For Those About to Squawk: Waldo Pecks on Haunt and Rat King

What’s up, guys? Happy New Year! Now that we’re through the doldrums of the November/December months, the releases are starting to pick up!

Haunt is releasing their third full length, Mind Freeze, on Shadow Kingdom Records. Do you like trad metal, with a bit of NWOBHM thrown in? Do you like trad metal, with a bit of NWOBHM AND some pop sensibilities thrown in? Well, do I have a record for you… The first thing to note here is the presence of synthesizers. Don’t fret oh loyal metal fans, the synths are present, but really well mixed in the songs so they don’t really “stick out,” BUT they do use the occasional flourish here and there. What else about this? The strongest material here is the faster material. That’s not to say the more down tempo songs are bad, they’re not, it’s just that Haunt shine when they stick more to NWOBHM roots they so clearly admire. All and all, this is a solid metal record and if this birdbrain had one complaint, it’d be the vocals, although SUPER fitting for the music, can come across as a little thin here and there. 8 Fucking Pecks.

Every now and then, doing these reviews, I stumble across a band I’ve never heard of and actually like.  Seattle’s Rat King are releasing Vicious Inhumanity on Within the Mind Records. I’m not really sure HOW to approach this. Looking at the previous release, this is a pretty big departure from the sludge/doom of the previous effort, BUT this is a clattering cacophony of death/grind and doesn’t really let up once it starts.  (that’s not really true, there is a “very brief” acoustic passage that lulls you into a sense of calm, but it’s quickly forgotten, and back to pummeling you). I’m pecking digging this. 7 Fucking Pecks.

So, there’s some things, I’d LIKE to review, but can’t really get my hands on.  Most notably, the first recorded material from Bloodlet (super excited for that one) and I REALLY wanted to review the new Apocalptica, and I can TELL you right now that it wouldn’t be to my liking. But alas, no such luck. Anyway, catch you foos next time! Waldo out!