Friday, March 23, 2018

Our MeadowGrass Music Festival 2018 playlist is good, but you can make it better

Posted By on Fri, Mar 23, 2018 at 1:00 AM

With MeadowGrass Music Festival's 2018 lineup officially announced, it's time to start getting excited for the annual Memorial Day weekend hoopla, which has been going strong for 10 years now.

In honor of their milestone anniversary, we've compiled a playlist of some top tracks by both headliners and locals. Enjoy this mix of bluegrass, Americana, country, folk and more, and get ready for another great year.

What did we miss?

Comment with your favorite tracks from this year's artists, as we'll be updating this list up until May 25.

Event Details 10th Annual MeadowGrass Festival
@ La Foret Conference & Retreat Center
6145 Shoup Road
Black Forest
Colorado Springs, CO
When: May 25-27, 12 p.m.-12 a.m.
Concerts and Food & Drink

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Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Slayer, Neko Case added to Fiddler's lineup, and the best of this week's concert announcements

Posted By on Wed, Mar 7, 2018 at 10:25 AM

Slayer plays Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre Aug. 18. - CHRISTIAN BERTRAND/SHUTTERSTOCK
  • Christian Bertrand/Shutterstock
  • Slayer plays Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre Aug. 18.
Colorado’s legion of Slayer fans can now breathe a sigh of relief. Earlier this year, the California speed-metal stalwarts announced a farewell tour schedule that skipped over our fair state, but a string of newly added dates will include an Aug. 18th appearance at Fiddler's Green. The venue is also adding Neko Case, Ray LaMontgne, The Revivalists, and Joe Bonamassa to its summer schedule.

Meanwhile, here’s this week’s full list of new concert announcements:
  • Oh, Whale, Black Sheep, March 16
  • Bloodline, Black Sheep, March 26
  • Otherwise, Marquis Theater, Denver, April 2
  • Slaughter to Prevail, Marquis Theater, Denver, April 5
  • Zaytoven, Marquis Theater, Denver, April 20
  • Split Lip Rayfield, Black Sheep, April 22
  • Morbid Angel, Summit Music Hall, Denver, Apr. 30
  • Days N’ Daze, Summit Music Hall, Denver, June 1
  • Self Defense Family, Marquis Theater, Denver, June 14
  • Neko Case with Ray LaMontagne, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, July 10
  • Citizen, Black Sheep, July 22
  • Joe Bonamassa, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, Aug. 5
  • Slayer, Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre, Denver, Aug. 18
  • The Revivalists, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, Sept. 13

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Monday, March 5, 2018

99 Bottles to celebrate 10th anniversary with farewell show

Posted By on Mon, Mar 5, 2018 at 1:40 PM

  • Cameron Moix

For Colorado Springs’ Oi! community, 99 Bottles’ March 31 show at the Triple Nickel will be a bittersweet occasion, even if most don't remember any of it the next morning.

The group, who were the subject an Indy cover story prior to their participation in a 2016 anti-Klan benefit, will be simultaneously celebrating both their 10th anniversary and their final show with founding frontman Mario Dalla Betta, who will soon be packing his Vespa and heading out of town.

In addition to the local headliners’ classic anthems like “Working Drunk” and “Skinhead Violence,” the all-ages show will also feature tinnitus-inducing sets from Night of the Living Shred, The Stickups, and Out for Blood. As the show poster puts it: “Come for the bands! Stay for the booze! Leave with a headache!”

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Friday, February 23, 2018

Imagine Dragons, Smashing Pumpkins, and Tricky announce Colorado dates

Posted By on Fri, Feb 23, 2018 at 10:18 AM

Imagine Dragons singer Dan Reynolds - TXKING/SHUTTERSTOCK
  • txking/shutterstock
  • Imagine Dragons singer Dan Reynolds
The British are coming — or will be this summer — led by UK trip-hop pioneer Tricky and 2018 Brit Award winner Dua Lipa. Both have scheduled Colorado shows for the coming months, as have grunge crooner Billy Corgan's Smashing Pumpkins, arena-pop favorites Imagine Dragons, and Todd Rundgren's proggy rock band Utopia. And with that, here's this week's full list of new show announcements:

