Jun 072017

 

(In this post TheMadIsraeli reviews the new album by Suffocation.)

If you ask me, at the end of the day there’s only five bands in the technical and brutal death metal circles that truly matter: Dying Fetus, Anata, Spawn of Possession, Martyr, and Suffocation. Suffocation is such an anomaly that it’s like the cosmos decided to manifest through humans the perfect mix of atonal grime, neoclassical melody, pulverizing groove, and eviscerating speed, all under the command most prominently of Frank Mullen, who in my book is THE death metal vocalist, and Terrance Hobbs. who writes some of the most intricately crafted incantations of despair and death on this planet when it comes to riffs.

Suffocation had a really fucking strong outing their last go around with Pinnacle Of Bedlam. It was their most energetic record to date, with a much more melodic focus than anything before it, while maintaining the proper amount of disregard for human value or opinion with some atonal off-road expeditions. It also contained a monolith of a closing track with a stellar re-recording of “Beginning Of Sorrow”, which worked better as a closing song than on the album it opened.

May 152017


Origin

 

(DGR steps in for round-up duty with a collection of deathly advance tracks from forthcoming albums that detonated late last week.)

2017 has been a year that has moved in fits and starts, with huge batches of releases and then a period of calm, then another huge batch and so on. It’s a different feeling from last year’s torrential flood, but it also means that promotional stuff moves in fits and starts as well — which is how we wound up with the back half of last week bringing one big release after another from some fairly recognizable names for those who love their death metal and high speed.

It was a pretty intense flood of death metal washing over the metal community, much of it coming from some fairly big names — a hefty collection of mainstays, old guard, and standard-bearers. We tried to collect some of them into our usual three-to-four part series of bands, but eventually it seemed like everyone wanted to get in on the game, and that’s why you have a SEEN AND HEARD headline with five recognizable names within it, all deploying material virtually at once.

Apr 112017

 

Well, as you can see, I actually did find time to follow up yesterday’s round-up with a second one within 24 hours, even though I was loathe to make any predictions about that. As usual, there is metallic variety within this post, but it’s also fair to say that none of it is for the faint of heart.

TRIUMVIR FOUL

Spiritual Bloodshed is the vile new second album by Triumvir Foul from Portland, Oregon, who have now condensed their form back to the band’s original two-person line-up (both members have also been participants in such other projects as Ash Borer and Urzeit). The album will be released by Invictus Productions on June 9. It embellishes a discography that previously consisted of the band’s 2014 demo, An Oath of Blood and Fire, and their self-titled debut album from 2015.

May 162014

Here are a couple of North American tours announced this morning that I thought were worth spreading around. The music in the two tours lies on divergent ends of the metal spectrum, but both shows should be excellent.

CARNIVAL OF DEATH 2014

This death metal blockbuster is co-headlined by Suffocation and Kataklysm, with Suffocation closing the shows on the US dates and Kataklysm playing the final sets in the Canadian shows. Accompanying those two heavyweight acts on this tour will be Jungle Rot, Pyrexia, and Internal Bleeding.

As the poster up there indicates, the tour schedule hasn’t been announced yet.

Now, changing gears…

May 172013

(Our man in the UK, Andy Synn, witnessed a night of death metal fun in Manchester on May 15 and files this report, with video.)

Tonight’s show was courtesy of my good friend Gary of Bite Radius Designs, who recently did some work for Cephalic Carnage on their Crucifreak t-shirt design. Thanks to him we were both put on guestlist and got a chance to enjoy a night of heavy, techy, thrashy, grindy, pummelling death metal fun.

FALLUJAH

Opening band Fallujah were the youngest and most inexperienced band on the bill, but still gave it their best shot at warming up the steadily growing crowd. Unfortunately, although their spacey, technical death metal works incredibly well on record, it lacks a little something live.

The mix didn’t help their cause, with the rhythm guitar and bass almost entirely inaudible, leaving the band to contend with a mix consisting purely of vocals, leads, and drums. Thankfully, the proggy, cosmic guitar leads are one of the band’s biggest strengths and offer a captivating glimpse of the band’s future potential. They just need to work on a bit more of a distinctive identity for themselves beyond this one aspect of their sound.

Apr 112013

I’m really slow in spreading the word about this event — my man Vonlughlio tipped me to it the day it happened. In a nutshell, Suffocation, Exhumed, Jungle Rot, Rings of Saturn, and Adimiron performed live at the Saint Vitus Bar in Brooklyn, NY, on the night of April 5. That was the second night of the Despise the World 2013 North American Tour, which is still in progress. The Saint Vitus show was webcast live, as it happened, on Gander.tv.

