Blood Red: Hooptober Se7en: Week One

blood red hooptober 2020 week 1

It’s usually a bit of a mixed bag the opening week of Hooptober, but I managed to front-load some films I was genuinely interested and the results paid off: only one clinker (to my mind) in the mix.  We have to get the header image from last week’s post out of the way, so things kick off with the headtrip that is Frank Henenlotter’s 80s classic Brain Damage before moving on two indie gems: the dread-inducing Lovecraftian plague of The Beach House and the the super-fun DIY sensation of Host.  One of my favorite action directors Timo Tjahjanto revels in his horror roots with the wickedly fun Raimi homage May The Devil Take You…and then there’s Wrong Turn 2: Dead End, which despite being directed by Joe Lynch and starring Henry Rollins falls with a thud for me.  Great axe-splitting opening, though…

So wipe yer damn feet and enter the opening week’s wares for Hooptober 2020.  If you break out in a rash or feel any itching just remember we warned you about the water.  Continue reading

The Third Circle of Bandcamp: August 2020 Edition

third circle of Bandcamp header

Deadlines, deadlines, deadlines.  You got ’em, I got ’em, but more pertinent to this post Charles has ’em, so I’m jumping in to put together a batch of great music you can find on the grand poobah of digital music, Bandcamp.  We got metal, we got stuff that’s tangent to metal, and we got stuff that is unequivocally not metal.  Is that a typical Third Circle post?  Hell if I know, but let’s jump in and see what you think…

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Blood Red: Hoop-Tober Se7en is Back to Inject Your Mind With That Sweet Blue Juice

blood red 2020 kickoff

Look, the world is horrific enough without me trying to ratchet this intro up a notch in an effort to psych you up for what is blood soaked return of the seventh – that’s right: SEVENTH – round of horror saturation that is Blood Red, back again and under the gun to review as many horror films as possible for you the discerning and macabre audience…  Continue reading

Nine Circles ov…Divebomb Records

tribunal, dive-bomb records

It’s August, which I feel is enough time to start building the argument that one of the releases destined to end up on my 2020 EOY list is a compilation of demos that were originally released in 1990.  One of my “safe places” during this shitstorm that is the current world politic has been retreating to the sounds that made me fall in love with metal, metal that moved beyond the hairspray and whirlwind solos that attracted me in the first place.

With that in mind, I want to focus this edition of Nine Circles ov… on the absolute treasure trove that is Divebomb Records (not to mention parent company Tribunal Records).  The work they’re doing releasing obscure and oftentimes unrecognized early metal gems—not to mention some great packaging when it comes to physical releases—has been exemplary, and the chance to highlight some of the many, many great pieces I’ve found digging through their Bandcamp page is one I couldn’t pass up. Continue reading

Album Review: Judicator — “Let There Be Nothing”

judicator - let there be nothing

There’s a nasty rumor – perpetuated by years of actually being true – that when an underground band signs to a larger, mainstream label their sound gets neutered; their wings are clipped and their teeth are filed down so as to not harm the delicate sensibilities of the commercial masses.  Prosthetic Records have been defying this with excellent releases from the likes of Vile Creature and Rebel Wizard, just to mention two amazing releases from 2020 alone.  So it should come as no surprise that Judicator, far from delivering a rote, by-the-numbers slab of historical power metal have put out possibly the heaviest, more glorious record of their careers with Let There Be Nothing.  This is the benchmark by which I hold other bands who want to carry the label of “USPM” accountable in terms of power, majesty and killer anthemic riffs moving forward.

You’ve been warned. Continue reading