State of the Art: Tennessee – Noisecult

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Tennessee!

Nashville, Tennessee’s Noisecult came to fruition in 2004 by guitarist/vocalist Don Carr and vocalist Bo Heyward who had been working together on many musical projects since 1993. Sharing a love for the 1970’s Hard Rock and underground Metal infused with Punk and “classic dark wall of sound pioneered by Black Sabbath”, Carr and Heyward started their dream project after a two year hiatus from working together. One short year later, their first full length album “End of Days” was released and Noisecult played a relentless number of shows to get their creation to the public.

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State of the Art: Inferi

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Tennessee!

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Week number two for our State of the Art: Tennessee brings something much more harsh than I usually choose. While still melodic, this band definitely falls on the more extreme end of Technical Death Metal in sound, theme and in attitude. Named appropriately after the collective gods of the underworld among ancient Romans, check out Inferi!

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State Of The Art: Tennessee – Man Behind The Curtain

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Tennessee!

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December takes us to the fine state of Tennessee for our State of the Art Series here at MN. Bordered by Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas and Missouri, Tennessee is the sixteenth state in the United States; admitted June 1, 1796. At 42,143 square miles, the Appalachian Mountains dominate the eastern side of the state while the Mississippi River runs down the western border. Tennessee has the 17th highest population at just over 6.5 million and boasts over 82,000 farms, production of textiles, cotton, and electrical power. Major corporations such as FedEx, Autozone, Pilot, Regal Entertainment and many others have located their headquarters there as well. If not for cold winters, I would live in Tennessee. It is the most beautiful state I have ever been to and holds many, many fond memories dating from high school to my honeymoon and my 25th wedding anniversary. I absolutely love the state! Beautiful, wonderful people and very close to where I grew up. When I learned of the recent wildfires in and around Gatlinburg, I was heart-broken. My thoughts and prayers remain focused on the fine folks affected by this tragedy.  Just northeast of there lies the state capital of Nashville, where my spotlight band this week, Man Behind the Curtain, calls home.

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State Of The Art: Utah – Riksha

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Utah!

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Last Monday of November signals the end of our State of the Art: Utah series unfortunately. This may have been the easiest state to choose killer bands to cover since being brought on with MN. All varieties of Metal represented, from humorous, to Punk, Progressive Rock, straight Metal all the way to the harshest of the harsh; blasting out from an obviously healthy scene. Must be something in the water. This week, let me offer a band out of Salt Lake City who call themselves Riksha. I call them bad-ass!

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State Of The Art: Utah – Principium

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Utah!

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Looking for good bands in Utah has been as easy as shooting fish in a barrel. The tough thing this month is not finding a good band, but taking the extra effort to find the right band. Here’s a good one. Crap, moved to another state. Hey, another one. Damn, they broke up. Such goes the search. Then I ran into Disforia. Whoa. Almost too good to be true. Yup. The band is on a semi (maybe) permanent hiatus, the members being usurped by other killer bands throughout the area. This one I will follow more deeply. Too much talent to land in anything less than spectacular. What I found was nothing short of that, because I was lead to Principium (taken from the Latin word meaning “fundamental principle”).

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State of the Art: Tr3ason

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Utah!

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So we enter into week number two for our State of the Art: Utah series. Man, this Metal scene is replete with really, really good bands! I have run into so many, as a matter of fact, I am putting back a number of them for review later. A month will simply not cover everything that has caught my ear while looking for bands to cover in Utah! Seriously, if you are looking for new music, do a search for “Utah Metal” on Google, ReverbNation, Spotify, Soundcloud, Bandcamp or whatever you use and rest assured you will be rewarded with a plethora of killer bands for any musical palate. My next band is so good that I was hooked from the first song I heard, “I, Machine”. Any band that drops something that hits this hard musically and emotionally cannot be a fluke! I was not disappointed. While “I, Machine” remains my favorite, as well as the band’s, everything is else is great as well. The band is Tr3ason and they are one of Metal’s future shining stars!

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State Of The Art: Utah – Cult Leader

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*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Utah!

Cult Leader was formed in 2013 by 3 members of the band Gaza. The band Gaza was legendary in their region, and created some of the most fierce music I’ve heard. By far one of my personal favorite bands. Gaza was active for 9 years, from 2004 to 2013. The band had elements of mathcore, sludge and grindcore in their sound and some of those elements have their way to Cult Leader. In addition to some of the already influences they also add a progressive twist to their new band. The band has released two EPs and one album. The first EP ‘Nothing for Us Here’ was released in 2014 and June of 2015 saw the release of their second EP ‘Useless Animal’. Cult Leader wasted no time putting out a full length which they released in October of 2015 titled ‘Lightless Walk’. All 3 of their records have been released via Deathwish Inc. which is owned by Converge’s vocalist Jacob Bannon. Cult Leader has quickly become one of my favorite bands.

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State Of The Art: Utah – Truce In Blood

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Utah!

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Utah was my pick for this month’s SOTA series. Tons of good Metal available from this western state surrounded by Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Nevada. Being the 45th state (January 4, 1896), Utah is known for the natural beauty of its deserts, Wasatch mountain range and The Great Salt lakes it also serves as the main hub for the Morman church whose choir is internationally lauded. Utah’s population sits just below 3,000,000 spread over 84,899 square miles, ranking it as the 31st most populated state in the U.S., 80% of whom live in the center of the state, along the Wasatch Front. In addition, Utah is considered to be the best state to live in, based on a 2012 Gallup poll, due to its low income inequality, and a variety of economic, lifestyle and health related metrics. Well, coming from the state capital of Salt Lake City comes my first State of the Art: Utah pick: Truce in Blood.

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Oblivion’s “Cyclogenesis: Songs from the Apocalypse”: Breathing Fresh Fire Into A Twenty Year Old Dragon

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Recently, Divebomb Records had the brilliant idea of remastering and re-releasing all-but-lost Metal gems from the eighties and nineties in their Bootcamp Series. Albums like Aftermath’s Killing the Future, Holosade’s Hell House, Intrinsic’s “lost album” entitled Nails, Swedish Thrash Metal masters Apocalypse for their debut and Faithless albums, Skeptic Sense’s Mind Versus Soul: The Anthology, Miasmal’s third album, Tides of Omniscience (first time it has been made available in North America) and many, many others seeing the light of day once again, with plans to continue these releases well into the future. Many of these bands have, unfortunately, disappeared into obscurity, broken up and been usurped into other bands or even gotten back together; picking up where they left off years ago. One such band that falls into the third category is Oblivion, who recently released their double CD Cyclogenesis: Songs from the Apocalypse as Divebomb Boot Camp Series #27. What was once old, becomes new again and, in this case, lightening strikes twice as brightly!

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