Saturday, February 28, 2009

HEAVY HEAVY LOW LOW - 2006 - Everything's Watched, Everyone's Watching

I listen to metal for a lot of reasons, and one of them is just to get really pumped up. Going to the gym to lift and get swoll? Try this on for size. HHLL are a mathcore outfit, a little on the scene side, but definitely the real deal. They've got the hooks ("Kids, kids, kids", "tell shannon her crafts are ready") to keep you coming back, the vocals are really crazy and animated, like the guy just kind of goes all over the place, and he knows when to just say "fuck it" and breathe into the mic like he's unaware that he's making music. They're not so avant garde and dissonant that they never give you any huge cathartic breakdowns, so you'll probably get more listens out of it than your average number 12 looks like you or daughters record.

Apparently HHLL put a new record out last year - I don't got it yet. It's probably not as good as everything's watched though. - sfs

download: Heavy Heavy Low Low - 2006 - Everything's Watched, Everyone's

Friday, February 20, 2009

A Thank You

So this is for everyone who has stuck with the blog and convinced that it's a good idea to continue. I know it's only been a month, but this has been such a dream of mine and I'm just glad I finally decided to do it and even happier people have responded so positively to it.

284 downloads from the site thus far! Way to go! Let's keep getting more music out there, where it should be! IN THE HANDS OF THE PEOPLE! Music is not for industry bigwigs, or solely for the artists or the labels or anything. It's for us. And honestly, we should have complete access to anything and everything that has at one point been released to the general public. Fuck copyrights, fuck copy control, fuck the RIAA, fuck the PMRC, fuck Tipper Gore, fuck the FCC, fuck everyone who doesn't want us to get access that which we want.

POWER TO THE PEOPLE! Music can change the world, but only if we let it.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Tool - 1992 - Opiate [EP]

Though clearly not one of Tool's better releases but the two live tracks really make up for everything. They give the listener a taste for the band's sense of performance style and stage presence. Maynard's attack is ruthless and vicious (he verbally attacks an audience member at one point--it's freaking hilarious) and it's grungy and raw and visceral. Great stuff, but not the same super progressive, trippy, psychedelic metal consistent with their later albums. Also, it has lot of the same songs from the Toolshed 72826.

download: Tool - 1992 - Opiate [EP].zip

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Tusk - 2007 - The Resisting Dreamer

So if you're gonna download one thing by Tusk, get this. Really intense grind/experimental/noise/electronic rock. Feels like being ripped apart by a helicopter only to be pieced together again like a puzzle. From jazzy to punky to noisy and synthy. If you like Genghis Tron, you'll enjoy them. Slightly different (less synths, more grind, more bass and drums).

download: Tusk - 2005 - The Resisting

Tusk - 2005 - Get Ready

These guys rock. It kinda sounds like a million other things going on right now, but somehow these guys really capture a certain something. Though this isn't their best release, this in conjunction with their next album (The Resisting Dreamer), show an amazing progression towards super-dissonant, jazzy, loopy grindcore. It's all over the place, but it really begins to make sense if you put a bit of dedication into it.

download: Tusk - 2005 - Get

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Venom - 1982 - Black Metal

One of the defining metal albums (and the one to give the black metal genre its name). This British metal band would influence countless American thrash metal bands throughout the '80s. The title track, "Teacher's Pet" and "Buried Alive" are good tracks.

download: Venom - 1982 - Black

Scratch Acid - 1984 - Scratch Acid [EP]

Classic '80s noise-rock. Kurt Cobain was a big fan. Really buzzy and fuzzy and weird and punky. Angry as shit.

download: Scratch Acid - 1984 - Scratch Acid [EP].zip

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Metallica - 1986 - Master of Puppets

Oh boy. This is a beast of an album. Seriously one of the heavy metal classic of all time. Even if you don't like Metallica, if you haven't given this album a chance, you should try it. The opening track ("Battery") has the best freaking intro and the rest of the album is just so monumental it's barely worth mentioning. You'll see what I mean when you throw it on. I'm not really sure what else to say, but the best track on the album is "Orion." It's completely instrumental and just huge. It's one of my favorite songs of all time. Try it. You'll like it.

