A Day To Remember is streaming a brand new single today, ‘Degenerates’ which you can purchase and stream below. The band will play the Reading and Leeds festivals in the UK this weekend, as well as appearing at numerous festivals in the coming weeks, including two massive installments of their own Self Help Fest. The first-ever Self Help Fest Massachusetts will take place on September 7th in Worcester, MA and will see the band perform alongside Falling In Reverse, FEVER 333, Real Friends, Wage War, Whitechapel, This Wild Life, A Loss For Words, The Acacia Strain, and more. The fifth Self Help Fest San Bernardino will take place on October 12th in San Bernardino, CA, and feature performances from A Day To Remember, I Prevail, Beartooth, Motionless In White, Animals as Leaders, Periphery, Real Friends, This Wild Life, Set Your Goals, Angel Du$t, Can’t Swim, Elder Brother, and more. Tickets for both Self Help Fests are on sale now. Continue reading
When Slam Dunk formed in 2006 it had a bill of 7 bands at a sole location in Leeds with a small capacity of a few thousand, skip to 12 years on and oh my has it grown! Whether you’re reliving your mid-2000’s singing along to the likes of Taking Back Sunday or throwing yourself into the heart of California in the 90’s with the likes of Reel Big Fish, this festival has really developed into a three-location monster of a day out. What better way to start off the day than with getting your rear end torn open by Brutality Will Prevail on the ever hardcore Impericon Stage. Continue reading
Over three consecutive dates in May the 2018 Slam Dunk Festival will bring the best in punk bands and killer concert experiences to the UK. The festival will bring the same core of bands to three separate locations this spring as bands like Good Charlotte, Jimmy Eat World, State Champs, PVRIS, The Devil Wears Prada, Astroid Boys, Brutality Will Prevail, Loathe, Every Time I Die, Northlane, Comeback Kid, Crown The Empire, Counterparts and many more for the bill. In addition, The Breakout Stage features the best in up and coming talent such as Palaye Royale, Sleep On It, Stand Atlantic, Milestones, Chapel, Dream State, The FAIM, Grayscale and Holding Absence. There is also the Acoustic stage featuring Four Year Strong and The Fireball Stage and more! The 2018 fest takes place across Leeds, Hatfield and Birmingham and tickets are on sale at the links below. Continue reading
HexMachine by False Flags is a self-released debut mini-album, although when you give it a listen it certainly doesn’t feel particularly mini, this packs some considerable force. False Flags rise out of the ashes of the once spectacular Leeds DIY scene consisting of former members of Red Stars Parade, Whores Whores Whores & Year Of The Man: so it certainly doesn’t feel like a debut either.
Opener ‘Earl Black’ starts slowly, a gentle intro stopped abruptly by a sucker punch of savage hardcore, crushing riffs and disjointed time signatures. Slamming guitars and shouty vocals scream their intent and it feels fresh and furious. Reminding me somewhat of the late great Beecher with a hint of Dillinger Escape Plan the track builds in its heaviness throughout.
Followed by ‘Last Screen Goddess’ which is slower but with a refined intensity rather than diminished. This pulses along rhythmically, swaying and mesmerising and constantly building. There’s enjoyment to be had being swept along with the song.
‘Fate (Has A Driver)’ starts off with pounding drums, but with a more understated yet infectious groove infused into snarling, but more straightforward rhythms: which get the head nodding along with ease. There’s a notable intensification in their ebb and flow particularly in the solid groove of the bass work as the song progresses.
When we get to track ‘Pet Wolf’ False Flags start to show off their hardcore chops in full fury, the shortest at 2:15 this screaming statement is a short sharp shock to the system, build a substantial weight to the track before pausing momentarily before launching into the stormy intensity of ‘Namedropper’, which subsides then screams and smashes against the ears with a blackened throb and erratic pulse, giving you just enough pause for breath before suffocating you again with their punch to the gut sound.
Final Track ‘Phone My Wallet’ steps things up yet another gear and undulates between the now familiar pulsing throb and out and out blasting of discordant riffs, this album finishes with the sound of the band giving everything they have and then some, until they have nothing more in the tank and rolling to a cathartic stop.
This may be a debut album, but there’s an all encompassing confidence about this which harks back to their history within the Leeds DIY scene. Definitely a band to watch out for in 2016.
As the build-up continues ahead of the release of False Flags‘ debut mini-album Hexmachine, Ghost Cult are pleased to continue our association with the technical-hardcore miscreants from northern England by bringing you the stream of a new track, ‘Pet Wolf’ from the soon to be released mini-album.
