Friday, October 28, 2016

3 Songs: On Repeat (Extended Edition)

Ulcerate – “Extinguished Light” (The New Zealand extreme metal trio are set to release their fifth album, Shrines of Paralysis today on Release Records.  Their brand of metal is proggy, powerful and highly-technical but just as easily; they can spread it out and become atmospheric or settle into a gnarled groove that goes beyond the blast beats and foreboding heaviness for an unparalleled experimental sound.)

Serpentine Dominion – “The Vengeance In Me” (The new project led by Adam Dutkiewicz  of Killswitch Engage with vocals from the legendary George Fisher of Cannibal Corpse, drums from ex-The Black Dahlia Murder drummer, Shannon Lucas and politically-charged lyrics penned by Killswitch Engage vocalist Jesse Leach.  Adam adds speedy grindcore rhythms and heaviness to his metalcore sound and George incorporates melodic singing into the mix as each musician steps outside of their previous constraints on their punishing self-titled debut album, out today via Metal Blade Records.)

The Youngest – “Built To Last” (The Chicago indie-rock band is set to self-release their stunning sophomore album, See It Through today.  Produced by Modest Mouse and Iron & Wine producer Brian Deck and featuring keyboards from Wilco’s Pat Sansone, the new album is the perfect blend of wistful, pop-leaning folk-rock and dusty, atmospheric Americana led by frontman Andrew Taetz’s scruffy yet soaring vocals that should hoist them above the radar.)

Signals Midwest – “West Side Summer” (The Cleveland based indie rock band has been at the forefront of the so-called emo revival since 2009 and recently released their best album yet, At This Age, via Tiny Engines.  Led by the impassioned vocals of guitarist Max Stern, they create taut, emotionally-charged punk anthems with chiming and winding guitar lines along with a Midwestern earnestness that sets them atop the scene.)  

Touché Amoré – “Rapture” (The L.A. post-hardcore band recently released their fourth album; the emotional and personal Stage Four, which is out now on Epitaph Records.  Vocalist Jeremy Bolm deals with the devastating death of his mother from cancer with heartbreakingly personal yet highly-relatable lyrics that question life and the afterlife with unbridled passion alongside the band’s most complex and compelling music yet that matches the intensity of the lyrical themes.  Guest Julien Baker lends her talents to the searing album closer as well.)      

Friday, October 21, 2016

3 Songs: On Repeat

Obituary – “Loathe” (The Florida death metal pioneers will release a new album next spring but in the meantime have issued a new release, Ten Thousand Ways To Die.  Out today on Relapse Records, it features two new songs; the six-minute groove-leaden standout, “Loathe” and the blistering title track along with a set of twelve live recordings of their fan favorites and classics including, “Chopped In Half”, “Don’t Care”, “Slowly We Rot” and more.  A must have for old fans and a great introduction for new fans.)

No Nets – “Dark Matter” (The Brooklyn-based indie-rock band led by Sal Mastrocola is set to release their stellar sophomore album, Bright Light today.  Growing beyond a bedroom project, the new album boasts lyrical themes of marriage, growing up and getting old that are contrasted by bright, anthemic melodies and bristling with cagey energy; recalling both the emo/punk and guitar-led indie rock of the late 90’s.)

Jimmy Eat World – “Sure And Certain” (With all of the recent reunions rising out of the emo-era’s ashes, one of the biggest bands of that time has always been churning out great music and they are set to release their ninth album, Integrity Blues today via RCA Records.  Produced by M83 and Paramore producer Justin Meldal-Johnsen, the album is filled with their trademark anthemic hooks and emotionally-charged lyrics but the Arizona band doesn’t try to relive the past, instead they have experimented with different guitar sounds and synths a little more for yet another excellent album to add to their legend.)

Friday, October 14, 2016

3 Songs: On Repeat

Conor Oberst – “You Loved Him Once” (Conor Oberst returns with his latest solo album, Ruminations, out today on Nonesuch Records.  This album is the album fans of his early work have been wishing for.  The stripped-down acoustic arrangements feature only acoustic guitar, piano and harmonica alongside his distinct voice and poetic lyrical prowess.  The new songs written in the cold Nebraskan winter ache with emotion for his best album in years.)   
Stream Ruminations here (via NPR):

Red Fang – “Cut It Short” (The Portland heavy metal heavyweights are back today with their highly-anticipated fourth album, Only Ghosts via Relapse Records.  Produced by Ross Robinson, the stellar new album is filled with more of their hybrid hard rock that blends together effortlessly catchy and anthemic hooks disguised by thunderous, blues-soaked stoner rock guitar fuzz.  If rock radio still mattered, these guys would dominate alongside Foo Fighters and Queens of The Stone Age.)

Seeker – “Rot” (Loss, the aptly-titled new album from the Texas death metal trio led by vocalist/bassist Bryce Lucien is a raw and honest record of personal and professional loss.  Out now on Victory Records, the new album is stark, pummeling and emotionally-charged with grinding grooves and a throwback to 90’s metallic hardcore.)

Friday, October 07, 2016

3 Songs: On Repeat

Gatecreeper – “Stronghold” (The emerging Arizona-based death metal band is set to release their debut album, Sonoran Depravation today on Relapse Records.  Their retro-minded brand of metal isn’t overly technical, but brutally primal and harkens back to the late 80’s and early 90’s death metal sound with sludge-thick Entombed-like guitar riffs, vicious growls and slow, levelling Bolt Thrower-like grooves for an impressive debut that satisfies nostalgia while bringing their own unique and modern take on the old school sound.)   

Cowtown – “Motivational Speaker” (The Leeks, UK based post-punk trio recently released their fourth album, Paranormal Romance via Athens indie, Happy Happy Birthday to Me Records.  They blaze through 12 songs in 23 minutes, like a sugar rush and caffeine buzz rolled into one with their catchy melodies and quirky lyrics alongside propulsive synth bass lines, echoes of 80’s  New Wave and male/female vocal tradeoffs.)

Bon Iver – “29 #Strafford Apts” (Justin Vernon continues to stretch the boundaries of Bon Iver and musical genres altogether with his highly-anticipated third album, 22, A Million, out now via Jagjaguwar.  Strange and beautiful, he creates swirling synth-led symphonies and soundscapes like on the single, “10 Death/Breast” with its blown-out R&B beat, glitchy horns and gorgeous, soul-stirring vocals and the more folk-leaning standout, “29 #Strafford Apts” heard here.)