Cauldron live in Allston, Ma

23 Jun

Apparently someone recently found this blog by typing into google “best manowar song for headbanging” … so that totally rules..

Anyway, on the topic of true heavy metal that makes me want to chop down trees shirtless, wear assless chaps to biker rallies, and break living room furniture, North American heshers Cauldron we’re thoughtful enough to swing through Boston’s Great Scott a month or two ago. I’d been a fan of their “Chained to the Nite” record (featuring hit fist pumper “Chained up in Chains”) for a year or so and dudes provided 100% of the stage show I was hoping for (even through ever present guitar head problems). While some might call foul on yet another “retro” band, I think I can say without a doubt that these dudes just fucking love heavy metal. There’s no posturing here, just nerdy Canadian head bangers sucking down cheap beer and doing what comes natural. Natural being, of course, totally bitchin’ solos, memorable, yet economic riffs, very solid drumming (we were entertained during the aforementioned amp problems with a very competent, jazzy drum solo), and melodic but non-wimpy vocals.

Pick up the band’s new album Burning Fortune and comment below with your favorite Manowar song for headbanging.

Amon Amarth in Allston, MA

2 Jun

The Mission was fairly simple.


Drink a lot, and then, drink more. Listen to a couple Manowar songs, hit the beer bong, high five Blake, hide nips in every crevice of your person and finally bike from home base to the Paradise Rock Club. Upon entry, drink.

Finally, when the Norse gods smile down and Amon Amarth hit the stage, head bang. Crowd surf, then drink, then head bang more, then crowd surf, then drink. Repeat until you can’t possibly believe that you just watched two hours of thunderous viking metal and you’re not quite sure when you ended up at the Silhouette “Lounge” a mile away. All you ARE sure of is that Pg. 99’s document #5 is the bands best record and it is of critical importance that you convey this to the gentlemen next to you over a basket of popcorn and a pitcher of foamy Narragansett. Your voice is golden and tonight your words are true and important and honorable.

When you whip your head around and suddenly realized your friends have left without you, it becomes very clear that once again, it is time to mount your two wheeled chariot and ride into the night. Valhalla awaits.

Aspects of War in Allston, MA

31 May

On a scale of 1 to brutality, Aspects of War (along with similarly membered Fuckheads) weigh in somewhere around a chainsaw tearing into a brick wall… with a dbeat behind it… and some kid screaming. It’s a high volume affair with an impenetrable wall of distortion and feedback. This show was fun as shit and it’s important to note that this is what touring diy bands should expect when coming to Boston. If you’re not met with a basement crammed full of kids, a few cold beers and a pile of crumpled money at the end of the night, you’re playing with the wrong locals and going through the wrong promoter.

If you’re into the raw Japanese/swedish punk via Boston basement sound, check out Fuckheads on tour now, and Aspects of War, on tour eventually?

Phantom Glue in Somerville

16 May

Phantom Glue has been one of Boston’s best kept secrets for years now. Formerly known as Angels of Meth, the band swapped monikers a few years back, though what remained the same is what’s key. Infectious guitar leads played over absolutely mammoth riffs trademark the bands High on Fire meets Karp meets Thin Lizzy blend of heavy metals. Sneaking through the dankest sewers of sound, the band manage to avoid the worst of the pit falls in their ultra down-tuned genre – boring. Unlike many sludgier bands, PG boasts twin shredders in Mike Gowell and Matt Oates who keep the momentum up and the energy high with their six string harmonizing and fist in the air solos. Does it sound like I’m a fan? Well here’s the sell, I happily released their last record on my label, TDB Records. The exciting news however is that they just recorded a brand new one at Godcity, so look out for more recorded output on the horizon. In the meantime, here’s a newer uptempo number –

A.N.S. in Oakland (Brainsqueeze)

20 Apr

ANS somehow get what 99% of thrash metal bands don’t.

Wanna know the secret? Write punk songs. Also, drink heavily, play loud, play fast and don’t sweat the small stuff. Energy is more important than anything and the unhinged assault of seeing these guys live feels like having the wheels fly off your skateboard while bombing a hill in Frisco. It’s scary and exciting and if you’re lucky you’ll just skin a knee. Mark’s guitar solos feel wild and dangerous, and newest drummer Clint flies around his kit with wreckless abandon. I really can’t recommend a band much more than these guys if you’re looking for the soundtrack to warm summer mischief. It is no coincidence that a split with ANS and my band hit stores April 12th and if you know what’s good for you, you’ll pick it up between beer runs. Eat a mushroom cap or two, drop the needle and get ready for the 8 minute mind melting closer. Here comes the sun.

