Posts Tagged ‘Hardcore’

R-814640-1361923046-6458.jpegWhen I think of Crossover Thrash which is the combination of Thrash Metal and Hardcore mixed into one, the Stormtroopers Of Death (often stylized as S.O.D.) immediately comes to mind. They were a bad ass band that contained two members of Anthrax in Scott Ian (Guitar) and Charlie Benante (Drums) and mixed it with a former member of Anthrax in Dan Lilker (Bass), and then you throw in Billy Milano (Vocals) and you have S.O.D. which formed in 1985. After Anthrax had finished recording Spreading The Disease, Scott realized that they still had plenty of studio time left so they used the one week to record their first album Speak English or Die which was officially released on August 30, 1985. The album was very influential on the scene and I guarantee that most people don’t know that three of the songs were used for MTV’s Headbangers Ball for a little while. Al Jourgensen of Ministry has claimed that this album was the reason he had thrash guitars into his music and saying that it was, “one of the best records ever.” Revolver Magazine included the album in their 14 Thrash Albums You Need to Own list and it has been re-released twice by Megaforce Records and it has sold one million records worldwide.

71oEROBDjsL._SL1050_1. March Of The S.O.D.- a bad ass opening track with a monstrous hammering opening riff and it’s the perfect instrumental intro to the next track 5/5

2. Sargent D and the S.O.D.-a bass heavy track that kicks your ass as soon as it launches in this track about Sargent D who is not a guy to mess with cause he’ll kick your ass. 5/5

3. Kill Yourself– One thing to remember is not to take the lyrics too seriously, but the track is them telling someone they hate to kill themselves. The lyrics are very literal. 4.5/5

4. Milano Mosh-Another personal favorite of mine on the record and it’s Billy’s song challenging anyone in the moshpits. 5/5

5. Speak English Or Die– Imagine if this song was played today, the backlash these guys would receive would be insane. What do you think the lyrics are about? 5/5

6. United Forces– a cool track that is an anthem of sorts for Crossover Thrash where they are trying to unite both sides to create one bad ass side. 5/5

7. Chromatic Death– this might as well be an instrumental because the music is in your face, lightning fast, and they just say Chromatic Death twice. 4.5/5

8. Pi Alpha Nu– All about partying with a fraternity and the craziness that is involved. 4/5

9. Anti-Procrastination Song– a six second song where he screams out the title of the song followed by a quick riff. 4/5

10. What’s That Noise?-a funny track where they are playing a riff and it sounds like Billy is getting pissed over some noise that he keeps hearing on his headphones. 4/5

11. Freddy Krueger– a track about you know who considering the film was released a year earlier and it describes some of the scenes in the film. 5/5

003f154312. Milk– a cool bass riff by Lilker opens the song in where the narrator is very pissed off because he has no milk to pour into his cereal. 5/5

13. Pre-Menstrual Princess Blues– a track that is sure to piss off any feminist out there about a woman who doesn’t have her maxi pads and complains about how easy men have it. I love the bass heavy riff to this one, reminds me of the opening track. 5/5

14. Pussy Whipped-a great opening riff before the band goes 100 MPH about guys who are too afraid to say no to their loved ones. 4.5/5

15. Fist Banging Mania– This one’s an anthem for the fans that show up to every show and are right in the front row ready to get crazy with the band. 5/5

16. No Turning Back– every album is not complete with the post-apolcayptic track of the 80’s on it and here is S.O.D.’s right here. 4/5

17. Fuck The Middle East– Like I said, do not take their lyrics too seriously because with this one, it may seem like they are racist with their erase the middle east message in this one. 4.5/5

18. Douche Crew– a song where Billy is calling out all the posers who think they can do what S.O.D. does. 4/5

19. Hey Gordy– a six second track of someone saying Hey Gordy give me a shot. 4/5

20. Ballad Of Jimi Hendrix– five seconds of a Jimi Hendrix styled song with it saying he’s dead at the end. 4/5

21. Diamonds And Rust (Extended Version)– a two second track of them saying Diamonds And Rust. 4/5

My Final Thoughts– An unbelievable album that helped jump start a sub-genre of Thrash Metal that would influence other great bands like Municipal Waste, etc. March Of The S.O.D., Sargent D And The S.O.D., and Freddy Krueger are still my favorite tracks. My least favorites are the last three tracks. I am going to give the album 4.5, stars out of five for a final grade.

