Feb 232012

We interrupt your regularly scheduled programming to bring you this recent discovery (thank you Blabbermouth). It’s likely that the news will mean nothing to anyone reading this except the real old-timers, but for those of you as ancient as I am, it will definitely mean something. And those less ancient might learn a thing or two along the way. By the way, the music isn’t metal, but . . . it’s metal. If you know what I mean.

The news concerns a band called Spectrum Road. The members of Spectrum Road include some genuinely legendary figures — Jack Bruce, one of the founding members of Cream (along with Eric Clapton and drummer Ginger Baker), a hugely influential songwriter, and a widely respected classical, jazz, and Latin musician; and Vernon Reid, the founder and principal songwriter of Living Colour and (among many other recognitions), the holder of the #66 position on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.

The band also includes drummer Cindy Blackman-Santana, who was the drummer for Lenny Kravitz’s band for 14 years and an accomplished jazz drummer as well as rock musician (she’s also married to Carlos Santana), and John Medeski, a jazz keyboardist involved in many projects, but principally a groove-oriented jazz trio called Medeski Martin & Wood.

For me, Jack Bruce and Vernon Reid are the real draws for this project. After the jump, there’s a video of Spectrum Road performing live. Just watching Bruce and Reid perform together is amazing — and fuck, Vernon Reid can still really shred. The icing on the cake, though, is Cindy Blackman-Santana; it’s a kick to watch her tear it up on the  drums. Spectrum Road will be releasing a self-titled debut album on June 5 via Palmetto Records. Continue reading »

Jan 192012

(Today, BadWolf begins a new ongoing series in which we focus on music that’s not metal, but it’s still metal, if you know what I mean. And if you don’t know what I mean, this first installment in the series may help you figure it out.)

Death Grips : Ex-military

I’ve made no secret of my life outside metal. My annual top 10 not-metal album list is consistently my most challenging—and therefore favorite—list to compile. The fact of the matter is each year a whole host of bands release albums every bit as noisy, chaotic, dark and heavy—if not heavier—than much of the drivel that passes for metal these days. With this in mind I will endeavor to expand your ears into realms of sound outside the borders of our beloved genre.

[Download Death Grips : Ex-military for FREE, HERE: http://thirdworlds.net]

Our first voyage is a free mixtape that’s already garnered critical acclaim outside the metal world—and inside of it. Death Grips play hip-hop… sort of. Of the three members only one, MC Ride, spits rhyme, and his style is so full of belly-growls and whooping yells that many hip-hop websites are dismissing his work as obtuse non-rap. In other words, he’s halfway to a metal singer already. His lyrics orbit around subjects with intense and bitter gravity—drug abuse, social injustice, Tacheons (or taking you on) and . . . DECAPITATION!!! Continue reading »