download: Metallica - 1986 - Master of

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Radiohead - 2001 - Amnesiac

So it might not have the instant gratification while still being incredibly complex and deep that OK Computer might have, but this their magnum opus, in my opinion. From the demure digital-waterdrops of musical texture in the opening track to the dissonant shock-waves of jazz-inspired horns and complex drum-lines of the last track, this album is a journey. It's not a journey for all though. It gets really weird and goes to some really intense places. It's almost like avant-garde neo-classical digital jazz-rock in it's complex arrangements and variety of themes and influences. "Pyramid Song" is a long, drawn-out, trippy-as-fuck dream sequence. The song ebbs and flows and goes in and out of making sense both lyrically and musically, much like how dreams rarely make sense and then there are intense moments of clarity.

download: Radiohead - 2001 -

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Rosetta - 2007 - Wake/Lift

Unlike The Galilean Satellites, Rosetta has learned to fine-tine their formula, making for a more well-structured and well-organized, and thus more monumental, album. "Red In Tooth and Claw" is a massive tower of a song that provides an awesome first exposure to the organically evolving soundscapes constructed through the rest of the album. As a whole, the album really is huge. Even in it's quietest, most intimate and serene moments, there's this towering sense of cosmic, emotional drama. In the ambient piece, "Tenet Nosce" (something like 'find yourself' in Latin), there is this emotional and heavy sense of self-discovery. Though it never really builds up, there is this forceful spinning sensation of blind, unconscious grasping for meaning. It really works very well as a whole because it creates a sensation of up and down, big and small, loud and quiet, atmospheric and monumental, ambient and thrash. It's an album of polar opposites. It's much more well-crafted and well thought out than their first album (though Tenet Nosce gets a bit boring) and it's an album that you might actually want to put on over and over again. Little details come out upon repeated listens that are very rewarding and thought-provoking (and, moreover, just really damn cool to listen to, let's get honest). "Monument" is hands-down the best album on the track, but all three parts of "Lift" make for one spectacular listen.

Rosetta might have an uphill battle to gain dominance of the Neurosis/Isis universe, but if anyone can do it, it's these guys. I've invested so much heart to these guys over the last year and a half, I just hope they keep at it and don't lose their touch for immaculate, spacey, atmospheric metal or whatever you wanna call it. I think these guys are one of the most interesting and defining bands of the current decade and I can't wait until their next album comes out...whenever it does.

download: Rosetta - 2007 - Wake/

ps, I don't think I've ever put so many labels on one album. I just really don't know what to classify it as.

Wanna help out?

So I'm having a blast doing this alone, but I originally had the notion that this could be a collaborative effort. If anyone wants to help me out, leave a comment or send me an email ( If you go to VC, it would be even awesomer. If you wanna write reviews or talk about music, or make music lists, or whatever...i don't care. But if you're interested, just holla at me.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Nine Inch Nails - 1996 - Quake Soundtrack

I don't know how many of you played Quake, but I fucking loved that game. It was scary as hell, really fun and really long with one awesome and freaky level after another. I remember how awesome it was when you realized you had to teleport into the final boss in order to kill her. Or when it would rain with blood after you killed a bunch of people with a single grenade. Or when I first got the thunderbolt which just shoots pure lightning. Fucking awesome! Fucking HARDCORE! ARGHHHH!! ARGHHH!!!! GRRR!!!! ARGGHHH!!! well, enough of that...the album is okay. It's hard to listen to because it's really very repetitive. But it does fit well with the game. It's clanky and gritty and industrial (it really does sound like a machine at points) and droning and spooky and provides a good background to your steady prowl through hell and back. But it's kinda hard to listen to. Truly recommended if you like Quake, NIN, or ambient music. It's also nice if you're just looking for wacky, scary music. It's also good for sleeping. No really. I actually put it on quite regularly with the sole intention of listening to the first song (which I actually really like) and passing out before it ends.

