Mar 292011

We’ve written about Cam Argon, a/k/a Big Chocolate, before. Many times before, in fact, though not recently. What first attracted our attention to him back in 2008 was his involvement in a brutal death-metal project called Disfiguring the Goddess.   You can find a bit of the backstory about DTG in this post we ran more than a year ago. Cribbing from that post, we described the original DTG EP like this: “a raw, distorted vortex of brutal, slamming death metal marked by some truly distinctive vocals.”

Since surfacing as a cult-figure-on-the-rise through DTG, Cam has gone on to do many other things, including dubstep, remixes, a project called Commissioner with Mitch Lucker of Suicide Silence, making music videos, and a stint as the vocalist for Burning the Masses. His musical interests are, shall we say, varied.

But no matter how far and wide Big C’s musical creativity has taken him (or will take him), there have been a solid mass of core fans interested mainly in one question: When will there be new Disfiguring the Goddess music? The question is now answered, because yesterday Cam Argon uploaded an entire new album’s worth of DTG music to Soundcloud.

The album is called Circle of Nine. Based on previous reports, we assume Big C recorded all the songs with ex-Misericordiam blaster Phil Cancilla on drums and Joe Broodle on guitar, in addition to the instrumental and programming work that Big C himself did. [Update: that was a bad assumption — we’ve now heard from Cam, and he did this whole album by himself, all the vocals, guitars, and drum programming.] And, of course, there are those distinctive vocals.

We’ve just started listening to these tracks this morning, and goddamn, it will spin your fucking head around and then tear it off. Fast, brutal, jolting, unpredictable, instrumentally inventive, and anchored by the most gut rumbling, abyssal, brutal-death vocals on the planet. Check it out for yourselves — the whole album stream is after the jump. Continue reading »

Dec 272010

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Back in November when I was away on an undeserved but still enjoyable vacation and unable to blog, lots of good people stepped up and contributed posts of their own so that NCS wouldn’t have to go dark while I was gone.

One of those contributors, The Artist Formerly Known As Dan, took a running head start on year-end album lists and became one of the first writers in metal blogdom to stake out a position on the year’s best metal (here). That post scored a massive number of hits, no doubt due in part to the fact that it was featured on MetalSucks.

With the end of the year rapidly approaching, we asked Dan if he had made any revisions or additions to the list he prepared a month ago. What we got from him was this.]

So, I hope all the NCS readers aren’t bored with me after my first list. I thought my picks for the best of 2010 were pretty solid, but reading lists can get old, so now I’ll try to focus my attention on one subject. That subject is potential musical recommendations for my NCS brethren that are outside the realm of metal.  I have a pretty wide range of tastes, but I thought that at least some of my “other” music might interest a few of you, specifically because it generally follows the NCS manifesto:

-it’s not pop music

-it has at least one or more of the following characteristics: fast, punishing, cathartic, dark, powerful, crushing

-there is no clean singing

So let’s get started.  (after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

May 222010

In yesterday’s post, we focused on recent news about Cameron Argon (a/k/a “Big Chocolate”), a dude that our bonded-in-blog bros over at Metal Sucks aptly called a “Renaissance Man.” What prompted our feature was Argon’s separation from Burning the Masses, a death-metal band with whom he’d recorded a forthcoming album and toured throughout Europe earlier this year. But at the tail-end of yesterday’s post, we also mentioned that in his “Big Chocolate” persona, he had remixed a Suicide Silence song called “Disengage”.

Century Media has released that remix, along with the original song, as a “single.” It’s available in two formats — as a digital download from iTunes and as a 7″ blue vinyl from CM Distro. Joshua Andrew Belanger created the cover art for the single, which you can see above.

Off and on yesterday, we listened to the original song and the remix back-to-back. The more we listened, the more we got into both versions of the song. The original Suicide Silence track shifts back and forth between a pulsing distorted riff and a dissonant, squealing guitar lead, and then up-shifts the tempo before crashing the pace down into a broken-down crawl. Following the breakdown, the tempo continues to shift back and forth, and throughout the song Mitch Lucker growls and shrieks mercilessly until the track finishes with 15 seconds of solitary drums.

In the remix, Big Chocolate has done more than separate and reshape the sounds present in the original. He’s applied a variety of electronic effects to distort and change the vocals and instrumentation, injected samples, added scratching and electro drums, messed with the rhythms so that they generate more of a dance-beat, and done a hundred other things that we’re not expert enough to figure out or describe.

The resulting music is drenched in wild sound effects, more aurally dense than the original, but still recognizably “Disengage” and still recognizably metal. I don’t listen to electro house or dubstep, but one of my collaborators (IntoTheDarkness) is getting into those genres and I’ve heard a few things he’s recommended. Snatches of the “Disengage” remix sound like those styles, but I really don’t think a genre name has yet been invented for the results of what Big Chocolate did with the Suicide Silence material. Anyone out there have a suggestion?

Ater the jump, you can listen to both songs back-to-back. And then after that, we’ve got a “mixtape” for you that was inspired by “Disengage”. Continue reading »