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Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Mucus and Metal

The rumours are true. I, MADman, have jumped into the infected gang and got myself swine flu. I'm quarantined in my flat, I'm coughing and sneezing up an array of colourful, flavoursome treats and I've got as much energy as an obese paraplegic with a hangover. To give you an idea of how shit I feel, I can't even be bothered to look at Internet porn.

I know.

However, being stuck on the sofa does have it's benefits. I got to listen to the whole of DevilDriver's Pray For Villains completely uninterrupted, plus watch the bonus DVD that came with the special edition. By now I'm sure most of you that are fans will have heard the album but if not, it's by far their most accomplished work to date. The fact that it was written and recorded in four weeks is staggering, with each individual band member bringing something fucking punishing to the party in each song.

There's a real mixture of sounds and vibes on Pray For Villains, from the intensely Southern style of Back With a Vengeance and It's In The Cards to the atmospheric Amon Amarth guitar sounds on Forgiveness is a Six Gun. It's clear the Resurrection BLVD is going to be the main topic of conversation around this album though as it's the closest I can ever see DevilDriver getting to a ballad.

There isn't a single criticism I can make of this album. Those of you who know me know I'm a bit of a 'Driver fan but even so, I'm objective to the last. If this was shit, I'd [reluctantly] say so. A DVD highlight for me is John Boecklin laying down the drum tracks for Fate Stepped In and Teach Me To Whisper as he gets the most phenomenal sound from his double-kick and treats the skins like they truly are his bitch. The whole of the film continues to show just how nice a bunch of blokes DevilDriver are. Hearing this new album though, I can guarantee that when they play this shit live, the pits will be anything but nice.

Speaking of anything but nice, a mate of mine recently recommend I inflict The Axis Of Perdition upon my sensitive ears. This Northern troupe of industrial-black-ambient metallers create a sound somewhere in between Gregorian chant, violent dysentery and an English literature lecture. Their MySpace may only have three songs but these'll take you about half an hour to get through. It's the sort of music you'd have running through your dreams if you went to bed after eating a kilo of strong cheese. It's completely fucked up and well worth a listen. I would strongly recommend not being in a bad mood first though, or you may end up making an armchair out of your mother.

I've managed to get a few more videos from Download '09 up on my YouTube page, so feel free to have a peruse but I shall no doubt be updating Metal Harmony again soon, for I currently have little more to do apart from sit in a pool of my own mucus and watch American chat shows. Entertaining as a woman from Alabama who thinks one of 23 men might be her "baby daddy" is, I think music may be the only thing that stops me from going stir fuckin' crazy.


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