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sam black churchThere is something to be said about the Boston area especially when it came to the famous hardcore scene of the late 80’s/early 90’s. The scene featured legendary bands like Gang Green, Slapshot, DYS, Blood For Blood, and today’s featured artist Sam Black Church who were named after the West Virginia town. They were a band that was known for throwing some insane performances back in the day that left a lasting impression. That is why when I went to my local Savers (thrift store) and spotted one of the band’s albums on the shelf I had to snag it. The album that I bought that is also this week’s album of the week is the band’s EP Superchrist which was released om August 22, 1995 via Taang! Records. The band was made up of Jet (Vocals), Ben Crandall (Guitars), J.R. Roach (Drums), and Richard G. Lewis (Bass) while the EP was produced by Rich Costey. The EP featured four brand new tracks plus a cover and a live track which was presumably to hold fans over until the release of their next album.

superchrist back1.Superchrist– The title track is the opening track on the EP and it opens up thunderous right out of the gates with the bands brand of metal infused hardcore. I’m not sure if Jet is being literal with the lyrics or if it’s a metaphor for the music business and the people who can get things done. 5/5

2. Ninth Gate– The track is a showcase of the band’s more hardcore side with the insane vocal delivery from Jet. The lyrics definitely make you think as he is talking about abusers facing the hell they deserve, but at what cost for the accuser. 4.5/5

3. Come To Me My Lovely– It’s a love letter to the city of New York and to the horrors of drug use. The track is fast and hard and done by the best of Boston. 4/5

IMG_20180726_0001_NEW.jpg4. Swing– an interesting track that is all about guys who will do anything for fame and fortune and how they forget where they come from in this fast paced hardcore track. 4/5

5. Sheer Heart Attack– This is the hardcore version of the Queen classic and while it might not be my favorite cover in the world, I still give the band props for making it their own. 4/5

6. Re-Alive/The Right Fuel (Live)– The last track on the album is a special treat for Sam Black Church fans as they perform two tracks for fans. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– These guys were legendary on the Boston scene and it was just fun to reminisce with this EP. The EP showcases what the band can do from a pure metal stand point all the way to the hardcore side of them. My favorite track is Superchrist while my least favorite on the EP is probably Sheer Heart Attack. I am giving the EP 4.4 stars out of five for a final grade.

 

Whitechapel_-_Mark_of_the_BladeI was searching around my record collection trying to figure out what album was going to be next on my Album Of The Week review post. Thanks to a little help from Spotify and I remembered my love for Deathcore and one band in particular. Over the course of 200 albums plus, I have enjoyed covering Tennessee Deathcore act Whitechapel and their albums A New Era Of Corruption and Our Endless War. That is why I have decided that for today I was going to cover the band’s latest effort in 2016’s Mark Of The Blade which also happens to be the bands sixth studio album released on June 24TH via Metal Blade Records. The album once again featured Phil Bozeman (Vocals), Gabe Crisp (Bass),  Ben Harclerode (Drums) in his last effort with the band, Zach Householder (Guitars), Ben Savage (Guitars), and Alex Wade (Guitars). The album once again features Ben Eller laying down some solos while Whitechapel and Mark Lewis served as producers for the record. The album did pretty decent for the band as critics generally seemed to like the band’s latest effort and it charted at number 72 on the Billboard Top 200 charts. It’s the band’s second lowest chart positioning just in front of This Is Exile which charted at 118.

WHITECHAPEL---MARK-OF-THE-BLADE-2016-EU-Milky-Clear-LP-21.The Void– A monstrous metal track that opens up like a blitzkrieg that just assaults your senses into submission. I feel like he is talking to people that feel depressed or out of place and he is giving them a way out of the BS of life. This is the first track to feature a guitar solo from Ben Eller. 4.5/5

2. Mark Of The Blade– The track opens up with a nu-metal/groove styled metal feel to it especially with the guitars while Bozeman just brings the fury proving that a couple of songs with clean vocals doesn’t mean they went soft. 5/5

3. Elitist Ones– This is one of my favorite tracks on the album that sees the band transition to a more groove metal sound, but Crisp’s bass playing is the highlight for me on this track. Wade talked about the change saying, “At this point in our career and as we grow older, we are taking a more open-minded approach to creating our music, allowing what we think sounds good to evolve naturally, rather than to just write what is expected of us.” 5/5

4. Bring Me Home– This is a track that everyone int he metal world was up in arms about because it’s the very first Whitechapel track to ever feature clean vocals from Phil Bozeman. It starts off very differently with a cool melodic beginning with a cool bass line and to be honest it sounds like something that Slipknot would have written. The second track to feature an Eller guitar solo. 4.5/5

5. Tremors– This track has more of Our Endless War sound with the big bass riffs that drive the song forward in what I call a Deathcore/Nu-Metal collab. The track talks about those people that just leach off of everybody and everything is about them until their world collapses. 4.5/5

