It seems silly to judge the volume and or content of music from one year to another – I’m sure I was feeling the crunch of not being able to adequately catch up with new music this time last year as well, but this year it just feels heavier. Between surprise releases I never saw coming to recommendations from friends and stuff that’s been either on our radar or blasted into the ether by huge marketing pushes, there’s just a weight of distorted riffs sitting on my shoulder no amount of headphone time seems to disperse. Which is not to diminish any of the records I’m about to cover that we haven’t devoted a full review to: there are easily two in this list I’m over the moon for. Nevertheless, for this edition of Nine Circles ov… let’s spend a little time with some early 2018 releases we may not have covered in depth, but are still worth your time. Continue reading
After a handful of singles and a brief hiatus, Toronto’s The Divided Line return tomorrow with their debut EP Paramnesia. Instantly apparent is just how much this self-imposed hiatus has paid off as their brand of progressive and melodic rock is tighter and more focused than ever. The influence of late 90s and early 2000s hard rock radio is strong but the band’s commanding approach and moving lyrics make this an EP you don’t want to miss. And to that point, we have a full stream just ahead of tomorrow’s release. Head inside to take a listen and hit the links contained for your own copy. Continue reading
With an interesting promo sheet and heavy Clutch / Down influences, Canada’s Thy Kingdom Slum will be releasing their debut album, A History of Dissent, this week on Slum World Productions. The previously mentioned promo sheet reads like a dossier from a group of mercenaries bent on, in their own words, “reweaponizing musical frequencies to awaken the complacent and inactive dissenters.” The band’s muscular rock swagger throughout will not only appeal to a wide audience but is also more than enough to keep listeners entertained and maybe even jump start this reweaponization. Just ahead of the album’s release we spoke with mastermind Trevor De Block so head inside to see what he had to say.
If I learned anything from my 2017 forecast of anticipated records, it was not to look too forward to anything. Spend too much time anticipated something and it either doesn’t materialize or doesn’t live up to the expectations you placed on it. The onus of which sits purely on my shoulders. There’s so much to discover out there, why spend/waste all this energy sweating over the next record, the book (George R.R. Martin “fans” are as batshit insane as any metal fan I’ve encountered) when you can dip your toe into literally thousands upon thousands of other things readily available and only waiting for an opportunity to unveil their secrets?
Nurturing this sense of discovery is something I plan to focus on in 2018, but that doesn’t mean I’m impervious to the draw of new music from the bands I love. So wipe away the detritus of the last year, grab yourself a large mug of your preferred morning beverage – no matter what time of the day it is – and let’s talk about what’s beyond that monolith…
…besides a giant Space Baby, of course. Continue reading
And here we are. A few more pages of the book before it closes.
Two thousand and seventeen years after we decided to start again at zero it feels like a reset is needed more than ever. And this doesn’t even take into consideration the collective chaos and suppurating hate that seemingly fills the space between the molecules in our media, our politics, and our increasingly hostile behavior toward each other. That poison surrounds but has yet to work its way into my bloodstream. It’s a selfish ask, entirely due to my own weaknesses, insecurities and inability to take the steps needed to be just a little better each day: as a husband, a father, a writer, a musician, but most of all as a human being. It’s been a challenging year, and I have a long road ahead if I want to keep on having challenging years, let alone any years.
More than ever it was music that kept my head above water, allowed a glimmer of land to guide me ashore. Continue reading