2015-01-29

Catching on 2014 Music : Primordial – Where Greater Men Have Fallen (2014)



Primordial – Where Greater Men Have Fallen (2014)

This late 2014 release from the Irish outfit Primordial was an awaited album that is the obvious continuity of their discography. First, there’s no surprise here and no shift in their music. This is the same formula of long songs, strong vocals, and a solid overall offering.

While Redemption At The Purtian’s Hand was an instant classic, Where Greater Men Have Fallen (yes the band continues on a strike to name its albums with long titles) is more in the average section of my personal rating. Still a good disc. There’s a certain monotony and a lack of passion or aggression that the previous Primordial efforts had in their core. As I often explain in my musical reviews, I’m okay with a certain homogeneity in the form of an album but I what I fear the most is monotony and filling. Sadly, some moments of WGMHF contains one or both of these elements.

With the quality of released in 2014, Primordial isn’t in the upper section neither it is in the lower section of my ratings. This is the kind of highly expected records that let you on your appetite.

7.4

Catching on 2014 Music : Old Man Gloom – The Ape of God (2014)


 
Old Man Gloom – The Ape of God (2014)

The super group that is Old Man Gloom consisting of Aaron Turner on guitar and vocals (Isis), Nate Newton also on guitar and vocals (Converge, Doomriders), Caleb Scofield on bass and vocals (Cave In, Zozobra), and drummer Santos Motano. With the release of two albums identically titled and leaking a fake edited version of a single album, Old Man Gloom angered and frustrated journalists and illegal downloaders.

However, playing with the reality of album leaking, illegal downloads, and expectations, OMG managed to make two unbelievably distinct albums that plays as proper entities. They also carry a depth for this exploratory side project. Fans and enthusiasts of the defunct band Isis can easily relate to the sludge and post-metal sound of OMG. But with The Ape of God, there’s a more complex song structure going on. More screaching and less repetition than Turner’s previous main band.

Noise and drones are used to introduce and to create an atmosphere of a sound barrier that brings its listener to a quiet and very noisy place. This contradiction in Old Man Gloom music is repeated in its ugly/beautiful sounds, harsh and clean vocals. Just like a meditation The Ape of God suggest a two way trip into the collective mind of those musical geniuses.

As Isis was ended I was left in the idea that this particular band still had many great records to offer. With Old Man Gloom, Aaron Turner has in many ways elevated the greatness of his previous work and it is refreshing to have him in a more aggressive outfit than the latest Isis offerings. A great two records that grows on every subsequent listens.

8.9

 

2015-01-28

Catching on 2014 Music : Indian – From All Purity (2014)




Indian – From All Purity (2014)

Blackened Doom metal masters, Indian have released though Relapse a very engaging record that blends mostly doom with sonorities and ambiances of Black Metal. However, both genres/labels don’t seem to be obvious for a mix. Indian plays their own music and it feels right in the entire album.

From slow beats to heavy guitar riffs, From All Purity contains six tracks of pure heaviness and incomfort. Those four musicians beat the shit out of their instruments and seem to know no limits when it comes to spare notes.

One of the best records to come out of 2014 while getting doom enthusiasts a nice challenge, black metal fans will scratch their heads to know how violent and heavy an album could even be that deranging and beautiful. A cacophony of great proportions that takes the pattern that Unsane opened and it is as if the New York Hardcore band had a black metal twin that was hidden all that time and was discovered and unleashed.

8.3

 

Music Review : Panda Bear – Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper (2015)


 
Panda Bear – Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper (2015)

As one of mymost expected albums of 2015 and one of the earliest releases of the year, Panda Bear aka Noah Lennox, hits the target and meets the expectations. While his main project, Animal Collective has found a pinnacle with Strawberry Jam and Merriweather Post Pavillion the Baltimore based indie/electro sensation has been on a decent path while Panda Bear alone seems to be expanding his creative ways.

Now singing about family, since he is a father of two, he speaks more about the fear of death and the responsibilities that you are facing when you have to sustain a family and not just yourself. It is a new reality and like the much more competent reviewer of Pitchfork pointed it Lennox sings about home life, marriage, and seems to be making music for his domestic life.

This is a near perfect album and without a doubt the best offering by Panda Bear as a solo artist. With its very evocative title, Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper, I was fearing a pessimistic record slamming on darker notes and denaturing the essence of Lennox’s qualities of his Beach Boys like voice and his dream like sampling music. I couldn’t be more wrong. Far from repeating himself, Panda Bear kept away from common spheres while exploring themes and sonorities he masters. Some naysayers will state that a consensus around an artist or an album is like an empty buzz but for Panda Bear and his new release praises and accolades are well deserved.

