I.O.’s PICK OF THE WEEK
ADIMIRON Timelapse (Scarlet Records)
The arrangements are lush, guitar heavy and melodic. A blend of experimental and progressive metals, there are death metal and thrash elements too. I’m hooked on “Redemption” but the video for “State of Persistence” is creepy with Lovecraftian animation. The album drops today via Scarlet Records.
BORDERWARS The Present Day (Black Hawk Label Records)
You can always count on interesting metal coming out of the Bay Area. BORDERWARS gives you heavy-as-fuck, in-your-face heavy metal that satisfies the Beast. Thick riffs punch you in the gut and will make your hair fly. Have a listen HERE. Check out my favorite track “Darkness Falls.”
TOXOID Aurora Satanae (Transcending Obscurity)
Lots of black metal bands claim to tout convention, but before you can break rules, you need to know what they are. TOXOID knows how to bend those rules and what emerges is a black metal album with a refreshing, melodic kick that will knock you on your ass. “Feed My Wrath” is my especial favorite.
IMPERIAL CONQUEST Hammerûn:Monarch of Serpents (independent)
I was in a blackened metal mood this week because when IMPERIAL CONQUEST filled my ears with its dark filth, I was simultaneously thrown into a morbid contemplation yet uplifted by the epic elements to their death metal. “Uncreation Manifesto” is a perfect example of this dichotomy. “Flesh Carved Doctrines” does me the same way.
HOMBRE MALO Persistent Murmur of Words of Wrath (Disiplin Media)
Blackened sludgecore? Haha, just kidding but really not. Buzzing guitars underscore the raging hardcore vocals while brooding chord progressions give it that blackened, dirge-like feel. “L’Etranger” and “Elena” are examples of this blend of sludge, hardcore, and blackened metal.
SHADOWSPHERE Darklands (Sphere Music Media)
This album was originally released in 2004 and Sphere Music Media will re-release it again on November 8th. SHADOWSPHERE created a concept album based on the story of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, using sound bytes from the Coppola produced 1992 film. The tracks evoke the haunting regret and horrifying inevitability of a tragic love story. This is thrash metal drama at it’s best and you can check out some of their newer tunes below.
SSS Limp. Gasp. Collapse. (Prosthetic Records)
If you like UK hardcore, you’ll enjoy “crossover” outfit SSS (Short Sharp Shock). The Liverpool natives are tight with metallic riffs, hardcore aggression, and raw grind. The tempo changes, though brief within equally brief songs, really made me sit up and take notice. “Burn All Fields” is an encapsulation of the entire album at 0:54. Here’s the first single “Dead Wood.”
DISFORIA The Age of Ether (independent)
I weeded through some power and symphonic metal submissions that were so NOT metal (tapping foot as I waited for the guitars to come in). Thankfully DISFORIA delivered the goods. The orchestral elements are there with the sole intention of showcasing METAL guitars. Power metal vocals are flawlessly executed with nice harmonies. Have a listen.
METAL DESCENT’S Battle of the Bands – Round III
We are now on Round III 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 November 2nd 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.
I.O. Kirkwood is a Metal Descent contributor. You can view her personal blog HERE.