Friday, October 26, 2012


A Bay Area band with a decade of work behind them, Comadre buck all punk rock conventions with their new self-titled album -- their third release for Vitriol Records and eighth release in all. With a sound that can be traced back to the pioneers of emotional hardcore, from Rites of Spring to Heroin, Comadre have evolved into a dynamic rock band. Still bursting with angst, especially in frontman Juan Gabe's shredded vocals, Comadre have nonetheless grown to become a rock n' roll machine. Comadre shows the band wielding anthemic melodies, ironclad structures, and such instruments as trumpet, piano, organ, accordion, and tambourine.

Comadre have a long alliance with Vitriol founder Justin Smith and his band Graf Orlock, dating back to 2005 when they met on tour. Like Graf Orlock, Comadre are defined by a staunchly independent DIY spirit. The band play by their own rules, whether in choosing to tour to remote places (to date, Comadre have ventured to Japan, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Mexico, on top of four US tours and three European tours) or in curating and releasing their own series of digital "mixtapes" of rare/remixed/random music, one of which raised money for Japan tsunami relief. With Comadre, all band business is an inside job: guitarist Jack Shirley records their albums at his own studio, The Atomic Garden (where he has also made records for Graf Orlock and Ghostlimb), frontman Juan Gabe creates their artwork, and up until recently bassist Steven Shirley ran Bloodtown Records, a label involved in all the band's releases.

Unfettered by rules, carving their own path, Comadre are nevertheless aligned with a thriving scene of West Coast bands. There's of course Graf Orlock and Ghostlimb, both of which feature Vitriol Records boss Justin Smith; then there's Touche Amore, Trash Talk, Loma Prieta, Punch, and Broadway Calls, to name a few.

Remarkably, Comadre have retained their original lineup through an entire decade of touring and releasing music. Perhaps the key lies in the fact that within the five-man band there are two sets of brothers: frontman Juan Gabe and his brother Kenny Gabe on guitar, and guitarist Jack Shirley and his brother Steven Shirley on bass (a former member of defunct thrashers Light This City). The lineup is completed by drummer Wes Ellsbree. 

With Comadre coming out January 8th on Vitriol, Comadre will once more bring their noise all over the world, starting out with an appearance at The Fest in Gainesville, FL, October 26th.

Comadre track list:
1) Color Blind
2) Cold Rain
3) King Worm
4) Summercide
5) The Moon
6) Drag Blood
7) Must Be Nice
8) Storyteller
9) Hack
10) Untitled
11) Binge
12) Date Night

FLOURISHING Intersubjectivity

It might read like a mess of comparisons but Decibel Magazine's Kevin Stewart-Panko hit the nail on the head when, in his review of Flourishing's 2011 full-length, The Sum of All Fossils, he described the band's sound as "Portal-esque rhythmic irreverence, Big Black-style noise rock, lurching Morbid Angel-meets-Soul of a New Machine death metal, and a bottom-heavy rumble injecting gooey gobs of sputtering warmth onto the mechanical/militaristic stomp of British industrial masters Slab, God, and Godflesh". An enthralling recombination of influences, The Sum of All Fossils was all this and more. Partly cryptic, partly anthemic, thoroughly cinematic, it pulled the listener through strange, vivid landscapes -- bleak and horrific, occasionally luminescent. 

The new EP, Intersubjectivity, carries forth where The Sum of All Fossils left off, further establishing the New York City band's command of its own signature sound. Here in full effect are drummer Brian Corcoran's primitive cadences and merciless blasts, bassist Eric Rizk's almighty "G.C. Green" frequencies, and frontman Garett Bussanick's gut-wrenching vocal purges and astral guitar work. Once more we are transported to the cold factory setting evoked by The Sum of All Fossils -- an ominous, unsettling place, awash in ambient tones and mechanical repetition -- then launched suddenly skyward by transcendent melodic passages. The overriding effect is trance-like. The listener surrenders to the will of the music as it leads a tour of extreme depths and heights.

Intersubjectivity was recorded and mixed by the band members themselves at Sound City in their hometown of Brooklyn, NY. It was mastered by Agalloch bassist Jason Walton at Audio Savant. The EP sees a November 13th release on The Path Less Traveled Records, the label that has released all of Flourishing's recordings to date, beginning with the 2010 debut EP, A Momentary Sense of the Immediate World.