  1. Vista Kicks, Summit Music Hall’s Moon Room, Denver, March 22
  2. Sharone & The Wind, Marquis Theater, Denver, April 13
  3. Fighting Against the Phoenix, Black Sheep, April 14
  4. RZA, Paramount Theatre, Denver April 17
  5. Kash’d Out and Tunnel Vision, Black Sheep, April 19
  6. Chris Webby, Black Sheep, April 21
  7. Sons of Apollo, Summit Music Hall’s Moon Room, Denver, April 25
  8. Post Malone, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, May 2
  9. Leeway, Marquis Theater, Denver, May 3
  10. Tricky, Marquis Theater, Denver, May 9
  11. Todd Rundgren’s Utopia, Paramount Theatre, May 24
  12. Bassnectar, 1STBANK Center, Broomfield, June 1-3
  13. Anvil, Streets of London, Denver, June 6
  14. The Monkees’ Mike Nesmith and Micky Dolenz, Paramount Theatre, Denver, June 12
  15. Dispatch, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, June 17
  16. Dua Lipa, Fllmore Auditorium, Denver, June 26
  17. Imagine Dragons, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, July 16
  18. Luke Bryan, Sports Authority Field at Mile High, Denver, Aug. 4
  19. Yonder Mountain String & The Infamous Stringdusters, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, Aug. 4
  20. Coheed and Cambria & Taking Back Sunday, Sculpture Park at Denver Performing Arts Complex, Denver, Aug. 6
  21. Smashing Pumpkins, Pepsi Center, Denver, Sept. 5

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Thursday, February 22, 2018

Brit Awards dominated by Grammy favorites

Posted By on Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 11:50 AM

  • Photo: Ralph P / Wikipedia Commons
  • The Foo Fighters

While U.K music fans may not appreciate their beloved Brit Awards constantly being referred to as “The British Grammys,” the Feb. 21 announcement of this year’s winners went a long way toward confirming that nickname.

Three of the eight Brit Award winners — Kendrick Lamar, The Foo Fighters, Lorde — are non-UK acts who were also 2018 Grammy Nominees, while Damon Albarn’s animated Gorillaz (who actually are British) have nearly a dozen Grammy nominations under their belt. It’s also a safe bet that three of the remaining 2018 winners — Harry Styles, Rag’n’Bone Man, and Dua Lipa — will all be feted at next year’s Grammy celebration.

In fact, the only Brit award winner who will likely never find favor among Grammy voters is Stormzy, whose mix of grime, jungle and garage music doesn't play well in America.

Compare that to the preceding decade, where half of the Brit Awards’ “Single of the Year” winners — Little Mix, Rudimental, Tinie Tempah, JLS, and Girls Aloud — linger in obscurity here in the States

All of which raises the possibility that the U.K. and U.S. music scenes have begun to coalesce in a way that hasn’t been seen since the ‘60s, when the Beatles, Stones and several other British Invasion artists ruled the American airwaves. Whether or not that would be a good thing remains to be seen.

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Thursday, February 15, 2018

Clint Black, Ariel Pink, Bruno Mars and Cardi B top new show announcements

Posted By on Thu, Feb 15, 2018 at 10:38 AM

  • Raven Varona

Bruno Mars and Cardi B are adding a second Pepsi Center show? Be still, our beating hearts. Or, for those of us whose hearts beat to an entirely different rhythm tracks, the latest show announcements include Ozzy Osbourne’s No More Tours 2 (his previous “farewell tour” was back in 1992), Clint Black, The Descendents, MGMT, Joan Jett, Luis Miguel, Neal Morse, and Ariel Pink.

Here’s this week's full list:

1000 Miles of Fire, Marquis Theater, Denver, March 10
Neal Morse, Soiled Dove, Denver, March 17
Apathy and Celph Titled, Black Sheep, March 25
Jon Wolfe, Black Sheep, March 29
Consider The Source, Black Sheep, Apr. 12
Hayley Kiyoko, Summit Music Hall, Denver, Apr. 28
Desert Daze Caravan with Ariel Punk and DIIV, Summit Music Hall, Denver, May 3
MGMT, Fillmore Auditorium, Denver, May 7
Luis Miguel, Pepsi Center, Denver, May 20
Hawthorne Heights, Marquis Theater, Denver, May 24
Red Wanting Blue, Marquis Theater, Denver, May 24
Alice Merton and Vance Joy, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, May 30
Hawthorne Heights, Black Sheep, June 3
Joan Jett & The Blackhearts with Styx and Tesla, Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre, Denver, June 5
The Descendents, Black Sheep, June 7
Clint Black, Paramount Theatre, Denver, June 8
Sleep, Ogden Theatre, June 11
Melvins, Gothic Theatre, Englewood, Aug. 10
Bruno Mars and Cardi B, Pepsi Center, Denver, Sept. 7 & 8
Ozzy Osbourne, Pepsi Center, Denver Oct. 2

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Saturday, February 10, 2018

Ministry’s Al Jourgensen issues mea culpa for everything

Posted By on Sat, Feb 10, 2018 at 9:30 AM

It can sometimes be difficult to distinguish between outspoken activism and publicity-hungry opportunism, especially when it involves a pop musician with a new album and tour to promote.

