Jul 172018
 

 

(This is DGR’s review of the comeback album by the Bay Area’s Light This City, which is out now via Creator-Destructor Records.)

We’ve been having a lot of fun with it lately but there seems to be a legitimate concerted effort to resurrect the mid-aughts musically, with a handful of groups that gained prominence during the early metalcore and deathcore explosions coming back after multi-year hiatuses and breakups, deciding that 2018 was going to be the time they all returned. They’re obviously not the only bands to do so this year, but it sure does seem like 2018 has been designated the year of the comeback.

We have to be on something of a ten-year cycle for groups breaking up and re-uniting, because that is one of the few ways I can explain how so many bands who were content to hang it up about seven-to-ten years ago all came back at once. If you’ll allow us to pull the curtains back a bit, it seems like my recent review work slate consists entirely of groups returning from my first few years of community college – – particularly the three-pack of Bleeding Through, The Agony Scene, and Light This City, although Into Eternity coming back and local Sacramento groups Journal and Jack Ketch both also joining the fray are part of the phenomenon, with the last two admittedly a likely the reason I’m pounding away at this theme.

As mentioned, Light This City are one of these groups, calling it quits after the release of their 2008 album Stormchaser and from then on reuniting sporadically only for a small handful of live dates (coincidentally the only times I had seen them up until July 1st of this year) — until this year, which saw the late-May release of the group’s newest album through Creator-Destructor Records, Terminal Bloom. Continue reading »

Mar 312018
 

 

A few of my NCS comrades have been nudging me to do a round-up that includes the latest songs revealed by At the Gates, Kataklysm, and Light This City. I didn’t have time to do this yesterday when I got that nudging, but decided to do it today even though Andy’s latest Waxing Lyrical post would have given me an excuse to check out from NCS writing for the day. And since I decided to pull those three songs together, I added one pick of my own.

AT THE GATES

I suppose you’d have to be living under a rock not to know that At the Gates have a new album headed our way. For you under-rock dwellers, To Drink From the Night Itself will be released by Century Media on May 18th. Yesterday brought another single from the album, packaged with a wonderful video created by Costin Chioreanu of Twilight 13 Media. Continue reading »

Jan 132018
 

 

(Here’s a personal list by Andy Synn identifying eagerly anticipated forthcoming 2018 albums.)

 

One week ago Islander published a list of upcoming albums expected to be released over the course of the next twelve months, and also solicited comments and recommendations from our readers concerning which albums (and EPs) they were most looking forward to.

Well, as successful as that endeavour was, now it’s my turn to talk up some of my most anticipated album scheduled for release in 2018. Continue reading »

Dec 052012
 

(NCS writer Andy Synn pauses after the 30th installment of THE SYNN REPORT to take a look back at the first two years of the series.)

Ok, so we’ve now had 30 ‘official’ entries in The Synn Report. I hope that a good number of you have discovered new bands and gone out and shown your support for them, buying music, merch, gig tickets, etc.

I thought, since the year (and the world!!!) is coming to an end, it might be a good time to provide a quick one-stop summation of all the previous entries, for those of you who maybe missed a couple, or for new devotees of the site who have yet to encounter the earlier editions and the bands contained therein.

Did you know that the genesis for The Synn Report was not entirely down to me? There’s a post that I consider ‘The Synn Report: Year Zero” which was written by Islander himself, in response to my recommendation of a particular band. That post is included here, as I think it’s an important foundation stone in the genesis of The Synn Report, and because I think the band in question are utterly phenomenal.

So there we go, after the jump there’s a tiny entry on each band from each edition of The Synn Report, with a short genre description and a re-iteration of the “Recommended for fans of:” section. Which ones did you miss? Which ones should you give another shot to? Click each one to be linked to the appropriate article, where you’ll find the full write-ups and sample songs from each release! Continue reading »

Aug 112011
 

(Andy Synn returns with his 17th edition of THE SYNN REPORT and a look-back at the discography of the late, lamented Light This City. Of course, we’re streaming songs from the albums, too.)

Now sadly deceased, Light This City were shaping up to be prime movers and shakers in America’s metal scene before their unfortunate dissolution. With a back-catalogue of four albums of thrashing, raging, melodic death metal, the 5-piece, fronted by human whirlwind Laura Nichol, took the Gothenburg sound and moulded it into something distinctively American, without falling into the rut of metalcore imitation, becoming darlings of the underground scene in their short time together.

One of the strongest comparisons that can be made of the Californian quintet, in the most positive sense, is of a less dark, more thrashy variant of The Black Dahlia Murder’s specifically American brand of melodic death metal, with the latter’s scalpel-sharp Dissection influence replaced with a stronger focus on flowing At The Gates melodicism and chunky Bay Area guitar rhythms, accented by forays into explosive blast beats, soaring Maiden-esque leads and heroic displays of guitar pyrotechnics.

Frontwoman Laura Nichol possesses a powerful voice that shifts organically from a blackened, wounded screech to a rumbling, guttural growl redolent with primal ferocity and sheer, overwhelming presence. The guitars, primarily stemming from the mind and fingers of band co-founder (and drummer) Ben Murray – who switched purely to drums after the band’s second album, allowing new-found guitar wunderkind Brian Forbes to step forward – thrash out a hurricane of molten, distorted riffs and blazing guitar leads, matching their soaring melodies and shredding solos with a crushing delivery of down-tuned devastation.

Although the band are unfortunately no more, they left behind them an enviable legacy of instrumental talent and impressive compositional skill. With a laser sharp focus and a tightly co-ordinated line-up, the group were able to take their influences, many of which have since become standard fare for today’s less-inspired metal groups, and meld them into something wholly individual, using their influences to achieve something greater for themselves; re-interpretation, rather than rote imitation.  (more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Nov 232009
 

So you all have probably read some things by the author islander, but there’s a new girl in town! I’ll be writing about the music I love and things I’m passionate about. Here is the music I love Continue reading »