Album Reviews

Unpredictability in general is something that people would prefer to do without in almost all aspects of life. The exception to this is art, where in unpredictability serves to exhilarate and shock the audience for purposes of entertainment. This extends to heavy music as well and these days avant-garde bands are not too rare to stumble upon. Heavy Baby Sea Slugs, from Texas, USA is a band whose experimental take on sludge / punk ensures that the music is rife with the above mentioned unpredictability. Recently, this band released a short four track EP titled ‘Teenage Graveyard Party’ on the occasion of their tour in Asia. The band’s fascination with drone, doom, sludge, noise and punk comes together to create 4 tracks that are diverse, eclectic and weirdly ominous sounding.

Heavy Baby Sea Slugs

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The resurgence of grindcore as a style has been going strong over the past few years. Bands these days continue to push the boundaries of the potential held by grindcore as a genre, often by bringing in avant-garde and unconventional influences into the mix. And then there are bands that continue to stay true to the core essence while still managing to create fresh sounds. Relapse Records has been a good proponent of such grind acts that manage to bring something refreshing to the table with every offering and The Drip is a continuation of that trend. This five piece from the Pacific Northwest of the US, have already been making waves and establishing themselves as a grind force to reckon with by releasing the three EP’s prior to this release. Their first full length ‘The Haunting Fear of Inevitability’ manages to surpass everything they’ve done so far and is set to be a record that is going to put The Drip on many people’s radars.

The Drip

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Oregon based death metal four piece band  Burials have teamed up with California based black / death entity Exhausted prayer to release a split album this January. Despite the bands sharing very little common ground in terms of stylistic choices, both these bands have one common aspect in that they both tend to add a chaotic and progressive spin to their respective styles of choice. This split release which is being handled jointly by  Apes Who Looked Up and Rose Quarter Records is my introduction to both these bands. Once again this leads me to stress upon how splits are valuable in discovering new bands with relative ease.

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Decomposed from Sweden is one of the most engaging bands I discovered by impulsively buying the CD of their 2014 release ‘Devouring’. Decomposed’s brand of meat and potatoes Swedish death metal is instantly alluring and I’ve been waiting for a follow up for quite some time now. Switch to 2016, and the band has now become a one man studio project with Jesper Ekstal handling everything with the help of drummer Emil Leijon. Their latest release, ‘Withering’ showcases how Decomposed has not suffered due to the exit of the other members and the band continues to deliver bludgeoning death metal, which is exactly what I’ve come to expect and love from this band.

Decomposed

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The warlords of heavy metal are back with quite a ferocious package!
With the kings of metal – Manowar, duh – seemingly going on pension (as if that’ll last) as of 2017, who will pick up the mantle as the supreme rulers of the realm? With a slew of brilliant albums behind them, the previous of which being the immortal opus ‘Triumph and Power’ from 2014, Grand Magus surely stand ready and are more than capable!

 

Grand Magus

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