Take, for instance, recent statements by Ministry’s Al Jourgensen. Last month, his label sent out an email with the attention-getting subject line:

“MINISTRY's Al Jourgensen talks about the recent sexual harassment claims.”

And then, of course, there's this one, which was posted Feb. 9th by his label’s German website:

“MINISTRY - Al Jourgensen's ‘Mea Culpa’ to European journalists for why Americans elected Trump president!”

As it turn out, Jourgensen is not taking personal responsibility for Trump’s election, nor were the sexual harassment claims he’s responding to actually directed toward him.

But Jourgensen does want you to know about the forthcoming AmeriKKKant, which will be released on March. This will be the 14th studio album from the band that was transformed by producer Adrian Sherwood from well-coiffed ‘80s New Wave act to enduring Industrial Rock standard bearers.

And while you’re waiting for new music, here’s the promotional video for “MINISTRY - Al's take on the Sexual Harassment claims in the media (OFFICIAL TRAILER)”

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Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Paul Simon farewell tour tops new show announcements

Posted By on Wed, Feb 7, 2018 at 4:20 PM

Paul Simon’s February announcement that he’s about to embark on his "Homeward Bound Farewell Tour" — which will include a May 30th Denver stop at Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre — comes more than 60 years after he and Art Garfunkel recorded their debut single, “Hey Schoolgirl,” under the name Tom & Jerry.

In a Feb. 5 statement, the singer-songwriter explained that the death of his lead guitarist and longtime friend Vincent N’guini was a contributing factor, and that being away from his wife and family was taking much of the joy out of touring. Ending his performing career, he wrote, “feels a little unsettling, a touch exhilarating and something of a relief,” although he still expects to play the occasional benefit concert.

Tickets for the Denver date will be available at the AXS event site beginning Thursday, Feb. 8, at 10 am.

Meanwhile, here’s the full list of this week’s new show announcements:

Altan, Daniels Hall, Denver, March 3
Ceschi, Summit Music Hall’s Moon Room, Denver, March 12
Olivia Jean, Summit Music Hall’s Moon Room, Denver, March 21
Dying Fetus with Thy Art is Murder, Summit Music Hall, Denver, March 24
Thirdstory, Marquis Theater, Denver, March 31
Dixie Dregs, Boulder Theater, Denver, Apr. 14
Turnstile, Marquis Theater, Denver, Apr. 14
Ho99o9 with 3Teeth, Marquis Theater, Denver, Apr. 22
Madison Beer, Marquis Theater, Denver, May 1
Zoe, Summit Music Hall, Denver, May 9
Charly Bliss, Marquis Theater, Denver, May 11
Poison with Cheap Trick and Pop Evil, Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre, Englewood, May 23
King Tuff, Globe Hall, Denver, May 29
Paul Simon, Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre, Englewood, May 30
Justin Timberlake, Pepsi Center, Denver, Jan. 29, 2019

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Monday, February 5, 2018

Shaggy 2 Dope and Dark Carnival Games coming to Colorado

Posted By on Mon, Feb 5, 2018 at 8:36 AM


Juggalo Alert: Colorado Springs denizens of the Dark Carnival already know that Insane Clown Posse emcee Shaggy 2 Dope — the one who wonders how “fucking magnets” work in the band’s 2010 hit “Miracles” — will soon be making his way to the Black Sheep for a Feb. 13 show promoting his first solo album in a decade.

But that’s just the beginning. ICP’s label Psychopathic Records has announced that the Dark Carnival Games Convention will be held at Denver’s Crowne Plaza Convention Center from May 11-13. Promoters are promising a “spectacle of games, arcades, contests, gameshows, autograph signings, seminars, movies, Juggalo gladiatorial combat, inflatable games, and concerts” that will capture the spirit of the earliest Juggalo gatherings.

Tickets are $50 for all three days and include admission to concerts, which will feature performances by the Insane Clown Posse and numerous other Psychopathic recording artists. Juggalo Fam members are also eligible for discounted rates at the adjacent Crowne Hotel, which has same-day laundry and dry cleaning service, perfect for removing those embarrassing Faygo stains.

