Working With God (Ipecac Records/Liberator Music)is the 24th release by the Melvins and features their 1983 lineup of Buzz Osbourne, Dale Crover on bass, and original drummer Mike Dillard (although they have been doing a ton of regular Melvins lineup activities with Steven Shane McDonald of Redd Kross). The record encapsulates the Hardcore and Sludge style Melvins have delivered since their genesis. The result is a fresh album that is thrilling and cathartic.
The first word that comes to mind when listening to Gravehuffer’s new album NecroEcolosion (Black Doomba Records) is “fun”. Gravehuffer takes us on a journey through many different styles. Their versatility and ability not to be genre bound is on full display with this entry.
Formed in Worcester, Massachusetts in 2016, five-piece thrash outfit High Command follow up their 2017 debut full length Beyond the Wall of Desolation with digitally released single Everlasting Torment(both Southern Lord).Continue reading
2015 proved to be a productive year for the Russian/Welsh act, Venom Prison when they released not one, but two EPs. Their ambition has continued to grow since then by deftly demonstrating the cunning and extreme of their Modern Death Metal sound. This budding band made noticeable waves in the scene when they released their second full-length, Samsara (Prosthetic Records) last year. Vocalist Larissa Stupar presented this rare rage that she and the whole band developed into a massive, contagious fury. Now, these guys are ready to exhibit how much they’ve grown in the last five years. Primeval (Prosthetic Records) is a compilation of their first two Eps re-recorded and reinvigorated.
Idles have come on in leaps and bounds since their last album Joy As An Act of Resistance (Partisan Records). It’s not even been 5 years since they were playing 100 capacity venues, yet here they are today having sold out giant venues like Alexandra Palace in under a day. With two giant albums under their belt, the big question was how the Bristol band were going to not only top it, but maintain the astronomical growth they’ve been on for the past 3 years.
I assume it’s easy to look back at the aughts and be dismissive of the entire decade particularly from the perspective of metal or punk fan. Nu-Metal was slowly being phased out as any goodwill from the previous decade had eroded and acts like Simple Plan and Good Charlotte made everyone realize that maybe the idea of Pop-Punk was a mistake. But those who kept their ear close to the ground knew better than to become jaded. Hard rock was alive and well and young bands were doing very exciting things. Young bands like Between the Buried and Me with their seminal Alaska (Victory Records 2005/Craft Recordings 2020).
(HED) P.E. releases a solidly decent album with Class of 2020(Suburban Noize Records). The band, hailing from Southern California, truly embodies the eclectic skater vibe of the area. The album is a mix of rock, funk, and rap. Jared Gomes, Jeremiah Stratton, Kurt Blankenship, DJ Blackard, and Chad Benekos are a tight outfit, and Class of 2020 has no wasted riffage.
Michael Alago recently released his memoir I Am Michael Alago: Breathing Music. Signing Metallica. Beating Death. (BackBeat Books), written by Alago with Laura Davis-Chanin (with a foreword by Mina Caputo of Life of Agony and John Joseph of Cro-Mags) and you can read our review here.Michael is the music industry legend that signed Metallica to Electra Records and helped guide them on the path to being the biggest band of all time. He also played a role in the careers of White Zombie, Cro-mags, Metal Church, Flotsam and Jetsam, and more. The Drew Stone documentary Who The F*ck Is That Guy: The Fabulous Journey of Michael Alago(just wrapped on Netflix after an unprecedented 3 years, now on Amazon Prime and YouTube) grew awareness of him beyond music documentaries and VH1’s Metallica Behind The Music. Now you can see never before seen outtakes of Michael with Metallica after they filmed their segments for the film, posted to Drew Stone’s YouTube. Continue reading