Jul 292013

The morning has delivered a slew of premieres, including a new Gorguts song and a new Cattle Decapitation video. And in this post, we bring you two more new videos. The first comes from . . .

KEN MODE

The video from this stand-out Canadian band (which premiered on Pitchfork) is for a song named “Secret Vasectomy” from their 2013 album Entrench (which can be streamed and purchased on Bandcamp here). When the song first debuted, guitarist/frontman Jesse Matthewson said this about it:

“Secret Vasectomy” was one of the first songs we put together during the Entrench writing sessions, but more particularly it was the first that we truly collaborated on with Andrew [LaCour], as the other three songs we finished in that first get-together were largely made up of riffs that I’d constructed going into the session. To me, it’s a punk song; a nasty, nasty punk song. Lyrically speaking, I’m sure everyone can relate to the situation of needing to produce, yet feeling utterly uninspired to write anything of any perceived value whatsoever; this is the tipping point. When you refuse to acknowledge the elephant in the room as a muse and instead you slump in your chair and shoot blanks.

The video is an interesting one to watch, with scenes of children manically drawing and coloring, accompanied by animation of their creations. Let’s just say it’s not fun happy playtime. The band have explained that this is only the first part of a two-part “music video saga”. Here it is:

Jul 292013

The day is still young out here in the Pacific Northwest, but it has already brought us a handful of notable premieres. We started with a new Gorguts song, and we now follow that up with an official music video for a song from . . .

CATTLE DECAPITATION

The song is “Your Disposal”, which appears on the band’s latest album, Monolith of Inhumanity. This one was again directed by Mitch Massie. Let’s see what frontman Travis Ryan says about it:

“Director Mitch Massie has presented us all with a bizarre retelling of the story of Adam and Eve using themes from our latest album Monolith of Inhumanity. Here we see Eve giving birth to humanity, a living, breathing piece of primordial meat birthed into the dirt making its way through the Garden of Eden, hellbent on destruction… A clean and conscious monolith foretelling what could be possible given the fact that humans exhibit superior traits of intelligence, instead the earth is flooded with technological fallout and debris by the hands of man. This video is very much a prequel to our other videos ‘Forced Gender Reassignment’ and of course, ‘Kindgom of Tyrants’.”

Jul 292013

The day is still young out here in the Pacific Northwest, but it has already brought us a handful of notable premieres. Without further ado, here’s one of them (more to come).

GORGUTS

The new Gorguts album, Colored Sands, is so full of win it almost beggars description. Nevertheless, in due course we will attempt to do it justice in a review. In the meantime, Decibel magazine has given us the premiere of a third song from the album, and this time it’s the title track. Here’s what the band’s founder Luc Lemay has said about the song:

“‘Colored Sands’ tells the story about the intricate, poetic, mystic ritual of drawing sand mandalas. Tibetan pilgrims can walk for months, sometime a whole year, prostrating face to the ground every tree footsteps until they reach the place where the mandala will be executed.

Once the mandala completed, the monks will dismantle the mandala, and take the sands to the closest stream of water. This stream will bring the sands to the river, the river to the immensity of the ocean to spread the mandala’s peace and beauty to the planet…

The single harmonic, in the beginning of the song, pictures a single grain of sand hitting the ground…then with the pattern in 5 slowly appearing, illustrates the five elements in the Tibetan philosophy such as: air, water, fire, earth and space which are embodied in the mandala through their specific colors. From there the mandala slowly takes form in the music.”

Jul 292013

(NCS contributor Austin Weber looks back again at 2012 albums he first discovered in 2013, putting the spotlight on three U.S. bands — SystemsEpistasis, and Singularity.)

I know I already did one of these posts but here’s one more with the three bands I found after my first Remnants article. Each band is completely different but worthy of your attention. All of them have new music or tours in the works that makes them relevant in the present as well. Unfortunately, this post was delayed by a few months since I’ve been too busy to work on writing much. Without further ado, on to the bands and enclosed music!

SYSTEMSTERRASOMNIUM

A lot of bands are djenting it up these days, and understandably patience grows thin due to the gluttony of mimicry. Most djent bores me because a lot of bands are not bringing anything of their own to the table. One of the best djent bands I’ve heard recently has to be Systems. Sky-high on their own supply and clearly off on their own insidious, shred-heavy, groove-structured tangent.

Systems is technical, lead-heavy djent with a death-metal flavor and spacey jazz interludes and more solos then you can shake several sticks at. Their uniquely mechanical, overflowing guitar leads further set them apart from your average djent and are often what propel the songs forward, though their groove-centered backbone is earth-shakingly heavy as well.

Jul 292013

 (NCS contributor and hard-man-to-please KevinP interviewed Mike van Mastrigt, and this is Part 1 of the interview. Stay tuned for Part 2, which includes an announcement you really won’t want to miss.)

K:  Let’s go back in history for a moment. You were in Sinister, left in 1996 after the Bastard Saints EP. Why?

M:  It was time to move on…. I was busy with too many things.  Next to being the frontman, spokesman, I also was the band manager/tour manager and booker. That all was to much and it took away the focus and correct spirit.  I needed a break. So there was no option but to quit.

 

K:  You started up rather quickly (only a year later) in 1997 forming Houwitser. Were the batteries recharged that soon?

M:  I didn’t start Houwitser. I was the singer and only the singer, until they would find someone else. Also, I made the album cover and booklet.  I did no arrangements for shows, etc.

