Chicago’s prolific experimental metal act THE ATLAS MOTH have entered the Billboard charts with smash hit and biggest debut yet, Coma Noir. The fourth LP from THE ATLAS MOTH, yet marks a few firsts for the band. It’s their first release on Prosthetic Records, the first album to feature Mike Miczek (Broken Hope) on drums and it’s the first time the band worked with an outside producer. On previous releases, the band’s guitarist/vocalist, Andrew Ragin handled production duties. This time around, longtime friend, Sanford Parker (Eyehategod, Voivod) stepped in to steer the ship. An outside voice, one that the band was comfortable with, was key to channeling all the different elements the band brings to the table and keeping everything cohesive and concise. The result has fashioned The Atlas Moth’s finest album to date.
ROYAL THUNDER‘s unique, genre-bending sound has been turning heads since guitarist Josh Weaver founded the band in Atlanta, GA. His songwriting, plus bassist Mlny Parsonz’s soul-searing vocals, have led to worldwide critical acclaim. The group released their third full-length, Wick, last year via Spinefarm Records. Wick finds ROYAL THUNDER at their creative summit. It’s a deeply personal, introspective effort, bolstered by monolithic riffing and the sort of lyrics and vocals that sear themselves into your brain… permanently.
MIRRORS FOR PSYCHIC WARFARE is the latest collaboration between Neurosis‘ Scott Kelly and Buried At Sea‘s Sanford Parker. The band released their self-titled debut – a sonic manifestation of insomnia, complete with the tossing, turning, and perennial dread that comes with facing another shabby daylight – earlier this year via Neurot Recordings. The five songs that comprise Mirrors ForPsychic Warfare lurch and pulsate across a sullen, desolate landscape with an almost curious obsessiveness. And while Mirrors For Psychic Warfare may remind some of the best work on the classic Cold Meat Industry label, there is enough familiar Kelly/Parker-isms scattered throughout to keep the album stimulating. It is a work with more in common with a fever or a fitful wraith than a record.
A necessary change from the common kind, this Boston five-piece brings an undeniable heaviness, with lyrics and music coexisting alongside each other in the same beautiful dynamic and volatile space. Heavy but not excessive. Massive yet not gratuitous. Meticulous. Focused. Direct. Necessary.
With their upcoming debut release to be released in the summer of 2018 through Pelagic Records, LESSER GLOW (featuring ex-members of Black Elm, Irepress, and The Proselyte) rips open a massively wide and confident blend of traditional doom meets melodic metal, paired with the likes of hardcore, post hardcore, noise rock, post-rock and beyond. Molding all these into one cohesive mix, LESSER GLOW stand out as a refreshing and unapologetically brutal take on what is defined simply as “heavy music”. Keep an eye for Ruined later this year.
All photographs by Matt Darcy.