Igorrr is the brainchild of the French musical genius, Gautier Serre and he made it to destroy the limitations of music. Originally a solo project, Serre dug into a variety of contrasting genres to proclaim palatable pieces of art that shouldn’t work, but do. In 2017, he broke barriers when the project gained more members and they released Savage Sinusoid (Metal Blade Records). Now, this bizarre band is back with the full-length album, Spirituality and Distortion (Metal Blade Records) where Serre and the other players are embellishing on the already oddball invention that is Igorrr. Continue reading
It’s a fascinating time to be in the Code Orange camp. It’s been a little over three years since the bruising Forever stormed the Metallic Hardcore gates and they’re finally releasing the proper follow-up, Underneath (Roadrunner) to a hungry world. And the hype is certainly a factor. Continue reading
Italian alt/electro-rock duo Soaware is releasing their new album, Soaware tomorrow. Founded by the duo of Damiano Bessi and Emanuele Grazioli, the inventive alternative rockers have hopes to infect the rest of the world with their songs. They first met in 1999 while playing in the band Mad Cobol, later splitting to join other groups. With Soaware, the band channels the familiar churning magnetic pulse of Industrial, the melancholy soulfulness of Goth, and the rawness of Metal. At the same time, they have experimental, undefinable elements that are purely Soaware music too. Stream their full album right now, only at Ghost Cult! Continue reading
Newcastle’s latest Hardcore reprobates Starve To Survive are back after a whole three years with a new EP, Have Me To Waste (Caliber), hoping to make their own statement of intent and garner some of the attention that the northern Hardcore scene generates, specifically Loathe and God Complex who have been turning more than a few heads over the past year. Continue reading
Electronic music comes in many waves. From new, to old to 80’s electro-rock, not many succeed in creating a memorable electronic record. For the French trio, The Sacrifice, it’s a point to revive the genre with nostalgic moments as they debut with their self-titled (Season Of Mist) on their own terms. They have taken synth-wave and incorporated classic 80’s pop and metal to produce this modern electro groove. The 11-track album is an experiment that involved a dozen of vintage synthesizers and drum machines, according to the band. But what listeners will gather here is a record that balances sonic synths full of color and life. The Sacrifice is here to make you dance. Continue reading
Being able to sound fresh both within metal, and then within your own career, is a hard thing to achieve. So, credit where credit is due, The Browning are still leading the way with their brand of synth-heavy Metalcore. New album Geist (Spinefarm Records) shows the band cementing their sound and even bringing more extremity to the table. Continue reading
Along with the likes of Dan Terminus and GosT, Perturbator has been one of the leading lights in the burgeoning Synthwave scene. The combination of retro, 80s-infused electronica played with the enthusiasm and tempo of Heavy Metal has become the not-so-guilty pleasure of metalheads looking for a reprieve from their usual playlists. Continue reading
Savannah, GA will once again host A.U.R.A. Fest (All Underground Rock Allday) taking place at The Gardens at Ships of The Sea Maritime Museum on February 18, 2017. Unearth, ZAO, Oh, Sleeper, He Is Legend are among the first bands announced. Continue reading
On Thursday, September 17, 2015, Justin Broadrick and G.C. Green of the absolutely crushing, Godflesh, made their Boston stop on the current North American tour in support of the latest album, A World Lit by Fire, with tour support from experimental noise artist, Prurient (Dominick Fernow).
Seemingly few people knew about this show as evidenced by the poor attendance of maybe 150 people, which I can only attribute to the shamefully non-existent show promotion by whomever was saddled with that task in the area. For that reason, I really think there should be some pink slips issued. Godflesh has been in the area exactly one other time in the past 16 or so years. It’s not as if they are some unknown band or some guys from around the corner that sound like everyone else. Having influenced so many with their unique sound since their inception in 1988 Godflesh can’t be categorized as anything but terms like legends, game changers or innovators. Whatever, if you don’t know who they are then you have some serious homework to do ’Mr. and Ms. Metalhead.’ My point is that there should have been at least as many people as had attended their last show in Boston in 2014 and it is a sad comment on the area that there weren’t, whatever the lame excuse or cause.
