Categories
Classic Album Review

Album of the Week: Metallica – Metallica (1991)

Metallica (aka “The Black Album”) was released by the metal giants, Metallica, on August 12, 1991 by Elektra Records. It was the band’s fifth studio album – Kill ‘Em All (’83), Ride the Lightning (’84), Master of Puppets (’86), and …And Justice for All (’88) – and the second in the series for Elektra Records (Justice). Of course James Hetfield mans the helm as singer and guitarist, Kirk Hammett plays lead guitar, Lars Ulrich is on drums, and the wildman Jason Newsted plays bass (he started with the band after the death of Cliff Burton, during the Master of Puppets tours). 

Metallica is fundamentally far removed from everything that came before it. The band, known for its speed and mastery of the Thrash Metal genre, began to separate from that era on Justice; but they came totally apart from it for this record. The incredible riff writings of Hetfield are definitely still here, and thrash has been replaced by bone crushing heavy metal of the highest order. The epics of the previous albums, with the multiple, twisting, layered riffs and extended length songs are replaced by quickly-to-the-point power chords and hooks. I think the most interesting development is (comparatively speaking) how slow the songs are on this record! I mean, they are certainly heavy, but far slower than the thrash of old. Though the band says it was never a goal for this album, the new direction was a HUGE commercial success. In my opinion, this record serves as a clear dividing line, that stands on its own, between the “old” Metallica and the “new.” 

Metallica is the band’s best-selling record. It debuted at #1 in ten countries, and spent four consecutive weeks at #1 on Billboards Top 200. The record is one of the best-selling albums worldwide, and one of the best selling in the United States. In December 2019, Metallica is the fourth album in American history to spend longer than 550 weeks on the Billboard Top 200. It is certified 16× Platinum by RIAA as of 2012, and has sold over 16 million copies in the US to date. 

Favorite songs: Sad But True (will bash your brains in) ; Don’t Tread on Me (is a bop) ; Enter Sandman ; My Friend of Misery

Rating: 10/10!! 

Stay Metal,

THE SAW

Categories
Miscellaneous

The Saw’s Choice Cuts: Upon A Burning Body

What’s going on Butcher Crew?! It’s your Master Butcher, The Saw here and I have a new blog segment that I like to call my Choice Cuts. Where I pick a band and I share some of my favorite songs with you. 

For my first post in this segment, I wanted to pick a band that is near and dear to my heart – Upon A Burning Body (UABB). I have been listening to this band since I was in high school and they were one of the bands that I have seen and hung out with the most. UABB is one of my favorite metalcore bands, and they have some of the catchiest choruses and riffs. Any time I hear a UABB song, I automatically start dancing and singing the songs, I just love them so much! 

Here is a list of my favorite UABB songs (in no particular order because that would be tough) 

  • Texas Blood Money 
    • This was the first song they dedicated to me when I saw them in 2018!
  • Sin City 
    • They dedicated this song to me another time!
  • All Pride No Pain 
  • From Darkness
  • Burn 
  • Desperado 
  • Scars
  • Judgement 
  • Bring The Rain 
  • Carlito’s Way 
  • Intermission 

Favorite album: The World Is My Enemy Now 

Stay Metal, 

THE SAW 

Categories
New Album Review

Album Review: Tash Sultana – Terra Firma (2021)

So, we all know that I love me some Tash Sultana, and when I found out that they were coming out with a new album, I absolutely geeked. Tash Sultana is just a breath of fresh air and their music always speaks to me. Their new album, “Terra Firma” is no different. 

This album is very different from their previous album, “Flow State” (which we all know is one of my favorite albums of all-time). Sultana incorporates different musical themes and instruments throughout each song; I think this is cool because it makes each song different and unique. Almost every song makes me feel like I am the main character of a movie and I absolutely love it. Let’s take a look at some of the songs that stood out to me on the album. 

