I have a theory that Brighton’s Anacondas would greet you with a punch to the face rather than say hello. Which judging by their penchant for sludge peddling grooves, vitriol-soaked vocal deliveries and the bludgeoning riffs found here in Cold Blooded, Warm Hearted, might be the least of your worries. You are given no room to breathe as brutally heavy guitar winds you immediately, before following with screaming uppercuts to your ears. The whole song is like a fight for survival in a boxing match against a pack of concrete wolves. Emotions ride high throughout, whether freaking out to well crafted headbanging moments or the strong burst of clean vocals near the end, their album Sub Contra Blues will take you by the hand and throw you off the nearest cliff, repeatedly kicking you as you tumble.
The formerly from Brighton glitch-hop collective known as Zen Death Squad have been somewhat experimental of late with their production time. In their trilogy of three free songs, Oni Valley is the second, blending both ground-shaking guitar and vibrant keytars into an undoubtedly harder dubstep style beat. While they are taking months at a time to produce these tracks, the quality is fantastic and makes for a great addition to their already diverse repetoire of slow moving party grooves, which are also well worth investigating.
Hopefully these guys won’t need too much more exposure, London’s Vuvuvultures are already well on their way to making a massive impact, having performed on this year’s main stage at Hard Rock Calling. Taken from their debut Push/Pull which has only been out a month or so, Steel Bones is fuelled ever so gorgeously by the soulful vocals of Harmony Boucher, whilst a heavy bass foundation and unsettling synth chimes nestle in the background, drive into the abrasive guitar-powered chorus, which will drill itself firmly into your head all day. One thing is for sure, Vuvuvultures are weaponised and it won’t be long before they become synonymised with true success.
I had to put the awesome talents of Bulgaria’s Joanna Syze on here eventually not just because Rodina is such a perfect song, but because she has been terribly ill for a long period of time and more electronic music enthusiasts need to be aware of her sheer brilliance. Taken from the self-titled album, Rodina is a journey through an Eastern European village which slowly escalates into a much deeper spiritual drumstep track. On an emotional level, this track has few comparisons, phenomenal is really the only word to describe it. The ambience, pacing, synths, vocals, everything is absolutely spot on, it is practically faultless. Please get well soon Joanna, the world should really hear the gift you have.
There’s some sort of prehistoric heaviness that London’s Astrohenge wear like a fine suit. All instrumental anarchy with dinosaur-paced grooves, riffs and in this instance, speed, all condensed into half an hour of edge-of-your-seat action. Lab Chimp Uprising is torrent after torrent of snarling riffs, heading full blast with the intensity of molten lava, with no breaths whatsoever before the next stream comes storming down. The addition of keyboard to some of their songs too is a surefire reinforcement of that ancient society feel, and a unique touch at that, but this is if prog rock was done by lunatics armed with sledgehammers. If a volcano erupts anywhere in the world, you can bet that Astrohenge will provide the crushing soundtrack for it as their second self-titled effort is simply perfect for it.
Capitalising on the fast-rising post-rock sound was the sadly now-defunct Pitchblend, who beside soaring atmospheres and awe-inspiring guitar tones wrote possibly some of the most emotionally-charged songs I have ever heard. Sirens is likely to be their most memorable, with yelling out to the outermost edges of the universe so passionate, it’s genuinely moving. What’s even more moving is the fact this fantastically talented musicians never got the recognition they properly deserved for their astonishing songwriting abilities and their 200% heart and soul deliveries.
Minneapolis’ Buildings are a funny bunch, combining spiky venom-drenched vocals and the punk aesthetic to grungy, fuzz-laden guitars in a hardcore haze that is incredibly contagious. Invocation is a build-up that never gets going, but between bass, drums and vocals ,goes through a fairly ropey emotional transformation. Sure it could rip you holes in several places in your body if it wanted to and once the full guitar might is unleashed, it does with ease, the stride turns into a sprint. The entire Melt Cry Sleep album will beat your ears into pulp but this is an incredibly well structured and emotionally charged attack well worth riding out to the end.
If there was an award for the most authentic Aphex Twin clone ever, then surely William Snavely a.k.a. Diagram Of Suburban Chaos would be the winner.The several shades of ambience and atmosphere to the schizoid percussion to the numerous textures of synths are all present and accounted for in Cryhsat from Status Negatives. This recalls arguably my favourite AFX works from double album Drukqs, which has many a standout moment and is a tremendous bar to be measured against and should be commended as so.
I wanted to post a lot more about this band because I’ve been listening to their music a lot recently but I could only have one track of the week and I was hooked on I Am Legion. And then I forgot about them. But a week has passed, and now I can post about the eclectic punk-inspired metal antics of France’s Omaha Bitch. While the feminist rage if word ever got out about this video would be enormous, I find this video entertaining and a pretty good idea, the same can be said about this band. While Dancing Cyprine is my track of the week because of the slightly unconventional take on hardcore with perhaps a persuasion of death metal woven in, it is merely one side of this incredibly dynamic band. Gang claps, a ferociously heavy throwdown moment and a very frenzied freakout moment make this track truly if not a pleasurable, a fascinating listen to hear a menagerie of influences thrown into 3 and a half minutes of organised chaos. I wouldn’t say it is for everyone but I sure as hell enjoy it.