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2/20/14 - Genesis of the Apocalypse

Feb 23, 2014

In which our historically-minded host explores where it all came from

Well, here we are again, and this week we went a little bit historical. Not all the way. We still played a lot of awesome newer metal music, but the whole show was loosely themed around the idea of the roots of metal. This theme manifested itself in a lot of a different ways: We covered the obvious roots of metal (Judas Priest, Motorhead, etc), but we also covered the roots of various subgenres old and new. We played Celtic Frost, who helped create extreme metal as we know it and worked as a huge influence for the first waves of both death metal and black metal. We played Meshuggah, who essentially invented Djent. We played stuff from the debut full-lengths of Carcass and Napalm Death (both with Bill Steer on guitar, coincidentally), two of the most important grind albums of all time. Basically, we covered a lot of different roots.

You'll scroll down to the playlist though, and ask "but but but but but... What about Sabbath?"

And you'd be right. We didn't play Black Sabbath. But this wasn't some deep philosophical decision about going against the standardized metal narrative or anything like this. The answer is simply that we spun some Sabbath a few weeks back and I didn't want to repeat bands so soon (in fact, unless there's something I overlooked, tonight marks the first repeated band of the show, Judas Priest, who had the very first song ever played on the show). Just remember, this theme is loose. There are plenty of hugely important bands I didn't include tonight. Too bad Sabbath was one of them.

Oh yeah, we also played some requests! Skid Row was requested a week or two back, and while they were a little late to the hair-metal scene, they were always a little bit grittier and heavier than some of their peers (think GnR instead of Poison), and I was happy to add them to tonight's show. Youth Gone Wild rocks. Also requested a few weeks back was Alcatrazz, a traditional 80's metal band including members of Rainbow and guitarist (at least for their first album, which is what we played) Yngwie Malmsteen. If you've never heard his name pronounced out loud before, the neo-classical guitar legend is read "ing-vay mallm-shteen." Another good request for an overlooked band. Remember, with the way the show is set up it's a little tough to play requests live (often times just because I simply don't have the music), but I do keep track of all the requests I get and try to fulfill them (within reason).


Now on to our track of the week! This week, it's Murmaider by semi-fictional melodic death metal band Dethklok, off their first Dethalbum. You can listen to it here:

This song kind of fits into our theme this week, because it's the very first track off of the band's very first album. So there's something to be said about that. But anyways, let's talk about Dethklok. They're the stars of the Adult Swim cartoon Metalocalypse, imagining a world with "A death metal band "vastly more popular than the Beatles." The show has a style all its own, but it also is truly a metalhead's love letter. Even in cartoon form, all the band members play real licensed instruments and play correct fingerings for the songs. Musicians provide guest voices for the show, from Kirk Hammett and James Hetfield of Metallica, to George Corpsegrinder of Cannibal Corpse, to King Diamond. Metalhead fan service is everywhere, down to fast food restaurants with names like "Burzum's" and "Dimmu Burger" appearing in the background. 

But let's talk about Dethklok's music for a minute. I said "semi-fictional" band because showcreator and lead musician Brendan Small takes "Dethklok" on tours, playing the songs live and touring with bands from Mastodon, Machinehead, Chimaira and more. But what really makes me choose Dethklok for this week's song of the week is that currently, Metalocalypse and Dethklok have proven helpful in bringing more people into our lovely world of heavy metal. Dethklok is often serving as an "entry level" metal band, because people hear the music in context on the show, then seek it out on their own. But what makes Dethklok such an interesting entry-level metal band is how heavy they truly are. Often times, people work their way into heavy metal starting with hard rock, then very melodic metal, and it takes them time to get down into the really heavy stuff. But Dethklok has no melodic vocals, their songs are rife with double kick, blastbeats, chugging guitars, and more. They are truly a melodic death metal band, and are essentially the equivalent of people getting into metal starting with something like Amon Amarth. Which is definitely jumping into the deep end, compared to how a lot of people ease their way into the genre. So, for helping burgeoning metalheads get right into the thick of things, Dethklok become our band of the week (Murmaider is a rad song, but the song itself is a little less important this week than the band itself).


Wow, I didn't expect to write this much this week. Let's just jump into the playlist:

Dethklok “Murmaider” from The Dethalbum on Williams Street Records

Arch Enemy “The Last Enemy” from Rise of the Tyrant on Trooper Music

Alcatrazz “Too Young To Die, Too Drunk To Live” from No Parole From Rock'N'Roll on WARD RECORDS

Napalm Death “Siege Of Power” from Scum on Earache Records

Bolt Thrower “Mercenary” from Mercenary on Metal Blade Records

CARCASS “Pyosisified (Rotten To The Gore)” from Reek Of Putrefaction on Earache Records Ltd

Cynic “King Of Those Who Know” from Traced In Air on Marquee Inc.

Chimaira “The Venom Inside” from The Infection on Ferret Music

Cattle Decapitation “In Axestasy” from The Harvest Floor on Metal Blade Records

MOTORHEAD “Love Me Like a Reptile” from Ace Of Spades on Sanctuary Records

Skid Row “Youth Gone Wild” from Skid Row on Rhino Atlantic

The Damned Things “Handbook for the Recently Deceased” from Ironiclast on Mercury Records

Meshuggah “Stengah” from Nothing on Nuclear Blast

Deftones “Diamond Eyes” from Diamond Eyes on Reprise

Periphery “The Walk” from Periphery on Distort Inc.

Venom “Black Metal” from Black Metal on Sanctuary

Celtic Frost “Procreation (Of the Wicked)” from Morbid Tales on Sanctuary

Darkthrone “Transylvanian Hunger” from Preparing For War on Peaceville

Slayer “Metal Storm / Face the Slayer” from Show No Mercy on Metal Blade Records

GWAR “Let Us Slay” from Lust In Space on AFM Records

The Terrordactyls “megatron's revenge” from The Terrordactyls on Seayou Records

JUDAS PRIEST “Rapid Fire” from British Steel (30th Anniversary) on Sony Music Entertainment

Metallica “Seek & Destroy” from Kill 'Em All on Mercury Records Limited

Sunn 0))) / Boris “Etna” from Altar on Southern Lord Recordings