 

K:  So when you joined,  it was known to be a temporary thing until they could find a more permanent vocalist?

M:  Yes

Jul 282013

Your humble editor has had a busy weekend and this Sunday is going to be busy too, so this will probably be today’s only post. I did find a little time to browse e-mail and wade through the interhole in search of new things yesterday and this morning. As usual, I found many, and have collected a big group of them in this post. As you’ll see (and hear), it’s a diverse mix, including some not-metal. I’ll have to keep the verbiage brief because time is short. I know that will traumatize most of you, and I’m already grieving for your loss.

BURIAL HORDES

I first happened upon this Greek band in January after discovering their split release with Enshadowed, which is excellent (reviewed here). They have a new album on the way, entitled Incendium. I haven’t yet seen a release date, but the band have recently uploaded the opening track — “Unleash Havoc”. It’s a very cool song, raw and ravaging, bestial and atmospheric. Listen:

https://www.facebook.com/BurialHordesOfficial

Jul 272013

Yep, just a bit earlier today the organizers of Maryland Deathfest announced the initial list of bands confirmed to play at MDF XII, which will be held May 22-25, 2014. Here you go:

AT THE GATES (Sweden)
GORGUTS (Canada)
TAAKE (Norway)
SOLSTAFIR (Iceland)
MGŁA (Poland)
EXCRUCIATING TERROR
BONGRIPPER
HEMDALE
DIOCLETIAN (New Zealand)

This may be too much information, but I thought I’d mention that I wet myself when I saw this list. And of course more names will be coming. MDF also announced that At the Gates, Taake, Solstafir, and MGLA will be making exclusive US appearances at MDF.

Jul 272013

(In this post DGR takes us off our usual beaten paths with a review of the latest album by The Luna Sequence.)

We’ve been on a hell of a reviewing streak lately here at NCS, our front page resembling the inside of a Revolver review section the past week. It’s been pretty cool, but also reflective of the fact that we’ve had a lot of heavy metal hitting our eardrums lately – my own having about eight different CDs cross their path at once (five of which got covered, the others picked up by fellow writers on the site). As a result, I’m taking a bit of a breather with this review to talk about a project that I really enjoy.

It’s an indulgence, if you will. It’s most definitely not metal. Folks who have been with us for a while will remember that we have covered this band before. I did so on a whim, to expose some of my musical tastes outside the realm of heavy metal, such as a very, very light enjoyment of some electronica music – mostly of the variety that hybrids with rock music. If I fish out my armchair psychology degree that I received for spending over ten minutes on the internet, then I’m sure that’s because I enjoy industrial music as well, and the two often overlap.

Because of the previous writing, some of you may recognize The Luna Sequence name, a solo instrumental electronica/rock project belonging to Kaia Young. One of the reasons that I’ve been drawn to this specific project has been its success in fusing electronic music with light heavy metal songwriting. Earlier works were heavily synth-focused and felt like electronic tunes initially that later had heavier elements added on top of it. However, more recently, with the previous This Is Bloodlust release and now this disc — The Day The Curse Grew Stronger — things have taken a heavier turn. Now the songs feel like heavy metal tunes written using electronics and a guitar, metal song structures put through an electronica filter, and it works really well. If you’re looking for something a little different then indulge me as I try to explain further why I’m drawn to this project so much.

Jul 262013

(TheMadIsraeli reviews the stunning debut EP from Black Crown Initiate of Reading, Pennsylvania.)

I feel like sometimes it’s up to us metal bloggers to take responsibility for making sure some bands get more air time.  There are some bands for which the ignorance of their existence should almost be criminal.  Black Crown Initiate is one such band.  Hailing from Reading PA, Black Crown Initiate are hard to describe or classify.  Equal parts death metal, black metal, and progressive rock, their sound channels hints of lots of what I’ll call the “right” influences, ranging from Opeth, to Daylight Dies, to Behemoth, Anaal Nathrakh, and Ihsahn’s solo work.

The band’s debut EP, Song of the Crippled Bull, is an epic four-part suite of progressive death metal sanctity that shouldn’t be ignored.  The utter brutality matched with a sense of grandeur and melodic reprieve is immensely impressive.   Combine this with a sound that merges old and new schools of thought seamlessly and you have a band to watch not only now but in the future.

Song of the Crippled Bull is in fact one song split into four parts.  What’s impressive is that these four sections are very distinct from one another, which made it even cooler to me when the band looped back around at the end to close on the very section on which the EP starts.

Jul 262013

Here are a few choice items from my recent ramblings around the interhole.

MAN MUST DIE

Some bands die who shouldn’t, some bands who should die seem to live forever, and some bands resurrect themselves against punishing odds. Man Must Die must not die, and in fact it looks like they’ve been resurrected after parting company with their big-label support following 2009′s No Tolerance For Imperfection.

When last we checked in with these Scots in April, they were nearing success on their revised crowd-funding goal at Pledge Music to help them self-finance a new recording. And today brought the cheery news that they’ve found label support once again after a long dry spell. Here’s the announcement from Lifeforce Records:

“We are very proud to announce the signing of Scottish extreme metal maniacs MAN MUST DIE for a world wide release (outside the UK) of their next album in late October via Lifeforce Records. The band is currently at Valvetone studios putting the final touches on the new effort.”

In addition, the band announced that Grindscene Records will be releasing the new album in the UK and Ireland.

Nice work lads! I’ll be ready to get brutalized in October.

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