You can visit the official DCG Con site for more details.

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Thursday, February 1, 2018

Tech N9ne, Pretenders, and Elton John announce Colorado shows

Posted By on Thu, Feb 1, 2018 at 12:34 PM

The Pretenders will join Def Leppard and Journey at Coors Field. - PHOTO BY JILL FURMANOVSKY
  • Photo by Jill Furmanovsky
  • The Pretenders will join Def Leppard and Journey at Coors Field.

The big winner in this week's Colorado concert showdown is our own hometown Black Sheep, with new show announcements that include hip-hop favorites Black Pegasus, Shaggy 2 Dope, and Tech N9ne. Further north, you'll find the Celtic band Altan, alt-rock act Minus The Bear, and, just one year from now, the classic pop icon Elton John.

Here's this week's full new concert rundown. Tickets for all shows are on sale now, unless otherwise noted.

• Shaggy 2 Dope, Black Sheep, Feb. 13
• Grindmother, Black Sheep, Feb. 14
• Ren Thomas, Black Sheep, Feb. 26
• Altan, Daniels Hall, Denver, March 3
• Black Pegasus, Black Sheep, March 3
• Shoreline Mafia, Marquis Theater, Denver, March 13
• Act Of Defiance, Black Sheep, March 20
• Adelitas Way, Black Sheep, March 24
Roy Wood$, Summit Music Hall, Denver, March 27 (On Sale Feb. 2)
• Thirdstory, Marquis Theater, Denver, March 31 (On Sale Feb. 2)
• Shawn James, Black Sheep, Apr. 9
• The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, Black Sheep, Apr. 15
• Chaos & Carnage Festival feat. Carnifex, Summit Music Hall, Denver, Apr. 29 (On Sale Feb. 2)
• Satyricon, Marquis Theater, Denver, May 18
• Minus The Bear, Summit Music Hall, Denver, May 30
Lettuce & The Floozies, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, June 8 (On Sale Feb. 2)
• Tech N9ne, Black Sheep, June 21
• Pretenders with Def Leppard and Journey, Coors Field, Denver, July 21 (On Sale Feb. 3)
• Luke Bryan, Sports Authority Field at Mile High, Denver, Aug. 4
• Chris Stapleton, Pepsi Center, Denver, Aug. 10 (On Sale Feb. 9)
• Elton John, Pepsi Center, Denver, Feb. 7, 2019 (On Sale Feb. 2)

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Monday, January 29, 2018

"Music Modernization Act" introduced by songwriting senator

Posted By on Mon, Jan 29, 2018 at 9:18 AM

  • Photo: Katherine Welles / Shutterstock
For those who think music has been getting a bit stale of late, a new bill introduced by Senators Orrin Hatch, Lamar Alexander, and Sheldon Whitehouse might sound like the perfect solution.

Unfortunately, the “Music Modernization Act,” which was introduced earlier this week, isn’t quite as beguiling as its title may suggest. In fact, the legislation would have little or no impact on the music itself, but would instead update copyright laws while changing the manner, and amount, of royalties paid by broadcasters and streaming services to music creators and copyright holders.

Not surprisingly, musicians and those who love them (publishers, drug dealers etc.) are all for the legislation, while lobbyists for the National Association of Broadcasters are spending their hard-earned dollars to kill it.

The plight of music creators is particular near and dear to the heart of Senator Alexander (R-TN), who co-wrote Nashville country artist Lee Brice’s 2010 semi-tearjerker “Falling Apart Together,” which begins:

“My baby's sweet talkin' the cable man
While I'm a diggin' around up here
Sweatin' my ass off in the attic
Trying to find the rabbit ears”

The senator actually came by his credit the easy way, since his sole contribution was relating a story to the songwriters about an elderly couple he’d met who were going through hard times and told him they’re “falling apart together.” Brice ran with it, and the rest is history. (These sort of things happen in Nashville all the time.) According to his 2016 financial disclosure statement, the senator's royalties that year added up to $101.75.

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Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Brian Wilson, Raekwon, and Gillian Welch announce Colorado dates

Posted By on Wed, Jan 24, 2018 at 11:27 AM

Brian Wilson and his band have  booked to perform a  the Pikes Peak Center on April 18. - PHOTO: TAKAHIRO KYONO
  • PHOTO: Takahiro Kyono
  • Brian Wilson and his band have booked to perform a the Pikes Peak Center on April 18.
Fans of Wu-Tang Clan and neo-dustbowl folk will be glad to hear that Raekwon and Gillian Welch have both announced Denver shows over the past week.