6. A Killing Industry-This is a cool track because it’s also a statement to all the haters that tell Whitechapel what they can or can’t do. This is the band’s F**k You song to all those people and industry heads. 4.5/5

5721b1d4070ef7. Tormented- A very dark and eerie track when it first starts, but then the big sledgehammer bass riffs take over with that groove. The track could be about a serial killer who feels he was driven to that point by a person he trusted or it’s a song about how someone feels the other has been fake for too long. Either way, it’s a cool track and this is the third to feature an Eller solo. 4.5/5

8. Brotherhood– A very cool instrumental track that is actually worth checking out from the band as it’s melodic as well as heavy. It’s the best of both worlds. 5/5

9. Dwell in The Shadows– I feel like this is a track dedicated to all of the band’s crazy fans because there are instances where he mentions that he helps them lyrically and don’t ever change because we are on of the same and that they made him who he is today. This is the fourth track to feature an Eller guitar solo. 4.5/5

10. Venomous– I love this track because it starts off very thrash metal like before it launches into hyperdrive. I feel like this is a track about trusting someone that maybe you shouldn’t because you know they are bad, but you feel stuck. This is th elast track to feature an Eller solo. 4.5/5

11. Decennium– This is the last track on the album and the other track to feature clean vocals from Bozeman. This is another track I believe is dedicated to the fans and anyone that has stuck with Whitechapel for the last ten years since decennium means decade. I love that this track is a balance of the screaming vocals with the clean singing. 4.5/5

My Final Thoughts– I absolutely love this record and I am an honest believer that a band should be able to grow as they grow musically. You can’t keep writing the same record over and over again, it just doesn’t work cause you would hate it if they did. My favorite tracks on the album are Brotherhood, Elitist Ones, and Mark Of The Blade. I don’t have a least favorite track on the album cause I liked them all. I am going to give the album 4.6 stars out of five for a final grade.

who is that guyIt has been quite some time since since I had watched or even reviewed a Rock Doc so I figured there was no better time than now to start. Normally when I am trying to decide what documentary to watch, I usually do not pick one unless I know the subject matter. That was definitely not the case with today’s choice for Rock Docs entitled Who The Fuck Is That Guy’? The Fabulous Journey Of Michael Alago. To put it in simple terms, the reason I chose to watch this documentary was for the simple fact that it had the word Metallica in the description. The documentary follows the life of a gay Puerto Rican New Yorker who would end up being one of the most important people in the metal industry simply for the fact that he signed Metallica. Watch the documentary as you get testimony straight from the source himself Michael Alago as well as James Hetfield, Kirk Hammett, Lars Ulrich, Kurdt Vanderhoof, Cyndi Lauper, Mina Caputo, Cherry Vanilla, Cheetah Chrome, Rob Zombie, John Lydon, Eric Bogosian, Mike Gitter, Phil Caivano, Phil Anselmo, Sean Yseult, John Joseph, Joe Sib, Doyle Wolfgang von Frankenstein, and so many more in this amazing doc.

who is that guy 2You may still be wondering just who in the hell Michael Alago is, but he truly is such an important figure for heavy metal because he signed so many acts from Metallica, Metal Church, White Zombie, and so many more. You find out that he was a guy that truly loved music back in the 70’s and 80’s as he describes the night life in New York City and all the legendary clubs that hosted shows back in the day from the L’amour, The Ritz, CBGBs, and so many more. You figure out that all of the names I mentioned above have a huge amount of respect for Michael Alago. He’s a guy who broke down a lot of barriers in the business being a gay man tackling an over-testosteroned genre and he made people understand that it was all about the music. The documentary features interviews, some animation for certain stories he or someone else tells, and a lot of great photos that Michael has had in his collection. You also learn about the HIV/AIDS epidemic of the 80’s firsthand from someone who survived it in Michael Alago. Check it out on Netflix right now as we speak and I am going to give it an A- for a final grade.

2017-headerFirst I want to start off by thanking everyone who took the time to vote in the tournament because after all, none of this is possible without your help. The first round of the 2017 Pedal To The Metal Tournament started off with a bang and some upsets along the way. The first division we are looking at is the Dio/Lemmy division which featured some cool match ups and was the late bloomer of the tournament meaning all of a sudden at the last minute, it blew up in votes. The first match up between Queensryche and Ghost seemed like a match that was pretty cut and dry with Ghost winning the match most of the time. Then all of a sudden out of nowhere, Queensryche fans show up and get the band the win by 11 votes. The match was between tournament first timers U.D.O. taking on tournament favorites Primal Fear and while Primal Fear always does it best to promote the tournament, unfortunately they never stood a chance against the legend as he won the match by 28 votes. The third match was much like the first match, it looked like for a while that maybe Saxon was going to pull off the win, but the former two time champions fans showed up when it counted and gave Judas Priest a come from behind win. Accept is one of those bands that you cannot take lightly because they have slayed some giants in their day and they did that in the first round beating last year’s runner up Iron Maiden by 44 votes.

