Shadow Woods Metal Fest 2018: Five Bands You Should Watch

Decibel has covered Shadow Woods numerous times since its inception, previewing the fest and chatting with bands playing. The weekend-long festival is unique in that the majority of performances take place outdoors, leading to some incredibly special performances, like Panopticon’s in 2017. Shadow Woods IV goes down September 13-15 in White Hall, MD this year, so Decibel chose five bands that everyone attending should watch.

Find more information on the fest and tickets here.

Imperial Triumphant (Saturday)
Avant-garde black metal weirdos Imperial Triumphant crafted an album that I’ll be trying to wrap my mind around well into next year. A mind-bending fusion of jazz and black metal, the end result is dissonant, chaotic and unique. Combined with their unique visual side, Imperial Triumphant should put on one of the weekend’s most memorable performances.

Replicant (Saturday)
Replicant dropped Negative Life earlier this year, a must-hear for anyone who likes their death metal dissonant and punishing. They open the day’s festivities on the Woodland stage and will be a tough act to follow.

Wolf King (Saturday)
It’s not all black/death/doom at Shadow Woods. Hardcore upstarts Wolf King will appear at the fest, doling out fight riffs and and breakdowns with touches of black and death metal. Hardcore bands thrive in a live setting, earning Wolf King a spot on the list.

Heavy Temple (Friday)
How many bands do you know putting out albums inspired by Stephen King’s The Dark Towers series? Well, now you know at least one. The psychedelic doom trio have been at it for a while now, but they’ve been on an almost unstoppable roll since releasing Chassit in 2016. Heavy and hypnotic, the power trio know how to play low ‘n’ slow, but they shred just as hard.

Cloak (Saturday)
Black ‘n’ rollers Cloak emerged late last year with debut full-length To Venomous Depths, which took their influences and made something worthy of repeated listens. The Atlanta group have played with Mayhem, Incantation, Withered and more, and will appear this weekend at Psycho Las Vegas.