Hello Avocadians, welcome to another installment of Heavy Side Up!
Morag Tong – Last Knell of Om
London’s Morag Tong have followed up their solid 2016 EP with a full-length album, and it’s some of the finest sludgey doom metal you’ll hear all year. The band takes inspiration from legendary bands like Sleep and Melvins while possessing a sound that’s very much their own, with each song providing its own memorable journey. Sometimes proggy, sometimes psychedelic, and other times downright apocalyptic, I imagine this band’s going to find themselves on many people’s radars soon.
Alkaloid – Liquid Anatomy
Alkaloid made a huge splash in the extreme metal scene with their stunning 2015 debut, and the follow-up proves that album’s high quality wasn’t just a fluke. Alkaloid are that rare technical death metal band who can rain down brutality on their listener like no other without being afraid to experiment – and experiment they do, as their sophomore release sees them exploring a multitude of musical styles and sounds. This band is one of a kind, and while they’re undoubtedly an acquired taste, I have a feeling that Liquid Anatomy is going to be topping many “best metal albums” lists at the end of the year.
The Afterimage – Eve
Ontario’s The Afterimage have been carving out a name for themselves in the progressive metalcore scene for several years now. Though they’re undeniably part of the increasing subset of bands working in pop/soul elements amongst the heaviness, The Afterimage manage to do something a little different with their sound, delivering technically complex and crushing riffs with equally as much fervor as their more melodic and accessible components. Their second full-length album sees them refining their sound even further, to great success.
Antisoph – Antisoph
Also releasing a sophomore album this week is Germany’s Antisoph, an avant-garde metal band whose sound largely defies description. This talented trio’s music lands somewhere between progressive rock and black metal, with traces of sludge/post-metal and some more experimental components. They’re a band that sounds completely unlike their contemporaries, and this self-titled album is enthralling from start to finish.
This Boston-based quartet put out their debut album this week, and it’s a wonderfully ferocious collection of songs that harken back to late 90s/early 00s era screamo and post-hardcore. Reveries don’t reinvent the wheel by any means, but they’re a band who clearly love the style of music they play, and their passion shines through each track, resulting in an engrossing and energetic collection of songs that’s absolutely worth your time.
There’s little I could say about At the Gates that hasn’t already been said. After all, the Swedish outfit largely helped pioneer the melodic death metal genre, in addition to putting out one of the most acclaimed metal albums of all time. Following an unfortunately unremarkable comeback album, To Drink From the Night Itself sees the band returning to their roots and once again reclaiming their throne.
Artists who released new albums this week:
Greek black metal band Acherontas, British doom metal band Age of Taurus, hard rock band The Almas, post-hardcore band Ambers Wake, Finnish heavy metal band Amorphis, Spanish heavy/power metal band Ankhara, technical death metal band Apocrophex, Irish alternative rock/punk band Ash, Spanish heavy/power metal band Black Seal, southern metal band Blessed Hellride, Finnish melodic death metal band Callidice, German death metal band Chordotomy, heavy metal band Corners of Sanctuary, melodic death metal band Crawling Manifest, Chilean black/death metal band Die Kunst Der Finsternis, Canadian death metal band Display of Decay, British heavy metal band Elysian Divide, Italian folk metal band Ephyra, heavy metal band Five Finger Death Punch, German melodic death metal band Fragments of Unbecoming, heavy metal band Freedumb, progressive metal band Grayceon, German hard rock band Hartmann, hardcore band Harvester, Mexican progressive metal band I-Artifact, Belgian experimental metal band Ihloosuhree, progressive/technical death metal band Kairos., Indonesian avant-garde metal band Kekal, Italian progressive death metal band Kenos, French hardcore band Khasm, Canadian death metal/deathcore band Killborn, Canadian death metal band Kokophrolic, Swedish metalcore band Leach, heavy metal band Lillye, Russian symphonic gothic metal band Little Dead Bertha, Swedish heavy metal band Lost Domain, progressive metal artist Michael G. Woodley, Spanish progressive metal band Miniatures, Australian hard rock band Moonshifter, Indian doom metal artist Moosa Saleem, Finnish thrash metal band National Napalm Syndicate, Australian black/thrash metal band Nocturnal Graves, Slovakian grindcore band Obliterate, deathcore band The Order of Elijah, power metal video game music cover band Powerglove, Serbian technical thrash metal band Quasarborn, Danish heavy metal band Ripe, Norwegian groove metal band Sandberg, Argentinian progressive metal artist Seba Cei, Russian black metal band Second to Sun, Swedish hard rock band The Senior Management, thrash metal/hardcore band Sift Through the Ashes, sludge metal band Something With Teeth, Swedish pyschedelic doom metal band Spiral Skies, British heavy metal band Symbol of Orion, doom metal band Thunder Horse, Belgian hard rock band Tim’s Favourite, blackened death metal band TIMORATUS, hard rock band Vogan Toll, French grindcore band Warfuck, Canadian atmospheric black metal band Wilt, grindcore band Wørsen, progressive thrash metal band Wrecklamation, symphonic death metal band Xael, Canadian progressive metal artist Zero11248
Artists who released new EPs this week:
Norwegian black metal band A.H.P., Canadian black/death metal band Attrition, Russian deathcore band Behold the Void, Australian metalcore band Bury the Kings, hardcore band Condone, Welsh alternative/post-hardcore band Dream State, deathcore band Everchanger, British melodic hardcore band I, the Mapmaker, Australian post-hardcore band In Deception, alternative metal/post-hardcore band Kevlar, Italian progressive metal band MirrorMaze, Finish deathgrind band Rotten Sound, Brazillian thrash metal band Suffocation of Soul.
Italy has been providing some fantastic death metal these past few years, and Godless Enthropia may be one of their best offering yet. The band errs on the more abrasive and technical side of death metal, though they’re also quite inventive and unpredictable, in all the right ways. Generous and length and rock solid in quality, Tetracyclic Dominion delivers so much more than anyone could reasonably expect from any debut album. This actually came out in late April but only just landed on my radar this week – at any rate, it’s not too late to let this talented collection of musicians throttle you into oblivion!
Released earlier this month, Overlook is the second album from this New York-based quartet, and it’s one hell of an interesting listen. The instrumental post-metal band cite influences such as Russian Circles and Latitudes, but their music is distinctly their own thanks to the band’s unique songwriting sensibilities and undeniable zest for experimentation. With this truly engaging – and constantly surprising – album, I can definitely see GRID becoming one of the biggest names in the instrumental metal scene in future.
Fall in Archaea – Aura Magenta
Fall in Archaea’s debut (and, to date, only) full-length album didn’t make much of a splash upon its release, but it’s one of the few progressive metalcore albums I’ve found myself consistently revisiting over the past few years. Their music is a penetrating wall of heavy sound that pummels the listener like a jackhammer, with sprinklings of mathcore and some more ambient/atmospheric moments that keep it from becoming monotonous. I sincerely hope this album isn’t the last I hear of this little gem of a band.
Are there any bands or artists you love who only released a single album?