megadeth-2016The trash metal division a.k.a. The Jeff Hanneman division is a very tricky one because you never know what direction fans will head in when the tournament starts. They have done that since day one with them voting the giants out of the tournament (Metallica is a constant victim of that). This year’s first round was a little different than usual with fans going in the direction you thought they would. Megadeth owned their first round match up against newcomers Sepultura winning by 12 votes. Slayer had similar luck as Megadeth beating Death Angel by ten votes setting up a mega match in the next round. The Exodus/Suicidal Tendencies match was a true toss up and that is what I loved about it. You couldn’t really choose a clear winner between the two, but you were fine with what ever result. It was a great match up as well as the voting went back and forth with several lead changes, but in the end Exodus gets to live another day. The last match up features the unlucky Metallica who I believe for the second or third time has now been ousted from the tournament in the first round and Testament did it in convincing fashion beating them by ten votes.

destruction-bandOne of my favorite divisions in the whole tournament is the Chuck Schuldiner division because of the fan participation that the division gets is second to none. Ever since I introduced it, it has been magic from the start and it’s produced our last two winners. Not much has changed as Destruction easily handled Entombed A.D. by a whopping 55 votes. The next match featured tournament newcomers Amon Amarth and Witchery as both were looking to make an impact. Unfortunately for one of them, only one can move on and Amon Amarth easily handled their opponent. The next match featured 2015 winner Kreator taking on newcomers Vader and for a while, it looked as if Vader was going to pull off the upset, but never count out Kreator and it’s fans as they brought the band back to a huge win. Death Metal legends Cannibal Corpse entered the tournament last year, made an impact from the start, and they are continuing it this year with a huge come from behind win against Blackened Death Metal legends Behemoth. That was a great match up that kept me on the edge of my seat.

233280The last division that we are going to talk about here is the brand new Metal To The Core division featuring Metalcore, Deathcore, Hardcore, and New Wave Of American Metal bands. This division is an absolute toss up because you don’t know what direction fans are going to be heading in. The first match up featured metalcore acts All That Remains and Upon A Burning Body go head to head. It was a match was heading in different directions as it looked like UABB was going to win, but in the end, All That Remains pulled it together and won. The next match featured New Wave Of American Metal flag bearers Lamb Of God take on Deathcore act Whitechapel in an epic match that was going back and forth. Like I said before, only one can move on and in the end Lamb Of God proved to be the mightier of the two. Trivium pulled off the win against Parkway Drive who led the match for most of the weekend and Killswitch Engage was able to hold off Suicide Silence. Check out the bracket below and get ready for the sweet sixteen.

2017 Bracket sweet sixteen

We are back on the tour bus and we are leaving Delaware and we are heading to the Empire State of the South in Georgia for this week’s Unsigned Band Of The Week. The band we are checking out today comes to us from the ATL and they have one of the coolest names I have seen for a band in As Animals Eat My Insides. The band explains their name on their Facebook page saying, “The meaning behind our name: We live in a world which represents the “animals” who try and consume us with violence, greed, despair, and power. Stay strong and never give into a world that will try to change who you are.” The track from the band that we are checking out today is the song Daydreamer which comes from the band’s previous disc Devoured. The music is intense and in your face as the band approaches with a very intense style of metal and hardcore that is guaranteed to start a pit in a heartbeat. I love Jeremy Bond’s vocals in this track and how he goes from screaming to a deep guttural growl to singing all in the same track. This is definitely a band to check out and to let all of you know that band is gearing up to release a new disc entitled Ellipsis. So to find out more info about the actual release date and other info like touring, visit their Facebook page here. Check out Daydreamer below:

suicidesilence2017One of the most controversial subjects in all of metal or deathcore is the brand new album that is going to be released by deathcore giants Suicide Silence. The self titled album comes out this Friday (February 24TH) via Nuclear Blast and it’s garnered a lot of flack because of it’s change in sound and style. I for one am all about artists reaching out to find their creative sides because that is what is all about. Being in a band is all about evolving and according to the band they are just exploring the many influences of deathcore. Nonetheless, earlier in the year, the band released a music video for the first track off the record called Doris and this is definitely a finalist for Metal Music Video Of The Year. The band released a 360 degree video which means that you can mess with what you see from various images of the band performing live to recording in the studio and more. It’s definitely a cool way to get fans introduced to the record and what they have in store for all of you. Check out the video below and mess with the angles a little.