Back at it again after a protracted holiday break. Today marks the beginning of the back half of summer, so let’s enjoy it (and its attendant gore pile of releases, shows, and news) while its still around.
WHAT TO HEAR: We start local this week with Stranger to Violence (Profound Lore), the latest batch of metal-ish material from Psalm Zero (i.e. Charlie Looker and formerly Andrew Hock). Guest appearances from the likes of Epistasis and Black Anvil ensure this one remains decidedly in the realm of “metal”, but if you’re looking to broaden those sonic horizons, Revolver’s stream should be your first stop this week.
If you’re fiending for some of those smoky, bell-bottomed sounds instead, then turn your attention to San Fran doom crew Castle‘s new LP, Welcome to the Graveyard (Van). Produced by Billy Anderson (every worthwhile doom band ever) and currently streaming on Decibel, this one ticks all the boxes—riffs, melodies, vibe—so make sure to check it out. As long as you’re not asking or expecting it to be something it’s not, you should be more than satisfied with what you find.
Next up a pair of new releases from veteran sludge bands, starting with Lifespan of a Moth (Relapse) from California’s self-styled (-16-). With 25 years of experience, you’d be forgiven for expecting a tame attempt to capitalize (in relativity) on metal’s current good graces, but trust me: This one rips. After digging into The Obelisk’s stream, go check out Fistula‘s Longing For Infection (PATAC), an oozing batch of chemical waste straight from the rusted-out chest cavity of Akron, Ohio. The band itself are calling this one “another sonic creation documenting our disdain for humanity”, so you know it’s gonna be heavy. Hear the stream over at Terrorizer if you’re interested in that sort of thing.
Meanwhile up in Boston, crust maniacs Panzerbastard have whipped up a wicked pissah new 7″ in the form of MotörHeathen (PATAC). Somewhere between Motörhead and Cro-Mags—and rivaling Bat in terms of no-fucks-given thrash histrionics here in 2016—this one makes for a perfect mid-afternoon throat punch, so check it out via Invisible Oranges. While your there also read up on Autumn (Cold Dimensions), the first full length in seven years from ambient German black metal crew, ColdWorld.
Finally, let’s wrap up releases this week with an exercise in contrasts. First up is Blood Red Throne‘s newest slab of brutal death metal, Union of Flesh and Machine (Candlelight) followed closely by Noire‘s The Tracks of the Hunted (Deathbound Records), which comes pouring forth from the Great North upon steeds of underground buzz. Give it a listen if you dare.
WHAT TO SEE: With The Acheron gone the way of Ol’ Yeller, this week’s show landscape is decidedly different than it has been over the course of the last six years. Instead of lamenting what we lost, however, let’s focus on what we still have, starting tonight with Luminous Vault/Anicon at Vitus, No Redeeming Social Value at The Grand Victory, Wolfmother in Webster Hall’s Marlin Room, and Trade Wind just downstairs in the Studio. Saturday night follows that up with another solid lineup of shows—including Horseburner at Lucky 13 Saloon, Windfaerer at Pista Bandas Unidas Oficial, Entropy at Nihil Gallery, and Angelcorpse at Saint Vitus—so get out there and see something before the weekend slips back into the darkness.
Sunday offers a few more opportunities to do that, of course—namely with Baphomet’s Blood at Pista Bandas Unidas Oficial and Old Lines/Prisoner at Vitus (via The Acheron)—before Monday rolls through with comedian Jim Breuer and his fledgling hard rock project, The Loud & Rowdy, at the Knitting Factory. Tuesday meanwhile welcomes Zakk Wylde to Webster Hall before Ascend/Descend hit Saint Vitus on Wednesday and Chrch, Fister, and Kosmodemonic wrap things up at Black Bear Bar (once again via The Acheron) on Thursday.
WHAT THE FUCK: While a Brooklyn resident for every second of my half-decade NYC tenure, I have to say it was awesome to see said borough’s metal so-and-sos stomping around Times Square for John Carpenter last Friday. LET’S MAKE MANHATTAN GROSS AGAIN.