Trendcrusher

Picks of 2020

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This past year, more specifically the last 9 months have been easily the toughest for me. During the initial months of isolation, Music became my main solace along with exercise. I think I have listened to more music this year compared to past couple years. Hence it was not an easy task putting together this list.

Non metal picks (in no particular order)

 Impulsive Voices is another impressive release from the guitar prodigy from Down Under. This album is darker and is a huge step in all aspects. Just listen to the track Pan which features a saxophone is a stand out track on Impulsive Voices

Rock the Highway is a great throwback to the 80’s rock sound. There are a couple of progressive tracks on the album like Identity Crisis. Wonder if their future material will be like that.

The Earth below is the solo project from Deepak Raghu from Shepherd. Nothing Works Vol. 2- Hymns For Useless Gods was my soundtrack during times of melancholy. Big step ahead in terms of production. 

Bayaan is a Pop rock from Pakistan. Suno is a very catchy album that reminds me of the Pakistani Pop rock releases from the mid 2000’s 

Karakoram are another good rock band from Pakistan featuring Zain Peerzada from Takatak on guitars. Ibtida is a promising release and their upcoming album will be one to looks out for in 2021.

Metal picks

#10 On Solitude, Cloudkicker turned heavy again and was totally what I needed this year. Thank you Ben Sharp for this album.

#9 ‘When I Die, Will I Get Better?’ is a seemless meld of hardcore and black metal. The album took me on a journey through the album. I especially enjoyed the lyrics and topics it covers, things we face both in real life and online. 

#8 The World that was is a potent mix of Death and doom metal. Temple of Void keep getting better with each album like a fine wine or whiskey.

#7 Stare Into Death And Be Still is Extreme metal with a menacing atmosphere. A phenomenal release. I don’t think any other album has captured better the sound of the shitshow that this year has been. 

#6 Mortal has a mix of all my favourite elements of death metal, Low growls and crunchy guitar riffs. Alseep Forever is a track that I will be listening to for years to come. One of the best death metal albums I’ve heard this year.

#5 Habits is one of the albums I have listened to the most this year. It’s meditative riffs and doomy vocals left me in a trance.

#4 The first time I heard Chatta, I was blown away by what I heard. Each time I listen to this album, I find a new element. This album has pushed the levels of grindcore. This album is Chatta!

#3 Phanerozoic II: Mesozoic | Cenozoic is a Post metal masterpiece. This album made me trip/transcend to another level.

#2 The Sanguinary Impetus is a strange mix of Technical and brutal death metal. On their previous album, they did a split of sorts with Disposal of the Dead and Dharmata. This album is a marriage of both albums and pummels you into submission. An All A’s album. 

#1 Yes for the 2nd year in a row, my pick is Spirit Adrift. Enlightened In Eternity was my pick me up album for this year.  An album that gave me hope that there is a light at the end of this. 

Written by trendcrusher

December 25, 2020 at 11:00 am

Bandcamp Recommendations – 4th December 2020 #BandcampFriday

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The last #BandcampFriday of the year is here! Check the previous posts I did here

New music from the solo black metal act in a couple years. From the single released so far, sounds a bit darker.

2020 has been a great year for Death metal and this album is a great addition to the list. Just over 49 minutes of prime death metal. No filler at all. AOTY material!

Comeback release from the now Mumbai based act showcases a heavier progressive sound.

The new release from genre shifting Aussie act has them take a psychedelia route. Trippy stuff!

2nd release this year from as Jesu. On Terminus, he goes back to the shoegaze sound of his earlier material.

500th release from the grindcore label is a 3 way split between the best current acts in the genre.

3rd solo release from Indian veteran metal musician. He plays all instruments on this one. Out next week.

Compilation featuring the bands that are part of Global Grindcore Alliance Festival Vol 1.0. Quite a few exclusive tracks.

Ripple Music and Vegas Rock Revolution put together this compilation. John Gist (VRR) has hand picked the bands part of this.

Revolting album premiere

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I’ve been writing for The Metal Wanderlust more recently. After the Wombbath premiere, I wrote about the album premiere for that latest Revolting album The Shadow at the World’s end.

Check out the album on The Metal Wanderlust

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November 28, 2020 at 9:28 pm

Tribute to Nitin Rajan

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Friend and fellow metalhead Nitin Rajan passed away on 17th November.

A short tribute I wrote for him for Horns Up podcast

Vocalist, festival promoter, digital head, he played many roles in the Indian music scene.

