Happy March Madness week (emphasis on the madness), folks. I probably make this dad joke every year, but honestly can’t remember, so let’s just get to what you came here for.
WHAT TO HEAR: Leading the way this week is Crux (Modern Static Records), the searing sophomore full-length from Long Island progressive rockers Moon Tooth. Spearheaded by Nick Lee’s pyrotechnic guitar work and John Carbone’s bottle rocket vox, Crux comes across like Torche hopped up on trucker pills and John Petrucci guitar DVDs and is easily the most fun you can have with metal (and the 100+ genres Moon Tooth smear across the Crux canvas) this week. Make sure to lend it an ear (and a jugular) this weekend.
After that, dig into the dark, winding labyrinths of Trembling and Shorn (Last Mercy Emissions) the debut LP from members of Falls of Rauros and Obsidian Tongue performing as Shabti. Hailing the probably still-frozen coasts of Maine, the New England black metal supergroup navigate a tangled web of progressive char and cavernous death metal with trademark virtuosity (listen to either of their origin acts for like five seconds to see what I mean). But what sets Shabti apart—and makes Trembling and Shorn so powerful—is its ability to make even the most mangled black metal gristle feel appetizing. Needless to say, we hope you came hungry.
Meanwhile, if you’ve been waiting for deathcore to have its hipster metal retconning well, Gomorrah’s slamming self-titled debut may just be the record you’ve been searching for (No Light Records). Comprised of guitarist Bowen Matheson, drummer Hannes Grossman, and a trio of rotating vocalists, Gomorrah somehow manage to make 6+ string djent sound not only icy, but artful, gurgling and grooving over some seriously heavy territory. Peels of feedback, vivid harmonics, and shorter, grind-inspired arrangements manage to keep things interesting, opening a whole new door for the much-maligned sub-genre in the process. Even if you think you’ll hate it, try it. Something tells me Gomorrah will change your mind.
After that, keep the death metal axe swinging with Imprecation’s Damnatio Ad Bestia (Dark Descent), the first throwback batch of whammy whinnies and riff worship since 2013. If you’re looking for something a little more adventurous, meanwhile, give Tengger Cavalry’s Northern Memory (Silk Road Metal) a shot. Combining elements of Mongolian throat singing and symphonic folk with galloping death metal, this one is a perfect Tengger Cavalry starter pack for anyone who has yet to have the New York horde invade their hearts.
Once you’re done there, tap into the Dutch underground, where members of Turia, Laster, and Northwind have united under the banner of Nusquama for their first (and Elizabeth Post-inspired) offering of black metal misanthropy, Horizon Ontheemt (Eisenwald). Finally, wrap up your weekly essentials out in left field, with industrial/noise MC Dälek’s new EP, Respect to the Authors (Exile on Mainstream). And yes, in case you were wondering, this is who Death Grips got it from.
WHAT TO SEE: The shows go on tonight, rain or shine, starting with Minimum Wage Assassins at The Meatlocker, Into Another at Brooklyn Bazaar, Promise Breaker at Sunnyvale, After Voyage at El Cortez, Borgo Pass at The Rail, KISS at Nassau Coliseum, Soul Patch at Saint Vitus, Warrant at Starland Ballroom, and Ulver at Irving Plaza. On Saturday, catch Dysentery at Irving Plaza, Attacker at QXT’s, Warrant at Westbury Theater, Changeörder at FM, Springwood at Above XXXV, Olde Tigers at El Sabor Norteno, and Churchburn/Unearthly Trance at Vitus at 7 and Lazerpunk at 11, before wrapping the weekend up on Sunday with Dead Soft, once more at 666 Manhattan Ave (not Vitus’s actual address, Google mappers).
On Monday, Vitus also plays host to the final round of the 2019 Wacken Fest Metal Battle, followed on Tuesday by Jake E. Lee at The Iridium. Wednesday comes correct with trio of loud stuff, includkng KTL (Peter Rehberg and Stephen O’Malley) at (le) Poisson Rouge, KISS at MSG, and Lucifer/Sanhedrin at Vitus, before Thursday wraps things up with Graveyard/Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats at Brooklyn Steel, Protection at Vitus, and the one and only Billy Idol at the Town Hall.
WHAT THE FUCK: Y’all want to get crazy tonight? Mötley Crüe’s Netflix biopic, The Dirt, drops tonight. Stay in, put on your leather pants, and spend a nice quiet evening with The Crüe.