Album Review: NARCOTIC WASTELAND – ‘Delirium Tremens’

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Remember Dallas-Toler Wade? Yeah, the former NILE vocalist who is no longer a part of the technical death metal band. Tadaa! he is back with his main project NARCOTIC WASTELAND with their follow up album to the self titled debut record, their sophomore effort is known as ‘Delirium Tremens’ and is slated to be released tomorrow on October 13, out via Megaforce Records. The quartet from Fayetteville, North Carolina has put out yet another incredible death metal album that has the potential to end itself up on the year end top album lists.

‘Delirium Tremens’ was produced and mixed by NARCOTIC WASTELAND at Vegas View Recording and Dallas’ home studio. For recording and mixing, the band tapped Grammy award winning producer Neil Kernon at Auslander, with mastering by metal producer-elite Alan Douches at West West Side Music. So, how heavy does Dallas and his team’s sophomore record weigh? Let’s find out!

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Manchester’s COLD FELL Offer Up Full Length Debut [Album Review] [Album Stream]

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Manchester, England, a city that exploded around the turn of the Industrial Revolution, has served as a backdrop and inspiration of metal musicians of all ranges.  No small wonder, either, given the social issues created once the trappings of the industrial exploitation machinations were set into play. Workers were often forced into inhumane working conditions and eventually, periods of civil unrest between the working poor and the bourgeois erupted, leaving behind inauspiciousness in it’s wake. From these circumstances, and similar in cities such as Birmingham, the bubblings of metal sprung forth to unleash upon the world an especially dreadful perspective.  The natives Cold Fell (so named for a mountain in the North Pennines, a spine, if you will, that weaves throughout northwestern English countryside) have finally gotten the opportunity to add their own voice to the offerings, four years after the release of their first EP. Comprised of Laurence Taylor (of Caina) on vox, Karl Sveinsson and Giovanni Infantino on lead and rhythm guitar, Callum Cox pounding on the drums, and Oliver Edward Turner on bass, Cold Fell evidently put the gap time after their initial EP to good use as 2017 has been gifted with one smoking full length debut. 

“Irwell” is both the name that christens their Argento Records release and a river valley nestled in (you guessed it) northwestern England.  Coming in with eight tracks, “Irwell” is a solid monster of a proper debut which bares it’s teeth from the opening, snapping fierce jaws within instrumental passages so you, the listener, do not escape it’s mighty grasp.  The band members here have an excellent chemistry which is evident in the ways in which each track has been composed.  There’s not a superfluous time change, solo or angry vocal howl throughout the album that I could find; these guys were on a mission of craft and on “Irwell” they absolutely bring the pain.  Peppered throughout each of the songs, one can easily see the influence that classic black metal and contemporary bands of the same genre have had on the members, and rather than setting out to exploit those genres or relying on a more avant garde/experimental approach, CF pay homage to those before and current in black metal by efficiently utilizing the core sounds, topped with their own personal flavor. Take, for instance, ‘Folly (Health & the Glory)’  which opens with a nicely fat bass thrum underlying the assault unleashed by the typical frontrunners of guitar and drums.  Densely atmospheric in the right places, the track pummels along, punctuated with howling guitar shrieks that eerily mimic a female’s screams in places, while ‘Bone Ceiling’ bites and snarls in its own right, featuring a nice addition of fist pump worthy chants that will surely be as appreciated during a live performance as it is on record. My overall album pick, though (and it’s surely a close call to make), is narrowly the doom and gloom served up by ‘The Whip (Armed to the Teeth): furious skin work where appropriate with some nicely bitter slower tempo drops, some skillful lead guitar that helps pull the beat back from the mire and cohesive and spot on instrumental passages.  The album closer, ‘Dream of Seppuku’, is a wholly appropriate one that fits like a glove.  Seppuku refers to the Japanese act of suicide by disembowelment, and this track moves in thematically appropriate ways until it fades into a more somber tone sprinkled with some piano keys.  While not necessarily a game changer (and not that it had such ambitions in the first place), “Irwell” delivers a solid album sure to catch the attentions of the black metal scene, and gives just enough to keep us wanting more.

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Review: Gatecreeper “Sonoran Depravation”

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If you’re looking for some catchy doom tinged death that jumps like a crack head on fire right out of the gate, the Gatecreeper‘s “Sonoran Depravation” on Relapse Records is the perfect album for you. GC have a heavy ass, nasty mix of older Entombed and Obituary with some hellacious melodic passages all accompanied by a John Tardy bred with a bull mastiff of a vocalist. This is “balls out, fuck the technicality, fuck genres, let’s play us some death metal” style shit.

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Black Sabbath The End… with Rival Sons – United Center – Chicago, IL. 1/22/16

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Freezing temperatures couldn’t keep things from heating up in Chicago Friday night as Black Sabbath brought show 2 of their final tour, appropriately titled “The End”, to the United Center. The 23,000 Plus arena was sold out and filled to the brim by the time the metal masters took the stage. But first Long Beach, California rockers Rival Sons took the stage to get the crowd warmed up from the cold outside.

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Review: Stonecutters “Blood Moon” [Video]

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It’s not often I get to write about some fellow Kentuckians. Not only do these guys hail from the Bluegrass state but they are putting us on the map for their brilliant musicianship. Stonecutters have successfully released 3 albums including their last kick ass release titled “Creatio Ex Nihil” that was unleashed in 2013. I was fortunate enough to see them back in 2006 with Eye Hate God and Nachtmystium in support of their debut album. Time has done nothing but make this band better and better. The brand new album “Blood Moon” is some of their best work to date and was recorded with David Barrick in Glasgow, Kentucky. Continue reading

Savi0r Invulnerability EP – Review [Video]

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Savi0r was a project created and founded by Adam V. Jones in 1997. He has since then added two other great musicians into the mix and formed this superior trio. The sound they have is like a melting pot of genres, just like city they hail from Los Angeles. The new three track EP “Invulnerability” was released in April. It brings together so many different elements, yet it works so well together. The album has an overall industrial feel musically that would remind you of Nine Inch Nails or Rammestein. The haunting yet melodic vocals by Adam Jones are what melds everything together. The song “Interlopers” starts out and just screams metal in your face, and before you realize it you are singing along to the song. Just like that throwback jam from the 80’s you like so much this song quickly has you head banging and moving around. The vocals change some on this track back and forth. He brings a sense of grit to his tone that brings out the metal edge in the song and then right back to those melodic sing along like lyrics. A video was just released for the track “Lead” which showcases some dark and eerie imagery which go hand in hand with the song. “Lead” is the stand out track on the EP, but the others aren’t very far behind. Each song features a somewhat different tone. Elements from metal, industrial, techno, alternative, synth, and black metal all seem to slither their way into each song. If you are a fan of Orgy or Skinny Puppy there is no doubt you will love this band and this EP, but they truly include something for everyone.

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Video Directed by: Anabel DFlux

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