Aaron Lariviere
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That he can just shit out a song at this level of natural quality is pretty amazing, gotta say.

 +7Posted on Oct 2nd | re: The 10 Best KISS Songs (33 comments)

The fact that I immediately scanned for “I Was Made for Lovin’ You” probably says a lot about my relationship with Kiss.

 0Posted on Oct 1st | re: Primordial - "Where Greater Men Have Fallen" (3 comments)

This is already one of the best things I’ve heard all year.

 0Posted on Oct 1st | re: The Black Market: The Month In Metal - September 2014 (59 comments)

Yeah, being perfectly candid, the new Dawnbringer broke my heart a little. I have endless love for Nucleus and In the Lair of the Sun God, but the new one leaves me cold. It grows on you with time, but the retro-schtick takes precedence over the actual songs by and large. I prefer Dawnbringer when they keep the intensity at “11″ and the retro vibes around “6″. Meanwhile the last High Spirits record was surprisingly good, so more than anything I’ve just learned Chris Black works in mysterious ways.

 +1Posted on Sep 30th | re: The Black Market: The Month In Metal - September 2014 (59 comments)

It’s totally worth it. And I say this as someone pushing, uh, my mid 30′s, with one kid at home. Go while you can!

 +3Posted on Sep 30th | re: The Black Market: The Month In Metal - September 2014 (59 comments)

Yep. I was standing approximately two dudes away from Tompa through Sacrifice’s set. He was in total fanboy mode, headbanging, fistpumping, just lost in the music, along with the rest of the crowd. I’m sure he was already a fan, but I have to wonder if that Sacrifice set (which was legit amazing) led to the existence of this bonus track? Rad either way.

 +3Posted on Sep 30th | re: The Black Market: The Month In Metal - September 2014 (59 comments)

Couple good ones that didn’t quite make the cut this month:

MAUSOLEUM GATE – Finnish trad metal that’s rough around the edges in the best possible way. Think Cirith Ungol but somehow… older.

ANTROPOMORPHIA – For those who crave death (metal), this is the best I have to offer. These guys have been around for a million years, but only have a few releases to their name. This is tremendously good OSDM that doesn’t really bow to the dominant trend of Swedish sounding guitars. I hear more Asphyx, maybe even a little of the vaguely black/occult vibes of Necrophobic. The song title will either make you giggle or groan, but it’s not really indicative of the music.

MYSTICUM – The song itself isn’t the most exciting thing in the world, but anyone familiar with the one and only (amazing) album from these guys knows that they put out one of the single best Norwegian black metal albums of the ’90s, and did so without the help of a human drummer. Fast forward almost 20 years, and they’re back with a track that has a fairly similarly shitty drum sound, which is still pretty fun. This is B-grade black metal at best, but interesting for a certain type of history buff.

CENTINEX – Of note for the same basic reasons as Mysticum, Centinex were a long-running Swedish death metal band who fell off the death metal train a while back and recently climbed back aboard. Meat and potatoes swedish death: totally solid, traditional, un-groundbreaking death metal with expectedly Swedish riffs. (I like meat and potatoes, for what it’s worth.)

SEMPITERNAL DUSK – Dark Descent death metal: a rip-roaring good time if you prefer music devoid of joy. Totally solid, though not the most exciting of the Dark Descent bands, I still recommend this to fans of the genre.

And probably a half dozen others I’m forgetting off the top of my head. Antropomorphia is probably my favorite of these, but I’m a sucker for that sound.

 +3Posted on Aug 11th | re: Yob - "Unmask The Spectre" (Stereogum Premiere) (11 comments)

Atma’s only real weakness is the production. I’m not sure what went wrong there, but I think it’s one of the only truly awful sounding doom records that I absolutely adore. The songs are strong enough to overcome that one impediment, but next to the rest of their classics, it just doesn’t sound as good (in my humble opinion).

Meanwhile, this new album is worth holding your breath for. I’ll stand behind Mike’s enthusiastic assessment 100%: this thing really is likely the best album of the year.

 +3Posted on Aug 1st | re: The Black Market: The Month In Metal - July 2014 (20 comments)

It might not be necessary, but it’s fun to do, so I’m gonna go ahead and make this an official monthly contribution: here are a few of my personal favorite BONUS TRACKS that missed inclusion by a few votes:

The worst band name paired with the best trad-metal band, and they’re from Australia, so it’s somehow acceptable. The production is pure ’80s trash, but like, legitimately poorly recorded, but the riffs are as real as reality and twice as tight. Really good stuff, out on Shadow Kingdom records, which should mean something to the diehards.

Through a bizarre chain of amazing events, I happened to see these guys play their album release show in Auckland, New Zealand a few weeks ago, and it was beyond fantastic. The album itself is also pretty fucking fantastic, a blend of black thrash and heavy metal theatrics with some native NZ eclecticism. The first 6 tracks are technically all part of one monstrous 30 minute song, and when I saw them live they played the entire album as a solid chunk of Southern Hemisphere insanity, and I really dig this. Dunno what else to say.

You know them for the classics like Balls to the Wall and Fast as a Shark, but Accept are still here, and still kicking ass with their replacement vocalist, who does a mean Udo impression without trying too hard. The last two albums kicked ass, and this one seems solid enough. This video is probably the single greatest example of a “band shredding in a desert”, featuring helicopter shots and freakish solos that last longer than you could possibly imagine.

If i can come up with any more tracks, I’ll post em here soon. See you next month!

 0Posted on Jul 13th | re: The Black Market: The Month In Metal - June 2014 (72 comments)

Wait til you see High on Fire live…they’re a band full of road-dog touring musicians, but they’ve got the songs and the chops to back it up. Truly one of the best in the business. That last album with Kurt Ballou manning the decks was such an unhinged explosion of sound.

And congrats on finding your watershed moment, welcome to the ranks, infinite hails, et al ;-)