Album Review: Astronoid – “Astronoid”

astronoid self titled

On the Scriptnotes podcast, professional screenwriters John August and Craig Mazin dispense advice to young and aspiring writers, and a recurring thread is the idea that building a career of screenwriting isn’t about writing one perfect script, but about being able to repeat that process on an ongoing basis. While not diminishing the merits of a single particularly good work of art, longevity requires more than that. That is the question that is asked of Astronoid’s self-titled sophomore album.   Continue reading

Album Review: Azusa – “Heavy Yoke”

azusa - heavy yoke

Over the years, graphics in video games have evolved from tiny pixelated 8-bit characters to much more photo realistic art styles, and while this is generally seen as an advancement of the medium, in the last 10 years or so, there’s been another movement to bring back that old 8-bit aesthetic, using modern tech to evolve that style to do things it never could in its original incarnation. Think of it as an alternate history. While it’d ever be a mistake to call anything that Swedish extreme metal band Extol did basic, their 5-album discography covered a lot of ground, and any of those albums could provide foundational anchor for a whole band. In the year 2018, we receive just such an album in Heavy Yoke, the debut album from AzusaContinue reading

Interview: Joel Violette of Thrawsunblat on “Great Brunswick Forest,” Musical Reinterpretation, and How to Spot a Moose in the Wild

thrawsunblat band photo

Over the course of three albums and a handful of EPs, Thrawsunblat have carved a space for themselves in the genre of black metal by integrating the Maritime folk of their home province of New Brunswick, Canada. With their newest album Great Brunswick Forest, which is out October 19, the trio of Joel Violette, Rae Amitay and Keegan MC immerse themselves and their listeners wholeheartedly into that Maritime folk. Careful listeners of the band’s discography should recognize the familiar elements that make Thrawsunblat what it is, and yet this does feel like a big step forward. We reached out to Joel to talk about the creative process for the new album, his fascination with re-interpreting songs and also a bit of Maritime tourism. Continue reading

Album Review: KEN Mode – “Loved”

KEN Mode - Loved

Becoming disillusioned with the world, especially for anyone reading a heavy metal review on the internet like this one is common enough. Metal is rife with idealized and (possibly) fantastical or political worlds. There’s a romantic notion to the idea that we could make the world better. But if that world fails to materialize, whether through your own fault or not, you might find yourself mindlessly drifting through those old worlds in the meantime. Life never stops being bullshit but it’s the path we’re on. Enter KEN Mode’s latest Loved.   Continue reading