Category Archives: top stories

The Best Metal on Bandcamp: March 2019

Metal

This month’s best metal runs the gamut, from ’70s-style proto-doom to ripping, occult metalpunk to triumphant power metal, with stops at all points between

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Diving into Miami’s Doom and Sludge Sound

Miami-metal-by-noopor-choksi-1244When people think of Miami, they might think of paradise: a postcard-perfect city synonymous with year-round warmth, beautiful beaches, sun-baked Art Deco buildings, and towering palm trees. And yet, deep within this blissful, balmy setting lies an unlikely—and surprisingly strong—undercurrent, one that’s rushing in the opposite direction. We’ve explored the wider Miami underground before, but here, we focus on Miami’s sludge-doom scene: a small, devoted circle of bands who inject the genre’s rugged, low-and-slow approach with Caribbean grooves and unkempt energy.  Continue reading

On “Ancestral Recall,” Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah Makes Rhythmic Music Sing

Christian-Scott-1244The title of Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah’s 14th release is deceptive. Ancestral Recall is many things, but a throwback it is not.

“Most people are going to think what I’m talking about is only in the past,” Adjuah acknowledges. “But when I use the word ‘ancestral,’ I don’t just mean what came before. We’re taught in the culture that I come from, the Black Indian culture of New Orleans, that you have the ability to channel or access not just what came behind you, but also what is coming. When I’m saying what I’m saying to you, it’s my great-great-grandfather and my great-great-grandson also speaking to you.”

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This Week’s Essential Releases: Japanese Jazz, Berlin House, Space Punk And More

7 essential

Welcome to Essential Releases, our weekly roundup of the best music on Bandcamp. Each week, we’ll recommend crucial new albums that were released between last Friday and this Friday, plus pick an older LP from the stacks that you may have missed.

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Album of the Day: La Dispute, “Panorama”

La Dispute are—without a doubt—the most significant, divisive band associated with the New Wave of Post-Hardcore (aka “The Wave”), for one reason, and one reason alone: they’ve got one hell of a way with words. Whereas their peers galvanize the subgenre’s requisite anguish into big-tent brutalism (Touché Amoré), turgid grunge-gaze (Pianos Become the Teeth), and wide-eyed alternative rock (mewithoutYou), the Michigan band play what is essentially the emo equivalent of spoken word—slam poetry at its most sullen. Listening to frontman Jordan Dreyer’s tense, eloquent monologues on 2008’s Somewhere At the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair, with their tight prose and copious references to Japanese folklore, Edgar Allen Poe, and Kurt Vonnegut, one might swear they’d stumbled in on a depressive creative writing workshop. Despite this literary bent, La Dispute never force sentiment in their stories; they simply lay out the scenery, leaving us to read between the lines.  Continue reading

Tengger Cavalry’s Nomadic Tales Pair Extreme Metal With Mongolian Folk

Tengger Cavalry

Nature Ganganbaigal is a man of many talents. The 30-year old Beijing-raised musician plays guitar, morin khuur (horsehead fiddle), Dombra (Kazakh lute), and performs impressive Mongolian throat singing in his folk metal band Tengger Cavalry. He even produces and masters the band’s recordings. But the skill from which he derives the most inspiration isn’t musical at all.

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Sheet Metal and Spray-Painted Trash: Wolf Eyes’ Deep, Noisy Discography

Wolf Eyes

“A song becoming definitive when an artist decides to hit record isn’t really the case, man,” says Nate Young, founder of noise project Wolf Eyes. “It’s never the definitive version, especially with the kind of music we’re dealing with.” For 23 years, that’s been a guiding principle in Wolf Eyes since it began with Young splicing a found tape loop from an answering machine with Paul Winters’s new age/smooth jazz release Wolf Eyes. He gave one copy to friend, and soon-to-be bandmate, Aaron Dilloway, called it “Wolf Eyes,” and almost immediately began amassing what is now one of underground music’s deepest catalogs.

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Album of the Day: Dexter Story, “Bahir”

During the first minute of Bahir, the new album from multi-instrumentalist and producer Dexter Story, a steady beating drum crescendo slowly evolves into an intricate composition: traditional jazz pianos, classical strings, wind chimes and East African percussion playfully mingle with cymbals that almost sound like a rushing wind. The opening track, “Techawit,” feels like an introduction to Dexter Story’s brand new world — a place where the musician can toe the line between different dimensions, embracing the pull of history and tradition, while conjuring a new, seamless fusion between the old and the new. Continue reading