Recent Posts in metal
December 6, 2013
by Wyatt Marshall
Cancer Bats are in the midst of the previously discussed tour with Red Fang, Indian Handcrafts and The Shrine (dates below), and the day after that tour hits NYC (12/11 at Bowery Ballroom, tix), they'll be taking a night off to play a very special Black Sabbath tribute set at Saint Vitus (12/12) with No Way and Blackest. The Cancer Bats will be performing as Bat Sabbath, which is also the name they used to release their tribute EP which they titled Bastards of Reality (like every other Sabbath cover band). This isn't the first time Cancer Bats have busted out the Bat Sabbath--they've played double headlining Cancer Bats/Bat Sabbath shows before, and toured Canada as Bat Sabbath late in 2011, too. Tickets for the Vitus show are on sale. Listen to Bat Sabbath below.
The real Black Sabbath is touring North America too.
Cancer Bats aren't the only band on the Red Fang tour with a little something on the side. The Shrine is playing a show at The Acheron with Natur, Dirty Fences, and Iron Force on 12/12 too. Tickets for that show are still available.
Updated dates are listed, along with the Bat Sabbath stream, below...
by Doug Moore
Kerry King of Slayer (more by Caroline Harrison)
Now that we're in December's not-terribly-icy-so-far clutches, things have finally begun to slow significantly on the heavy music front, but the newswire never goes cold! There was a lot to talk about this week, and some totally killer shows coming up this weekend -- most notably, Canadian war metal horde Revenge's two-night NYC debut at Saint Vitus, which starts tonight (12/6) with support from Abazagorath, Krieg, and Woe and which continues tomorrow (12/7) with support from Masoleum, Engorge, and Mutilation Rites. We celebrated this rare event with a war-themed East Village Radio show.
Here's some other stuff you might've missed:
This was an unusually busy week for music videos in the metal world. We debuted two: a Deicide video at Invisible Oranges and a Rabbits video here at BV. High on Fire popped one out too, and Watain tried their hands at the form for the first time. (Converge posted a teaser video for their upcoming Live at the BBC 7", if that counts.) But Behemoth won out easily, both with the quality of the video and of the accompanying song, which heralds their first new LP since 2009.
We also had some face time with big names: we interviewed Dave Vincent of Morbid Angel and Joakim Stermer of Necrophobic over at IO, plus some extensive thoughts regarding recent live performances by Slayer and Monster Magnet.
Some other odds and ends: Carcass, Gorguts and more will be on the road next year for the 2014 Decibel Tour. Metal Church, or what remains of them, announced a tour and a show at Vitus. Somewhat less-aged local phenoms Unlocking the Truth got their first taste of rockstar ad revenue. A ton of metal bands posed for photos with their cats at Obituary's behest for the benefit of feral cats in Tampa. And we ran down all the new metal releases that are fit to buy, as we do weekly.
Some other noteworthy shows this weekend: Negative Approach & the Casualties at Europa on Friday; Valkyrie with Sinister Haze & HASJ at the Acheron on Friday too; Cop Problem w/ Passage & Capacity at Acheron on Saturday (12/7); & Zevious, Hyrrokkin, and Pants Exploder at Union Pool on Sunday (12/8). Keep an eye on our snazzy NYC metal show calendar for your heavy show needs. It rules.
by Wyatt Marshall
Carcass at Gramercy Theatre in September (more by Greg Cristman)
Carcass, The Black Dahlia Murder, Gorguts and Noisem are teaming up for the Third Annual Decibel Magazine Tour, which is already making a case for one of 2014's best lineups and showcases both the worthy veterans and up-and-coming. Old school death metal pioneers Carcass put out one of the year's top metal albums in Surgical Steel--a triumphant comeback that earned Decibel Mag's top album of the year on their Top 40 Albums of 2013 list--and it was just a few months ago that the band leveled Saint Vitus and played Gramercy Theatre. The same accolades apply to Gorguts, whose Colored Sands, the band's first album in seven years, landed at number three on Decibel's list. Youngsters Noisem, who scored number nine on the Decibel list, have been wowing everyone wherever they go with their chaotic, shot-in-the-arm thrash. They just wrapped up a tour with melodic death metal vets Black Dahlia Murder, who will provide direct support to Carcass.
Carcass frontman Jeff Walker seems pretty amped for the show:
This is possibly the unsexiest Decibel Tour lineup yet," he quips. "We're all bringing the 'girth' back to the U.S., along with gray hair and sensible footwear. But it's the music that matters, right? Just close your eyes and think of England. If that fails, think of Tampa.The tour stops in NYC at the Best Buy Theater on Friday, April 11. Ticket info is forthcoming at the Decibel tour website. Check out the tour dates below...
by Doug Moore
Brooklyn jazz/prog/rock unit Zevious are fresh off of a month-long tour with Dysrhythmia, with whom they share talented drummer Jeff Eber. They'll be showing off their road-tested chops for their last hometown show of the year at Union Pool on Sunday (12/8). Joining them will be equally out-there Ohio band Hyrrokkin, who will be celebrating the release of their "new" (released in September) album Pristine Origin. We premiered some material from that album over at Invisible Oranges around the time of its release, and if you missed it, you can stream it below.
