APESHIT’s Top Metal Albums of 2013

carcass.surgicalsteelOnce again, another fruitful year in extreme music draws to a close.  We saw some long awaited comebacks by legends, three quarters of the original SABBATH line up, VOIVOD and CARCASS.  The godfathers of U.S. death metal had a healthy year with strong releases by SUFFOCATION, DEICIDE, and IMMOLATION.  We also saw young superstars, GHOST B.C. and KVELERTAK, release good sophomore albums.  Perhaps the most polarizing and criticized album is SATYRICON‘s self-titled album, which was roasted by the majority of the media and fans.

Among the mountains of releases, there is one album that we’ll gush about again and again, and that’s CARCASS‘ comeback album, Surgical Steel.  There are always good and interesting albums coming out all the time, and then there are the untouchable albums that only the legendary bands could create.  Surgical Steel scorches everything in its path and clearly shows that in the pantheon of active bands, they are at the top.

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DEICIDE, BROKEN HOPE, DISGORGE, NECRONOMICON @ The Whisky, Hollywood, CA (10/20/13)

The No Salvation Tour had made its way to Los Angeles, and by the looks of things outside the world famous Whisky A Go-Go, it would be a packed house inside.  There were tons of fans lined up outside the venue, but since the show was sold out, they had no choice but to stand outside and hang out all night!

The opening act for this brutal tour package was NECRONOMICON, but alas, they did not play, as their RV broke down and sadly, did not get to the venue in time to perform.  The crowd grew restless, and wanted some brutality…

After a few miscues with their intro, San Diego’s DISGORGE proved why they are still one of the most extreme and violent acts out there.  The band plowed directly into “Atonement” with new vocalist Angel Ochoa up to par with legendary ex-DISGORGE vocalist Matti Way.  The crowd started up the pit, and the band fed off the swirling hair and circle pit nicely, delivering the most ferocious, extreme, and ultra low guttural death metal possible.  They went through their “hits” such as “Womb Full of Scabs,” “She Lay Gutted,” and “Cranial Impalement” just to name a few.  The crowd gave them an excellent response, and this tour should definitely take the band to the next level in terms of gaining more fan base and support.

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New BROKEN HOPE Song, “Ghastly,” Online for Download

Broken Hope - Omen of DiseaseWith the October 1st release BROKEN HOPE‘s reunion album, Omen of Disease, on the horizon, “Ghastly” has been made available for download.  Get it here.

BROKEN HOPE guitarist Jeremy Wagner says: “I’m really excited to have ‘Ghastly’ released as a free download for the world – our gift to you. I have to say, ‘Ghastly’ is one of my favorite tracks from the OMEN OF DISEASE album! As I wrote the music on this song, I took riffs I’d been saving for a while, combined them with new death metal ideas, and sewed the whole thing together to make for one of our sickest and most relentless musical tracks. Lyrically, I wrote about an unfortunate person who was born so physically repulsive from head-to-toe/inside-and-out, that the mere sight of the hideous form could almost blind and nauseate you. Like a Gorgon, but even more horrific. Hence the line: ‘Ghastly…a horrid blight upon the eyes.’ With ‘Ghastly’ and ‘The Flesh Mechanic’, I think these tunes will give everyone a good idea of what to expect from the entire OMEN OF DISEASE album. Enjoy!”

BROKEN HOPE Reunite, Scheduled for OBITUARY, DECREPIT BIRTH, JUNGLE ROT and ENCRUST Tour

Twelve years after breaking up, underground death metal favorites, BROKEN HOPE, recently announced their return. The band are set to make their return to stage on the Carnival of Death Tour with headliners OBITUARY and support bands DECREPIT BIRTH, JUNGLE ROT and ENCRUST.

In a recent statement, BROKEN HOPE guitarists Jeremy Wagner and Shaun Glass stated, “For over a decade, we’ve listened to fans worldwide who’ve asked us to return. We’ve listened to our peers in bands who seen us at shows and said, ‘when is BROKEN HOPE coming back?’ Well, you have finally been heard, and frankly, we just miss it too goddamn much—the clubs, the metal, but especially you: the diehards, the most.

“We decided as a first step to return back to the place that always felt like home: the road! So we are proud to announce that this fall, BROKEN HOPE will join forces with OBITUARY and join the Carnival Of Death tour! This tour will solidify that extreme music is still alive and well, we are ready, focused, and hungry to show you what we have in stored for you all! Moreover, we cherish and promote the legacy of our fallen brother, vocalist Joe Ptacek, as we travel from show to show and honor him, he will not be forgotten. With this being said, we would like to introduce Damian Leski of GORGASM on vocal duties, who will handle the tough task for the upcoming tours. Be ready to be ‘Swamped in Gore‘!!!!”

DYING FETUS – History Repeats…

Maryland based veterans DYING FETUS were heavily influenced by the underground death metal scene in the early 1990’s, so it’s quite fitting that the band pays homage to their influences on History Repeats…

FETUS has covered ground from the most popular bands in death metal, such as with CANNIBAL CORPSE’s “Born in a Casket” or NAPALM DEATH’s “Unchallenged Hate,” but they don’t forget about the underrated bands, either.

Their cover of BOLT THROWER’s “Unleashed Upon Mankind” might even sound better than the original, and the PESTILENCE cover of “Twisted Truth” is up to par as well. Some bands deserved more credit than they received, such as BROKEN HOPE, and FETUS’ rendition of “Gorehog” is brutal and sounds extremely close to the original. The band also covers an obscure but heavily underrated slam/groove/death metal band from New York, called DEHUMANIZED, and they nail “Fade Into Obscurity” to a T. Throw in “Rohypnol,” an original DYING FETUS track exclusive to this EP, and you’ve got yourself another worthy release from this hard working trio.

While some bands try to experiment or change the original songs too much, things can get a bit blurry, but DYING FETUS sticks to the originals as closely as possible. It’s a treat for old school death metal fans to hear these classic tracks updated in DYING FETUS fashion, and at the same time gives the younger generation a feel for how great these original songs were. (Relapse Records)