This world is dying, and those myopic metal lyrics are sounding more and more accurate, but on the plus side there’s always new music to check out, here’s Mark Davies with this month’s Dysgeusia.
Everywhere you look, whether it’s on your Facebook feed, the news apps on your phone or in the papers you don’t really read but are aware of anyway, this world is getting worse by the day for us humans, at least the 99% of us who can’t afford to leave the planet anyway.
The verdict is pretty unanimous, we’re fucked, basically. If climate change doesn’t get us, nuclear war or cancer certainly will. Storms, hurricanes, devastating earthquakes, amazonian tribes being butchered, terrorism, the encroaching fascism in Europe and the US, Donald Trump, the list goes on of things that are out to ruin us. Yet we persist.
If metal didn’t have enough inspiration before, it sure as hell has the material now after all that we have continued to endure these past few years.
That’s the beauty in music though, the ability to turn an experience, a thought or a feeling into something tangible and for the world to hear and share. In the case of the UK metal scenes brightest stars (and one of our top ten artists from 2016), Architects, a band who suffered the loss of one of their own, a loss so devastating to them and their families of course, and an irreplaceable loss to the world too.
A band who has taken this collective hurt and transformed it into one of the most powerful singles in the band’s history.
Our featured single comes without explanation from the band, there is no mention of a forthcoming album or EP.
No, this was was dropped from on high, and blew us all away almost within the same moment. This is a track that simultaneously deals with the loss of guitarist Tom Searle, and also the pain and misery the world is being gripped by.
A feat accomplished so effortlessly and with equal doses of beauty and brutality, and in a thoroughly Architects way, that we rightfully found ourselves a little choked up as the track comes to a close.
This is Doomsday.
Architects – Doomsday (Epitaph Records)
Mastodon – Toe to Toes (Relapse Records)
I know it does seem like we bang on about Mastodon a fair bit here on Dysgeusia but that’s because of two reasons: in an unexpected turn of events they announced a brand new EP of unreleased material leftover from their last two albums, with their previous album only being put out in March this year, entitled Cold Dark Place out on 22 September via Relapse Records. And they are worth talking about because they slay.
The featured track and first single from the release, Toe to Toes, is most definitely Mastodon.
All of the familiar elements are there, but with a nice almost folkier twist, with hints of classic rock in there with that chorus.
It’s easy to see why this might not have fit in with the technical qualities of Once More ‘Round the Sun, or the more psychedelic influences of Emperor of Sand, but as a standalone track and in the context of an EP, it really works well, and shows a side to the band we haven’t heard since 2011’s The Hunter, and we welcome it with open arms.
The world can be a cold, dark place, but this EP will surely be a beacon of hope for metal fans in need of yet more new Mastodon.
Osaka Punch – How We Operate (Birdsrobe Records)
For a much needed ray of sunshine in these unpleasant times, you need not look further than our funk-metal brethren over in Australia, Brisbane’s own ‘rumble from down-under’ Osaka Punch.
They have been quietly lurking around in the bushes for a quite a while now, at least in our neck of the woods, but have been steadily gaining momentum since their tour of the UK a couple of years back, their signing to Birdsrobe Records last year and their subsequent Death Monster Super Squad EP out on the same label, released September 2016.
Now those boys are back with those beastly yet graceful guitar tones, sultry yet powerful vocal hooks, thunderously funky bass and technically soulful drumming. Yes, this is a band of contradictions, yet it somehow all just works, and wondrously so. The band’s latest single, How We Operate, taken from an untitled and as-yet-unannounced forthcoming release, is a clear statement of intent: “From this moment, we have a choice in how we operate”. The track is also a masterclass in all things funky and metal, It’s got dem riffs, and some wonderful imagery involving a man doing the “monkey dance” and smoking crack, what’s not to love? Give the lads a ‘like’ and check out their single below.