Jul 262018


(DGR delivered a tome of reviews so massive that we decided to serialize it throughout the week so as to avoid fracturing your spine beneath its weight. This is the 4th and final part of the series.)

On occasion we find ourselves backlogged with albums that we want to write about but seem never able to find the time to do so. Sometimes this results in multiple review ideas getting tossed and never revisited, and at other times you get posts like this one as we deseperately try to hammer out a whole bunch of reviews about EVERYTHING that we’ve been listening to.

In this case that means 13 different releases, unsorted by genre and from all varying walks of all things heavy. So, with the floodgates now fully open, let us wade further forth into the rushing waters of heavy metal to recommend some stuff that perhaps might have flown by you.

Jack Ketch – Ashes Of Vesuvius

You may have caught it in the opening of my Light This City review, but a lot of bands who’ve been silent for the better part of a decade have decided that 2018 would be a good time to come back. Maybe it’s just the general sense that the world is on fire right now, but a bunch of groups are now putting stuff out as if they’ll never get another chance to do so. Among the increasing number that are returning to us are two local Sacramento acts, one of which released a new album I reviewed yesterday (Journal) and the other of which is Jack Ketch, whose new EP The Ashes Of Vesuvius is a stunning turn of events from the band’s previous material. Continue reading »

Jul 032018


This is a SEEN AND HEARD round-up that’s going under a different name today. If the reason for that isn’t already obvious from the title of this post, let me explain:

Below you will find new songs and one new video, plus a news item, from seven bands. One of them is by a band whose last release was 10 years ago. Three are from bands whose last albums came out eight years ago. Two more are by bands whose last albums were released six and four years ago, respectively. And the video for the last one is set in a time when if you wanted to watch a movie at home, you went to the VHS store.

I can’t take credit for the Robin WilliamsJumanji meme or the post title. That was suggested by DGR, and actually it was he (with an assist from Andy Synn) who foisted all these new songs and videos on me. Basically, today I’m just a marionette whose strings are being pulled by others. Let’s get this over with so I can go back to listening to really disgusting death and black metal. Continue reading »

Jun 152017


(DGR takes over our round-up rodeo for this Thursday, with a mix of news and new music from 8 bands.)

By the time you are reading this, I will likely be hiding like a coward underneath a fan set on incredibly high as this region of California experiences its first legit summer heatwave of one hundred plus temperatures. Considering that I am a soft wuss who has somehow survived many of these prior, you’d think that attempting to lose weight so that I may one day fit in my freezer with the door closed wouldn’t be the go-to gameplan, but alas, here we are.

You may have noticed by our recent slowdown post that a good chunk of the NCS crew plans to spend the weekend cooped up in a handful of venues in Seattle for the Northwest Terror Fest, enjoying a smattering of different groups. So in order to offset that I’ve made a hefty collection of new music and some album artwork that has slowly been cropping up on the web in recent weeks that have floated by us recently, to be caught in the patented super-porous DGR news net. At the very end I’ll even toss in an album that I came across recently for all of you to enjoy.

So let us sunder forth so that I can quickly go back to attempting to stuff myself onto the second shelf of the freezer next to the frozen lasagna boxes. Continue reading »

Apr 132012


(DemiGodRaven checks in with some quick music updates . . .)

Let us all reap the rewards that a little extra time given to a disc can provide. Mechina have uploaded the titular single of their new disc Empyrean, and it is fucking excellent. The band have been one of my favorite recent discoveries as their hybridization (holy shit, spellcheck says that is a word! I was going nuts while typing it. Just constantly repeating, “You’re a fucking idiot for thinking this is real”) of death metal, industrial, one part Fear Factory (mostly in the vocal work, their lead vocalist sounds similar to Burton Bell’s old singing voice), and sci-fi philosophy have bought me hook, line, and sinker.

“Empyrean” is a shorter song but is one of the first chances we’ve gotten to hear anything solid from the new disc since they delayed it in January back to May. It still has amazing orchestral work, driving drum beats, and those vocals just seem to be getting better and better. (after the jump, a new video . . .)

Continue reading »