Rounding out the lineup will be the hilariously-named Pants Exploder, which features Jason LaFarge of Seizures Palace Studios, and a joint improv set from musicians Matt Schulz (Holy Fuck, Enon) and Greg Saunier (Deerhoof).
No advance tickets, but admission is $10, and doors are at 8 PM. Stream some Hyrrokkin and Pants Exploder below...
December 5, 2013
Converge have announced the release of a "Live at the BBC" 7" EP due out soon on Deathwish from their session at Studio MV4 at Maida Vaile Studios at the BBC in London, August 2010. Release date TBA, but you can watch the trippy teaser video, along with more details, below...
by Doug Moore
Keeping pace with Arabrot's release schedule is a fool's errand, but Rabbits have done a bit to catch up with SOS (Singles, Other Shit), an odds-and-ends compilation that pairs six unreleased originals with a block of eight '80s-era hardcore punk covers. One of those originals, "No (More) Depth," now has a music video, which we're streaming below.
The tune itself is over almost before it begins -- it's a minute-long spurt of flutter-strummed chords and spasmodic rhythms, but its lyrics are the selling point for me. Not many songs reference both the seventy-year-old folk standard "Sixteen Tons" and the Ramones in barely a breath: "What do you get when you beat on the brat? / Another day older and deeper in debt".
SOS is out now on Eolian Empire via download and cassette. Rabbits have some more releases in the works, too: a(nother) covers-oriented 7" split with an as-yet-unnamed East Coast band, and a 12" EP that should be out some time early next year. They're also gradually uploading archival live recordings to their Bandcamp, one show at a time.
Stream the video and some of the live material below...
by Doug Moore
Dave Vincent (more by Jonathan McPhail)
When Morbid Angel announced that they would be celebrating the 20th anniversary of their classic third album Covenant by playing the album in full on tour, the reaction was a little more muted than the band had probably hoped. Despite their unimpeachable legacy, Morbid Angel lost a lot of goodwill with their fanbase when, after an eight-year delay, they released 2011's disastrous Ilud Divinum Insanus. The departure of longtime drummer Pete Sandoval did not help matters. Many people (justifiably) turned their backs on M-A in the two years since.
But despite the dampened expectations, Morbid Angel's performance on the NYC stop of this tour on 11/12 was thoroughly awesome. As goofy as this band looks onstage sometimes (notice Dave Vincent's outfit above), they still bring their A-game to their classic material; the performances are less manic than on the albums, but they're tighter by the same token. Trey Azagthoth remains the best lead player in all of death metal; watching him rip those unearthly sounds out of his guitar is absurd and awesome.
We also spoke to Vincent, the band's lately-divisive frontman, for an interview over at Invisible Oranges. Since Morbid Angel kept their set mostly to their classic material, we followed suit with our conversation. Vincent notably confirmed that Pete Sandoval is no longer an official member of the band, due to Sandoval having "found Jesus." Read an excerpt below...
Covenant came out in 1993, which was in many ways the peak of death metal as a commercial genre -- Carcass's Heartwork, Entombed's Wolverine Blues, Death's Individual Thought Patterns, and Dismember's Indecent & Obscene all came out that year, among others. Morbid Angel were the first death metal band to sign to a major. What was it like to be at the center of all of that?
I looked at it as an opportunity more than anything else. It gave us some muscle to get us into the big boys' swimming pool, as it were. We had to work a lot harder, obviously, but we had some opportunities available to us that weren't before. We got on some really good tours. We had some really good videos. It takes a lot of money to do some of these things, and Warner has very deep pockets. They allowed us to realize some of our dreams -- we got to do some things that I enjoyed a lot, and that the fans tell me they enjoyed as well.
Do you feel like you capitalized on that opportunity as much as you could've?
Gosh, well, I guess you could always do more. But I think that we pushed what we do pretty darn far for what it is. It's not commercial music. We have some stuff that's catchy in its own way, but not to the mainstream. Although, it's interesting. Listening back now, I hear a lot of things that arguably we helped to pioneer. There are elements of that which I hear in all manner of kinds of music, including pop. Which is cool.
Covenant is really catchy for a death metal record.
That's just what we do, y'know? But all these other bands that you mentioned -- we're all very different. Today, what I hear is a lot of things that sound the same. I don't hear the sense of individuality that I felt with us or some of the other Florida bands -- Obituary, Death, those bands. When people talk about a "Florida sound," I don't know what that would be. We all sound very different. The tones, the song structures, everything about us was very different.