Black Breath in Somerville, MA

24 Mar

It’s easy for a band to be crushed by the weight of their own hype. In the current flash-in-the-pan musical land scape, artists are rarely developed, and those lucky enough to blow up and actually sell records often have trouble making a career out of it. Because of this, it becomes so gratifying for the listener when a “hyped” band lives up to all expectations. Black Breath swung into Boston this last weekend to begin a two week stint recording at God City in Salem. The boys were smart enough to schedule a show the night they arrived, and played a set so unbelievably energetic it was impossible not to smile. I’d heard a lot about the five piece and as a first timer I was elated to hear the Dismember/Entombed style riffage played so tightly and with such thunder. Hopefully we’ll see more from the dudes during their stay in Mass and I’m more than confident the record currently being tracked will cement Black Breath in place as a long term american metal act.

Motorhead in Boston, MA

13 Mar

It’s a 20 minute straight shot by bicycle from my practice space home to the House of Blues in Boston. With a belly full of Old English I pointed my handlebars east and raced to catch the denim sermon that is a Valiant Thorr’s live show. Stuck waiting outside I was forced to listen to the band’s set through the venue’s side doors before heading around the corner to have a few last tall cans in advance of dealing with HOB prices. Unfortunately I didn’t waste quite enough time and ended up catching half of Clutch’s mook rock anthems upon finally making it inside. Regardless, the crowd and I were significantly lubricated when Motorhead confidently took the stage and offered up the only set Motorhead seems to know how. Their iconic punk/metal tinged rock ‘n roll is as timeless as the bourbon I snuck past security and much in the same, will always be close to my heart. With a catalog as large as theirs, one is always bound to find favorites missing from the set list, but staples like “Over The Top” and “Stay Clean” fit in perfectly with (relatively) newer ragers like “In the Name of Tragedy”.

Lemmy, who if human, must be getting up there in years. He didn’t exactly muster mountains of enthusiasm, but the show was everything it needed to be: cripplingly loud, embarrassingly drunken and about a years time from the last one. The day this band breaks up is the day I seriously question my life choices. Until then, I’ll see you on the floor.

Over The Top –

Metropolis –

Drum Solo –

Doomriders in Allston, MA

18 Feb

Six or so years ago, Doomriders rocketed out of the Deathwish hype machine and into the wardrobe closet of every hardcore kid in America. It was about time that someone informed the community that while Motorhead obviously rule, so did Swedish death n roll acts like Entombed and American stoner stalwarts Goatsnake. Better yet, it was refreshing seeing a band of bonafide adults screaming about the virtues of skateboaring. Thankfully this was no gimmick act and the long awaited 2009 release was heavier, Sabbath-ier and perhaps more melodic (in unexpected ways) then ever.

Although live appearances can be few and far between for the band, it seems the addition of new drummer “Q” was a good enough excuse as any to take a couple of days off from working on a new Converge record, caring for a newborn child and any other responsibilities the various band members have been occupied with. The Boston gig on their recent three day run was downright vicious and here are a few tunes from the 45 minute set. Ride or die bitches.

(My personal favorite)

Revocation in Allston, MA

11 Feb

While Massachusetts’s role in the national metal arena has generally been
limited to chuggy metalcore from the outlying suburbs and towns towards
the center of the state, it’s been encouraging to see Revocation rise
out of the Boston scene. Playing highly technical, thrashy death metal is
a feat in and of it’s own, but hitting the larger stage as a gimmick-less
metal band from a city of cynics is almost as difficult. After a solid
year of touring, the dudes headlined their first local show in quite a
while and included a surprise closing cover with Adam from Sexcrement on
vocals –

Sexcrement in Allston, MA

10 Feb

For those that like their death metal with a wink and a pat on the butt (count me in) Boston’s Sexcrement should fulfill all guttural slam needs. Without being overly neanderthal, this four piece lay down brutal breakdown upon brutal breakdown, filling the gaps with stick twirls, giant grooves and the occasional blast. For fans of Obscene Extreme and that back aisle in the porn store your weird uncle doesn’t even check out.