The album opens with an instrumental track, “Musk,” which sets the tone, really, well for the rest of the album. It appears that Sultana is sticking to some of her musical roots but is also adding a little bit of flavor so the songs don’t sound the same. Their second song, “Crop Circles,” has to be one of my favorite songs off the album because it reminds me of their album “Flow State,” but with more of a jazzier feel. “Greed” is also another great song which talks about the music industry and how they only love you when you “make it big.” This song has the jazz, indie, lo-fi type vibe which I am in love with. Another song that I keep playing off this album is “Dream My Life Away” which is a very dreamy song. The song says a lot even when, lyrically, the song says so little. Sultana has always been good at capturing emotions not only though their lyrics but also through their instruments. 

Overall, this album is very enjoyable. It contains 14 songs and takes an hour to play front to back. The vibe of the album is jazzy with a hint of indie and upbeat tempo. I really enjoyed listening to this album and even though it is far different from “Flow State” it is definitely worth a listen. 

Rating: 7/10 

Favorite Songs: Crop Circles, Greed, Musk, Dream My Life Away 

Stay Metal, 

THE SAW 

Categories
Classic Album Review

The Saw’s Choice Cuts: Three Albums for Your Consumption

How’s it going, Butcher Crew?! Today I have collected for you three albums that are heavy on my rotation lately. All three records were released during 2020, and all three were released by Unique Leader Records. Watch these three bands. And enjoy the madness of these three albums that made The Saw’s Choice Cuts. They will surely pound you into dust! 

Where Only Gods May Tread (2020, Unique Leader Records) is the 5th studio album from the British Brutal Death Metal band, Ingested. Now, I’m here to tell you, this band delivers the beat-downs in quick order! Jason Evans utilizes many different forms and types of vocal techniques – most notably, screams and gutterals in a more DeathCore fashion. In fact, IMO, Sam Yates and Sean Hines (guitars), Lyn Jeffs (drums), and Brad Fuller (bass) masterfully deliver the beatings in a sort of Brutal DeathCore/Technical Death Metal assault that will leave you gasping for air. Formed in 2006, Ingested have some miles on their carcasses! As an example of their crushing abilities, they’ve toured with the likes of Black Dahlia Murder, Carnifex, 3 Inches of Blood, Aborted, Disentomb, Enterprise Earth, I Declare War, Kublai Khan, Despised Icon, and Cryptopsy to name a few. 

Favorite Songs: Follow the Deceiver; The Burden of Our Failures; Leap of the Faithless

Rating: 9/10! This one will beat your brains in, for a long time! 

Revive The Throne (2020, Unique Leader Records) is the 7th full length album from the German GrindCore/Brutal Death Metal band, Stillbirth. This band is as old as me, forming in 1999! Now, here is what I like about these butchers, they strongly incorporate the CORE (as in HardCore) aspect into their efforts. With multiple tempo changes, mid-riff (the GrindCore aspect), and crushing, gurgling gutterals, this record will give you whiplash. Lukas Swiaczney is the vicious vocal master, Dominik Konig also gutterals, and plays bass, Martin Grupe is banging, smoothly and quickly on drums, Jens Strack and Simon Sturmlinger slay the blistering dual guitars, and Lukas Kaminski is like a steam roller on the 2nd bass. Double gutterals and double bass players?! You know the beatings are life threatening! 

Favorite Songs: Degraded to Mutilation; Panem et Circenses; Dethrone the King

Rating: 8/10! Skull splitting frenzy!! 

Nuklearth is the newest album (2020, Unique Leader Records) by the German band, Cytotoxin. Right from the start, I’ve got to say that this band is like the WhiteChapel of Technical/Brutal Death Metal (and you already know that I love some WhiteChapel!). But this record… what an incredible piece of work we have, here! The arrangement, style, and structure of the powerful music by Fonzo and Jason (guitars), Stocki (drums) and Vitalis (bass) is nothing but pure, “Chernobyl Death Metal” (as Cytotoxin, themselves, refer it), and Grimo’s vocal delivery is nearly perfect – brutal gutterals and growls (reminding me of Phil!). Cytotoxin formed in 2010 and Nuklearth is their fourth full length album. 

Favorite Songs: Soul Harvester; Coast of Lies; Nuklearth

Rating: 10/10!! This record will bang for MANY years to come!!

