Thursday, May 21, 2015

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Aesthetic Meditations of Death

As I've pointed out before, the larger culture seems to find much amusement when metal is combined with a seemingly unrelated term; "black metal+chef", "metal dudes+cats", and so on. So it's no surprise that "metal yoga" is not only a thing, but a thing that gets reported on with increasing regularity in the mainstream press. It takes two things that are ripe for parody and combines them in one Mr. Show-ready concept. Let the memes begin.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Full of Hell & The Body @ABC No Rio; Cryptopsy & Disgorge @ Nihil Gallery 5.16.2015

The last time I was in ABC No Rio was 13 years ago; there was a hole in the floor near the back of the performance space roughly the size of the average foot. Stare at it for a few seconds and it would spell out "L-A-W-S-U-I-T". Luckily, it's been fixed in the intervening years. Also new: Separate cans for trash and recyclables, showing that anarchy and organized waste management are not mutually exclusive...except in Malaysia, where I've been told that having recycling bins in Rumah Api will not work. Clearly it works for ABC No Rio; are New York punks that different?

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Antigama, Drugs of Faith, The Communion & Buckshot Facelift @ Nihil Gallery, Brooklyn 5.13.2015

The Nihil Gallery is a new(ish) venue south of downtown Brooklyn; formerly an art gallery, it's got a bar, some picnic tables to sit around and an adorable little pug who scampered around before the show started, but that's about it. [It's also got a front door without a handle, which I stared at for a full minute before being instructed to get in by pulling on the mail slot]. Which makes it perfect for a metal show. Who needs all the tchotchkes in Saint Vitus or the Acheron's kvlter than thou clientele? The sound at Nihil was great, the space was big, and the bands more than made up for the commute from Woodside.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Mixtape 22: Master

Here is the 22nd installment of the Dreams of Consciousness podcast, featuring an interview with death metal godfather Paul Speckmann of Master, Death Strike, Krabathor, Abomination...the list goes on.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Bandcamp Picks: Gruesome, Demonical, Abyss (CAN), Ululate

Anyone who wishes they had another Leprosy/Spiritual Healing must be reeling at the debut from Gruesome, Matt Harvey's tribute to Death's early years. [But aren't Matt Harvey's other bands also a tribute to some other band?] To that end, Savage Land is spot on; the vocals especially are such a perfect simulacrum of Chuck Schuldiner's rasp that it's unsettling. The deluxe edition contains a cover of Death's "Land of No Return"; surely that's redundant after a whole album of reverential mimicry? [$9.99]

Demonical similarly started out paying tribute to the early days of Swedish death metal, but have been able to carve out their own identity separate from the revivalist bandwagon. Black Flesh Redemption contains four new songs showcasing their knack for memorable hooks and succinct arrangements. Servants of the Unlight, rejoice. [$4]

Raw and uncompromising, Toronto's Abyss aren't ones for subtlety. Heretical Anatomy was produced by Joel Grind, who brings a rehearsal tape aesthetic to the band's meatgrinder roots death. A chest-thumping rejoinder to the usual triggered, technical Canadian death metal. [$6.66]

Beijing's one-man band ULULATE [哀嚎] has a lot going for it. Though it's only the second full length (the first was released all the way back in 2002) Back to Cannibal World (sic) is pretty accomplished Immolation-inflected death metal, abetted by a solid production and some interesting songwriting choices.  [€5]

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Blind Surgeons Operation Interview

Andrew Cleveland should be familiar to readers of this blog by now - he was the guitarist for DoC faves Pretty Mouth. The last time I talked to him was just before the release of Pretty Mouth's final album The Endless Mistake. Since then, he's joined Canadian thrashers Mad Trapper and resurrected his old project The Blind Surgeons Operation. I e-mailed some questions to check in on the Operation.