But the show was also recorded as it was happening, and the entire thing can still be streamed.

Even better, the stream of the live performance is embeddable, which means I can stick it right here at NCS for as long as the stream lasts — all 5 hours of it.

I don’t know how many people would choose to watch the entire show — I skipped around, myself — but it’s pretty damned cool just to have it available. Also, Exhumed played a new song called “The Rotting” from their next album, which should be out in the summer. Check out the show right after the jump.

Apr 042013

(NCS writer Andy Synn has returned from Oslo’s Inferno Festival, held on March 27-30, 2013, and brings us a multi-part report of what he saw and heard, along with photos. Check out the previous installments here and here.)

Day 2 of the festival had fewer bands I was particularly dying to see, so I decided to check out some different acts I’d never seen before, so as to make better use of my time and to fulfil my journalistic pretensions a bit more.

We decided to have a later start to the day, arriving in time to see Aeternus hit the stage and introduce the crowd (if any introduction was needed) to their twisted take on the darker side of the black/death metal aesthetic. Drawing liberally from all the various spheres of the metallic spectrum, the group performed like a well-drilled musical machine, though their focus on slippery shifts between styles meant that their live stage presence was a little more unassuming than most.

Though the band last played here 11 years ago, there was very little rust to be found on them, as they bled their instruments dry of every hypnotic riff and spiralling, dissonant lead they could wring out of them.

Feb 232013

It seems like every other day the past few weeks is we’ve been writing about Suffocation. We reviewed their new album Pinnacle of Bedlam, we published an interview with Derek Boyer, we posted their new official video for “As Grace Descends”, and now we have details about their first North American tour in support of the new album.

Honestly, if Suffocation were touring by themselves or with support from their postman, I’d roll out for it in a heartbeat — this band is one of the best live acts I’ve ever seen. But this tour includes a bunch of other strong attractions: Exhumed, Jungle Rot, and Rings of Saturn — plus two other bands I have a feeling I need to learn more about: Adimiron and (for West Coast dates) Lord of War.

Though it’s called a North American tour, Montreal and Toronto are the only Canadian stops and the Deep South and Mid-Atlantic regions are getting passed over, but for those of you who aren’t within driving distance of this monster you’ll feel much better when I tell you that I will be able to go.

Feb 222013

“Grace” means different things to different people. In the case of Suffocation, it seems to mean guzzling booze, moshing your nuts off, tossing your cookies, and getting your head thoroughly wrecked by a blowtorch blast of death metal. I can get behind that philosophy.

Not long ago the band released their official video for the song “As Grace Descends” from their new album Pinnacle of Bedlam. As for the album as a whole, check out our review here, as well as our entertaining interview with the band’s bass player Derek Boyer. As for this individual song and the video, let’s just say that they’re both badass.

See and hear for yourself right after the jump. Pinnacle is out now on the Nuclear Blast label. (thanks to DGR for the prompt tip about this)

Feb 202013

(Suffocation’s new album Pinnacle of Bedlam is a stunner, but what did you expect? As TheMadIsraeli said in our review of the album, Suffocation “define the three things that make a great band: Consistency, legacy, and relevancy.” We’re honored to present Andy Synn’s interview of Suffo’s uber-bassist Derek Boyer.)

So a couple of weeks back I was asked if I wanted to interview Suffocation… and who could say no to something like that? I wasn’t aware who exactly would be answering my questions, so I tried to make them of a type that could easily be answered by any and all members of the band. In the end it turned out to be uber-bassist extraordinaire Derek Boyer who was tasked with responding to my inane queries, and – all credit to him – he did so in a thoroughly entertaining and really detailed manner.

You’ll notice that I didn’t bother to touch on any of the recent line-up changes, the he-said, she-said back and forth between the band and departing drummer Mike Smith, or even the storm-in-a-teacup that was Fran Mullen’s decision to cut down on his own ability to tour. These have all been covered pretty thoroughly elsewhere, and, as I think you’ll see, it seems like Derek certainly appreciated not being asked about them for the 100th time.

Ultimately, I hope he got some enjoyment out of answering the questions himself, and I hope you all appreciate his answers and his generally very friendly and relaxed demeanour, which really comes across despite the limitations of the email interview format!

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