The metal thread is due a good kick in the ass, I reckon.
I’ve been catching up on metal releases from this year, after spending most of my time listening to Rap and wouldn’t you know, there’s actually been quite a bit of good albums released this year!
First up is Italian Doom savants Messa with they Sophomore cut “Feast For Water”. Their 2016 debut “Belfry” was a hauntingly beautiful and crushingly heavy like a sad spectral Rhino and the follow up is even cooler. The vocals are still soaring and aetherial and beautifully compliments the instrumentation which this time around has begun leaning in to a more Jazzy sound. It’s all really fucking good but “The Seer” is a personal favorite of mine.
Next we have Slugdge, who are ostensibly a joke band but their music is so good that nobody’s laughing any more. Thematically centering around interdimensional slug overlords and their wicked ways, Slugdge has conjured up a deviously sinister blend of black metal, death metal, prog and sludge that shocks and delights at every turn. Their latest album “Esoteric Malecology” is their most polished release to date and sounds like a band that are perfectly at ease with becoming a true powerhouse.
Then we have High Tension with probably the most surprising record I’ve heard this entire year in “Purge”. Built as a concept album about the internal strife of lead singer Karina Utomos home country of Indonesia, “Purge” is a cathartic release of bile and venom aimed at some of the worst parts of the human condition. It soars to the heavens with righteous indignation and wallows in despair, carried on the shoulders of Utomos herculean performance. In a year where Zeal and Ardors stranger fruit similarly tackled social issues “Purge” is a suitable counterpart; a blistering war cry aimed square at the jaw of todays society. It is a hell of a record and one that deserves to be recognized as such.