We’ve got an announcement coming very soon. In totally unrelated news that definitely in no way relates to that announcement, here’s another monthly playlist, featuring some more picks from our as yet unannounced new guitarist.
Joe – Vocals
Voices – Footsteps
Emotional closer to the last album Frightened hits hard. Very much looking forward to the new album this year.
Raging Speedhorn – Me and You Man
I love Speedhorn, one of the first bands I saw live. Consistently great fun and down to earth attitude, deserve to be much bigger than they are.
Bloodyard – Mortem
Lancaster old school death metal. Their livestreams have been a shining light during lockdown.
Cannibal Corpse – I Cum Blood
Sometimes you just fancy a classic…
Draconian – Moon Over Sabaoth
I’ve had this stuck in my head for ages now. Gothic majesty, haunting cleans and demonic growls make for a gorgeous bit of dark metal.
Richard – Bass
The Body – A Lament
Even by their own disgusting standards, the new Body album is pretty extreme in terms of pushing their equipment to breaking point in terms of volume and distortion, and it creates a really weird and uncomfortable extra edge to their already nasty sound. This track has a slightly Jesu-ish melodic aspect to it, too.
Hong Kong Express – Humid Summer
As is the case every year, the don of dreampunk/ambient vaporwave himself, Mr HKE/Hong Kong Express/Subaeris/about a billion other projects has released a stupid number of albums in 2021 already, and it’s a hefty task to separate out the stuff I actually want to listen to from his recent left turn into wilfully offputting nonsense. However, the album L.Y.F. is a step right back into his heyday of wonderfully atmospheric, melancholic, urban nostalgia.
Violet Cold – Be Like Magic
I’ve always liked Violet Cold but I’ve never been fully invested, and it’s the latest, strongly pro-equality, LGBTQIA+ focused album Empire of Love (and it’s inevitable pathetic backlash from the darkest and most closed-minded corners of the online metal community) that has prompted me to properly dive into the catalogue. This is my favourite off the new record, partly because it is just a gorgeous blackgaze track and also partly because of the troll-baiting electronic/rap section.
Kessler – Moonlight Branches
Take the euphoric, ambient-laden tech-house vibes of Bicep and turn up the drum’n’bass element and you’re pretty close to the infectiously melodic sound of Kessler. I simply cannot get enough of this new EP for big time vibes.
The Angelic Process – Coma Waering
It’s pretty unlike me for four out of my five tracks to be new releases, so I need to bring it back to the early 2000s here, and an enduring favourite record of mine that I’ve been getting immersed in again this month. Saturated to within an inch of it’s life, The Angelic Process’ sound is so sonically dense and overwhelming that Coma Waering feels more apocalyptic and overpowering than even the most outwardly evil and misanthropic of other metal bands could ever hope to be. If you’ve ever wondered what drowning in lava whilst having a religious experience would feel like, look no further.
Nick – Guitar
Tephra – How The West Was Lost
Oh how I wish this band would reunite, though I suspect the chances of that are close to nil. Still at least I have this, one of my all time favourite sludge records to fall back on.
Sleep Token – Alkaline
A fairly brief taster of what is to come on their upcoming second album, with Vessel’s outrageously strong vocals as ever being the focal point of the track. Would like to see some progression from Sundowning in the next few tracks that drop but this is a nice opening flavour.
Ride – Leave Them All Behind
A gem from the early days of shoegaze before they broke up and one of them joined Oasis. Such a move is forgiven by the grace of how good those first few Ride albums were.
Boss Keloid – Gentle Clovis
Honestly don’t think any sludge band are as instantly recognisable from a single riff as Boss Keloid, barring maybe Mastodon or Baroness, and they have worldwide on their side. Family The Smiling Thrush is yet another intricate garden of vivid, phosphorescent flora with some of the most exquisite musicianship and vocal prowess you’ll hear on any album this year.
Baddiel, Skinner & The Lightning Seeds – Three Lions
I don’t think this one really needs an explanation.
??? – Guitar
Sojourner – Perennial
You’re standing on a hillside. Behind you, a ruined keep crumbles into the earth, swallowed by greenery. Ahead, giants stalk the landscape, a monolithic and mysterious presence. The air smells of wet loam and moss. Suddenly, an ethereal voice pierces the air, uplifted in song – adventure awaits. This song is 100% my shit!
And So I Watch You From Afar – BEAUTIFULUNIVERSEMASTERCHAMPION
I spent much of this month trying to remember the name of this song/band, only remembering that it had a long and ebullient title and I enjoyed it. Once I rediscovered the band, I remembered why it stuck with me – bouncy, instrumental rock with an ear for a good hook and some big, lovely guitar chords.
Hail Spirit Noir – Mannequins
Hail Spirit Noir are one of my favourite bands (their last album Eden in Reverse is fantastic, weird, and unique) – this new track from them goes in much more of a synthwave direction, which isn’t what I was expecting, but it works. Come for the synth beats and floaty vocals, stay for the theremin.
Clutch – Electric Worry (Weathermaker Vault Series)
Clutch have an insanely deep discography and keep putting out album after album of bangers, but this track will always be one of their best. This re-recording captures the magic of the original while freshening up the production for guaranteed good vibes.
Zombi – Mangler
Another instrumental track, this was a Spotify discovery that just slaps – big atmosphere, some groove and a lot of interesting soundscapes to splash around in. Plus the cover has flying manta rays on and they’re one of my favourite aquatic creatures!