As we stumble, bleeding out and going septic, into our annual celebration of America, let This One Goes to Eleven provide the soundtrack to our geo-political angst. Hot dogs sold separately.
WHAT TO HEAR: It’s a bit of a light week on the release front, but Self Defense Family lead the way in fittingly pissed-off fashion with their latest full-length, Have You Considered Punk Music? (Run For Cover Records). A mix of classic myopic hardcore and life-affirming punk, the band’s 6th record—pieced together in the studio at the last second, per the band’s modus operandi—tackles issues of aging and meaning, pushing and pulling between light and dark with frontman Patrick Kindlon’s gravel-throated croak balancing the rest of the collective’s lilting riffs. It’s not really metal, but it’s metal adjacent (and very good), so make sure to check it out via Noisey if you’re in the mood for something a little different.
After that, dive in to the genre deep end with The Antichrist Imperium’s Volume II – Every Tongue Shall Praise Satan (Apocalyptic Witchcraft). The modern project of Matt Wilcock and David Gray of early-oughts black metal stalwarts Akercocke, The Antichrist Imperium are the closest thing you can get to “tech black metal” and Volume II their most progressive offering to date, ricocheting between tremolo-scapes, dexterous clean arpeggios, and ripping death metal riffs in the first 90 seconds of the album’s first track alone. Hop aboard this rollercoaster from hell over at bandcamp.
Once you’ve had your brains adequately scrambled by that one, re-calibrate a bit with Shylmagoghnar’s Transience (Napalm Records). While the branding—logo, album art, et. al—may put you on the noodly death scent, it’s actually a bit of red herring. The Dutch outfit are atmospheric, synth-saturated black metal to the core, and Transience backs that up with every massive, melodic riff and irresistible hook. It’s maybe a tad cheesy and over reliant on chord progressions instead of riffs, but it’s still more than worth a listen, so check it out via (you guessed it) bandcamp.
After that, wrap up the new stuff with Messages to the Past (Translation)—the latest instrumental showpiece from Kevin Hufnagel (Gorguts, Sabbath Assembly, etc.)—and its polar sonic opposite, Blind Justice’s No Matter the Cost (Flatspot Records/Edgewood Records)—a seething slab of Jersey Shore hardcore that arrives just in time for summer.
WHAT TO HEAR: Kick off America’s spoiled brat birthday party tonight with False Gods at Lucky 13 Saloon, Elefantkiller at Dingbatz, By the Grace of God at Saint Vitus, Foreigner/Whitesnake at the PNC Bank Arts Center, and Joan Jett & the Blackhearts at the Jones Beach Theater. On Saturday, check out the 3rd Annual Iggy Pop Fest at Lucky 13–featuring Rick’s Jets, Dracaris, and more—or get out to Blackthorn 51 for HeadMotor or Vitus for a sick Spotlights EP release show. Finally, Sunday bleeds out with Friendship Commander at Vitus, Ross the Boss at Debonair Music Hall, and Glenn Alexander & Shadowland at Roxy and Duke’s.
Monday, meanwhile, welcomes Nastie Band to Vitus, Roseblood to Porta, and Armpits to The Meatlocker, while Tuesday plays host to Wait and Shackle at KJ Farrell’s and the first of two Amenra gigs at Saint Vitus. Wednesday is the 4th, but you can still check out Invocation Spells at Pista banda unidas official and an Amenra/Sunrot matinee at Vitus, before Thursday wraps things up in fittingly hungover fashion with High Cost at, where else, Saint Vitus.
WHAT THE FUCK: Surprise Converge EP? Surprise Converge EP.