Sounds From The Heavy Metal Underground: 09/29/14

by I.O. Kirkwood on September 30, 2014

promethean hordeI.O.’s PICK OF THE WEEK

PROMETHEAN HORDE Ashes of the Empyrean (Metal Swarm Productions)

Florida black metal, like Florida “water,” is a mysterious concoction that draws you in. Like all genres, black metal has evolved–from its pretentious, “you can’t see me” roots into a night orchid that will open if the moon is right and you have the patience. PROMETHEAN HORDE will win you over, regardless of your preferred genre, and you will wonder how you survived without black metal in your life.



SLUDGEHAMMER Organ Harvester (independent)
Yeah, they live up to the name. The vocals and guitar are sludgy death while the drums are thrashing hammers. Throw in a guitar solo and a deep groove and you’ve got SLUDGEHAMMER. The cleaner vocals remind me of EVILE while the death growls are just plain sinister. The band’s sound is nice and thick. The first four songs of the EP are available on SoundCloud.


TESTIMONY The Beast That Prays (independent)

Metal music mutates. Never forget that as you listen to this sophomore effort by TESTIMONY. Thrash with hardcore and progressive elements and lots of fancy guitar playing will have your head bobbing. The recording is pretty organic too which gives it an old school feel.


HELLPIE Love To Burn (independent)

What do you get when you mix tongue-in-cheek politically charged lyrics, slightly slurred, with a bare bones heavy metal ethos? HELLPIE. Flavored with a dash of hardcore and a pinch of doom, this metal goes down best with beer. Plenty of head banging moments abound with chunky guitar riffs and a thin, flaky crust. Their Love To Burn LP is available HERE.


DIE CHOKING II (independent)

If you want brutal, grinding thrash, then you want DIE CHOKING. What I love about II is they know they have something so good that too much would destroy the taste for it. The songs are blissfully short, sonic ear bleeds that give you just enough time to appreciate a track without making your head actually explode.


HOUSE OF LIGHTNING Lightworker (Translation Loss Records)

I almost didn’t include HOUSE OF LIGHTNING because my head hurt trying to categorize it. But I’m not one of those people, so I present Lightworker to the fine readers at METAL DESCENT to do my job. The songs are trippy, progressive-flavored, and interesting. The Seventies come to mind, maybe even some STEELY DAN, but that’s all I’m going to reveal. Have a listen.

The album drops on October 14th via Translation Loss Records.


BLOOD OF THE SCRIBE Rim of the Cosmos (independent)

All three tracks of this EP filled my head and made the very crown tingle. BLOOD OF THE SCRIBE created music that drops you into an alpha state where the subconscious rises to the surface. The atmospheric instrumentals provide a soundtrack for contemplation. Before I knew it, the songs were over. So I replayed them. Definitely chill metal.



CONSPECTUS A Clearer View (independent)

ConspectusI fought with myself over this one. The music is phenomenal but the vocals are–out of place. Usually, I pass over something that jars me like this, but the music is so good that I decided to push past my personal preferences and share it with you. I’m not saying that the vocals are poorly done and I’m not putting down the vocalist. Some of you are going to love the style; but for me, the voice is so off-the-wall that it just doesn’t fit. Maybe I’m a traditionalist, but I really, really, really enjoy the music on this so there you have it, folks. Have a listen HERE.


METAL DESCENT’S Battle of the Bands – Round II

memeWe are now on Round II of the Heavy Metal Underground Battle of the Bands. Readers are encouraged to listen to the six I.O.’s Pick of the Week and vote for their favorite. Voting will close on October 21st at 06:44:59. As each set of I.O’s Picks are voted, the bands that garner the highest ratings will be featured in a Top Ten post of underground bands to watch in 2015. Keep in mind that labels, promoters, and other music industry professionals are taking note of our weekly Tuesday article. Vote HERE.

Submissions from bands are accepted HERE

ioI.O. Kirkwood is a Metal Descent contributor. You can visit her personal blog at

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

hellpie September 30, 2014 at 11:42 am

Thanks for the support, let’s get baked!


Sludgehammer September 30, 2014 at 11:30 pm

Awesome guys! Thanks for the shout out! \m/(-.-)\m/


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