Okay, I have an interesting double debut week for you. It’s already week 5, how the time flies! They say the surest poison is time, but I have the cure with these two bands. I found the header image above after some Google searches related to the upcoming band which was a very lucky find. Plus, I’ll let you in on an up-and-coming genre blender of a band that just released their debut EP on 10/02/12. The Merchant of Misery by Headwound the Pony (Brisbane, Australia)
So I had an immediate epiphany when I began listening to Headwound the Pony (HtP) last week. It was incredible, the exact sort of extreme metal that puts a huge grin on my face; its so great when an album has that effect on my walk to work. The complexity coupled with the sheer pride that gushes from this band made The Merchant of Misery immediately stand out as a new favorite.
However, I let the feeling mature a bit instead of rushing out an emergency post that says ‘BUY THIS ALBUM NOW’. I was especially hoping that HtP were an unsigned band ready to share with my Metal Microscopians, and they most certainly are. HtP are an Australian six-piece (3 guitarists!) death metal band that is influenced by some of my favorite bands such as: Signal the Firing Squad, Boris the Blade, The Black Dahlia Murder, Whitechapel, and Beneath the Massacre. It’s the complete package, and it never gets boring. Merchant of Misery, their debut album, is described on their Facebook page as a “unique take on modern Deathmetal, from blistering riffs and harmonies, to bone crushing beatdowns, grooves and slams, to brutally crushing vocals and deep lyrical content.” I think that’s a very accurate description, but you should listen to the album to verify. You’ll probably even like the cover art. Now that’s a monster(necromorph) I don’t want to meet. Headwound the Pony don’t have a bandcamp, but you can buy their album HERE.
Now I also want to admit that I’m really curious about how Headwound the Pony got their name. I scoured their page for an explanation to no avail. I searched the web for references or pictures. Is it an Australian tale about a real pony? Does anyone know?
My next band worthy of mention for this week is Exotype. A little bit of back-story will help you understand why I like them. I’ve loved metal, in any number of its forms, since the beginning of high school. It’s always been my favorite genre of music. However, when I was a freshman in college, my roommates didn’t like metal, and so I started listening to electronic music after becoming addicted to one song by a band named Infected Mushroom. Eventually, I had every IM album and I was a huge psy-trance fan. Psy-trance tends to be very technical and complicated e-music, and it keeps your fingers tapping and twisting to the beats.
Anyway, I got into the Electronic Dance Music(EDM) scene through Infected Mushroom. It still took a backseat to metal, but that changed a bit two years ago when I was in Budapest for a month-long internship and I started hearing a new genre of music at the clubs there. This was the start of mainstream dubstep, and soon I knew all the big-name dubstep producers. Dubstep is defined as ”tightly coiled productions with overwhelming bass lines and reverberant drum patterns, clipped samples, and occasional vocals”. The wubwubwub bass sound was addicting, and the wall of bass that attacks your body after a drop was so much fun. So there you have it, my two favorite genres were metal and dubstep(particularly the filthy/heavy/dirty) kind and naturally I wondered what sort of combinations are possible between the two genres. Perhaps metal vocals and guitar over dubsteps bass, and metal breakdowns over dubstep drops. A couple songs popped up by Mitch Lucker and Big Chocolate, two new-age death metal singers who scream over glitchy-dubstep songs. Commissioner was just what I was looking for, but they haven’t produced any new songs. Next I was hoping that Korn’s The Path of Totality, rumored to be mixed with dubstep producers like Excision and Skrillex, would be the perfect mix of the two genres, and it’s a pretty good album. But not until I heard Exotype was the dream made true. I would call Exotype dubstep-infused rap/hardcore metal. You could also envision this band as Linkin Park on dubstep steroids. A statement on Exotype’s facebook describes their unique fusion. “Heavily detuned guitars providing earth shaking riffs engulfed in euphoric, atmospheric ambiance cause your spine to tingle. Pulsing dubstep drops laced with cybernetic synths, shake you with coma inducing bass. Thought provoking lyrics and infectious, anthem-like choruses, shouted by vocalist Josh Anderson, spark a fire inside you that can’t be put out.”
Synthetics Official Music Video by Exotype (Central Florida)
If you like the following bands, I highly suggest checking out Emerge: Linkin Park, Deftones, Excision, Korn, Skrillex, Meshuggah, Slipknot. Emerge is a 5-song EP for $5 available on their bandcamp. If like this unique forward-thinking blend of electronica and metal then support Exotype.
BONUS : bonus content is new content about bands I’ve already written about (Bonus for you, bonus for them.) such as new singles, lyric videos, \m/videos, and maybe I’ll even sneak in some metal news, just the random bus crashes in Europe.
This week goes to Ænimus who made their own lyric video for new song ‘Inertia’. I covered this band in MM#1. For metal bands, lyric videos have given the genre a fresh breath of air and a new dynamic because they really show the lyrics. I always have a better sense of what I’m reading over what I’m hearing, and although metal is particularly difficult to understand in general, it’s always fascinating to read them. (Plug: there are programs such as MiniLyrics which download the lyrics for the song you’re listening to then play them along to it, easy party trick or subtle way to pay attention to lyrics/vocals).
Ænimus really exemplifies the Do-it-yourself mantra because ‘Inertia’ was made by guitarist Sean Swafford who writes:
“I am extremely excited to release this lyric video for our song ‘Inertia.’ The idea behind the video is mainly based on the song’s lyrical content. I really wanted to do something different from a lot of the lyric videos that I’ve seen. I wanted to try to visualize the lyrics, so I decided to go with a video that looks more realistic as opposed to most lyric videos that are primarily abstract. This was probably the most difficult video I have worked on so far, due to the tedious work involved with creating the clouds. Being able to finally see the end result, it was definitely worth the time and effort that went into it. Since joining Ænimus, I’ve been doing my part to help to make us as self sufficient as possible. Everyone in this band does something extra on top of contributing to the writing process and continually practicing to improve their skill sets on their respective instrument. In this day and age (in the music business), bands need to learn to wear multiple hats to survive; especially in the metal music scene. It’s definitely a lot of work, and we’re doing our best to stay on top of it. Anyhow, please do enjoy the video.”
Until next week…@MetalMicroscope