Stay Metal,

THE SAW

Categories
Classic Album Review

Album of the Week: All That Remains – This Darkened Heart (2004)

The second studio album from All That Remains, This Darkened Heart, was released on March 23, 2004 (Prosthetic / Razor & Tie). The band’s debut record, Behind Silence and Solitude, as well as its third release, The Fall of Ideals, are very good records in their own rights; but it is their sophomore release that stands in a category all its own. 

So, All That Remains was first listed as a “Heavy Metal” band, with This Darkened Heart listed in the genre of “Melodic Death Metal.” Later, the band would come to be known as one of the first bands of an evolving sub-genre known as Metal Core, while the vocal style of This Darkened Heart is a perfect example of very early “Death Core;” though, the music (and its composition) is very much Heavy Metal, leaning toward Death Metal. Today, this combination of styles would be considered a band’s way of breaking out of the various “Core” genres. But in 2004, this is the expression of a band forging an entirely new brand of Metal. 

Philip Labonte (Shadows Fall) is the founder and lead vocalist of All That Remains. He is one of the visionaries of the, then, forming new genre of Metal. His first band (in the mid-90s) was a Death Metal band called Perpetual Doom, where he also played guitar. He left the band to join Shadows Fall as the lead vocalist, recording the band’s debut album, Somber Eyes to the Sky, in ’97. He left Shadows Fall the following year due to “musical differences,” and formed All That Remains. In 2010 Labonte filled in as the touring vocalist for Killswitch Engage. And in 2016 he filled in as lead vocalist for Five Finger Death Punch. Labonte had a great band with him for This Darkened Heart with Mike Martin and Oli Herbert on guitars, Matt Deis on bass, and Michael Bartlett on drums. 

I understand This Darkened Heart to be a bridge between Metal genres. While All That Remains went on to be more Metal Core, this record, with its combination of styles, really helped the logic of the evolution of sub-genres. My dad (The OG), as an Old School Death Metal head, remembers when this record dropped. “Oh, I loved the riffs of the songs, and Philip’s vocals were incredible. But I also recognized that there was something different being developed, here. The structures of the songs were departing from the style of pure Death Metal, while the riffs were very Old School. And the vocals, while delivered with “gravel,” were more melodic, but not like Melodic Death Metal. We knew that something new was happening.” 

There are exactly 0 wasted songs on This Darkened Heart. This is truly a great record that still, today, speaks to the struggles and suffering of life lived in community; the darkness of loneliness and the light of friends and loved ones. This record, itself, is a light in that darkness. 

Favorite Songs: Focus Shall Not Fail; Tattered on My Sleeve; This Darkened Heart 

Rating: 10/10!! A perfect record at the perfect time 

Stay Metal, 

THE SAW 

Categories
Miscellaneous

Do You Like Watching and Learning about True Crime?

What’s going on Butcher Crew, it’s your Master Butcher, The Saw, and today we are going to talk about True Crime. This has always been a subject that fascinated me because I have always been curious as to why people do the things that they do. I also like to understand the sociology and the psychology of a person. I like to try and analyze the individual and see if I can come up with my only theories as to why people are the way they are or how an event could happen. 

Below, is a list of shows that I enjoy watching that are based on true crime: 

  • Mindhunters – Netflix 
    • This TV show is based on actual FBI agents and their cases! This show follows around two FBI agents who helped create the term “serial killer” and also develop the behavioral science/psychology department at the Bureau. 
  • Night Stalker – Netflix 
    • This documentary goes through the investigation of the Night Stalker. There are interviews with the detectives that were on the case, family of the victims, and surviving victims.  
  • American Murder: The Family Next Door – Netflix
    • This case was wild!! A mother and her two daughters go missing and the father is acting rather calm… I wonder why… 
  • Evil Genius – Netflix 
    • Follow the investigation to see who was behind the man who was told to rob a bank with a bomb attached to him. The people in this case are wild. 
  • The Ripper – Netflix 
    • Follow the investigation in England, when the Ripper was out on the streets. 
  • Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile – Netflix 
    • This film follows around Ted Bundy (played by Zac Efron) and his gruesome murders. This film also shows the point of view of Bundy’s girlfriend, who did not know what her man was up to. 
  • Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes – Netflix 
    • This film has audio recordings of interviews with Ted Bundy and his killings. These are fascinating to listen to because you get a glimpse of the personality behind the killer and his reasonings to kill. 
  • Hotel Cecil – Netflix 
    • Follow along with the investigation of Elisa Lam and dive through all the conspiracy theories and went along with this strange disappearance. 
  • Honorable Mention: Bailey Sarian’s YouTube channel
    • Bailey is a YouTuber who does her makeup while she talks about a true crime story. She does a great job at laying out all the information and giving you a good picture of what happened. She is very passionate about what she speaks about and she does a wide variety of true crime stories. 

