It’s another slowish release week, but I’m getting hell out of dodge next weekend and don’t want to leave you hanging for two weeks. Onward into the flames…
WHAT TO HEAR: First up this week is Sounds From the Vortex (Nuclear Blast), the debut full-length from ‘90s melodic death revivalists, The Spirit. Seeing wider re-release today via Nuclear Blast, Sounds From the Vortex is more than just the At The Gates you expect, however, burning through huge black metal tremolo lines, chunky Swedish melodicism, and ominous, horror-inspired hooks at will. It’s not a crazy rollercoaster of reinvention, but it’s damn entertaining, and isn’t that what we’re here for after all?
Meanwhile, if you’re looking for something to push the ol’ boundaries just a bit, then check Ill Omen’s The Grande Usurper (Iron Bonehead). A murky blast of heinous (down)underground black metal from Australia, The Grande Usurper—the twisted spawn of Mitchell “IV” Keepin—writhes like a shadow, the edges of form intermittently distinguishable in the din. Keep your ear tuned for the odd, manic Kerry King solo, but listen to this one not to find something, but instead to lose yourself.
Dwelling in similar dungeons meanwhile are Detroit’s Divine Ecstasy and their new offering of delightful punishment, Strange Passions (Iron Bonehead). Steeped in rollicking first-wave riffage and wearing a love of Motor City punk n’ roll on the sleeve of its grimy mechanic jumpsuit, Strange Passions is a celebration of the taboo rendered through the lens of underground black metal. Grab your leathers and whip, and check it out via bandcamp.
Speaking of melodic Swedish death metal, Unanimated return with their first new music in nine years, Annihilation (Nuclear Blast), before this week’s releases wind down with a pair of killer collaborations. The first is filthy black metal split from Gloam and Obscure Evil (Blood Harvest Records), who are calling it quits after this one, and the second, Sources of Human Satisfaction (Six Week’s Records), a joint LP from PNW grind merchants Transient and legendary noise maestro Bastard Noise. Pick your poison and check them out here and here.
WHAT TO SEE: The shows go on, starting tonight with Latinx Punk Fest headlined by Lupus at Brooklyn Bazaar, The Cuts at Hank’s Saloon, Dead City Crown at Dingbatz, The Cancer Conspiracy at Saint Vitus, and Black Label Society at The Paramount. Saturday is even crazier, featuring Genocide Pact/Funeral Leech at Saint Vitus, Sheer Terror at Mother’s Pugs, Ides at the Meatlocker, Introtyl at Blackthorn 51, Black Label Society/Corrosion of Conformity at the Starland Ballroom, and Bound Alive at The Saint, followed on Sunday by Mudfuck at the Meatlocker, The Mentors at Lucky 13 Saloon, and a back-to-back at Vitus featuring Stimulant at 2pm and Skullshitter/Deathgrave at 8.
Monday brings you Entry and Unified Right at Amityville Music Hall before Tuesday rumbles through with Ghostbound/Prostitution at Vitus and Polish Black metal legends Batushka at Knitting Factory. On Wednesday, Batushka follow that up with an encore performance—this time with help from Imperial Triumphant, AKA the most sonically terrifying band in NYC right now—while Gideon headline Amityville Music Hall and Slaughter do the same at The Space at Westbury Theater. Finally, Thursday wraps up the show section as always with the start of NYDM’s 15 year anniversary bash—featuring Possessed, Leeway, Malignancy, and more—at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center in Poughkeepsie, Multilatred at Lucky 13 Saloon, Mob 47 at C-Squat, and The FUs at The Kingsland.
WHAT THE FUCK: This week on planet Danzig, the titular asshole himself has apparently signed a film deal to adapt his line of erotic comics which I didn’t even know existed into a three-part film anthology. Cinema will never be the same.