Heavy Rotation: Cattle Decapitation’s Travis Ryan


Anti-human death dealers Cattle Decapitation just released new album Terrasite and it’s gonna be in my heavy rotation for a while. Because of that, MetalSucks caught up with Cattle Decapitation vocalist Travis Ryan to see what he’s been spinning lately. There are more than a few surprises on here, so read on and crank it yourself.

Norman Pain – “Sonnet”

Norman Pain popped onto the UK Drill scene thanks to his pals Pete & Bas, two men in their 70s who have decided to take their local rap scene by storm in the sunset years of their lives. The first few songs Norman released were really depressing but really cool and catchy. My favorite music is moody, depressing stuff so it really resonated with me. I can’t imagine living a whole lifetime and then becoming some huge rap star. Seriously, what the fuck is going on.

New Skeletal Faces – Sextinction 7″

I still can’t get over the fact these guys are from a few towns over from me. Really cool metallic twist on death rock. Or the death rock version of metal. It could go either way. Their singer Errol Fritz is a total character and one of a kind. It’s kind of like if you took someone like Watain and forced ‘em to sound like old Christian Death or something, really hard to put my finger on their sound, you just have to experience it for yourself. Especially live, but their recordings are awesome as well.

Ghostemane – “Fed Up”

I snoozed too long on this dude. I thought I was going to hate it but its kinda addicting. I don’t know, I just like the dude’s stuff. I really like his more trap sounding stuff than the “metal” sounding stuff though. Honestly I find myself listening to so much more rap than metal nowadays. While I can tell Ghostemane probably grew up listening to all the kinda shit that I absolutely hate, for some reason I’m not totally turned off by the way it finds its way into his music. If there’s one part that kinda sucks, it quickly transitions into something super sick that made you forget about the part that just sucked. Honestly I have no business reviewing music. Next…

Kwengface – “Plugged In” (w Fumez the Engineer)

What the fuck do I know about UK drill rap? Nothing. Pete, Bas, Norman Pain and this guy… And I only found him through Youtube’s algorithm. Glad it did because I’ve found I really like this guy and his style. This is some of the only shit I’ve been listening to while coming out of the pandemic.

McGruff The Crime Dog – Smart Kids Album

In 1984, this piece of musical genius was released. Absurdly catchy pop tunes made in a vain attempt to keep kids away from drugs. From what I can tell, it was only released on cassette, with a date from my home of San Diego no less, but I got turned onto it from a friend and I quickly became obsessed. Seriously, these songs are really good. I play it all the time on my Twitch stream and it’s become kind of a meme there. I realize including this on my list does me absolutely no favors in the metalsphere. Again, WTF am I doing recommending music to people.

Anguis Dei – Angeist

OK, OK, OK… Here’s something you might actually dig. The band is from Japan and the singer is fucking bonkers. Sorta like Rainer Landfermann and Laurent from OxxO XooX rolled into one. I happened upon this by a recommendation from someone on my FB friends list and I instantly tracked it down and ordered the LP. Oddly enough, it’s kinda like a more modern version of Dimmu Borgir but not as straightforward.

Diamanda Galas – The Divine Punishment (2022 Remaster)

I love that Diamanda Galas has been reissuing some older stuff but remastered under her watchful eye. This woman has never compromised anything and it shows in the reissues. This one is just fuckin terrifying. She knows how to make people’s hair on their neck stand straight up. Haunting layers of vocals and always covers a disturbing subject matter. She can evoke emotions from sadness to straight up barbaric hostility in the blink of an eye. With just a microphone and a few effects. She is our queen and thus we bow in her presence.

Chipmunks Sludgefest

This might have ended up on one of my lists from the last couple years, can’t remember for sure. Anyways, Sludgefest from what I can tell is just a playlist on YouTube made of songs taken from Chipmunks and slowed down to where their vocals become the normal pitch of the person that sang them when the tracks were laid down in the studio. The result is a very psychedelic sound, you feel like you’re swimming or in one of those dreams where you go to fuck someone up but your punches are just slow like molasses. It’s beautiful, haunting and evokes emotion from the listener. I recommend starting with “Heaven Is A Place On Earth.” I would absolutely love to have an LP of this.

Midnight Odyssey – “Echoes of The Thalassic Deep”

Our drummer Dave McGraw turned me onto this guy and we ended up having him work with us on Death Atlas as well as a couple parts on Terrasite. Super lush, grandiose, plateau-y symphonic metal that borderlines black metal and even some funeral doom on some parts but being neither of those genres. This one is heavy with synths that sound more like ‘80s synth than his usual stuff. Can’t get enough of his output.

Mad God Soundtrack

Soundtrack for the stop motion animation film that took creator and composer Phil Tibbet over 30 years to make. I was shocked when I received the LP and realized he also composed the soundtrack. Definitely the most horribly-depressing stop motion ever made. Makes the Tool videos look like Winnie The Pooh cartoons. Deeply disturbing from the second it starts clear to the end. Unrelenting, the sadness and outright depravity in the imagery just does not stop.

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