It's hard to believe that Chicago's DISTURBED have already been at it for over a decade. The band that rose to stardom by inviting listeners to get "Down With the Sickness" has come a long way from the dark clubs of the Windy City (anyone remember the bassist auditions at Oasis 160?) to headlining arenas and playing host to their growing MUSIC AS A WEAPON tours.
THE SWORD is back, and goddamn if they aren't mighty as hell.
On the Austin bands latest effort, WARP RIDERS, The Sword presents a concept album brooding with science-fiction from front to back, wrapped in a tasty nugget of hardcore stoner metal. From the moment the artwork hit the web looking like a long forgotten cover for an early 1980's ATARI 2600 game cartridge, my interest was piqued. Would there be a let down? Not hardly.
ATOM SMASH would like you to know that they are a rock band. From the cover art featuring a woman spread-eagle with angel wings and a missile rising between her legs, the "rock" is quite evident on their debut release and not-so-subtle penis nod LOVE IS IN THE MISSILE, due out August 31 via Jive Records.
On their sophomore album DISPOSING OF BETRAYERS (out September 14 via Unruly Sounds/The End Records), fellow Chicagoans THESE ARE THEY mine the rich history of Organized Crime in our city to create an album that carries with it a unique topical approach wrapped within it's brutal sonic delivery.
There's a part of me that still prefers the oldAPOCALYPTICA, as in the cello-playing quartet of Finnish metallers, whipping their hair around while performing covers of Metallica, Faith No More, and Pantera. That said, the current incarnation of the band still manages to delight, despite carrying a sound that doesn't quite feel like the band I initially came to enjoy - instead blending more into a "symphonic metal" realm as opposed to a unique flavor of organic sounds.
On their self-titled fifth album, Boston's STREET DOGS bring a healthy dose of punk rock fury to the masses without showing the signs of age that many bands display by album number five.
Their second release through Epitaph offshoot HELLCAT RECORDS (due out August 31, 2010) finds the band (fronted by former DROPKICK MURPHYS vocalist MIKE McCOLGAN) working a groove that in other circumstances could be considered "played-out," but here sounds completely fresh.