Shit That Comes Out Today: July 3, 2020
Tomorrow’s July 4. Remember to social distance and try not to blow off your fingers with fireworks. Here are some new metal releases from mostly non-American bands to help you celebrate ‘Murica. Note: it’s another one of those fee-free Bandcamp days today, so that means there’ll undoubtedly be surprise drops. Feel free to tell us about them in the comments!
The solo debut from Trees of Eternity/Swallow the Sun singer Aleah Stanbridge (aka Starbridge) is also her last — she died of cancer in 2016. Whether it’s the raw, intimate acoustic tracks or the melancholy Gathering-style atmosphere of the fully-produced versions, it strikes right at your heart. The love and care with which her life partner/collaborator Juha Raivio put this collection together shows. This album is honestly one of the most devastating things you’ll listen to all year.
All that deathcore must’ve damaged Axl’s hearing if he isn’t excited for new material from one of the most wildly adventurous acts in all of heavy music. NO could be their most J-hardcore-inspired release yet (although they have a million albums and I haven’t heard all of them). While this thrashing affair may not be as appealing to the fans that came to them on their doom/drone masterpiece Pink, it’s exciting to hear them unleashed like this. They’re a force of nature here. Just say yes.
Cannibal (Music for Nations/Sony)
Bury Tomorrow were always third-tier metalcore back in the day. That hasn’t changed. If you’re looking for heartfelt music from dudes with neck tattoos, then this has all the good cop-bad cop singing and anthemic riffs one could possible want. I dunno, it’s fine but they bring absolutely nothing distinctive to the table. What can I say? It’s a slow release week.
Couvre-sang (Chien Noir)
I’m running out of ways to describe post-metal (my Cult of Luna review was not my best work on here). If you like it, you like it. If you don’t, you don’t. This is a solid example of the form if you do like it. DDENT come from France and do some cool rhythmic stuff to break up the peaks and valleys and crushing atmosphere. It’s name-your-price over at Bandcamp, so it’s worth grabbing if you’re looking for some oppressive heaviness.
Flashback (Church Recordings)
Haunt album number two of approx. a million this year, Flashback is the first release on Trevor Church’s own label. I guess it dropped for streaming a few weeks ago, but today is the official release date, so I’m including it now. It’s a step up from previous full-length Mind Freeze. The keyboards feel more integrated into Haunt’s trad metal thunder, and the songs more urgent. I have no idea how Church maintains this consistent level of quality with such prolific output, but this still rules.
Best of the Blessed (Napalm)
Powerwolf are undoubtedly Germany’s finest (only?) werewolf priest power metal act. Here are 16 of their best songs and a live concert. While they’ve rerecorded a few of the songs, there’s honestly not much difference (more polished production, basically). It’s dumb as hell but also catchy as hell. The song selection is well-chosen, so if you’re gonna own a Powerwolf record, it may as well be this one.