I want to start this week by saing thanks to everyone—especially Slaves BC, Blackest, Thera Roya, and Pants Exploder—who came out to This One Goes To Eleven’s showcase at The Acheron on Friday night. Hopefully I’ll doing more of that moving forward, so stay tuned and remember to support your local bands. Now, on to what you came for…
WHAT TO HEAR: We’re going straight for the jugular this week, with Apology (Relapse), the fittingly temperamental swan song from Chicago powerviolence greats, Weekend Nachos. This is it. After this, these guys are done, and if one listen to Apology didn’t already make this clear, they are going out with a fucking bang. Bursting at the stitches with crusty hardcore riffs and the occasional hyper speed d-beat spazz-out, Apology stands as the band’s rawest—and most ideologically realized—offering to date, bidding adieu in the only way these guys know how: By spitting beer in your face while flipping you off. If that sounds like your idea of good time, make sure to check it out via Noisey.
Next up is definitively my favorite release of the week (and possibly one of the best of the year thus far): The self-titled debut from Icelandic black metal outfit Toska (Eihwaz). If you’re a second-waver who prefers their black metal cryogenically frozen, then this one will certainly appeal, but there’s also more going on here than immediately meet the eye. Proggy keyboard melodies, massive thrash breakdowns, and molten metal solos are peppered in liberally throughout while harsh noise-style rasps and sky-gazing interludes create a fascinating dynamic juxtaposition. Orthodox it is not, but get over to Invisible Oranges and turn this one up all the same.
Also on the black metal spectrum this week are Finnish cellar dwellers Teloch and their rollicking new full length, Thus Darkness Spake (Saturnal Records). Historically, Finland’s black metal scene has produced some the genre’s most challenging, experimental, and underground music, but Teloch have taken a different path, eschewing the boundary-prodding for a revved-up, four-on-the-floor breed of black n’ roll boogie that’s as fun as it is punishing. Best enjoyed with cheap whiskey and shitty speakers, Thus Darkness Spake is a perfect Friday nighter that your local dive bar probably still wouldn’t play, so go get CVLT and enjoy yourself at the same time. What a novel fucking concept, hub?
After that, chill out with The Fall of Hearts (Peaceville), the latest offering from Swedish melo-metallers, Katatonia, who, after two-and-a-half decades, continue to crank out solid records with impressive consistency. That one pairs nicely Mars Red Sky‘s Apex III (Praise for the Burning Soul) (Listenable), a hefty helping of psych-doom from Bordeaux that is sure to impress when the band makes a rare fly-in to Vitus later this summer.
Your descent back down into the throes of insanity doesn’t have to wait long, however, with Howls of Ebb—just about the weirdest, wildest death metal band going at the moment—also set to drop their much-anticipated new full length, Cursus Impasse: The Pendlomic Vows (Nuclear War Now!). This one is going to take more time than I’m able to expend this week to dig into, but for now I’ll recommend it as the most batshit crazy thing on offer here. Meanwhile, in Pittsburgh a thriving hardcore scene spearheaded by bands like Code Orange and Slaves BC is also stirring, bringing killer pit-ready bruisers, like Eternal Sleep‘s The Emptiness Of… (Closed Casket Activities), with it. Invisible Oranges has the full stream of that sucker, so tear off those sleeves and check it out.
Death metal completists meanwhile should heap their affections (and cash) upon the final installment of Relapse’s fantastic Death reissue series, a massive three-disc reprise of the band’s debut slashterpiece, Scream Bloody Gore, featuring the original re-mastered recording, plus two full discs of b-sides and rarities. Complementing that one nicely is Dimensions of Horror (Relapse), the new jumbo EP from pseudo-Schuldiner-tribute-act, Gruesome. Roll your eyes at the whole thrift store death metal thing until the astigmatism sets in, but when it’s this much fun (via Noisey), who the fuck cares?
WHAT TO SEE: Summer show season is just about in full swing, as evidenced by the stacked weekend lineup, starting tonight with Apocalyptica at Irving Plaza and Weekend Nachos’ last-ever NYC appearance, which goes down at Vitus with support from The Afternoon Gentlemen, Gets Worse, and Mother Brain. Saturday continues in equally all-over-the-board fashion. With Cryfemal and Abazagorath at Lucky 13 Saloon, Dehumanized and Torturous Inception at Hartley’s, Mitochondrion and Auroch at Vitus, Anasazi and Sadist at Don Pedro, DS-13 and Hellshock at The Acheron, and Black Paradise and Hammer Fight at Blackthorn 51 and Black Bear Bar, respectively. If that’s not enough for you, you’re a fucking crazy person.
Sunday keeps the proverbial foot to the beer can-strewn floor with shows like Infernal Revulsion at Lucky 13 and Ill Nino at Starland Ballroom before the workin’ week sneaks up on Monday with an insane bill featuring Weedeater, Author & Punisher, Today is the Day, and Barishi at Vitus. Tuesday brings one of the best live bands in the biz right now—Full of Hell—to The Meatlocker for a wild one with Organ Dealer and Die Choking (say goodbye to your fucking face, Jersey), as well as Claudio Simonetti’s Goblin in the Marlin Room, should you want something a little mellower.
On Wednesday, Rotten Sound, Deathcycle, and White Widows Pact hit The Acheron for what is sure to be a good one, while Murder Junkies and Spewing Cum hit The Grand Victory for a battle of the bad band names, Killcode roll into Webster Hall, and Lacuna Coil headline an intimate one at Saint Vitus. If you have room for more after that gluttonous feast, then Thursday provides a proper digestif with Nocturnal Graves and Hellbringer at The Acheron, Despise You at Saint Vitus, and Here Comes the Kraken at Blackthorn 51. Pick your preferred blood chalice and enjoy.
WHAT THE FUCK: Truly bummed to hear about the passing of former Bell Witch drummer and vocalist, Adrian Guerra, this week. Bell Witch have always made apt mourning music, however, so turn it up and pay your respects to one of modern doom’s most influential individuals.