In this post are four new things I saw and heard today. I saw and heard other things today, such as the sight of the Sun (which is worth reporting, given that it’s November in Seattle) and the explosive sound of my own voice when I put weight on my fucked-up ankle the wrong way. That was about as close as I’ve ever come to thinking I could do vocals for a black metal band.
Well, as painful as it is for me to say this, “enough about me”. Here are new videos from Beyond Creation (Canada), Welicoruss (Russia), and Beastwars (New Zealand). The Welicoruss and Beastwars songs are also brand new and will appear on forthcoming albums. But first . . . the debut of a remastered song from . . .
As you may know, Relapse Records has been re-issuing remastered editions of albums by Death. The latest is the band’s 1990 record, Spiritual Healing. This is a two-disc release, with the first one featuring a complete remaster of the original album and the second one including 16 previously unreleased rehearsal recordings, outtakes, and studio instrumentals. If you spring for the limited edition digipack, you’ll also get a third CD of a never-before-released live set recorded in 1990. And if you download the album from iTunes, you’ll get 5 previously unreleased pre-Human rehearsal tracks that aren’t included on either of the CD versions.
Well, enough with the free advertising. The reason I’m writing about Death today is that today Guitar World premiered one of the remastered tracks from Spiritual Healing: “Altering the Future”. You can hear that after the jump, along with the remastered version of “Living Monstrosity”, which appeared earlier.
Beyond Creation’s debut album The Aura was one of my favorites of 2011. Cribbing from my review: “The music is immensely intricate, but the variety of countless, rapidly moving pieces interlock coherently and satisfyingly. This is music into which you can dive deeply, and never want to come up for air. . . . It’s as perfect an example as I could name of the ménage à trois of death-metal aggression, prog-metal inventiveness and emotional sweep, and the kind of wild improvisational feel that I most often associate with jazz — and here, calling to mind the sense of heart-bursting freedom you feel when seeing a flock of swallows darting and diving in flight, multiple minds following a freakish path as if organized by a single mind.”
Today the band premiered their first music video for a track from the album named “Omnipresent Perception”, which includes some delicious guitar and bass solos, in addition to head-wrecking rhythms. The video is well done, and it serves as a good reminder of how talented this band is.
Siberia’s Welicoruss are another band I’ve written about in the past, most recently in July. They’re working on their next album and earlier this month they released an official video for a new song — “Sons of the North” — which I finally got around to watching and hearing this morning. The song is available now on iTunes.
As for the song, it may have rapidly become my favorite Welicoruss track yet — a thundering, sweeping example of symphonic pagan metal, with a dramatic folk-inspired melody, plenty of powerful riffs, and a nice combination of clean and harsh vocals. It has “epic” written all over it.
As for the video, it’s a kick to watch, with striking visuals that are both natural and supernatural. I’m also including a SoundCloud player for “Sons of the North”, in addition to the video.
The final item in this post concerns yet another band to which we’ve paid a lot of attention in the past . . . including our premiere of a song from their current album (self-titled). Only last month I posted a video of the band performing a live cover of another band’s song, and today they premiered yet another video. But this one is for a song that isn’t from their debut album. It’s a new song named “Tower of Skulls”, which is the title track to a two-song single (above, you can see the cover art by illustrator Toby Morris).
Both “Tower of Skulls” and the single’s B-side, “The Sleeper”, will be included on Beastwars’ next album, but for now they’re being distributed solely on 7″ vinyl during a New Zealand Beastwars tour that starts tomorrow night.
“Tower of Skulls” is heavy as hell, freighted with an atmosphere of doom, and laced with hallucinogens. Matt Hyde’s vocals continue to blow me away, and the psychedelic video perfectly captures the grim strangeness of the song. “The Sleeper” is equally shrouded in a cloak of night. The melody is bleak, though arresting, the pounding riffs double the pull of gravity, and the guitar solo is an attention-grabber. And yeah, Matt Hyde kills the vocals again with a strikingly varied delivery.
This band really continue to impress. The next album should be a doozy.