Stay Metal, 

THE SAW 

Categories
Classic Album Review

The Making of Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumours”

Days Before “Rumours”

Prior to the making of “Rumours”the band was in a great period of growth. Just two years before the release of “Rumours” in 1977, Fleetwood Mac released their self-titled tenth studio album, commonly referred to as “The White Album” by Fleetwood Mac fans. This was their first album featuring Stevie Nicks as vocalist and Lindsey Buckingham as guitarist, a duo that would later become monumental to rock and roll. Just over a year after its release on July 11, 1975, “Fleetwood Mac” reached number one on US charts and later peaked at number 23 on UK charts. This was the first number one record for the band and a major accomplishment. Fleetwood Mac was finally thrust into the spotlight after nearly 10 years as a band and several changes in members. 

Inner-band Turmoil 

            From 1975 until the late ‘80s, Fleetwood Mac maintained its most commonly known lineup, consisting of vocalist Stevie Nicks, guitarist Lindsey Buckingham, vocalist Christine McVie, bassist John McVie and drummer Mick Fleetwood. With new success and more than one inner-band relationship, the five members of Fleetwood Mac were swarming with the drama of love, fame and money. The majority of the recording of “Rumours” took place in 1976 California. This was shortly after the romantic split of the long-time relationship between Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham. Following their split, the two maintained a professional relationship courtesy of Fleetwood Mac, creating some drama-filled song writing material. To add to the band’s stress, Christine McVie was in the middle of divorcing her husband, bassist John McVie. These failing relationships put great pressure on Fleetwood Mac and created some of the most beautiful music of all time.

The Release

            Upon its release on February 4, 1977, “Rumours” reached number one on US and UK charts. The songs “Dreams”, “Go You Own Way”, “Don’t Stop” and “You Make Loving Fun” were released as singles, all of which placed in the top 10 on US charts. The album was wildly successful and continued to gain popularity throughout the course of the band’s international promotional tour. “Rumours” was critically acclaimed for its brilliant lyrics and stunning harmonies, provided by the interchanging dominance of three talented vocalists. The album was named Album of the Year at the 1978 Grammy awards and maintains its position as the eleventh highest-selling record of all time, with over 40 million copies sold. As of “Rolling Stones”’ 2020 ranking of the 500 greatest albums of all time, Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumours” falls at number seven. It was clear from the success of “Rumours” that Fleetwood Mac had become a major name in rock music in the 1970s. Their success would continue with a run of three highly praised albums following “Rumours”: “Tusk”, “Tango in the Night” and “Behind the Mask”. They continue to be regarded as one of the most influential bands of all time. 

-Hannah

Categories
Band/Artist Profile

Band of the Week: Belphegor


 Belphegor is an Austrian extreme metal band from Salzburg, that formed in 1991. When they first became a band, they used the name Betrayer, but in 1993 they named their band after the demon Belphegor. Their music has been described as “diabolical death/black metal.” The band was created by vocalists and bassist Maxx, guitarists Helmuth Lehner and Sigurd Hagenauer, and drummer Chris. 
 
The band has jumped from different labels throughout their existence; they were briefly signed to Perverted Taste Records in 1994. They were then on Last Episode (now called Black Attakk) in 2000 but left because the band felt as though the label was a “rip-off.” They then preceeded to release their live album, Infernal Live Orgasm, on their own label, Phallelujah Productions, until they signed with Napalm Records in 2003. They only stayed with this record label until 2005 because they felt like the label did not support them enough. Belphegor then signed with Nuclear Blast Records in 2005. 
 
