This month I have been largely listening to metal, because there are times when one simply must thrash. Ok, so I’m also researching a top ten thrash albums piece and have just finished reading part 2 of the superb Metallica biography, ‘Into The Black’ by Paul Brannigan and Ian Winwood, but whatever, I’ve been doing some serious memory lane metalwise, reliving the halcyon days of my hard rocking youth, besides checking out some new shit. Here’s what else I’ve been binging and purging on during the month of May.
I have been hammering the quality new album from Bay Area thrashers Death Angel. It’s a furiously fast blend of old school rifferama with plenty of modern twists to the arrangements to keep it sounding fresh. ‘Lost’ is one of the most sublime metal tracks I’ve heard in years, while ‘Hatred United, United Hate’ is eyebrow scorching stuff; check them out below…
I’m in the middle of writing a monumental piece on Iron Maiden for http://www.alreadyheard.com, so my Deezer is wall to wall with the metal giants right now. Despite my surprise at how good some of their later releases are, I keep going back to ‘The Number of the Beast’, which totally deserves its exalted place in rock history. There are so many great songs on this album; ’22 Acacia Avenue a personal favourite. “Let him who hath understanding reckon the number of the beast, for it is a human number….”
I don’t really have a good reason for this, just that I think it’s a great album, so end up playing it a fair bit; it’s also a bit easier on the ear after all that metal mayhem! Ok, it may not be “cool” to like Lenny Kravitz right now, but fuck it ‘Mama Said’ is a fine album on many levels, taking in rock, pop, jazz, funk and soul in Lenny’s own inimitable style. The big hitters aside, there are some seriously classy moments like the funky Stop Dragging Around’, the soulful blues of ‘When The Morning Turns to Night’ and the jazzy chill of ‘What Goes Around Comes Around’; great record.