Just before 9:45pm, Prurient pretty much exploded onto the stage and began his auditory assault. Smashing sound gizmos and gadgets(clearly technical terms) laid out on a table with a laptop and microphones then throwing himself around the stage while screaming inaudible sounds or words into the mic. I found the performance kind of mesmerizing and enjoyed every minute of it. If you don’t like noise artists then it may have been time to get a drink at the bar but if you do, then this was the set for you. Full of energy and interesting to watch with great sound to match.
Godflesh hit the stage and did not disappoint. Not only did they sound amazing, the projections that they are known for set the mood perfectly in the moderately sized venue. The majority of the set list obviously comprised tracks from the recent A World Lit by Fire, which I like a lot, but there were some “classics” as well. Ferocious songs like ‘Crush My Soul,’ ‘Streetcleaner,’ ‘Christbait Rising’ and of course ‘Like Rats’ to close out the night. Whether it was a new or old song, each one hit you square in the chest and left you wanting more. The sound for them was a bit quieter than I expected for the venue but was completely on point otherwise and the lighting for the set, although dark and moody, was the best I have seen there which in my experience has been stagnant an uninteresting.
Other than an extremely disinterested (to the point of ignoring customers), slow and very late merch guy and the lack of any real local show promotion, I have zero complaints. Go see this tour if and when it rolls through. It’s worth every second.
I’m going to just come right out with it – I’ve never really seen the appeal of Dødheimsgard (I refuse to call them DHG – that’s non-negotiable). Their third album 666 International created a considerable wave in the late 90’s Black Metal scene, heralding a cyber-future that had the fans wiping off their panda-paint and buying glowsticks and leather trench-coats, but neither it, nor its equally feted follow-up Supervillain Outcast (both Moonfog), really clicked for me. The “progression” seemed too forced, the electronic elements awkwardly realised and the whole thing just a little too redolent of the Emperor’s new clothes.
I point this out simply because I’m about to lose my shit over A Umbra Omega (Peaceville), and I want to make it clear that I’m not just buying into the general consensus here – with this one, they’ve finally caught my attention.
Despite opening with the glitchy, fragmented electronics of ‘The Love Divine’, one of the first things that becomes apparent about A Umbra Omega is that the “cyber” elements of the last two albums have been dialled down noticeably, replaced with a much broader selection of influences. The songs move jaggedly but with surprising fluidity through Jazz breaks, modern classical music, more restrained electronics and some good, old-fashioned box-of-angry-wasps Scandinavian Black Metal.
It will doubtless anger some fans to say this, but there’s something almost backwards-looking or quaint about A Umbra Omega’s approach to progression. The face of “avant-garde” Black Metal in 2015 is very different to what it was in 1996, and Dødheimsgard’s approach still owes more to the carnivalesque playfulness of Arcturus or goth-tinged drug babble of Ved Buens Ende than DeathSpell Omega or Blut Aus Nord’s chaotic black-hole worship (this review brought to you by hyperbole.com). This is by no means a criticism – indeed, Dødheimsgard remind us of the one thing that the newer style of “experimental” Black Metal bands often forget to include in their time-shifting trans-dimensional horror; character. Despite how wacky things get here, there’s a constant sense of personality, wit and style that pervades each track on A Umbra Omega, drawing together what could otherwise be disparate musical elements into a genuinely effective whole.
As I observed in my recent review of the new <code> album, being weird is ultimately a fool’s quest – each year it gets harder and yields diminishing rewards. Perhaps that’s where Dødheimsgard lost me on previous releases – being experimental and breaking new ground seemed to be the primary objective – but on A Umbra Omega they sound like a band who’ve come to terms with their own weirdness and focussed on the task of writing a really excellent set of songs around it, rather than showing off how wacky they are. A genuine master-class in why Black Metal can still be interesting without having to choose between retro-traditionalism or forced experimentation.