I wasn’t planning to post anything else today, but then I read something that I enjoyed and thought was worth recommending to you. It’s a long article by Ryan Wasoba in Riverfront Times of St. Louis about the city’s metal scene, with a focus on three metal bands in particular: Fister, The Lion’s Daughter, and Black Fast. I’m a fan of all three bands, and that has something to do with why I enjoyed it, but there’s more.
The article is built on interesting stories about each band’s music and their experiences getting to where they are now — Fister’s new album IV (which consists of a single 44-minute song) is due for release in a matter of days, and The Lion’s Daughter and Black Fast have signed to prominent labels (Season of Mist, and eOne) for the release of their next albums. Those stories include anecdotes from Black Fast’s recording sessions with Erik Rutan that are kind of amazing as well as amusing. But all the stories are interesting.
The article goes beyond just those three bands, to give a sense of history and place for the St. Louis metal scene, though it will be readily apparent that it has a lot in common with underground metal scenes in other cities of comparable size. The article is also a well-written piece, which is why I stuck with it to the end and am recommending it now
I don’t often post about metal-oriented articles I’ve come across elsewhere, not because I have anything against the idea but because I so rarely find the time to read what other people are writing, at least if the writing is more than about two paragraphs long. I’m glad I had the time for this one. Check it out here (there’s music from all the bands included with the story, so that’s another bonus):
UPDATE: I discovered that the digital version of Fister’s new album is already available on Bandcamp — so here’s the link and the stream for that:
Good people in STL, I make the short trek as often as I can.
There’s a lot more STL metal bands that are really good; Fister is definitely leading the pack, but we’ve got a lot of talent around here that’s ready for national/international exposure. I’m blown away that the St. Louis scene has so many skilled, innovative metal bands right now. I’ve lived here my whole life, been involved in the local music scene for almost a decade, and I’m still floored by the quality of music that seems to have magically popped up.
PATH OF MIGHT is an awesome, psychadelic/sludge band with a huge, adventurous sound and some incredible songwriting chops. Their new self-released album just came out the other night and it’s killer.
GRAND INQUISITOR: Scorching HoF-sounding metal with some awesome Georgia-Sludge style jams. Not sure on the status of their album, but live they are incredibly powerful. Graham looks like an enraged Japanese Ox Demon when he’s doing vocals. They opened for Fister’s going-away show and it was one of the finest live performances I’ve seen. Ever.
CATHEDRAL FEVER: Sort of crusty, sort of hardcore, but sort of other stuff too. The vocals always make me think of Oathbreaker. This band features two of the three members of Path of Might as well.
BONG THREAT: I missed most of their set at the Fister show but I loved what I heard. Straightforward stoner metal done right. I also loved the giant papier-mache bong they brought with them. They’re from Ferguson, which is one of the most socially important towns in the country right now (and not for any positive reasons), for what that’s worth.
PLANET EATER: More beefy stoner grooves here. These guys are wrapping up recording their full-length, so it should be out sometime in the next few months.
VAN BUREN: This is my band. We’re a two-piece that’s trying to incorporate our favorite things about doom and sludge metal into songs that are very long and mostly depressing. I’m pretty satisfied with what we’re coming up with lately. Unfortunately, all we have are live recordings, for now.
There’s many, many more bands working hard in St. Louis. I feel like if we keep up this pace we might have a pretty strong standing in the US metal scene in a year or so. I’m planning on profiling more of our local metal for you guys, I just have to sit down and actually write it out.
http://vanburenband.bandcamp.com/releases here’s the Van Buren bandcamp page.
Awesome. Thank you for all these recommendations!
Damn! You should’ve churned out a piece for the Local Focus series we had around here a little while ago.
Fister sounds pretty killer! I love Black Fast and The Lions Daughter 🙂