Existential dread, class war, and alienation? Seems like a great time for some new American Nightmare. The storm clouds of tomorrow loom over this fantastic new EP from the beloved hardcore (with post-punk sprinkles) institution on their latest release Dedicated To The Next World (Heartworm Press).
Not even a year on from his last full-length album, The Atheist and Jamie Lenman is back with yet more music. Acting as a companion EP to the aforementioned album, IKnowYouKnowIKnow (Big Scary Monsters) features some of the tracks that didn’t fit in with the theme and sound of The Atheist, allowing Lenman to truly showcase some of the varieties of influences that went into the sound of this phase of his career. What can this additional release add to the package that was his previous album?
On Devil Music (out now on Run For Cover Records) Austin, Texas three-piece Portrayal of Guilt up the ante with a thirty-minute barrage of inventively malevolent extreme metal, firmly achieving what they’ve hinted at on recent releases: greatness.
Descending consecutive steps of the shadowy nooks and crannies of the psyche, like Werner Herzog revealing more abject layers of vampiric horror, Sweden’s Tribulation have never been a one-trick (bat) pony. They are the rare band with sophisticated songwriting smarts, an ominous and seductive allure, and the self-awareness to not tip their hand too far into unintentional macabre cheese camp while still straddling the gulf between Hammer homage, the deep subconscious mind, rock n’ roll, and death.
Metal is allowed to be fun, especially when three heavyweights collide in a tri-split that not only features original songs from each, but unlikely cover tracks which allow for displays of versatility.
Hematite is a hard, steel-gray-colored stone with a metallic sheen. It comes from the Greek word “blood” (hema), alluding to the rust to dark red colored streaks that often run through the stone. Fitting for a duo that formed from former metal outfits, vocalist Davey Muise (Vanna, Trove) and guitarist/vocalist Andrew Gaultier (Big 50, To Speak of Wolves, He is Legend), come together to strike while the iron is hot to forge a new genre crossover. Hematite is where the Wild West meets metal; it’s ‘Gothic Western’.
Ihsahn is a true living musical legend who helped shaped the modern symphonic sound of Black Metal with his work across the four albums Emperor produced between 1994 and 2001, particularly with their debut In The Nightside Eclipse which is perhaps the quintessential release of the genre. And although Emperor are still of course touring and Ihsahn has in the 2000’s released music with his Thou Shalt Suffer and Peccatum projects, the focus for the Norwegian musician has undoubtedly been on developing his solo career.
The last couple of years have been a whirlwind for the Essex-based Beyond Extinction, who dropped their first EP The Fatal Flaws Of Humankind in 2021, then hit a packed New Blood Stage at Bloodstock for their first festival appearance in the same year. Since then they’ve continued to hit the road with full force, playing shows with an impressive roster of bands including Viscera, Cancer Bats, The Five Hundred, and Our Hollow Our Home.
When an EP is presented, it’s easy to cast it off as a minor installment added to a band’s overall body of work. But Dirge composed four independent, uniquely structured tracks that makes their self-released, self-titled opus bigger and more complex than what the runtime would suggest.