Dec 172014


(Our old pal Ben C. from Church of the Riff has surfaced once again to put a smile on our faces and raucous music in our earholes.)

Well fuck. I did it. I wrote something for the first time in, uhhhhh, a while? Yeah, a while. Y’see, this year I graduated university and got hit with this real life thing, so my internet time got dragged behind the barn and shot like a sick dog. It doesn’t help that my day job has me staring at a computer screen all day like a slack-jawed monkey, so the last thing I want when I get home is more screen time.

Anyway, that doesn’t mean I didn’t find plenty of kickass tunes through the year, 12 of which are the subject of this list. It’s not all metal and there is clean singing but hopefully I’ve highlighted some new bands you haven’t heard before and might enjoy. Continue reading »

Dec 252013

(I once again successfully prevailed upon Ben C, the proprietor of the immensely entertaining Church of the Riff, to share with us his year-end list of 2013′s best albums.)

Looks like I made it through another year more or less intact, with a whole new collection of music to boot. 2013 proved to be a pretty solid year for me, both in new releases and discovering old classics. It was also the year I decided to plunk some money down on a second-hand stereo setup that doesn’t suck, so I’ve been able to not only rattle my brain but the neighbour’s as well.

The next 15 albums cover the majority of metal’s extended family, from grindcore, sludge, and doom all the way through to throwback stoner rock. I also decided to put together my choices for riff, chorus, and solo of the year – an idea I had been toying with since I published my last list. So without wasting any more time, here are 15 more albums some random guy on the internet thought were pretty swell. Continue reading »

Feb 032012

Another ugly duckling has left the nest, venturing into the cold, cruel outside world to spread its wings. An NCS reader, commenter, and e-mailer of reliable tips on metal news and new music who I’ll call Ben C. has gone off and started his own blog with the thoroughly awesome name of: CHURCH OF THE RIFF.

In Ben’s words, the musical focus of the new blog is “oriented around big manly ball-swagger riff rock”, though I’m sure Ben will be most welcoming to both non-balled and balled readers as long as they’re interested in “face melting and skin blasting” — in other words, readers with good taste in metal.

The blog went live yesterday with three posts. They’ll give you a further idea about the musical direction of the blog. Their subjects are these three bands: Whores, Barn Burner, and Graveyard. I especially liked the title of the second post: “Barn Burner: If Iron Maiden Drank More Beer, Smoked More Weed and Ate More Poutine.”

I also liked the fact that Ben created this tag for the post about Whores: motherfucking. I wish I had thought of that. He also has tags for beer and bongs. All these words will come in handy when searching Church of the Riff for music in future months.

Please show Ben some love. Go visit Church of the Riff today and leave the kind of ridiculous comments you post here at NCS.