But here in Colorado Springs, the big news is that Brian Wilson, who is universally regarded as one of the true pop geniuses of the past half century, has been booked to play the Pikes Peak Center on April 18.

While Wilson's cousin Mike Love owns the rights to the Beach Boys name, and continues to use it for live shows that center around early surf-rock hits like "I Get Around" and cheesy MOR fodder like "Kokomo," Wilson's band has, in recent years, leaned toward heartbreakingly beautiful renditions of classic material from albums like Pet Sounds and Smile. (You can read more about all that in the Indy article “Inside Brian Wilson.”)

The bottom line: If you see just one Colorado Springs show this year — which would admittedly be a weird thing to do — you need to make it this one.

Meanwhile, here's this week's full rundown of new show announcements:

• Raekwon, Summit Music Hall, Denver, Jan. 27
• Lockjaw, Marquis Theater, Denver, Feb. 3
• Tatanka, Black Sheep, Feb. 9
• Lucia, Marquis Theater, Denver, Feb. 25
• CupcakKe, Marquis Theater, Denver, Feb. 26
• Prince Fox, Marquis Theater, Denver, Feb. 28
• Ramzoid, Marquis Theater, Denver, March 7
• Rings Of Saturn, Marquis Theater, Denver, March 11
• Forever Came Calling, Marquis Theater, Denver, April 3
• Frankie Cosmos, Black Sheep, Apr. 16
• Brian Wilson, Pikes Peak Center, April 18
• Red Sun, Black Sheep, Apr. 18
• Hall & Oates with Train, Pepsi Center, Denver, May 10
• Wolf Parade, Ogden Theatre, Denver, May 22
• Imparables, Paramount Theater, Denver, May 26
• Odesza, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, June 15
• Umphrey’s McGee, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, July 5-7
• Def Leppard with Journey, Coors Field, Denver, July 21
• Erasure, Ellie Caulkins Opera House, Aug. 10
• Shakey Graves, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, Aug. 30
• Gillian Welch, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, Sept. 17

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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Jack White, Bishop Briggs, David Byrne and Bon Jovi top new show announcements

Posted By on Thu, Jan 18, 2018 at 8:11 AM

  • Jo McCaughey
  • Jack White

By all appearances, the new year’s drought is finally over, at least for a week. A plethora of new shows have just been announced, ranging from veteran acts (Bon Jovi, George Clinton, David Byrne) to new-ish artists (Bishop Briggs, Anna & Elizabeth, Kane Brown), with the likes of Jack White and Tech N9ne falling somewhere between. And so, with that good news, here are this week's latest area concert offerings:

• Anna & Elizabeth, Tuft Theatre, Denver, Feb. 9
• Lights, Summit Music Hall, Denver, Feb. 13
• Khemmis, Gothic Theatre, Englewood, Feb. 26
• Steel Panther, Fillmore Auditorium, Denver, March 9 (on sale Jan. 19)
• George Clinton & P-Funk, Ogden Theatre, Denver, March 11
• Ring of Saturn, Marquis Theater, Denver, March 11
• Bon Jovi, Pepsi Center, Denver, March 14
• Kane Brown, Fillmore Auditorium, Denver, March 16 (on sale Jan. 19)
• Gloria Trevi & Alejandra Guzman, Pepsi Center, Denver, March 23
• Bishop Briggs, Ogden Theatre, Denver, May 8
• Tech N9NE, Fillmore Auditorium, Denver, June 23 (on sale Jan. 19)
• Jack White, 1stBANK Center, Broomfield, Aug. 8 (on sale Jan. 26)
• David Byrne, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, Aug. 28
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Wednesday, January 10, 2018

What's in a band name?

Posted By on Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 4:09 PM

In our Jan. 10 cover story, no less than 25 Colorado Springs acts — from the Haunted Windchimes and The Nobodys to Shiii Whaaa and Bullhead*ded — reveal the secret origins of their band names.

And while many of them are unpredictable, none are unpronounceable.

For the latter, we can turn to The Guardian, who printed a story a Jan. 9 piece called “The Most Unpronounceable Band Names Ever.”

Granted, their stories beat ours to press by one day — and even Colorado Springs’ Thegoodmorningaccordionterrorist can’t compete with international artists like SHXCXCHCXSH and Eximperituserqethhzebibšiptugakkathšulweliarzaxułum — but there's no question that our local bands have better origin stories.

In any case, we recommend reading both.

