Apr 162011

(Thanks go out to NCS reader/commenter Surgical Brute for today’s guest post, which focuses on five bands that may be new to you; they were certainly new to me, but I’m damned glad I know about them now: Anatomia, War Master, Grave Ritual, Adorior, and Ilsa. I’m also happy to learn about the Rites of Darkness festival that, to date, has confirmed appearances by 41 bands, including the likes of Behexen, Demonical, Interment, Mitochondrian, Sargeist, Valkyrja, and Vasaeleth, in addition to the bands that are the focus of this post.)

Okay, as you know, Islander was looking for some articles to use as fill-ins so he didn’t lose any days on the NCS website. I stupidly said Id try to put something together for him, and…well… here we are.

I guess I should start with a little bit about me. My name’s Rob, but I usually use the tag SurgicalBrute (no there’s no story behind it . . . so don’t ask). Compared to a lot of you, I’ve only been into metal for a very short time, but after dabbling with metalcore a little bit I found Amon Amarth’s Twilight of the Thundergod. I couldn’t stop listening to the title track, and I’ve been devoted to the metal gods ever since. I listen to most of the different styles (grindcore being the exception), but I prefer either old school death metal or folk/viking metal.

Now, I’m not much of a reviewer; frankly, I suck at it. So I was trying to figure out what I should write about. Well, as some of you may know, I try to stay pretty tapped into metal’s underground.  So I figured I’d make a suggestion list of bands most of you may not have heard about. I’ll also include a brief description of theses bands

This isn’t just any list though. No . . . I’m going to tell about 5 lesser known bands you should check out at Rites of Darkness 3, which is happening in San Antonio, Texas, on December 9-10.  (continue reading after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Mar 102010

[Today, we’re pleased to feature a post from our occasional guest contributor from the Antipodes, Steff Metal (whose usual site you can find here). We wish we had at least thought up the wicked title to this post, but that was hers, too. And the rest of post is also pretty damned wicked. Prepare yourself to be entertained, and to discover some new music in the process.]

I went to a Cripple Mr. Onion gig. During setup I was nursing my bourbon and cola at the bar when I overheard a couple of dudes discussing Arch Enemy.

“She’s alright to look at,” one said, “but she can’t growl for shit.”

“Yeah,” his friend agreed. “Chicks can’t do extreme metal. Every extreme metal band with a chick vocalist is crap.” Therein followed a heated discussion of what chicks should be doing instead of playing extreme metal, which I’ve omitted due to the rules of common decency.

Resisting the urge to punch them both in the face, I drained my glass and wondered if I could prove his claim false. Surely there must be extreme metal bands with decent female vocals?

It’s a long-held belief among metalheads that girls can’t do extreme metal. Extreme Metal is probably the most aggressive, angry, violent form of music there is, and every study ascertains its audience as overwhelmingly male. There’s a kind of “lost boys club” surrounding extreme metal, a sort of grymm forest treehouse with a badly handwritten sign on the door: NO GIRLS ALLOWED.

I think the lack of decent female extreme metal musicians has more to do with simple maths. Hardly any girls listen to extreme metal, and of those that do, hardly any play instruments. There are hundreds of thousands of men playing in metal bands and about twenty-two girls (seriously, I counted), and if 80% of all metal is crap, then that’s only … 4.2 decent female extreme metal musicians.

No I just have to find them.  (and find them she did — read on after the jump . . .) Continue reading »