Thursday, July 4, 2013

Bandcamp Picks: Deafheaven, Ache, Heartless, With Burning Contempt

The new Deafheaven album Sunbather won't make many friends in the TRUE/KVLT community, with its mix of indie/post-rock and black metal; leaving aside the title and album artwork, which is belligerently unblack. But this is a remarkably strong and confident sophomore album that's going to make a lot of end of year lists, culminating in the epic closer "The Pecan Tree." Whatever common ground that exists between Explosions in the Sky and A Blaze in the Northern Sky is sure to be found here. The album is available as a $9.99 digital download.

Australian label Monolith, who gave us releases by Rumah Api faves Idylls and Nuclear Summer, recently released the self-titled debut by Brisbane's Ache.  Expect apocalyptic hardcore in the His Hero Is Gone vein, with the occasional Botch-ish pinch harmonics keeping things interesting. Doomy hardcore is becoming more popular in Malaysia; local kids might want to check this out to see how it sounds when it's done properly. The 5 track EP is available as a "name your price" digital download.

Pittsburgh's Heartless released a 7" in time for their appearance at Maryland Deathfest. Luckily for people like me who aren't cool enough to either own a record player or get in to see them at the Baltimore Soundstage, the band have made Certain Death available on their Bandcamp page. Topping their previous releases, this is furious and unrelentingly noisy hardcore that will cause nosebleeds. I hope there was a medic at MDF. The 8 songs are available as a "name your price" digital download.

Speaking of MDF, I met the guitarist of With Burning Contempt on the last day of the festival, and promised I'd check out his band. And I'm glad I did, because this is pretty good stuff. Their Red Visions EP is a nice mix of old school and modern influences. There's a heavy Wolverine Blues vibe, and the song "Defaced" has a pretty cheeky Winter lift. As the band themselves say, no overthinking required. The four track EP  is available as a "name your price" digital download.