9.0

Catching on 2014 Music : Godflesh – A World Lit Only By Fire (2014)






Godflesh – A World Lit Only By Fire (2014)

As an metalhead since almost twenty years I am often asked by people what is the heaviest band in the world. If I had a dollar each time people have asked me the same question I could only do things I like and not work anymore. Seriously, the common answer to that is to say Black Sabbath since they were one of the earliest bands carriers of heavy music. With nowadays’ resurgence of sludge, doom, noise, and the followers it is more a question of taste in genres. However, one of the heaviest bands of all time and of any genres is Godflesh. With a thirteen years of absence, A World Lit Only By Fire takes the torch at the same point they left the musical scene. This might be one of the best albums of 2014 along with SwansTo Be Kind (review coming soon by the way).

Sounding as heavy, loud, and angered as ever Godflesh beats the crap out of every songs on this record. A lesson in metal and pure understanding of underground music. Labeled as industrial metal and post-metal, Godflesh makes what I would call their own genre and I find those labels too restrictive for the wide span of Godflesh.

Godflesh is part of the evolution of underground heavy music and must be taken as leaders of the cultural movement that is Metal. A World Lit Only By Fire is another proof that when artists like Justin Broadrick and G.C. Green are creating they always will be ahead of the mass offering of musicians. Whenever the time or trends.

8.6

2014-12-22

Most Expected Films of 2015


After my list of most expected albums for the New Year, I was more or less forced to make a short list of the films that will be out in 2015 that may deserve my interest.

Feel free to comment and challenge those picks since they are arbitrary chosen from a wider list of releases.

2014-12-18

The Most Expected Albums of 2015


The Most Expected Albums of 2015

With my recent post on the Best Albums of 2014 I’ve wrapped up 2014 for music. Now let’s have a look at  what is coming and what are the most expected albums of 2015.

Panda Bear
Meets The Grim Reaper – January 12

Being honest with you all, I’m a big fan of everything Noah Lennox does from Animal Collective to Panda Bear with his glimpse into Daft Punk’s Getting It Right. There’s a lot of anticipation for this album and whatever Panda Bear has in stock for us I’m sure it is fresh and genuine.



Marduk
Frontschwein – January 19

With my ever lasting penchant for Extreme Metal, Swedish legendary performers of Marduk’s new release is always something at least worth my time to listen. In fact, they are always a sure shot and even if they don’t produce masterpieces anymore, Serpent Sermon was a solid effort.


 

Mount Eerie
Sauna – February 3

With Mount Eerie’s Phil Elvrum we can expect anything. From Indie-rock textures to black metal ambiances, Sauna is sure to be an interesting new offering from this one of a kind singer/musician/composer.


 

Enslaved
In Times – March 6

Norwegian Metal is in general mistakenly or rightly linked to satanic rituals and church burnings. In the case of Enslaved, a black/Viking Metal band inspired by the likes of Prog rock icons Rush, it is my the ancient Scandinavian religions that these masters at mixing violent music and beautiful compositions that we are expecting.


 

Faith No More
TBD – April

A legendary band that doesn’t need any presentation is getting back with a new record. I just hope that it will meet the high expectations.


 

Giorgio Moroder
74 Is The New 24 – TBA

The father of modern pop music is back with a new offering. Many younger music enthusiasts discovered the old master with Daft Punk’s song on Random Access Memories. But Moroder worked with Bowie (listen to Cat People), and made many motion pictures soundtracks (Midnight Express).


 

King Diamond
TBD – TBA

The Godfather of black metal and the direct child of Genesis and Alice Cooper, King Diamond is back from his heart surgery and stronger than ever. Almost 60 and still killing it!


 

Kreator
TBD – TBA

The German masters of thrash metal are on a streak of great albums since Enemy of God, Hordes of Chaos, and Phantom Antichrist. Their new stuff will be noticeable since I could listen to Kreator thrash for an entire week without getting tired.



Motörhead
TBD – TBA

Another survivor and pioneer, Lemmy and Motörhead are what I call classic. I can’t get behind the drums and not jam at least one or two tracks from Motörhead’s repertoire. Even if the latest albums are formulaic I still hope to be surprised by a new album.


 

Muse
TBD – TBA

The band that takes itself a bit too seriously since a couple of albums even if they managed to master anything they get to do is by rumors getting back to their more alternative rock sound with their new record. Anyhow, The 2nd Law was one of the best records lately and even if it was painted Queen all over it and so cheesy I thought that it was quite good. Muse can do whatever they want and this is why I still believe in them even after the very average release of The Resistance.

 

With all that said, what are the albums you are most expecting for 2015? Any albums I may have missed in 2014?




 

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