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Friday, 27 November 2009

Punk's not dead

Last weekend really was the shit. Not only did I get to sample some upcoming British metal talent in the shape of Arxis and Snakebite but I also saw Rise Against, one of my favourite acts of all time, giving it plenty in Brixton. That, my friends, is what a weekend is all about.

Following on from witnessing Chicago's finest, I'm in a punk mood right now which essentially means listening to fuck loads of Leatherface, Pennywise and Lagwagon just like the old days. Plus, I'm off to see Madball next week which is going to be more punk that spitting on an ugly bird with a mohawk and tartan skin-tights. And whilst we're on the subject of muthafuckin' hardcore, I've recently encountered Rhinoceros, a straight-edge band from Buffalo. These guys are pure and simple, smash-your-face-in hardcore so go have a listen (link's in the list, of course).

But as with all of my recent posts, I've got to be serious briefly. Legendary metal frontman and pioneer of the "metal horns" Ronnie James Dio has been diagnosed with stomach cancer. They've caught it early doors so things are looking okay but still, spare a thought for the crazy little mentalist.

On the up side, the best news I've heard this week though is that Stone Sour are heading back to the studio in January for a spring release of their third album. Hopefully this means we can expect to see them at Download 2010 as ol' Corey does love the event. I'm going to have to immerse myself in either class A drug smuggling or white slave trafficking to afford a couple of tickets this year. Or sell my pants of eBay. Seemingly people like that shit. I'll just pretend I'm a lesbian teenager and we're all set.

Finally, massive fucking horns up to local metallers Echovirus for getting onto the Hammerfest 2010 bill. I'm a big fan of these guys (check out my post from July 7th, 'Infectious 'Virus') and they're a worthy additional to the line-up. Good work gentlemen.

I now need to get a sausage and egg bap because as usual, I have a fucking huge hangover.



Friday, 20 November 2009

Thrashing loveliness

You know there's thrash metal? You know there are some pioneers of thrash metal? How would you feel if three of the biggest names were touring together? Would it excite you? If so, time to move to the USA to catch the forthcoming tour of Megadeth, Testament and Slayer. There's been rumours of a big four thrash tour including Anthrax and Metallica for some time but in real world terms, this is as good as it's going to get. Rest assured though, this tour is more than likely going to hit these shores in 2010, probably in time for festival season.

And talking of festival season, Download 2010 tickets went on sale yesterday - unfortunately I haven't got the spare £270 for mine and Hot Chick's ticket at present but the discount's running until Christmas Eve, so I'm going out mugging tonight to see what I can do. The best thing about the Download ticket announcement is the headliner speculation kicks off, which generally involves Slayer, AC/DC and Led Zeppelin. At present, I'm going to suggest:

Friday: Rammstein
Saturday: Bon Jovi
Sunday: Green Day

Can't wait for the first complaints when the top billers are announced in January/February. Hopefully this year the moaners will fuck off to Hammerfest, Bloodstock or Hard Rock Hell - the UK's got plenty of metal festivals after all.

On the subject of brutal hardcore metal, one of my all-time favourite bands HIM are providing us with the latest installment of their "love metal" whitterings in February next year, entitled
Screamworks: Love In Theory & Practice. This is supported with a UK tour that as of yet has no London date but before the 16-year-old girls start slicing at their wrists, this will only be down to sorting a venue. And for those of you who hate the soft shit, pyramid-inspired insaniacs Nile are playing in London on December 15th with support from such pop starlets as Krisiun, Grave, Ulcerate and Corpus Mortale. One for all the family.

As an aside, I'm loving the fact that not only did Shithouse text me from his motor whilst doing 110mph to tell me he was listening to DevilDriver yesterday, but I also bumped into a bloke I didn't know who was wearing an I Could Fucking Care Less sleeveless in my home town. 'Driver world domination continues...

I'm off to review the new GWAR album; I really don't think there's enough talk of dead or retarded babies in the world nowadays.


