Jun 142017

 

Happy Wednesday. As I have mentioned before, No Clean Singing is one of the co-presenters and organizers of the first Northwest Terror Fest, which begins tomorrow and runs for three days in Seattle. As a result of my responsibilities in putting on the fest, I will have little time to devote to NCS until Monday.

I’m not sure whether our other writers will be contributing anything during my absence, but I still plan to post at least one new thing (and probably only one) both tomorrow and Friday. Not sure about the weekend. But before running off to take care of today’s festival-related tasks, I wanted to recommend some really good new metal I heard last night or this morning.

AKERCOCKE

Not long ago at the 2017 edition of Maryland Deathfest I had the pleasure of seeing Akercocke perform, and was especially taken by a new song they played. I didn’t know its name, but now I do — because it debuted today.

May 312017

 

That photo up there shows the sight that greeted my eyes on Monday night while waiting for my ferry boat home after returning to Seattle from Maryland Deathfest 2017, but it also accurately represents my glowing impressions of this year’s fest in Baltimore.

Like many, I was disappointed to learn that MDF would be “downscaling” this year, eliminating the Edison Lot venue and having all the shows indoors at Rams Head Live and Soundstage. I also saw some grumbling on the internet (imagine that! grumbling on the internet!) that the line-up wasn’t as strong as in many past years; on top of that, Nightbringer was a last-minute no-show because of an airport outage in the UK.

Despite those misgivings, my own strongly held view is that this edition of the festival was a rousing success. (Part 2 of this post can be found here.)

Nov 082016

julie-christmas-cult-of-luna

 

(Our man in the UK, Andy Synn, attended Damnation Festival 2016 in Leeds on November 5, and provides this report along with videos he made.)

Oh Damnation Festival how do I love thee? Let me count the ways…

Whereas too many other events seem content to book the same big-name crowd-pleasers, year in and year out, buttressed by an interchangeable selection of generic sound-alikes and contrived gimmicks – all carefully selected purely for their mundane mass-appeal – the Damnation team seem to operate on an unwavering ethos of only booking the bands they truly like, bands (big and small) that they truly believe in, who have something unique or special to offer.

This is how every edition of the festival features an array of bands from multiple different styles, from Death to Prog to Doom to Hardcore to Sludge (and beyond), from across the length and breadth of the underground Metal scene coexisting under one roof and why, over the years, Damnation has seen everyone from Ahab to Asphyx, Carcass to Katatonia, Mono to My Dying Bride, playing to the sort of packed crowds that are a regular occurrence in Europe, but which only rarely seem to be achievable here in the UK.

This helps make Damnation Festival’s line-up a much more interesting affair than many of their peers, as the organisers seem to operate on the principal of “if you build it, they will come”, putting their faith in the belief that the UK scene doesn’t just want to be fed the same old bands and the same old performances, time and time again. And this year was no different, with a wide variety of different acts, of different styles, on display, coupled with a bunch of exclusive performances which practically justified the ticket price on their own!

Jul 142014

Here’s just a short little something something that may make you smile, as it did me.

Akercocke may sadly be no more, but the spirit of the band lives on… in Legos. What you’re about to see is an animated video made by Akercocke fan “LegonardoDaFinci“, using Legos. It stars Darth Vader (aka Blast Vader) in the role of Akercocke’s drummer David Gray in a “drum play-through” of part of the song “Eyes of the Dawn” from Akercocke’s Words That Go Unspoken, Deeds That Go Undone (2005). LegonardoDaFinci did something like this before, in a Lego-ized tribute to Cryptopsy (here).

David Gray, of course, is still alive and well and performing in the UK black metal band Voices along with former Akercocke members Peter Benjamin and Sam Loynes. Their debut album From the Human Forest Create a Fugue of Imaginary Rain was released in March 2013 by Candlelight — and, what the hell, I might as well embed the player for that album right after the video.

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