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Friday, 17 May 2013

Guess who's back?

After a long day at work, one of my favourite ways to spend an evening is to stand in my kitchen, play darts, and listen to back catalogues of bands that I either love, or should know more about. I think that Spotify may be the best thing that has ever happened to me. Recently though, I've mainly been using this particular media platform to blast two albums.

I'm very conscious of my evangelisation of Bring Me The Horizon this year so I'll be brief; Sempiternal is a splendid album. There are a few lulls throughout but overall, it's ridiculously well produced and phenomenally catchy. It demonstrates how much the band have grown since their abysmal debut, This is What the Edge of Your Seat Was Made For,  in 2004 and already, Sempiternal is well and truly embedded in my top ten of 2013.

Secondly, the mighty Killswitch Engage recently returned with Disarm the Descent, the first album to feature the return of original vocalist Jessie Leach. Metalcore is one of my favourite sub-genres of metal and as bands go, they don't come much bigger than KSE. I can't claim to have been with these boys since the beginning but As Daylight Dies and The End of Heartache are absolute classics.

Disarm the Descent, however, is my favourite Killswitch album to date. I'm chucking that out there after about 10 listens because nothing they've done has ever grabbed me quite so quickly. From opening track The Hell in Me, resplendent with blast beats and Leach's exquisite growls, through lead single In Good Time, there isn't a dud track to be heard. 

There's also a hint of nostalgia about Disarm..., not only because it features the return of Leach but because it harks back to the golden age of metalcore. In the early 2000s, bands such as Atreyu, 36 Crazyfists, As I Lay Dying (before Tim Lambesis started instructing people to kill his ex-wife. Allegedly) were the soundtrack to my life. This massive album from Killswitch, plus new bands that hover on the periphery of the genre like While She Sleeps and relative unknowns We Die Tonight, mean that a once great, then dead genre has been resurrected with gusto. 

I am one happy mother fucker.


Friday, 10 May 2013

Why I hate girls

Obviously I don't hate girls; that would be ridiculous. I have no personal issue with the swathe of messy haired, piano-tinkling lasses who are currently populating the music world but I do have one major issue; stop covering metal songs. Just fucking stop it.

I've lost track of the amount of adverts that underpin the messaging with a soft, breathy version of a rock classic, and the biscuit was well and truly taken a week or so ago when While She Sleeps posted some unknown doing a piano cover of Seven Hills. The girl is clearly talented, no doubt about it, but that's one of my favourite songs from This Is The Six and the gang vocals should be shouted by a group of sweaty misfits, not whispered by a teenage blonde from Kennsington.

My emotive response to this current trend can be blamed on one thing: Jagged Little Pill. Alanis Morissette is single-handedly responsible for cock-blocking thousands, if not millions of teenagers in the 1990s. As I spent most of my teenage years in the arse end of East Anglia weekends were invariably spent at house parties and sleepovers, all of which presented a perfect opportunity for us chaps to drink Special Brew and attempt to indulge in carnal knowledge with our female peers. 

Sadly, every single party or social occasion would always be hampered by one enlightened girl placing Jagged Little Pill in the CD player and subsequently forming a circle with the rest of the girls to sing along to every single song. The crowning moment always came with the immortal line "and now you're thinking of me when you fuck her" in You Outta Know. At that moment, every single one of those girls hated every single one of us lads. Men were bastards, that was that.

So perhaps I don't actually hate the current piano-y movement. Perhaps I actually do hate female singers? And if that's the case, it's completely Alanis Morissette's fault.

That's fucking ironic for you.