Friday, 13 November 2009

Brutality and goats

Metal is a funny old thing. To the general public, 'metal' is quite simply 'heavy metal'. Only those in the know or sad losers like me have even an inkling of sludge, grind, death, groove, thrash, black, goregrind, mathcore, pornogrind, folk, and so on and so forth. But this week even I was taken aback by goatgrind. I mean, there are some fucked up genres of music in this world but listening to Milking The Goatmachine's Back From The Goats really took things to a new level. They're not wholly serious, as you would imagine but the music is savagely heavy and I can see them developing quite a following amongst the underground mentallists of the metal scene. I reviewed the album for MetalasFuck so go there if you want to find out more.

At the other end of the metallic spectrum I've been given the opportunity to interview culture-transcending troupe the Brutal Ballet Company. Instead of pink tutus and lace, this collective of lasses from Australia perform traditional ballet dressed in PVC with white contacts and corpse paint, and rather than Tchaikovsky they move to the dulcet tones of Dethklok, performed by a live tribute band. Nice. I can't say too much more at this stage but it got me thinking, what other traditional dance styles could take a metal turn? Could the little bells and bits of wood be replaced by animal bones and weighty clubs for Viking Metal Morris Dancing? Could the flowing dresses and tight leather trousers be replaced by lacy basques and spiked chaps for Norwegian Death Salsa? The opportunities are truly endless.

In other news I've been completely overawed by ChthoniC this week, particularly the immensely dark and uncompromisingly heavy 49 Theurgy Chains. The Taiwanese quintet play some of the darkest, heaviest black metal I've heard for fucking ages so any fans of the genre should click on the link in my list and check them out. They combine the nastiness of the Scandinavian sound with the use of traditional Taiwanese instruments, which produces shit hot results. I think the name is meant to be pronounced like 'sonic' but I have no fucking idea. All I know are there are yet another example of insane noisemakers from the Far Eastern part of this lowly planet. Girly trio Gallhammer produce some horrendous heaviness, and Dir En Grey take the insanity of Rammstein and versatility of Slipknot or Nine Inch Nails to produce absolutely epic works. And let's not forget Fat Wreck Chord's finest Hi-Standard - their cover of California Dreamin' is still one of my favourite covers of all time. If you haven't heard it, you have an enormous hole in your life.

Now to create more brutal subgenres of metal. Keep your eyes peeled for banjogrind...


Friday, 6 November 2009

People suck, labels rule

It's generally accepted that as a metaller, punk, goth, whatever, you're going to get looked at. People will make comments, you might get the odd snigger but that's all part of the fun, isn't it? I love getting a reaction from people and I think if you're reading this blog, you probably do too.

What really grinds my gears is arseholes. Not actual arseholes, for they are simply a functional orifice. I mean arseholes who decide it's okay to assault women on her wedding day because she's got pink hair. Last weekend, Lucy Emmingham and her new hubby were leaving their wedding reception, at which point she got pushed down a flight of concrete stairs by three cunts, then beaten and kicked, leaving her in a real state. I've put a link to the article in my list, please have a read. After Sophie Lancaster, you'd hope people would have learned a lesson.

Apologies for the immensely heavy opening to this post but it needed to be said!

And now onto the usual nonsensical babblings...

I've just finished a list of questions for an interview with Australian melodic metallers Voyager which I'll be writing up on MetalasFuck in the not too distant future. I'm keen to find out who they think would win in a fight between them and A-Ha as I'm sure you all are (don't worry, that will make sense once the interview's published). I can't make up my mind about Voyager. Part of me thinks it's decent, crisp metal but the other part of me thinks it's a bit fucking weedy. Not that everything needs 800bpm double kick and vocals that would set off your nan's arthritis but a bit of guts is always good.

I'm a big fan of record labels this week. Roadrunner have kind distributed Awake, a track from Mutiny Within's debut album. It's an awesome mix of blastbeats and metalcore; if the rest of the album turns out this good, happy fucking days. Also, Earache have decided that Gama Bomb's new album should be given away free so if you're a fan of thrashing like a spastic in three minute bursts, click on the link, get some beers in and enjoy.

Until next time...