Feb 212012

Songwriter and guitarist Tre Watson is a talented dude. He also can’t sit still for very long — a quality I’ve noticed in most talented people, except for those (like me) whose principal talents are sleeping and waiting for someone else to entertain them.

One of Tre’s many musical projects — the one that seems to be the vehicle for putting some death and hardcore in his metal — is a Baltimore-based band called Carthage, which also includes vocalist Eric Hendricks, guitarist Ian Starks, guitarist Noyan Tokgozoglu, bassist Robby Gossweiler, and drummer/vocalist Billy Berger.

Last fall, TheMadIsraeli reviewed the 2011 debut EP from Carthage here, but the band is already at work on a new album called Salt the Earth, which will be available for pre-order soon. At midnight last night, the band put up a new song from the album called “Blackout”. It’s a real genre-bender. There’s a foundation of bruising, pulsing, funky riffage and a hardcore vibe generated by swarming, pissed-off vocals, but the song also includes a Midi-style intro, swirling guitar leads, a brief jazzy interlude, and a sweet little solo right before a metric shift near the end.

I guess one might say it’s an interesting hybrid of hardcore, prog, and pneumatic metal. It makes you want to body-slam your neighbor while dropping into a head-nodding groove at the same time. Hot stuff. Check it out after the jump.


  12 Responses to “CARTHAGE: “BLACKOUT””

  1. I…I feel confused. I think I like it, but I also feel a tad put off by the clean singing. (I’m not anti-clean singing, I just didn’t dig it in this song.)

    I like the circular scales (are they scales?) the guitars are doing around 2:00. I felt like an owl. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4GL2eB2pdBk (Put the Owl video on mute, put Carthage on the 1:55 mark, and press play on both. Not quite Wizard of Oz and my dick in the face of dumb fucking hippies, but still pretty cool.)

    • Oh ShitH! The owl + Carthage is a genius match.

      And yeah, I wouldn’t have missed the clean singing either, but on the other hand is there really anything better than waving your johnson in the face of hippies?

  2. Since we’re discussing owls, I have an owl half sleeve. It’s pretty fucking rad!

  3. Ewwwww. This is some post-sumerian hyper-compressed laptop shit. And I’m with phro on the cleans. Dislike.

    • “post-sumerian hyper-compressed laptop shit”

      Now, you know well that you and I share a similar (though not identical outlook) on this sort of thing. I don’t ever feel any grit or believable emotion from 99.9% of the Sumerian roster (and their various soundalikes), and I question the integrity of it as a result. That’s part of the reason VoM do zero for me, as I don’t get any sense of connection or real feeling from their vocalist, he seems to be imitating what a scream is, without the underlying emotion and conviction. Loud and shouty but without the depth of feeling.

      HOWEVER – I don’t get that from this. It’s still not really my thing, but seems to have been put together with a bit more love and care. It jumps around in sound a bit much for my taste, but it doesn’t sound like it was just programmed into a laptop.

    • I felt it was obvious from the post that I disagree with this comment, so I thought, why bother. But I like the way Andy put it — that this music was put together with more love and care, because I feel that from it, too.

      • As a passionate backer of Tre Watson’s and as a good friend I take a bit of offense to Andy and Joseph’s comments. The dude works insanely hard and has a goal set for himself to really do something interesting here. I knew the Carthage EP despite it’s underdeveloped state showed a great deal of potential. This is that potential being realized.

        The dude has told me he’s set to create a mix of 8-bit, deathcore, death metal, djent, orchestral and jazz pieces and groove metal. I think he’s doing that and he’s on his way to something outstanding.

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