The collection of new music this week is so damned good. The evolving landscape of heavy music continues to make for new additions to the universe that not only keeps the listening experience fresh, but also challenges the culture's contributors to stay on top of their game.
From thrash to dark wave, hip hop influenced hardcore to elevated post rock, the variety packaged in the list of the week's best should give a clear indicator of how heavy music is far from dead - in fact it's thriving.
Crank the following at a very high volume.
Impure Wilhelmina - “Midlife Hollow” (Season of Mist)
The post-rock complexity happening in the latest from Impure Wilhelmina showcases the kind of nuanced songwriting that injects an element of excitement into the genre. The instrumental melodies add a narrative quality to the track that make the cut especially memorable. In the vein of bands like God Is Astronaut, Cult of Luna, and Russian Circles, the heavy rock IQ is strong with Impure Wilhelmina.
Perturbator - “Excess” (Blood Music)
Purveyor of cyberpunk, dark synth aggression Perturbator offers another cut from his forthcoming Lustful Sacraments with a track that typifies his stylistic signature. The first track written for the album, the ominous tone of the track and it’s cinematic scope is a brilliant mesh of subgenres that translates like more of a film score than a singular track. In short, “Excess” is epic.
Atreyu - “Catastrophe” (Spinefarm Records)
Marching towards their June 4th release of ‘Baptize’, metalcore pioneers Atreyu have offered what they are referring to as the album’s “apocalyptic love song” in “Catastrophe”. Driving guitars combined with Atreyu’s ability to transition from harmony to heavy anchor what has arguably been the best showing from the album yet. Reminiscent of ‘The Curse’ and ‘A Death-Grip On Yesterday’ era Atreyu, “Catastrophe” is the contemporary version.
At The Gates - “Spectre Of Extinction” (Century Media Records)
For the introductory single from the band’s seventh studio full length, ‘The Nightmare of Being’ Swedish metal pioneers At The Gates enlisted the talent of King Diamond guitarist Andy La Roque to assume the role of lead guitar in a opener that truly is epic. The skilled balance of muscle and melody assert At The Gates’ brand in a way that feels as familiar as it a does fresh. Setting the bar for what’s to come, the band’s seventh album is on track to be one of their most definitive.
SeeYouSpaceCowboy - "Painting a Clear Picture From a Unreliable Narrator” (Pure Noise Records)
Getting painted with the cliche buzzwords like “emo” and “core” almost pigeonholes the kind of talent that exudes from SeeYouSpaceCowboy. Channeling the Myspace era of angst with a modernized approach, the band’s forthcoming split with If I Die First is far more than nostalgic heft, it’s a glimpse into the genre-blurring future of heavy music. The most recent offering from the EP certainly paints a clear picture and the outlook has the innovators of Sasscore confidently leading the charge.
Cane Hill - "Blood and Honey: Part 1”
Louisiana nu-metal natives Cane Hill have debuted the first sample of music since the release of their commanding ‘Krewe De La Mort: Volume One’ EP that made waves early in 2021. The band’s cheese-free dark esthetic and groove heavy cadence make for combination that has already resonated with a broad spectrum of fans. Given the quality of the track, the Nola unit is on the kind of come up that shows no signs of slowing.
Cold Cave - “Prayer From Nowhere” (Heartworm)
The second sample from Cold Cave’s pending release Fate In Seven Lessons, “Prayer From Nowhere” follows the introductory single “Night Light” as another beautifully bleak offering of subtle synth set as a bed to vocalist Wes Eisold's intoxicating call. Cold Cave’s contemporary take on dark wave translates as sophisticated and free of the gimmicks.
Pillars of Ivory - “Leviticus” (Triple B Records)
Kinda have to get down with a track that samples Raekwon’s verse from WU-Tang’s “C.R.E.A.M.”. The hip-hop influenced heft of hardcore outfit Pillars of Ivory feature members of Mindforce, Death Threat and Age of Apocalypse and serves will showcasing the future of heavy music and its convergence of cultures. A prime example of how genre lines continue to blur, PoI are what that new wave of aggressive music sounds like.
Spiritbox “Circle With Me” (Rise Records)
Following the band’s breakout 2020 with singles like “Holy Roller” and “Constance,” the Canadian standouts have become one of the genre’s rising stars and are currently working one of the most anticipated debut albums in recent memory. Sharing the first same of the album, “Circle With Me” has rightfully earned high praise and only added value to the band’s stock. Anchored by frontwoman Courtney LaPlante’s vocal range, the sweeping quality of the track suggests the band is fully prepared to deliver on their hype.
Evile - “The Thing (1982)” (Napalm Records)
It’s been eight years since UK thrash export Evile have released an album. The band’s first effort band after their lengthy intermission suggests that the time off served them well as each single from ‘Hell Unleashed’ has been an emphatic reassertion of their technical prowess and songwriting horsepower. Channeling the beloved cinematic cult classic, “The Thing (1982),” Evile nail the sound and spirit of the genre with one of the strongest singles on their record.