of them. Conceivably you could call them powerviolence. But that's taking the easy way out. My advice is to press play and go along for the ride. Massgrav is perfect for anyone who likes the grind side of punk.

The packaging is nice if you speak Swedish. Other wise you get full lyrics for Blood I Bleed, some random letters strewn together in paragraph form on the Massgrav pages, band photos and some Thank You's. For me that all takes a back seat to the music and this CD has two great bands playing their distinct brand of proper grind. Support the bands, support SelfMadeGod - buy it here.