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Album Review- Infestissumam by Ghost


ghost-infestissumamTwo years ago when my ear drums caught the crunchy Satanic grooves of Ghost’s debut album Opus Eponymous it was a bit of a musical revolution for me.  First off, there was just no band that I had known about making modern music like them with that heavy 70’s vibe mixed with Black Sabbath style doom metal and a generous sprinkling of Mercyful Fate.  The right amounts of heaviness and catchiness won me over immediately and to this day Opus Eponymous is one of my most frequented haunts at minimum getting a playthrough a week.  Second off is the lyrical content.  Ghost sings about Satan and Satanism pretty much to the point where it’s so over the top it becomes absurd and humorous.  You can’t help but chuckle at how they were able to twist the words of the Our Father prayer into an Our Satan prayer on the tune “Ritual” or how they turn the much used Christian phrase ‘Stand By Him’ into meaning ‘Stand by Satan’.  And they do all this with a perfectly straight-face trying to make you believe that they are serious in their Satanism, but you know deep down, they aren’t.  And that is where I find the real fun in the genius of Ghost, if you give a listen to any Christian or faith filled band you will also easily hear how over-the-top it is with all of cheesy Biblical quotes and professing that ‘God’ is the only way and yadda yadda yadda.  It’s such a fun little parallel.  Finally there is the contrast of their themes and their musical output.  On one hand you could call Ghost a metal band, but since there is a crap-ton of pop influence by way of bands like ABBA one does have to question Ghost’s metal cred.  That contrast of super hammy yet infectious melodies and tunes to the super Satanic themes creates such a contrast that one has to wonder how it even works in the first place, let alone find an audience that could bring popularity to the band.  Though one would think that the metal fans would find them too soft and poppy for metal stardom and the pop fans find their Satanic themes a bit too dark.  Oddly enough, they did find an audience with this contrast as they became one of the biggest rising stars in the metal realm gaining big support from fellow metal artists like James Hetfield and Phil Anselmo and in the pop scene gaining lots of coverage in big name publications like Rolling Stone.

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Album Review: Epicloud by Devin Townsend Project


Some years ago Devin Townsend found himself at a crossroads in life which led to him kicking a drug abuse habit.  The newfound, sober Devin took to his passion of music to fill the space where drugs had once impacted his life and one could say he is now hooked on a new drug, writing music.  Since he cleaned up his act the rate at which he has been releasing albums is astounding.  In less than a year, his latest album, Epicloud, makes his 3rd full length release within a 365 day period.  Even crazier, each of these 3 albums (the other 2 being Deconstruction and Ghost) is a completely different listen than just about anything in the man’s massive musical repertoire.  It seems that Devin can write quality music for just about every genre of music, but has quite a soft spot for pop music.  Songs like “Christeen” and the album Addicted definitely show this, and Epicloud is Devin’s biggest love song to pop music, all with that classic Devin Townsend metallic twist.

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Full Album Streams: Epicloud by Devin Townsend


It’s epic.  It’s loud.  It’s like floating on a cloud.  It’s super poppy.  It’s more catchy than the bubonic plague.  It’s metal. It’s got Anneke Van Giersbergen. It’s Devin Townsend and his soon to be released album, Epicloud.

I’m a few days late to the party on this stream, but better late than never.  If you have yet to check out the next masterpiece in Devin Townsend’s insanely diverse catalog of music, go to town.  I’ll hold back my thoughts on the record until I get my hard copy of the album and write up a full review, but I will say, this is excellent (would expect anything less from Mr. Townsend?) and has a lot in common with his more upbeat works like AddictedClick here or the album cover above to go to the stream provided by Progrockmag.com and check out the video below of Devin doing a silly dance to the song “Lucky Animals”.  Thanks to Guls of Musicbugsandgender for bringing this to my attention.  Enjoy!  Peace Love and Metal!!

 

Album Reviews: Second Hand Wonderland by Kontrust


Since the first seconds my eyes and ears were graced with the hilarious video for “Sock ‘N’ Roll” I knew I had to get my hands on an album by Kontrust.  Everything that was so not metal was metalized in that song and video and it completely and instantly won my heart over.  Pop rock, sock puppets, dance music, yodeling, reggae, and touches of hip-hop attached themselves to the bands über-bouncy brand of groove metal, and it was one of the most rad things I’ve heard.  Then I learned that the Austrian septet performed entire shows in lederhosen, man, how much cooler could this band get! Before going into their latest record, Second Hand Wonderland, I had my reservations that the rest would not be able to match the pure cheesy genius of “Sock ‘N’ Roll”, fortunately the rest of the album contains all the ridiculous splendor of that tune, and then some.

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State of the Music Address.


Why would you waste your money on shit?  When it comes to music it probably happens far too often.  Here is an interesting tidbit on where the music industry stands today.  Ever heard of a band called Cake?  Well, my friends, Cake’s newest release was the #1 album this week (in America).  Cake!  Not a Metallica, Taylor Swift, nor a Snoop Dogg caliber band/artist, but Cake!  A little quirky fun band from Sacramento, California. 

Now I know Cake’s music pretty well. I have two of their CDs, they play great at parties…fun, fairly neutral for a varied audience.  They are quirky and catchy, but this week Cake’s new release debuted at #1.  That is quite an accomplishment.  Cake has a niche market.  I don’t even think Cake started with the intention of taking the world by storm,yet they are #1 this week.  Interestingly enough, they made #1 with the record lowest sales ever for a #1 album (about 44,000 copies sold).   What does that say about the music industry today?

I think Cake got incredibly lucky to release an album during a week when no other major act released an album.  But also, consumers are starting not to care anymore.  Why is that?  Because music sucks these days.  Why do you think the #1 one band this week only sold 44,000 copies?