There is something aggressively unsettling--nay, terrifying--about fungi. And I'm not talking about the prospect of eating then, because here at the Village, we can get down with a variety of mushrooms (from a culinary perspective.) Nor am I referring to the one-bite wonders of the world, the Deathcaps and the Autumn Skullcaps and the Destroying Angels, of which the most delicate of bites brings, in many cases, coma or death. No. I'm talking about a vision of mycological apocalypse. The worldwide decomposition at the gaping maw of all-consuming saprophytic fungi--a form of fungus that gains its life-force through the gourmandization of decaying organic matter. As we die, the ultimate decomposer has its way with our remains...and so survives when all else finds inevitable demise. Given the sheer staying power of fungus, it all seems very possible, this eventual process of worldwide reverse fungi-cide. And, unlike zombies, said apocalypse has a concrete basis in biological reality. Scary shit, no matter how you slice it.
Our (very kind!) music-reviewin' friends over at the wonderful Alternative Control sent a package this week containing a plethora of stickers and an (illustrated!) Owl Maker CD. In celebration of their general badassery, we slumbering townsfolk are re-running our review of Sky Road, said band's latest effort. This short lil' write-up was put to paper prior to our acquisition of the web property upon which ye currently gaze, so forgive the brevity.
Without further ado:
Like all highfalutin peasantry, my rag-tag compatriots and I here at the Sleeping Village like our music with a little lyrical substance & mythological flavoring. As luck would have it, so do Owl Maker. Despite representing the insular world of southern CT, this hard-hitting trio is inspired by Lakota legend & moonlit desert landscapes. If anyone still needed proof that honest rock ‘n’ roll recognizes few borders, geographical or otherwise, we hereby present Exhibit A. Revel in the glory of Sky Road, Owl Maker’s latest EP.
The Village has accepted me as one of their own. I'm not entirely sure why yet, as I will sacrifice them all to our Mighty GOD, Varic. Not one of these sleepy fools even cares. How much weed are they smoking around here? A lot, the answer is " a lot."* Damn stoners, and losing their inhibitions. Regardless, I am here, and they will be an offering for Varic.
On Tumulus we are born into battle, or even from battle. Rising from the core of those slain. With my powers I can raise new crew members from the bodies of those I've run through. My next victim has been found, and if the crew member is anything like him. I'll surely have my work cut out for me. I haven't seen such a weak specimen in my life ( I do love hard work).
Look. In the hunt for excellent heavy metal with which to rudely awaken our slumbering populace, we're well aware that some genres, by nature, aren't...how shall we say. Subtle in their execution?
The nasty blackened thrash/speed metal/punk conglomerate brokered by Wraith is the definition of one such sonic palette. Gloriously exemplified by high-octane riffage, rabid vocals, and a general sense of fun-loving wild abandon, their sophomoric album is an effort as energetic as it is loud. Take opener "Devil's Hour" as a prime example of all that follows: a raucous ride, equal parts deadly and jubilant. Think Midnight, Witchtrap, or perhaps Exciter, all by way of Venom. While the more critical among us would comment on the extreme brevity and the general lack of diversity, I'm here to say, emphatically: who gives a damn? I went into Absolute Power expecting an absolute ripper, and that's exactly what I got. No more, no less. Thank god.
Finding excellence in unexpected places is one of the greatest joys in the (otherwise sordid) life of a music-reviewing scribe. While I haven’t been terrible vocal on this forum regarding personal opinions on melodic metalcore/post-hardcore, here’s a primer: I don’t explore those particular bogs frequently, as the vast majority seems to exist in a nebulous state of commercial creative regurgitation. And I don’t like bile on my boots.
But, on infrequent yet glorious occasion, a band like The Last Martyr takes elements of an established sound, add their own spin, and elevate said genre out of the murk. At risk of spoiling the rest of this damn review, let’s just say that Creatrix, the stellar debut EP before ye, succeeds enormously in this regard.
We provide thoughtful reviews of music that is heavy, gloomy...and heavy enough to wake us from slumber. Written by a certain groggy-eyed and highfalutin' peasantry.