Posts Tagged ‘relapse records’

Album of the Day: Torche – Restarter

Posted on Thursday, February 12th, 2015

Lovingly pinched from The Obelisk: While the title immediately evokes connotations for the band itself, the fact remains that Torche‘s Restarter could just as easily refer to an interpersonal relationship or someone who decides to go back and beat Super Mario 3 again. The lyrics for the song itself, which closes out Torche‘s 10-track / 39-minute Relapse Records debut, are minimal and vague, just a couple lines amid nine minutes of steady riffing that carry the record to its finish.

Like most of everything, it’s more likely not relegated to a single idea, but if the title provokes intrigue, so too does the album itself. Torche‘s fourth overall, Restarter follows 2012’s Harmonicraft, which, while engaging as ever in Torche‘s blend of heavy tonality and melodic or harmonized vocals and irresistible hooks, was shortly and perhaps too easily upstaged by the subsequent single, Harmonslaught, which promised heavier things to come.

Torche - Restarter

It’s only been three years since Harmonicraft, but it feels like a long three years, with guitarist  /vocalist Steve Brooks having released the Oblation full-length in 2014 with the reactivated trio Floor and toured to support it and Torche guitarist / vocalist Andrew Elstner, bassist Jonathan Nuñez and drummer Rick Smith having also pursued other projects in the interim (ShitstormTilts). I wouldn’t say Torche were ever really inactive or too far from public consciousness, but between the members coming back together to make this record and the signing to Relapse – a fitting home for a group so respected and prone to extended touring — it’s an easy enough argument to make that they’re trying to make a fresh start.

If that’s the case, they’re in a tough position. Like many acts with such a distinctly individual, almost singular style — think SlayerNapalm DeathSunnO))), or even to a certain extend Torche‘s recent tourmates, Clutch – Torche can’t veer too far from their signature blend of pop and heft without coming across as a completely different band.

Restarter has a few bolder steps in songs like the slower groove of the ultra-catchy call to arms ‘Minions’ and the near-brooding ‘No Servants’, Smith using half-time drums to make the material sound even more spacious than the tones he’s punctuating, but the sound is still unmistakable for anyone who’s heard Torche since 2008’s Meanderthal sophomore outing, their process having been refined and tightened after a transitional (in bridging Brooks from Floor to Torche) but clarion 2005 self-titled debut, and while opener “Annihilation Affair” absolutely crushes and caps with about a minute and a half of vicious feedback and noise backed by plodding toms, once ‘Bishop in Arms’ kicks in with Brooks and Elstner in harmony, Torche are very much Torche.

Continue reading: The Obelisk | Review | Torche – Restarter
(Courtesy of JJ Koczan / The Obelisk)

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Album of the Day: Lord Dying – Poisoned Altars

Posted on Friday, January 23rd, 2015

Lovingly pincehd from The Obelisk: Portland, Oregon’s Lord Dying deliver an efficient sludge-thrash beatdown on their second album for Relapse, Poisoned Altars. The follow-up to their 2013 debut, the Sanford Parker-recorded Summon the Faithless, the eight-track / 34-minute Poisoned Altars was recorded by Joel Grind of Toxic Holocaust and arrives as the answer to anyone’s question as to […]

Album of the Day: Anatomy of Habit – Ciphers + Axioms

Posted on Monday, January 12th, 2015

Lovingly pinched from Pitchfork: For the noise musician Mark Solotroff, Ciphers + Axioms ends in very familiar territory. For eight minutes, amplifiers and instruments scream the sort of feedback, static, and clipped tones that are endemic both to his caterwauling power-electronics band Bloodyminded and his long-running extreme experimental imprint, Bloodlust! […]

Tombs Brings Sheer Visceral Intensity To Roadburn 2015

Posted on Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

Brooklyn’s Tombs is one of the finest heavy bands in the world. Their second album, Path of Totality, pushed them into the vanguard of the burgeoning post-black metal scene, and found its way to more than a few 2012 best of the year lists as well. The band made a […]

Black Anvil Hails Death at Roadburn 2015

Posted on Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

Hailing from the filthy sewers of New York City, Black Anvil have been tearing up the US Black Metal scene since 2008, with their debut Time Insults The Mind and 2010 follow-up Triumvirate turning the band into a ferocious beast, and making them a stable in the Black Metal genre […]

Primitive Man To Ride Straight Into The Depths of Hell at Roadburn Festival 2015

Posted on Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

Behold! Denver, Colorado’s Primitive Man will unleash a filthy, malignant maelstrom of blood drenched, blackened doom and soul-annihilating, dissonant sluge at the 20th edition of Roadburn Festival on Thursday, April 9 at the 013 venue in Tilburg, The Netherlands. Thrillingly misanthropic in their approach, Primitive Man’s pure hatred, self loathing […]

Brooklyn-Based, Blackened-Sludge Metallers Mortals Bring Their Bestial and Singular Blend of Metal to Roadburn 2015

Posted on Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Effortlessly shifting from stoner rock to black metal in a flash, Mortals‘ infectiously colossal sound lies in their ability to craft a commonality throughout a blur of dark and heavy genres. Their critically acclaimed debut record, Cursed to See the Future, released this past July through Relapse Records melds “disparate […]

Zombi, Steve Moore & Majeure To Play Roadburn Festival 2015

Posted on Thursday, September 4th, 2014

We’re ecstatic to announce that legendary kosmische Giallo synth duo Zombi will be playing an exclusive set at Roadburn 2015, appearing for the first time in Europe since a handful of festival appearances back in 2011. Since first hitting the general consciousness with their Relapse 2004 debut album Cosmos, following […]

Album of the Day: Black Anvil – Hail Death

Posted on Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

Lovingly pinched from Sea of Tranquility: There’s been a bit of positive press lately (promotional stuff, mostly) about Black Anvil‘s cover of Kiss‘s ‘Under the Rose.’ The praise is well deserved: not only is the cover superb, it gives the classic song a slightly harder edge. It’s worth a listen. […]

Album of the day: Serpentine Path – Emanations

Posted on Thursday, June 26th, 2014

Lovingly pinched from Sea of Tranquility: This sophomore release from New York City’s Serpentine Path offers further proof that these guys are absolute masters of doom. As many people know by now, this band is made up of current or former members of bands like Electric Wizard, Unearthly Trance, and […]

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