The Accüsed came to life in 1981 as a punk/metal-act from Seattle who indulge in a self-coined musical style interchangeably referred to as “splatter core” or “splatter rock.” Releasing their debut full-length album in 1985, The Accüsed developed tangentially to thrash luminaries such as D.R.I., C.O.C. and Cryptic Slaughter, with whom they share musical characteristics. Like the latter, the Accüsed applies metallic riffing to rudimentary song structures fueled by the raging intensity of hardcore punk.
For us Westerners, many forms Japanese non-traditional music carry an awkward, or even amusing air of exotism. When it comes to metal and punk, this sense of other-ness often stems from the way European-descended musical genres get filtered through a cultural lens largely alien to its original source. Even when it comes to obvious carbon-copy tribute acts, there’s always something strikingly goofy about Japanese metal/punk. Not surprisingly, this makes for a good marketing device because even if the bands suck (and to be frank, many of them do), they still sound “unique”. Relevant cases in point are just too ubiquitous to deserve mentioning. Let’s instead talk about something that does not suck. Like Japan’s premier hardcore punk act and much-overlooked crossover pioneers G.I.S.M. While definitely goofy, G.I.S.M. succeed where most Japanese metal- and punk-acts fail by forging a highly idiosyncratic expression that not only offers something new to the table, but also manage to resonate with the deeper spirit of both punk and metal.
Metallica’s mark on metal in both the mainstream and underground still continues to grow as every riff, drum fill,solo etc has been plagiarized. As Metallica progressed towards much tamer territories, the band did the opposite of what common sense dictated at the time. Instead of reneging their previous records, they embraced them and relished their mainstream status as kings of “The Big 4”. This allowed them to exist in a bizarre duality alternating between mainstream Radio Rock and furious Heavy metal depending on the fan. Through this duality many bands have taken from both periods to create a curious mix that resonates with with a wider audience. Demonpalm fall into this category but their music carries potential for something better in some of the brief glimpses shown here.
Sammath returns to the days of its second and third album with a shredding assault that emphasizes tight, technical riffing that keeps to a simple theme and develops it with precision strumming integrated with exacting percussion. This takes the war metal idea into the technical death metal realm while preserving the black metal sense of melody and epic architectures to unite these alienated and reductive riffs.
The Swedish orthodox black metal brand rose because people needed a label for music adorned in the style of Dissection, yet composed in shorter riffs and cyclic songs like war metal, with a strong cover story of Satanism to help obscure its anti-social and Darwinist positions.
Truly vicious Speed metal band Exhorder have previewed new song “My Time” after signing to Nuclear Blast(a death sentence in terms of quality for most bands) last year. Those expecting a return to Slaughter in the Vatican level of composition will be sorely disappointed. The last twenty seven years haven’t revitalized the band at all and there is little reason to believe that this exists for any other than a quick cash grab.
The comparisons to Pantera have numbed this band to the point where the band have decided on creating a bizarre mixture of their later albums but with a healthy dose of latter day Exodus to create standard Nuclear Blast Retro-Thrash for people who need even more Shovel headed Kill Machine. The blasts of anger funneled by almost labyrinthine arrangements give way to standard groove metal inspired Speed metal. Now complete with nursery level rhymes for karaoke while you angrily contemplate on taking over area 51. These chugs will put you in the right mood to drink your third can of Monster energy drink before your huge fortnite session. At least glam rockers Pantera had something to prove and could make decent Lite Metallica when they didn’t dance to their breakdowns.
After releasing an impressive debut back in 2012, then proceeding to vanish amidst the shadows, briefly emerging out of the mist and fog with a cryptic 2-track offering in late Summer 2018… Serpent ov Old, perhaps the most interesting Metal project of the past 15 years (if only to the the present author’s particular personal perspective and tastes musical and otherwise), have finally released their long-awaited sophomore full-length.
Morbid Angel’s output after Covenant led to a huge divergence between Extreme metal fans. After the huge failure and one of Death metal’s biggest downfalls, which was Domination, the band decided to change things up, which is a move that has to be admired, since many bands would milk out such a success and let their own music suffer in mediocrity.