After surviving more than 20 years together, Napalm Death still is going strong. Earlier this year, the English extreme-metal outfit released its latest acclaimed effort, Utilitarian — its 15th to date.
For its latest video, the band teamed up with director Tim Fox (Tesseract, Skindread) to fulfill its vision for “The Wolf I Feed.” Incorporating apocalyptic, sci-fi visuals, it explores the song’s themes about exploitation of power, propaganda, and religious dogma.
Intronaut made its name in forward-thinking metal circles by understanding that pure metal moments hit harder by sandwiching them between other styles — in this case, passages that are closer to fusion or jazz. Rather than a guitar spotlight, the group reaches for a fretless bass solo; in lieu of a unison run, Intronaut deploys a spacey, percussive breakdown.
But whereas the group’s previous releases (especially Prehistoricisms in 2008) suggested a band poised squarely in art-metal territory, Valley Of Smoke shows the band moving simultaneously toward and away from modern metal. It’s moving toward in its increasingly overt nods to the group’s sonic peers (Neurosis, Isis, and, at times, Pelican), but away in its refusal to ever really stick to one thing at a time, resulting in a disc that’s not easily classifiable as metal, but not easily classifiable as anythingelse either.
Among the thousands of under-appreciated or under-publicized albums that were released in 2010, hundreds became our favorites and were presented in ALARM and on AlarmPress.com. Of those, we pared down to 100 outstanding releases, leaving no genre unexplored in our list of this year’s overlooked gems.
Tom Warrior’s creative output is both extensive and divergent. Since 1983, Warrior has released music as part of Hellhammer, Celtic Frost, and Apollyon Sun, and now his current project is Triptykon. If one takes inventory of the music created by this man over the last two-plus decades, one finds that none of his albums really sound all that much like any of the others. There are common threads and tendencies that tie everything together, but each release stands on an island of its own.