Ghost Cult recently caught up with vocalist Chris Jenkinson (in a feature you can read here), who had this to say about the subject matter of their new outpouring:
The lyrics are kind of weird, really. Each song has a theme but they’re not really about anything in particular. Most of the time we come up with the title first, then I try to write around that. Charlie came in one day and said “Can we call a song ‘Pet Wolf’?” So that ended up being about one of my Chihuahuas being a little shit!
I’m a big fan of lyricists like Cedric Bixler (The Mars Volta) and John Congleton (The Paperchase) so I try to do that “interpret it how you like” kind of thing.
False Flags – ‘Pet Wolf’
Hexmachine, which the band will be releasing themselves, spurts abrasive, disjointed rock and takes inspiration from the likes of Unsane, Breather Resist, Botch and Coalesce. It will be released on 20th November.
The album launch show takes place at Bad Apples in Leeds, also on 20th November.
Video of Metallica playing at last weekend’s Leeds Festival in the UK has surfaced online. You can watch the videos below. Metallica has been playing sporadic festivals and tour dates this summer as they wind down live activities for the year and continue to work on their 10th studio album, for planned release in 2016. The band will play two shows in Quebec City, Canada and Rock In Rio in the next few weeks.
2014 has been a ground-breaking, redefining year for doom, almost overriding the fact that many of the genre’s female-fronted outfits have produced some mesmerising music for a couple of years now. The unique qualities of Harriet Bevan‘s Leeds quintet Black Moth have been setting tongues wagging for some time and second album Condemned to Hope (New Heavy Sounds) reaffirms their particular status of a sassy, doom-rooted outfit whose satirical outlook is augmented with biting lyrics on modern life.
The colossal groove of opener ‘Tumbleweave’ lends gravity to whimsical lyrics about “porkers from the Daily Mail”, paper tiaras and burger queens, all delivered in Harriet’s laconic, incanting yet quintessentially English voice. Riffs crash rather than rumble yet still carry weight, with variations between trad doom and the stoner currents of ‘Looner’, whilst Jim Swainston‘s lead-work is flashing, emotive, and carved from the finest slabs of 70s heavy rock.
Atmospherics abound with the threatening fizz of amps during hushed moments of the stellar, sexy ‘The Undead King of Rock ‘n’ Roll’, resonant tub-thumping heightening the sinister effect and slower sections possessing a bewitching sway that’s difficult to resist. Guitars occasionally have shimmering pedal effects similar to those of The Wounded Kings‘ Steve Mills, more often applied to the lead but muddying Nico Carew‘s riffs deliciously on the cascading, swirling ‘The Last Maze’, which is also graced by one of Swainston’s more memorable solos. Aside from those waggish phrasings other styles are infiltrated, with the indie-punk of ‘White Lies’ and ‘Room 13’ blending with a reverberating low end and complementing the Britpop feel of the lyrics and delivery. ‘Slumber with the Worm’, meanwhile, marries a Pulp Fiction-esque spaghetti twang with lead riffs verging on black metal.
This may not wield the same portentous mass as some of its contemporaries, and Bevan’s voice occasionally shows limits, save for some soaring notes on the hypnotic closing title track. All of this, however, enhances Black Moth’s charm and identity. They’re a little bit different and, in the quirky fashion of oddities from these shores, unmistakably ours. Quite frankly this rips, and deserves some serious investigation.
Sometimes things don’t go according to plan. Due to issues with their van, The Ocean’s arrival to the venue is delayed. Having been travelling for 36 hours since their set at With Full Force festival one could forgive the German/Swiss outfit if they were less than one hundred percent.
After nearly an hour we are yet into the venue to be greeted by a set from local act Hieroglyph who boast ex-Fragments Of Faith singer Valentina Reptile in their ranks. Crammed onto the small stage the sextet belt out their dual vocal djent metal with gusto. Co-vocalist Mark Howes harsh growls provide contrast with Val’s Gothic diva presence. Numbers like ‘Parasitus’ still bare many hallmarks of acts like TesseracT but considering the group have been together only since December 2012 they show enough prowess to be considered ones to watch in the future.
Wasting no time the headliners take to the stage and launch into the title track of ‘Pelagial’. Bathed in blue light, any thoughts of tiredness are immediately forgotten as you are caught in the current of this all-consuming noise which blends post metal, jazz overtones and classical textures of mesmerizing effect.