Belphegor has also had their fair share of band members. Throughout their formation and switching amongst record labels, the lineup constantly changed. Here is their current members: Helmuth Lehner (guitar and vocals) and Serpenth (bass and backing vocals). They have members that only play live: Martin “Molokh” Arzberger (guitars) and Pawel Jaroszewicz (drums). 
 

Discography: 
 
·      The Last Supper (1995)
·      Blutsabbath (1997)
·      Necrodaemon Terrorsathan (2000) 
·      Lucifer Incestus (2003)
·      Goatreich – Fleshcult (2005) 
·      Pestapokalypse VI (2006)
·      Bondage Goat Zombie (2008) 
·      Walpurgis Rites – Hexenwahn (2009) 
·      Blood Magick Necromance (2011) 
·      Conjuring the Dead (2014) 
·      Totenritual (2017) 
 

Stay Metal, 
 
THE SAW 
Categories
Playlists

Shower Playlist

What’s going on Butcher Crew?! It’s ya girl, The Saw, and today I am sharing with you my playlist that I listen to while I’m in the shower. I take my showers very seriously and I like to set a vibe while I’m showering. It is one of the only places where I can self-reflect and relax. It’s also a place where I have my one-woman concerts. I have the worst singing voice, but in the shower, you best believe that I sound like Ariana Grande. 

These songs are some fun sing along songs that I like to dance around to while showering, this is probably the favorite part of my day because it’s just straight vibes. 

  • Olivia Newton John – Hopelessly Devoted To You 
  • Mac Miller – Self Care 
  • Frank Ocean – In My Room 
  • Tyler, The Creator – 2SEATER 
  • The Internet – Special Affair 
  • Smino – Amphetamine 
  • $not – GO$HA 
  • $uicideBoy$ – O Pana! 
  • Isaiah Rashaad – Tity and Dolla
  • Saweetie & Doja Cat – Best Friend 
  • Megan Thee Stallion – Body 
  • Drake – Hotline Bling 
  • TLC – No Scrubs 
  • Seether – Careless Whisper 
  • Staind – Outside 
  • Ariana Grande – Positions 
  • Lady Gaga – LoveGame 

These have been my go-to songs while I’m jamming out in the shower. I like to keep it light and playful while I’m showering. Gotta get the right vibes. (:

What songs are in your shower playlist? 

Stay Metal, 

THE SAW 

Categories
New Album Review

New Single Review: Cannibal Corpse – Inhumane Harvest (2021)

THIS IS NOT A DRILL; I REPEAT THIS IS NOT A DRILL!!! CANNIBAL CORPSE RELEASED A NEW SINGLE AND ANNOUNCED THEIR NEW ALBUM!!! 

Okay, now that I got that out of my system, let’s talk about this new Cannibal Corpse single, “Inhumane Harvest.” This song was released on February 2nd and this was honestly the best way to start the month. This song embodies everything that I love about Cannibal Corpse; crunchy riffs, deep growls, and technical drumming paired along with it. 

Bassist Alex Weber says that Cannibal Corpse’s new album, “Violence Unimagined” was approached in the same writing style similar to their previous records. The band tries to make each song they write, the heaviest, most memorable songs that they can come up with. He also says that the band wants each song to have its own character. In other words, the band wants the listeners to be able to listen to the song, easily recognizing what song it is. This rings true because out of all the Cannibal Corpse songs that I know, I can name the song just by the opening riff. I think this talent is credited to Cannibal Corpse and how they create their songs, but also because I am a metal freak. 

Cannibal Corpse’s new album, “Violence Unimagined” is set to release on April 16th via Metal Blade Records. Do you see how brutal their album cover is for this album (see above)? That just means the album is going to be even more brutal and I cannot wait to hear what this album sounds like. 

Track List: 

01: “Murderous Rampage”

02: “Necrogenic Resurrection” 

03: “Inhumane Harvest”

04: “Condemnation Contagion”

05: “Surrounded, Kill, Devour” 

06: “Ritual Annihilation”

07: “Follow The Blood”

08: “Bound And Burned”

09: “Slowly Sawn”

10: “Overtorture” 

11: “Cerements Of The Flayed” 

Stay Metal, 

THE SAW