So yeah, we celebrate Good Friday a little different around these parts. Sorry Mom, but thanks for the jelly beans anyway.
WHAT TO HEAR: Leading the way this week are Colorado’s resident orthodox black metal specialists, Nightbringer, and their latest convulsing pit of despair, Terra Damnata (Season of Mist). Fuck your pretty major chords and expensive reverb pedals, they say, here is black metal the way it began and the way it was always meant to be: Cold, fast, and dissonant–a long crescendo to an unfortunate end. If you were to listen to these guys in a vacuum, you’d probably be shocked to find they’re a contemporary band, let alone an American one, but thus is the throwback appeal of Nightbringer. Check out a few tracks via YouTube and make sure to turn them up to point of physical discomfort.
After you’ve clawed out from that undertow, dive back in with The Grave Alchemist (Prosthetic Records), the third full length in three years from blackened thrash outfit All Hell. A no-bullshit slab of metal served with a healthy dose of straightforward punk aggression, The Grave Alchemist (now streaming at the All Hell’s bandcamp) is a must-hear salvo from one of the more prolific—but least-heralded—underground acts going.
If that’s not enough charred, Bathory-worshipping riffage for you this week, then also make sure to check out Shackles of Mammon (Dark Descent), the latest full length from London rippers, Craven Idol. Dark, dank, and boiled alive in old-school analog production, this one is a blast from past with an added edge—in other words, Venom for the post-death metal world. Check it out here and prepare to lose your head. Check it out via Decibel.
If that’s not heavy enough for you, however, then check out Necrowretch‘s new LP, Satanic Slavery (Season of Mist), a writhing cesspool blackened death metal from the heart of the French underbelly. These guys have been at it for awhile, but Satanic Slavery—currently streaming via CVLT Nation—finds them separating from the admittedly crowded pack on the back of fantastic left-field solos and truly manic growling (yes, even by the sub-genre standard). Needless to say, this is one you’re not going to want to miss—especially on Easter weekend.
Finally, on the reissue front this week, you get Oranssi Pazuzu’s entire catalog via 20 Buck Spin while Nuclear Blast will be dishing out the first three records from Gates of Ishtar—a seminal but largely forgotten force in the early ’90s melo-death boom. It’s safe to say, what’s old is most definitely new again.
WHAT TO SEE: If you’re looking for a little alternative Easter weekend programming, we have just what you need, starting tonight with Azonic at Saint Vitus, CHUD at Don Pedro (part of Bodega Ball 2017), a Warcrust Records rager at Lucky 13 Saloon, and the return of the Decibel Tour—featuring Kreator, Obituary, Midnight, and Horrendous—at Irving Plaza. Saturday, meanwhile, offers little respite, following that up with Junta at Don Pedro, Buckshot Facelift at Shakers Pub, Through the Discipline at Lucky 13 Saloon, Judas Priest stand-in Tim “Ripper” Owens at Blackthorn 51, and new death metal supergroup John Frum (plus a secret headliner) at Saint Vitus. Finally, on Easter Sunday, make sure to get up to Brooklyn Night Bazaar for an amusingly ironic EYEHATEGOD one-off featuring sets from Ecstatic Vision, Netherlands, and more.
After that ridiculous weekend, metal gets Monday off, but Tuesday returns in fitting fashion with Falls of Rauros/Obsidian Tongue/Luminous Vault at Vitus, who also welcome Mothership and Tower for a vest-metal spectacular the following night. If the world makes it as far as next Thursday, also make sure to check out Avatar/IKILLYA at Saint Vitus, Mary Todd at Don Pedro, and a Testament/Sepultura/Prong three-headed hydra at the Starland Ballroom.
WHAT THE FUCK: Having been graced with a screening of AC/DC’s 1979 rock doc Let There Be Rock earlier this week, and being further convinced of the majesty/tragedy of Bon Scott, I leave you all with this. Given the holiday—which I’m going to prop up as a framing device one final time—it seems only fitting.