Five For Friday: July 24, 2020

Is Summer really half over already? In these pandemic times, everything seems to move so slowly that you don’t realize how the weeks and months ebb away from you. It’s about this time I start yearning for September to come and free us from the heat. Of course, I’ll be complaining again a few months after that, which will disappear quickly enough anyway.

But don’t let this week’s new releases pass you by. We’ve got the latest from the Acacia Strain, Night in Gales and more!

The Acacia Strain – Slow Decay

The masters of crushing, vicious negativity return with their latest album. Back in the late-2000s, The Acacia Strain was one of the most consistently ripped-off bands in extreme music. In 2020, the band forges onward. One time outside of the Palladium in Worcester, I heard main-man Vincent Bennet remark that “I wake up every day with my blood boiling.” Tongue-in-cheek or not, the band’s latest makes that sentiment clear enough.

Stream: Apple Music

Bedsore – Hypnagogic Hallucinations

If you liked Blut Aus Nord’s most recent album, Hallucinogen, but wished it was a death metal album instead, Bedsore delivers this in dazzling fashion. Weird and ambitious, but not for its own sake, Bedsore takes the listener to trippy domains but keeps things raw and brutal. A little like Morbus Chron if they were more into gutturals.

Stream: Apple Music

Night in Gales – Dawnlight Garden

I don’t care what anyone says, if you can do melodic death metal well, it never gets old. Night in Gales has been around since 1995 and plays a style very much in line with greats like At the Gates, the Crown and Dark Tranquility. Sit back, hit play, and let the riffs guide you to the darkest bliss.

Stream: Apple Music

Spirit Possession – Spirit Possession

The latest emanation from black metal-busy bee Ephemeral Domignostika, Spirit Possession plays raw, nasty heavy metal with shades of early Bathory, Celtic Frost and perhaps a touch of Aura Noir. Music to pump your spike-laden fists to after downing the cheapest beer possible.

Valkyrie – Fear

2020 seems to be the year that classic, straightforward rock has made an attempted comeback among metal audiences. Valkyrie’s new album, Fear, is an excellent example of this modernized ’70s worship, the guitar harmonies being a notable highlight. This is the best way to pay homage to the sounds of the past, all the right pieces are in place, but they come from you. Rock on.

Stream: Apple Music