A Metal lifer, Nitin started the earliest know death metal band, Morticide and then was one of the founders of Domination the Deathfest. I remember reading about the festival in the Metal India zine and being amazed that there was an extreme metal festival in India.

I met Nitin a decade ago at the first edition of the Rolling Stone Metal Awards where he was a judge and we became friends then. I still remember how excited he was to bring back the Domination the Deathfest in 2013.

“I prefer performing live” Nitin used to tell me. Anyone who had watched him at a gig with Primitiv or even Killibrium in recent years would agree that he was a powerhouse on stage and commanded the audience.

Everyone who met him even if it was once I am sure has a great story to tell about Nitin.

Thank you for the music and also your friendship. The Bombay Death Metal Legion forever.

Here is a video of an unreleased Primtiv track that I took a couple years ago.

Nitin Rajan Photo by Tushar Dhanawade

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November 21, 2020 at 4:15 pm

Wombbath track premiere

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Wombbath are an Old School Death Metal act from Sweden that completes 30 years of magnificence this year in their chosen field. No easy task for a band that plays Metal let alone Death Metal. To mark this milestone Wombbath are releasing an album consisting of re-recorded songs from their older material as well as some brand new material, “Tales of Madness” via Transcending Obscurity Records.

Listen to Unholy Madness here

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November 13, 2020 at 1:02 pm

Bandcamp Recommendations – 6th November 2020

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First Friday of the month, everyone knows the drill by now.

This one was a surprise release. New music from the band that got every teenager in the 2000’s into metal. This is to benefit the Armenia Fund, a US based charity organization instrumental in providing those in need in Artsakh and Armenia with supplies needed for their basic survival.

The debut album from the best Pakistan metal act that I have heard recently

As the days turn shorter and weather colder, here is some Hungarian Black metal for company.

First non metal recommendation, my good friend Abhi Meer has a new single out through Boxout.fm recordings.


Pummeling power violence from the American duo.


The first album from the Canadian grindcore stalwarts in 5 years is out in a couple weeks.

2 track EP by the Tech death metal act from Down under is out later this month

4 compilations featuring bands across all sub genres of Metal. All proceeds go to combatting UK food poverty.

https://hungercompuk.bandcamp.com/

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November 7, 2020 at 12:28 am

Fistful of Metal 21

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A hour of metal from around the world. First aired on boxout.fm

Track List

Spirit Adrift – Ride into the Light

Raging Speedhorn – Hard to Kill

Enslaved – Homebound

Takatak – Flash Your Bones

Svalbard – Click Bait

False Gods – Stay Frosty

Construct of Lethe – Lamasthu

Depravity –  Cantankerous Butcher 

Fuck the Facts – Pleine Noirceur

Carcass – The Living Dead at the Manchester Morgue

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November 5, 2020 at 12:53 pm

Inferi

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This year has been a rough one for everyone, even more so for Metal bands used to being road warriors. Some of them have embraced being indoors and have made productive use of their time. A few have done live stream virtual concerts and others have worked on new music. American Death Metal act Inferi fall in the latter camp. They wrote and recorded their latest EP, “Of Sunless Realms” that released earlier this month. Vocalist Stevie Boiser shared with us a few things about the experience and also their plans for the coming months.

Read the interview on The Metal Wanderlust

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November 1, 2020 at 7:00 am

Fistful of Metal 20

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This episode is dedicated to the memory of Riley Gale, the front man of American metal act Power Trip.

Track list

Power Trip – Executioner’s Tax
Capra – Torture Ship
Allfather – Poison Soil
Grid – Disinformation = Facts
Grid – Insatiable
Skeletal Remains – Illusive Divinity
Necrot – Asleep Forever
Cloudkicker – Code Language
Hinayana – In Sacred Delusion (Ft. Toni Toivonen)
Foretoken – Bewildering Duress/Retribution
Jupiterian – Mere Humans
Cynic – How Could I

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October 8, 2020 at 1:49 pm

Bandcamp Recommendations – 2nd October 2020

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Here are my picks for this month’s Bandcamp Friday

This British trio have released one of the most intense metal albums I’ve heard this year. Believe the hype around it.

9 tracks of catchy melodic Black metal from the American quintent. Yes, it does have clean vocals.

Latest album from the German collective adds a new depth to their progressive sound. Their best as yet.


Over a hour of doom curated by the good folks at Sleeping Village

The who’s who of the Metal put their spin on Alice in Chains – Dirt on the 28th anniversary of the album.

Compilation with a stacked line up that benefits the family of a killer metal musician.

Check my previous picks here and here

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October 2, 2020 at 11:52 pm