Intersubjectivity track list:
1) A Living Sundial
2) The Petrifaction Lottery
3) Intersubjectivity

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

New releases

Out today, the three new ones from BMA:

Oct 23 - The Tony Danza Tapdance Extravaganza - Danza IIII: The Alpha - The Omega - BMA
"The most aggressive, the most dominant, the most confident, and the heaviest album of the year." -MetalSucks

Oct 23 - Behold The Arctopus - Horrorscension - BMA
"Behold The Arctopus will have even the robots of this world headbanging to their own beat and stage diving into an unknown universe!" -CvltNation

Oct 23 - Hivesmasher - Gutter Choir - BMA
"The cold sophistication of technical death metal with the blood-soaked intensity of grindcore... In the palette of violence, Hivesmasher are equal parts Picasso and Pollock." -About Heavy Metal

And next week:

Oct 30 - Family - Portrait - Pelagic Records
"Perfectly psyched out... Equal parts heavy attacking, effects jamming and melody-making." -Decibel

Oct 30 - Grails/Pharaoh Overlord - Black Tar Prophecies Volume 5 - Kemado Records
"Lush and cinematic" -BrooklynVegan

And next after that:

Nov 13 - Flourishing - Intersubjectivity - The Path Less Traveled Records
"Where Tombs takes its extremes from the band Swans and black metal, Flourishing looks to Sonic Youth and industrial metal innovators like Godflesh for its own brand of melodic yet punishing death-grind." -NPR

Jan 8 - Comadre - Comadre - Vitriol Records
"With the new self-titled full-length, Comadre's finally fully exercising their potential as a band, crossing a lot of genres and offering an accessibility lacking in most punk/hardcore bands." -Justin Smith (Vitriol Records, Graf Orlock, Ghostlimb)

...and the new releases by Stomach Earth (Gunface of The Red Chord), Phantom Glue, Bird Eater (members of Gaza), and more!

Monday, October 22, 2012


Cvlt Nation presents the premiere of "Monolithic Destractions", a track off Behold The Arctopus' new album, Horrorscension, which hits stores tomorrow, October 23rd, on Black Market Activities.

States Cvlt Nation: "Behold The Arctopus is the kind of band that will have even the robots of this world head banging to their own beat and stage diving into an unknown universe!"

Featuring 12-string Warr guitarist Colin Marston (also of Gorguts, Krallice, and Dysrhythmia), guitarist Mike Lerner, and new drummer Weasel Walter (The Flying Luttenbachers), Behold The Arctopus are renowned for their complex, disjointed space-shred, all of which is composed in written form before ever being played.


FAMILY album stream

Family, the Brooklyn band singled out by Decibel Magazine as "sure to be one of our favorites of 2012", are now streaming their entire new album, Portrait, exclusively on MetalSucks.

MetalSucks reports: "In the epicenter of the Venn diagram showing modern prog metal, classic rock, and '90s heavy alternative lies Brooklyn's Family, a new band that deftly controls that unlikely intersection of heavy sub-genres with stunning aplomb."

Portrait was recorded by Justin Mantooth at Translator Audio (Unane, Cave In) and mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side Music (Mastodon, Torche). The album sees its European release on October 29th via Pelagic Records, the label founded by Robin Staps of German band The Ocean. Family self-release the album in the US on October 30th. The US pre-order is here.

A record release show is set for November 2nd at Union Pool in Brooklyn, NY, with Hivesmasher and End It.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

GAZA tour video

Metal Injection has posted a new Gaza video that compiles live footage from the band's North American touring earlier this year. Shot on the road between May-July 2012 as Gaza ripped it up alongside Corrosion of Conformity, Torche, and Black Cobra, the video edits together clips from various performances of the song "Not with All the Hope in the World", off Gaza's latest album, No Absolutes in Human Suffering. 

Of No Absolutes in Human Suffering, NPR has declared, "the band's blast-beaten hooks lure as much as they devastate" and has likened Gaza to "a panther rattling a barbed-wire cage". The album can be purchased here.

Gaza hit the road again this fall - a headlining run with support from Code Orange Kids and Full of Hell.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

HIVESMASHER on GunShyAssassin

GunShyAssassin has posted a new Hivesmasher song featuring guest vocals by The Red Chord frontman (and Black Market Activities label boss) Guy Kozowyk. The blast-heavy bullet train of a song, "Can of Awesometism", appears on Hivesmasher's new album, Gutter Choir, out October 23rd on BMA.

GunShyAssassin editor Chris Harris names Gutter Choir, "one of the best records to hit shelves this year... If you dig crazy fast, punishing grind, Hivesmasher is your new poison."

A standout of the New England underground for several years, the Massachusetts band describe themselves as "a giant middle finger waved in the world's general direction". A recent review on MetalSucks prefers to classify it as "furious tongue-in-cheek chug-grind in the style of Wormrot and Graf Orlock".


FAMILY on Alarm

Alarm Magazine presents the premiere of a new Family song, "Daddy Wronglegs", off the band's upcoming debut album, Portrait. The song features guest guitar work by John Lamacchia, guitarist of Candiria, Spylacopa, and Julie Christmas.

Alarm editor Scott Morrow describes Family as "mixing the low-end heft and beastliness of Unsane with classic-, straight-ahead, southern-, and even post-rock elements." A recent review by Decibel Magazine names Family as "sure to be one of our favorites of 2012" and notes traces of "Unsane splatter-scrape" and "Soundgarden throb" in the band's sound.