The backdrop of visuals is certainly a key to the presentation, being connected so completely with the songs it accompanies, yet the five musicians onstage are hardly static particularly livewire vocalist Loic Rossetti who is hurling himself around the stage one moment then sat cross-legged on a monitor the next.
Creative hub Robin Staps nurtures shimmering harmonics and tidal waves of distortion from his instrument at will. His intense concentration reciprocated by the audience who are transfixed by his band’s every move. Playing your new opus in its entirety is a bold endeavour but one which is carried off with such masterful ease.
The encore sees the band sign off with ‘Origin Of The Species’ to an ecstatic response. They were up against it tonight, but like a force of nature they were unstoppable.
WORDS: ROSS BAKER
PHOTOS: ECHOES IN THE WELL PHOTOGRAPHY
Justin Broadrick has always been a mover and shaker. Active in underground music with many projects from the Drum ‘N’ Bass assault of Techno Animal to Final’s ambient elect-drone, the Birmingham musician is a key underground figure whose influence can be felt from Fear Factory to Isis. Reforming in 2009 having played a smattering of shows but little more Broadrick has finally birthed a new four song EP from his most famous musical endeavour with the promise of more to come. Before the Brummie industrial icon can dish out the punishment it’s time for Alt rockers Loop to woo the audience with their droning riffs and throbbing bass. The venue is just over half full as but the band still receives a positive reaction with many shaking their bodies in time to the rhythm. Relying heavily on repetition you found yourself swaying in time to the soothing molasses of feedback. Hypnotic and alluring this trance inducing spectacle is fine for a kick off but nothing prepares you for the harrowing sounds of urban decay that follows.
The stark contrast between the terrifyingly bleak and nihilist sounds of Godflesh from Loop’s warm psyche could be felt by all in attendance. Justin Broadrick’s scowls intensely while thrashing at his guitar and bellowing like a wounded animal. The hour and ten minutes over which Godflesh inflict their scathing assault upon the bewildered crowd is as claustrophobic as is it compelling. The catacombs of The Cockpit cater for Godflesh’s Molotov cocktail of neurosis over grim industrial sounds.
New number ‘Ringer’ is dished out early and gratefully received by a crowd many of whom probably felt they would never hear a new Godflesh track. Material from the newly released Decline and Fall EP is foul and depraved, harking back to their early material without being an exercise in hopeless nostalgia. ‘Like Rats’ and the bruising ‘Christbait Rising’ are dispatched with frightening efficiency sounding as vicious and life affirming as ever. Crushingly devoid of humanity save for Broadrick’s anguished tones, no intensity has been lost in the thirteen year absence between recorded works.
Godflesh Set List:
New Dark Ages
Crush My Soul
The second set of tour dates supporting last year’s highly successful Earth Rocker (Weathermaker) opus see’s Clutch riding a high having one again reaffirmed their status as one of rock finest live acts currently treading the boards.
The met is still disconcertingly quiet when support act Lionize begin their set, but their funk infected grooves impress punters early on. Chris Brooks and Nate Bergman deliver some rich vocal harmonies. Clutch’s Jean Paul Gaster even joins the band briefly on percussion yet while its clear their label bosses have been a forbearer for Lionize sound they retain a feel all of their own. Hell they even manage to get away with dropping a bit of reggae without sounding laughable or trite.
When father Neil Fallon begins the sermon the congregation has joined us in full swing. ‘The Mob Goes Wild’ lives up to its name, with frantic dancing breaking out en masse. Such is the energy that the Maryland quartet inspire that the crowd keeps singing even when Tim Sult’s guitar cuts out half way through ‘Crucial Velocity’.
The charm and charismatic presence of Fallon certainly means he is the wide eyed focal point yet the musicians around him lock into a groove that is irresistible. ‘The Elephant Riders’ makes a welcome appearance, making good on the reputation Clutch have of keeping their lives shows fresh and invigorating. The acoustic ‘Gone Cold’ provides a break from the raucousness allowing Fallon to show off his soulful side before a storming ‘Struck Down’ picks the pace back up.
Considering Neil Fallon was recently a whisker away from being unable to perform following an operation on his spine which meant a delicate operation which meant his windpipe having to be moved temporarily in the process his performance is, if anything even more driven and passionate.
A four song encore concludes with the one, two punches of ‘Electric Worry’ and ‘One Eye Dollar’ which leave many drenched in sweat smiling in unison. Tonight may not have gone without a hitch, but when you’re a journeyman act with a discography few can match and perform with such vigour and zeal you can do very little wrong.
WORDS BY ROSS BAKER
PHOTOS BY EMMA STONE