Clayton Michaels

Posted Saturday, March 8, 2014 - 6:01pm by Clayton Michaels

There was an editorial on MetalSucks a couple of years ago that made the argument that metal vocalists were becoming irrelevant. I had just seen Russian Circles live for the first time a few days before, so I found myself readily agreeing with a lot of the points being made in the piece.

Category: Album Reviews

Tags: Highpriest, Grimoire Records, instru-metal, post-metal, Russian Circles
Posted Friday, March 7, 2014 - 11:50pm by Clayton Michaels

I don't know if a grind band can really be considered prog/art metal, but if there's one band worthy of such consideration it's Gridlink. Featuring vocalist Jon Chang of the greatly missed New Jersey avant-grindsters Discordance Axis and Japanese tech-grind guitarist extrordinare Takafumi Matsubara, Gridlink's third and final album Longhena was recently released by Handshake Inc. It's a technical/avant-garde grind masterpiece that I predict people still be talking about in 15 years. Yeah, it's that good and has the potential to be that influential. 

Category: Album Reviews

Tags: gridlink, discordance axis, grind, grindcore, progressive, tech metal
Posted Wednesday, March 5, 2014 - 7:26pm by Clayton Michaels

I don’t recall the last time I heard an album with as many jaw-dropping moments of what-the-fuckery as there are in the first song of Destrage’s new album Are You Kidding Me? No. The song in question is called “Destroy Create Transform Sublimate” (a nod to Meshuggah’s Destroy. Erase. Improve. perhaps?), and it goes from melodically-proggy Protest the Hero territory to clean channel jazz shred to what I can only describe as a prog breakdown, and then the dubstep comes in.

Category: Album Reviews

Tags: Destrage, Heavy prog, shred, Protest the Hero, Dillinger Escape Plan, BTBAM, Umphrey's McGee
Posted Wednesday, February 19, 2014 - 11:24pm by Clayton Michaels

I have to say that the advanced word on Kindly Bent to Free Us, the newest long-player from seminal progressive death metal outfit Cynic, kind of had me worried. It wasn’t the purported lack of heaviness that raised the alarm bells in my head, because heaviness isn’t really something I’ve associated with Cynic; their jazz/prog side has always seemed more dominant to me than their death metal side. The disappearance of the vocoder on Paul Masvidal’s vocals didn’t really make me pause, either.

Category: Album Reviews

Tags: Cynic, Opeth, the Beatles, prog rock, progressive death metal
Posted Monday, February 10, 2014 - 9:46pm by Clayton Michaels
We live on an island called Montreal, and we make a lot of noise because we love each other…
Category: Album Reviews

Tags: experimental rock, art rock, post-rock, Thee Silver Mount Zion Memorial Orchestra, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, gypsy jazz, psychedelic rock, drone, Neil Young, the Beatles, Django, Reinhardt, Canada

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