Nowadays, I don't think there's so much emphasis put on identity as there is on groupthink: "What's this style, or that style?" Style doesn't mean a lot to me. Quality means everything to me. If there's anything that I wish that I heard more of these days, it's the same differentiation that I heard back when we were cutting our teeth.
The rest of the interview is available over at IO. Fingers crossed that Morbid Angel's next album sounds more like Covenant.
December 4, 2013
By Doug Moore
Behemoth at Irving Plaza, 2012 (more by Greg Cristman)
Behemoth frontman Nergal is kind of a badass -- he's an extremely gifted musician and a live-performance powerhouse who's played an important role in putting the potent Polish metal scene on the international map over the past 20 years. He's also a cancer survivor; after his 2010 leukemia diagnosis, he underwent chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant. Two years later, Behemoth were back on the road and plowing through high-energy live sets like nothing had happened. Again, badass.
Behemoth announced a 2014 release for The Satanist -- their tenth album, and their first in half a decade -- a few months ago. I admittedly haven't been too excited by their last few efforts, but after watching the NSFW video for leadoff single "Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel" (streaming below), my enthusiasm for the band has been rekindled. It's far moodier and more patient composition than the cluttered, robotic death/black metal that they've produced recently. They can still put the hammer down when they need to, though; the song's final minute is both the catchiest and most intense moment I've heard them produce since the mid-aughts. The video is pretty cool too, especially if you're into artsy black-and-white shots of evil rituals happening in slow motion.
In related news, Behemoth were also recently announced as part of the initial lineup for the 2014 edition of France's Hellfest, which will take place from June 20 through 22 (6/20-6/22). The lineup so far is huge and crazy: there's a "huge rock band" stage, featuring Iron Maiden, Aerosmith, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, and Soundgarden, among others; a big-name thrash/black metal stage that spotlights Slayer, Death Angel, Emperor, Iced Earth, Behemoth, and more; a death metal stage that will include Death To All, Carcass, Opeth, Nile, Gorguts, Hail of Bullets, and Weekend Nachos; a smaller black metal stage topped off by Watain, Gorgoroth and 1349; a sludge/stoner stage featuring Electric Wizard, Monster Magnet, Unida, Kylesa, Godflesh, and Clutch; and a punk stage topped by Walls of Jericho, Millencolin, and Turbonegro. Wow. You can reserve tickets now, if you feel like parsing the Google-Translated ticket page.
Check out the Behemoth video and the full set of Hellfest announcements below.
by Doug Moore
Deafheaven at Saint Vitus (more by Lukas Hodge)
As Deafheaven bask in the first wave of the year-end accolades that everyone knew they'd be getting, they've made a simultaneously odd and totally logical career decision: they've announced a North American tour with Between the Buried and Me, Intronaut, and The Kindred for early 2014. BTBAM are headlining, but it looks like Deafheaven will provide direct support.
BTBAM and Intronaut are both quite popular, so it makes sense for Deafheaven to ride their current wave of hype onto a bigger-budget tour. But Deafheaven's core fanbase is quite different -- BTBAM and Intronaut are both fairly noodly prog-metal bands who, despite their considerable crossover successes, have younger fanbases and have never been the subjects of the same type of mainstream-media adulation that Deafheaven are currently enjoying. By the same token, parts of the BTBAM/Intronaut fanbase may not have paid much attention to Deafheaven yet. Even though it's kind of a strange aesthetic match, it's an opportunity for them to access another sizeable and lucrative market. When you're basically living off your touring band, it's hard to pass opportunities like that up.
The tour isn't currently scheduled to hit NYC, but it comes close on February 21 at The Paramount in Huntington, and also includes a couple upstate stops in Clifton Park on 2/22, and Syracuse on 3/2. Tickets for the Paramount show go on sale 12/17 at noon.
All dates are listed below...
December 3, 2013
by Wyatt Marshall
Unlocking the Truth at Afro-Punk Fest 2013 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Earlier this year, ears were turned when video emerged on YouTube of a trio of pint-sized metalheads destroying the streets of NYC. Their synchronized headbanging, shred skills, and massive breakdowns were the real deal. Their name: Unlocking the Truth.
Unlocking the Truth may need to get dropped off at their gigs, but they're sharing the stage with some big names at some pretty big shows. They recently shared a billing with metal legends Slayer (who just played The Theatre at MSG) at Fun Fun Fun Fest and played Afro-Punk Fest earlier this year. Now they're scoring pretty sweet deals--they're already sponsored by ESP guitars, and here they are looking super dapper in their own br00tal take on "Jingle Bells" (Jingle Hells?) that they recorded as part of a Cole Haan promotion. Slaying with style, for sure.
Video of Unlocking the Truth destroying Christmas, "Master of Puppets" and more below...