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Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Crown Magnetar releases The Prophet of Disgust, Black Sheep show date

Posted By on Tue, Jan 9, 2018 at 8:57 AM

  • Courtesy Crown Magnetar
Local deathcore band Crown Magnetar has been on the scene for around three years now, playing many a show with touring acts and locals alike. On January 2, they released their debut EP, The Prophet of Disgust, and in celebration, they'll be playing a release show at the Black Sheep on Thursday, Jan. 25.

Thing is, deathcore exists in a peculiar spot in the gamut of way-too-specific metal sub-genres and sub-sub-genres. To oversimplify, the metal press/blogosphere doesn't give the genre a lot of love, yet genre stalwarts like Suicide Silence, Chelsea Grin and Fit For an Autopsy sell albums and fill seats — hell, Suicide Silence's 2014 album, You Can't Stop Me, hit #16 on the Billboard top 200 chart that year. Often, deathcore prioritizes moshpit fuel in the form of breakdowns and chug riffs over writing unique, cohesive songs. Y'know, as opposed to every other metal sub-sub-genre that prioritizes adherence to genre tropes over songwriting.

Anyway, here's a track-by-track review of the new Crown Magnetar EP — listen along via Bandcamp at the bottom of the page.

Track 1: "The Eyes of Discontent"
The band chose this as their lead single and even got a music video made. The longest song on the album, it feels like I get a new riff every 20 seconds, from blisteringly fast to ultra-slow and br00tal for a breakdown. There are some cool harmonies, and on some of the chugs, they've got a noise gate effect that makes the guitar and bass sound very sterile and digital — according to guitarist Nick Burnett, it's an Axe FX plugin. There's a lot going on in this song, and the band's technical chops are undeniable. Props for the creepy melodic and atmospheric touches, too. Vocalist Dan Tucker's low death-growls and higher-pitched rasp sound wholly functional, conforming to expectations. But some of those rapid transitions feel choppy, and the song doesn't feel super cohesive.

Track 2: "Immolation"
"Immolation" starts out heavy, fast and slamming, with more of that gated chug. Faster passages get little guitar flourishes here and there, which is cool. It’s mercilessly intense but feels pretty cohesive as a single piece of music. The song proper gives way to a functional ambient interlude after going hard for 2:20. Unfortunately, the drum lead-in for track 3 comes at the end of this song instead of the start of the next one. Damned if this isn't a solid track, though.

Track 3: "Detestable Impurity"
Right off, track 3 is a wall of swirling guitar chugs, bringing in more higher-register atmospheric notes over the breakdown, which then shifts into a BIGGER, SLOWER, HEAVIER breakdown. Expect a few cool, irregular timings here and there. Expect also near-constant jumping from riff to riff and tempo to tempo. The end of the song features repeated jumps between palm-muted percussive chugs and high-speed technical leads.

Track 4: "Mountain of Flesh"
Right at the beginning, there's a thrashy guitar intro that keeps popping up throughout the song's 2:32, but it doesn't stick around long enough to hook me in. The breakdown's fine. Their use of melodic guitar parts as atmosphere serve them well. The periodic chugs in outro section feel a little aimless, then the band comes together to conclude. The technical skill here, again, is undeniable, but it's not the most cohesive song on the album.

Track 5: "Execrator"
Fast, chuggy right off. Getting some good change-ups from the drummer, and there's a palpable groove. I’m between this and "Immolation" for album favorites. I’m not getting lost in the change-ups. My most favorable comparison, and these little sections have been coming up all album long, is to the last two Cattle Decapitation albums. This track’s actually pretty fun, all told, especially the tremolo riff starting around 1:30. The band sounds tight throughout this track — it’s less show-offy, and that’s very much to their benefit in terms of cohesion.

Track 6: "Fetus in Fetu"
The album closer starts in a chuggy breakdown. That sample on top of the intro is nice, and the guitar leads here stand out when they happen. There's a brutal breakdown out of nowhere, about 15 seconds before a speedup. I feel like the rhythm section holds this song's constant transitions together better than on other songs on the album, excepting a disorienting beat change around 2:20. A brief ambient break precedes an outro that's all beatdown.

It's easy to mosh to Crown Magnetar's debut effort, and the musicianship is definitely there. The riffs are good, but I didn't find any to be particularly hooky or stand-out. That said, there are cool moments to spare, and to produce something this technically tight as a debut EP is a testament to the band's pure ability to perform. Check them out at their album release party, The moshpit is sure to be choice.

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