download: Nine Inch Nails - 1996 - Quake

of Montreal - 2008 - Skeletal Lamping

So I asked my friend to write a piece for the blog and this was the product. If anyone wants to participate, let me know! I want people to help out. Especially if you go to VC, it would be super easy to coordinate...hmmm...i should make a new post. Anyway:

Most Delicious Sandwiches of 2008: Skeletal Lamping

Jarring transitions. That’s the centerpiece of like 90% of the critical appraisals of Skeletal Lamping. They usually say something like: the record doesn’t hang together well enough; it’s not cohesive.
FUCK YOU. Okay, so maybe I should calm down a little. But this is my pick for best of 2008, jarring transitions and all. Kbarnes talks about how he doesn’t want to be predictable, he doesn’t want the listener to be able to finish his musical sandwiches. And you can’t finish the sandwiches, not at first anyway. You choke on them a little bit, and you can’t eat the whole thing in one sitting.
Listen to it LIKE EIGHT TIMES. Get high and listen to it. Get crunk and listen to it. Before you know it this electrofunkpop pastiche will become your life. This is of Montreal’s Kid A, don’t be swayed by the lukewarm reviews. Just eat the damn sandwich(es).

download: of Montreal - 2008 - Skeletal Lamping

Tool - 1996 - Aenima

Tool's second full-length album, this album showed the world what they were capable of in terms of song-writing talent, instrumental virtuosity (specifically that of Danny Carey, whose drum lines just keep knocking my socks off, even 9 years after I first heard this album), and the vast, immersive soundscapes they create in this masterpiece of metal. Seriously though, if I had to make some sort of top 10 list this would probably be in there. Definitely in the top 20. And I'm not talking about the albums I think are the greatest ever, better than everything else. I haven't listened to everything else. Just the stuff that has helped guide and shape my music interests and the music I put on most frequently.

What makes this album great is just how listenable it is. It starts off with the single "Stinkfist"'s crazy bassy-guitar line that devolves into a single line of bleating feedback. The vocals are first subdued and removed (a theme present throughout the entire album) but they then break free during the breakdowns and choruses and Maynard's ability to rage at the powers that be and his own personal demons is exhibited the final buildup. Leading up to this the bass and guitar twiddle away in their own private madnesses while the drums provide this helicopter-grinding effect in the back ground. It just keeps getting bigger and bigger and each instrument pushes into new territory with each expansion. Finally, dejected and angst-ridden, Maynard, with the rest of the song following just seconds behind him, fade out into static.

This just provides the tiniest sample for what the rest of the album does. Despair, rejection, denial of emotion by outside forces, and madness are just some of the themes. There's a great industrial/noise track towards the end called "Die Eier Von Satan" which is a cookie recipe spoken in German for making hash cookies over a recorded pneumatic drill. Great, dark stuff. They really show just how much metal can do, how small and how large it can get. Maynard just has a beautiful, ethereal voice almost unfit for metal it's so lush. And then there's the ambience of the album. Oh man, the ambient/muzak interludes are the fucking BEST! Much in the time-honored tradition of progressive rock, Tool rarely has one song simply end and another start. There's always a build-up and a fade out, an interlude, long stretches of silence, static and ticking. They even break one of the the songs ("Eulogy") right in the middle and just throw in this bizarre ambient intermission for about 10-15 seconds only to throw the listener right back into the mix where things had been totally cut-off by the intermission. This suck-in and spit-out is a strange and rather startling addition but it gives us some insight into the band's whimsy and desire to really be seen as something other than the typical metal band. Maynard's other work (A Perfect Circle, Puscifer) shows his appreciation for more than just metal and more than just rock and his work in Tool shows his ability for really stretched-out, prog-inflected, anger ridden ambient-poetry slam-metal.

In short: you want this album.

'nuff said, I'm out

download: Tool - 1996 -