Friday, 30 January 2015

Just what Sepultura needed - the backing of more than a dozen mad French percussionists playing oil drums and yet this is exactly what they've done for the new live album Metal Veins

Les Tambours du Bronx add even more tribalism to the Brazillian brand of thrash metal... In places it's utter chaos but in others inspired. Refuse/Resist and Fever work spectacularly well - This is clearly the sound of the worlds angriest samba band

The live version of the Prodigy's Firestarter  is quite, quite surreal and the big finale of Roots Bloody Roots is fantastic

Sepultura are a band I've dipped in and out of throughout their 20 odd year career but with this they still show they have the ability to surprise

The new Blueneck album King Nine arrived as a late Christmas present but still manages to be on e of the best releases of 2014

The first Blueneck album to feature vocals on each track it's a leap forward in terms of commerciality from previous releases. The album opens with Counting Out which is one of the standouts of the album. A depressing tale of a dying man and his secrets unravelling, it's still strangely uplifting. This bank have the same ability as Coldplay to have that nagging piano or chiming guitar motif that just lodges in your brain and it's played to perfection on the opening track.

Sirens follows and this is where the Coldplay similarities end as this is closer to previous releases - brooding, heavy atmosphere leading to a cathartic crescendo of noise.

There is a feel of Radiohead in places but the vocals are less of a whine (Thom Yorke does nothing for me) and full of feeling. Though most of that is either utter desolation or melancholy so it's not a jolly listen....

The big centre piece is Mutatis, a 9 minute beast of a track. Starting slow with piano and vocals, it builds layer on layer until you have something that sounds like a lost Ennio Morricone epic. A lone trumpet plaintively plays over crashing percussion before everything is lost under noise of what sounds like a jet engine starting up !

With stunning artwork supplied by the mercurial Lasse Hoile adding to the look and feel of the album this should be the release to push the band into the mainstream and if it doesn't then the music industry really hasn't got a clue.