Portrait was recorded by Justin Mantooth at Translator Audio (Unsane, Cave In) and mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side Music (Mastodon, Torche). The album comes out October 29th in Europe on Pelagic Records, the label founded by Robin Staps of German band The Ocean. The band will self-release it on October 30th in the US. An official record release show is set for November 2nd at Union Pool in Family's hometown of Brooklyn, NY.

Monday, October 15, 2012

BEHOLD THE ARCTOPUS on Metal Injection

Metal Injection's cameras recently caught a Behold The Arctopus rehearsal at The Thousand Caves, the Queens, NY studio owned by Behold founder and 12-string Warr guitarist Colin Marston. Captured on video are two songs off the band's upcoming new album, Horrorscension, due out October 23rd on Black Market Activities, as well as one brand new as-yet-unrecorded song.

In addition to Marston, Behold The Arctopus features guitarist Mike Lerner and new drummer Weasel Walter, a multi-instrumentalist known for his long-running, shape-shifting band The Flying Luttenbachers and for his collaborations across the free jazz, noise, and metal genres.

Behold's complex music is unique in that it is all composed in written form before ever being played. An early review of Horrorscension on Invisible Oranges praises the album's "endless blast-beats and shred riffs" while Metal Sucks christens it as "skullgrinding mindfuckery"!

Friday, October 12, 2012

New releases

Closing in on our October release dates!

Oct 23 - The Tony Danza Tapdance Extravaganza - Danza IIII: The Alpha - The Omega - BMA
"So shredtastic it may cause the skin to peel right off your face" -AltPress

Oct 23 - Behold The Arctopus - Horrorscension - BMA
"Skullgrinding mindfuckery" -MetalSucks

Oct 23 - Hivesmasher - Gutter Choir - BMA
"Top notch, tech-infused grindcore of the highest order" -MetalSucks

Oct 30 - Family - Portrait - Pelagic Records
"Lures you in with hooks then bashes you with leaden heaviness" -InvisibleOranges

Oct 30 - Grails/Pharaoh Overlord - Black Tar Prophecies Volume 5 - Kemado Records
"A complex kingdom of sound" -Stereogum

Coming up next, so much more, including releases by Flourishing, Comadre, Stomach Earth (Gunface of The Red Chord), Phantom Glue, and Bird Eater (members of Gaza)!


Precious Metal returns Monday with Vattnet Viskar!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

DANZA on Stereokiller

Stereokiller presents the premiere of "Rudy x 3", another slice of Danza IIII: The Alpha - The Omega, the forthcoming new album by The Tony Danza Tapdance Extravaganza.

Bursting with all the groove, chops, ambience, and heaviness that have made Danza a household name, "Rudy x 3" is a sneak peek at what's in store for fans when Danza IIII drops, October 23 on Black Market Activities.

Danza IIII (think tally marks, not Roman numerals) heralds the end of Danza's decade-long tenure, during which time the Tennessee band have released three other albums, toured with the likes of The Acacia Strain, Suicide Silence, Cattle Decapitation, and Misery Index, and inspired countless younger bands. The Danza IIII lineup consists solely of core members Jessie Freeland and Josh Travis -- with Freeland on vocals, Travis (now a member of Glass Cloud) is responsible for all other instrumentation on the album. The result: the most musical and bloodlettingly honest work to ever bear the Danza name.

Danza IIII was engineered and mixed by Nicholas Scott (Miss May I). The artwork was created by Michael J. Windsor, known for his work with The Red Chord and Pig Destroyer, and for his book covers for bestsellers like The Da Vinci Code and Darkly Dreaming Dexter.

GRAILS on Stereogum

Stereogum has posted Grails' new song, "Wake Up Drill II", off the band's upcoming Black Tar Prophecies Volume 5.

From Portland, Oregon, Grails feature drummer Emil Amos, also of Om, the band founded by the rhythm section of the legendary Sleep.

Black Tar Prophecies Volume 5 sees an October 30 release on Kemado Records as one side of a split LP, the other side belonging to Finland's Pharaoh Overlord, featuring three members of the prolific Finnish band Circle.

Stereogum's Michael Nelson describes Grails' music as "explorations of sounds spanning psychedelia, ambient, doom, Eastern music, prog, and beyond... a complex kingdom of sound." The song "Wake Up Drill II" is a sequel to "Belgian Wake Up Drill" from Grails' 2006 album Black Tar Prophecies Vols 1, 2, & 3.

Grails head to Australia this week.

Oct 13 - Melbourne, Australia @ The Corner (w/ Tortoise)
Oct 14 - Perth, Australia @ UWA (This Is Nowhere Festival w/ Tortoise)
Oct 17 - Brisbane, Australia @ The Zoo
Oct 18 - Melbourne, Australia @ Northcote Social Club
Oct 19 - Sydney, Australia @ Oxford Art Factory