Genre: Food Metal
Alum, sodium, zinc, etc… I get plenty of metal in my food. Now if I can just manage to get some food in my metal… wait, what? Native Californian and sometimes New Zealander James Perry?! Why are you putting your guitar in the oven? Ohhhhhhh…
Food Metal apparently started off as an exercise in song writing and snowballed into a legitimate project (think Tim Lambesis’s Austrian Death Machine only with no celebrity impersonations and less attempted uxoricide). This self-titled offering is a savory selection of songs that blend hard rock, metal, gastronomy and humor together to make an album that’s not heavy on calories, but heavy where it counts.
Mr. Perry borrows from a multitude of subgenres before butchering them, marinating them in his own distinct style, broiling them and finally serving them up on Food Metal‘s sonic smorgasbord. “Fries” takes bit of a slower paced thrash approach (“For Whom the Bell Tolls”), while “Pass The Beets” finds James in more familiar territory (for me at least) with a slower, more melodic (almost poppy) tune. But, in terms of balls out headbanging, the cake surely goes to “Where the Hell is My Food”. James’s vocals, dirty rollin’ riffs and lines about being pissed off about shitty customer service fit perfectly together here.
My only complaint here is that I felt a bit like Oliver Twist towards the end. “Please Sir, may I have some more?” (Ok, not an apt comparison since James would gladly give an orphan all the metal he/she could handle and I’m a fully grown ragamuffin.) I guess I should ask him if he plans on serving seconds in our forthcoming interview?
Shark Infested Daughters is a local abnormality making waves in their hometown of Calgary, Alberta. They are one of the few local bands who manage to garner as many rabid haters as devoted fans. When expressing dislike for the band, people rarely make mention if it’s the music they dislike, or if they think the members are pricks; the subjectivity of music is ignored, it’s just straight up, fuck that band.
I assume these people haven’t listened to SID since they released Reflections of the Dead (EP) in 2013, which is a unfortunate mess of unrefined vocals, misplaced guitar solos and heavy does of egregious synth abuse. SID has definitely come a long way in 3 years. Their latest release, These Tides, Our Tombs shows a far more mature sound with a multi-dimensional feel where most metalcore tends to fall flat and become monotonous. One of the most appreciated enhancements is less dramatic use of keyboards and the clean vocals taking a far more prominent role, providing a soothing break from the chaotic harsh vocals. Sticking with the typical metalcore format, the riffs are fast and heavy with more aggression and less emotion than previous releases. We are given an album that shows dedication to improvement, complete with creative, progressive riffs, intricate melodies and a cohesion not typically found in the ‘core’ genres.
Keeping in mind that this is metalcore, the album is pretty close to flawless, managing to seamlessly blend perspicacious lyrics on top of a formidable metal sound, compiled together with expert production. This is an album that has the originally to break down genre walls and create a truly diverse and dedicated fan base. A revised sound that maintains the positive elements of past releases that veteran fans know and love, compounded with enough creativity to attract a plethora of new listeners. It’s rare to find such a definitive offering from an unsigned local band, that I’d consider a shining example of everything that can go right with underground original music. If haters are a sign of success, then SID deserves them. If they have improved this much in 3 years, I’m personally very interested in seeing what washes up on shore in the next 3.
Favorite track – Hitokiri
Genre: Death Metal
Chicago natives Imperial Savagery got in touch with me and mailed me a copy of their album for review. I looked at the cover, nodded my head, and opened it up. Into the car’s CD player it went, and very quickly my brain was being battered against the insides of my skull. The band’s name is also the band’s sound; old school, fast, and brutal, and not without a somewhat militaristic feel to it.
It is like listening to an army marching toward the building where you are hiding with all the women and children of the city, and the army is carrying swords and chainsaws. It’s inevitable that they are going to find you, and they are getting closer, and when they uncover your hiding spot, it’s going to get fucking messy.
One of my honestly favourite things about this album is that all the songs are pretty short. The longest song, “Thy Kingdom Crumbling” isn’t even four minutes long. The average length is pretty much 2:30, 2:45 range. This disc is ten songs, but not even a half hour. It’s like listening to a death metal band write punk songs. No frills, just kills. In itself, this is slightly strange because their bassist used to be in technical death metal royals Gigan, as well as currently in Sons of Famine with the drummer. Looking deeper into the pedigree of Imperial Savagery results in a mess of unrelenting death metal heritage. From brutal death, slamming death, blackened death, and technical death, these guys bring some serious fucking history to this band.
Fans of Gravehill, Crepitus, Deicide, underground hardcore punk, and violent mosh pits, get it here. This shit is so good.