Bad Mood Tunes: Churchburn, Barghest, Thou Art Lord, and Order From Chaos
So I’ve had a really shitty week, and chances are, a pretty high percentage of you have, too. Its not a particularly inauspicious month or anything, April ranks fairly high on the tolerability index (fuck you, January), but Murphy’s Law reigns supreme, and whenever one person’s jumping for joy, it’s likely that at least seven others are cursing the day their mom chose not to swallow. Whether you’ve lost your job, your fuckbuddy’s awkwardly caught feelings, or your stupid little sister’s run off to California to live in a trailer with her slack-jawed boyfriend, you’re going to need a pick-me-up to make it through with sanity intact. There are plenty of options, and the best part is that not all of them will give you a hangover. You could call up your best friend for a nice chat, take a bubble bath with those weird salt crystals your aunt gave you for Christmas, eat a metric shit-ton of Taco Bell… or you could curl up with a flask of cheap whiskey and a bunch of horrible music. I recommend the fourth option (unless your aunt shops at Lush, in which case – scrub-a-dub, dude). Here’s some of what’s been howling out of my stereo lately if your “horrible music” supplies are getting low.
I’m really surprised more people aren’t freaking out about these guys, given their Rhode Island “supergroup” status and how hard people used to ride Vital Remains’ collective dicks back when they were in their prime, but Churchburn have been flying under the radar since they kicked off in 2011. Longtime Vital Remains guitarist Dave Suzuki (who left the band in 2009) got together with Ray McCaffrey (Sin of Angels, Grief), found a bassist, kicked him out, then got in touch with Haxen’s Mike Cardoso to finally get their asses in the studio. The final result is flawless. Churchburn’s first recording is a self-titled, self-released EP that nods to each member’s background with shades of death, black, and doom, with plenty of sludgy grit, tormented vocals, and some seriously excellent melodic guitar work (see “Come Forth the Swarm” for some Sound of Perseverance nostalgia). It’s remarkably well-rounded and produced for a first EP, and you can tell that we’re dealing with veteran musicians; there’s no fat to be trimmed or highfalutin frills to look past, and absolutely zero fucking around. I cannot recommend this highly enough to fans of Coffinworm, Grief, Dysopia, and Unearthly Trance.
When I’m in a bad mood, listening to Morbid Angel is about a comforting as inhaling a mountain of Ben & Jerry’s in front of a Simpsons rerun (that is to say, very). Finding out that one of my favorite newer bands has chosen to tackle “He Who Sleeps,” and done a bang-up job of it, was like sprinkling some rainbow jimmies on top. I clearly need to go mainline some sugar or something, but in the meantime, feast your ears upon this gem of a cover. Barghest abandon their usual ice-cold black metal in favor of depraved, lo-fi, knuckle-dragging, sweaty Florida death metal, and the climate change suits them. They’ve also got two new demo tracks from their upcoming album posted, and a track from last year’s split with False.
THOU ART LORD
These long-running Greek black/thrashers are getting the Nuclear War Now! Treatment for the release of their fifth studio album, The Regal Pulse of Lucifer. It’s due out at the end of June, but they’ve got a couple tracks streaming on Bandcamp. They’re not the most brutal or overbearing extreme metal band; if anything, they’re pretty damn listenable, with vast echoes of vintage Rotting Christ and a firm grasp on the fine art of simplicity. They’ve got a nice, punchy tempo to play with, are atmospheric without wimping out, and went with a production job that stays lo-fi without tripping facedown into the mud. I really dig what I’ve heard, and you guys will probably like this too – it’s way more headbangable than most of what Yosuke releases.
ORDER FROM CHAOS
So what’s been pissing you off this week?