Initial Descent: September 4 – 10, 2022

Revocation
Revocation

It’ll officially be Fall later this month which means spooky season is right around the corner. I can’t think of a better way to get in that mood than the trio of death metal new releases that lead this week’s list; Revocation return with an album that after a few spins really hits a sweet spot for me, and even more so than anything they’ve done to date, then we’ve got Bloodbath who are on the forefront of every death metal fan’s mind, next up is I Am with a groovy bruiser (and killer album art to boot), and rounding out the top slots is Abrams who are not death metal but are favorites around this back office. Now, these four will definitely keep you busy, but don’t forget about the long list of other new stuff that follows as there’s a ton of good stuff out this week. Happy hunting and we’ll see you here throughout the next several days. Until next time…

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CANTO: Wayfarer, Carnifex, Orthodox, and More


Took a lot of cool photos yesterday after a storm… that’s all I got.

“Ein Bier… bitte.”
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Best of 2020: Josh’s List

Best of 2020

I could wax for paragraphs on how 2020 leapt into the toilet in March and continues to swirl, deeper in, teetering just on the edge of complete obliteration, but that would be news to no one. In a year when bands could’ve easily went into hiatus based on no way to tour or support themselves—and honestly no one would’ve blamed them—we are damn lucky to have any music at all much less any best of lists. Thankfully the bands turned it up, tuned low, and cranked it out anyway, despite the thought of any sort of monetary return. In short, metal freakin’ ruled this year and kept me sane while the world crumbled and hope was fleeting at best. My music collection grew like my headphone time at dangerous volume levels (according to my apple stats) and I loved the fact that bands sounded angrier and louder, experimented more, stretched thin genre lines to the limit, and generally laid their balls on the chopping block in a way we haven’t heard in a long time. That chopping block bit was one of ten rules I made for my 2020 list back in January and all the artists that made my list did just that in one way or another but my picks this year were also about the albums that really stuck with me for either the long haul or made a fast impression. So, keep reading and maybe one, or more, of these will hit you the way it hit me.

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Album Review: Abrams — “Modern Ways”

Abrams - Modern Ways

For Denver’s Abrams‘ 2017 release, Morning, I spent some time on their past and how it tied to that specific release and how with Morning the band seemed to have found its true self, all of which you can read here for context. Plus, it made my best of list for 2017. Now, with Modern Ways, their third full length, that “true self” is being fleshed out even further taking cues from Morning and expanding on its best parts to create a heavy rock album chock full of soaring melodies, hooks for days, and a slight pop sensibility just to keep the good times flowing. As high as I was, and still am, on Morning, Modern Ways is better. All my trepidation regarding whether they’d stay the course, whether this effort would top the last, and whether or not this would be a defining moment disintegrated upon my initial spin and each subsequent spin leaves my jaw on the floor. Continue reading

Initial Descent: April 26 – May 2, 2020

Abrams
Abrams – photo courtesy of Mike Goodwin

Uncharted times, folks. Who knows what the right answer to any of this is or will be but I do know there’s a whole list of new metal to uncover so let’s do it. For those of you that like some rock to go with your metal, Abrams returns with their third full length and it’s heavy on the good time jams perfect for whatever you’re doing. Symphonic extreme metal gets a HUGE shot in the arm with Foretoken‘s debut, Pyre roll the death metal dice and come up with doubles, and Black Pestilence fire a shot of blackened punk amongst the masses. So, four really good albums up top and a slew of more down below. Enjoy it! Continue reading