Longtime goth outfit Leper deliver a set of dark songs creatively weaving acoustic and electronic elements. Leadman Skot Shaw broods over an intertextual palette of acoustic and electric guitar, keyboards, electronic beats, etc. That palette is complicated and further darkened by vocal samples and vocal distortions. On songs like the closer “The Way It All Unfolds,” the acoustic elements prevail. On songs like “The Artist in You,” the electronic elements overwhelm to industrial rock in the vein of NIN. Shaw’s lyrics give reason for the bleak mood; harping on death, torment and suffering with bitter clarity and religious imagery. From start to finish, Beautiful Gray Day riffs on a fairly steady mood in a fairly steady way – making it an album suited only for downhearted sensibilities. And yet, it is not all bleak for Shaw. In the midst of torment, Shaw hopefully promises “I will pray…” Further, the aptly titled lament, “I Hate Everything,” ends on a hopeful note: “…it’s a beautiful gray day; I don’t have to face it alone, even when there’s nobody home.” With these small glimmers of hope amidst darkness, Shaw reminds us that hope is not lost.
With influences that span Miles Davis and Stravinsky to Geddy Lee and Les Claypool, jazz metal force Imperial Triumphant is the epitome of genre-bending. HM contributing writer Andrew Voigt spoke with the band about their unique style, the massive bass presence in their music, and the rise and fall of civilization.Full Feature More from Imperial Triumphant
Death metal is no longer strictly a one-kind-of-sound genre but a cloud under which many elements have formed. We have assembled five must-hear death metal acts you should be listening to now, each distinctly set apart from another in form, yet still brethren in the death metal community.Full Feature More from In-Conquered
At their core, Atreyu is a hard rock band with metal riffs and pop choruses. Now, after more than 20 years, the band has stepped boldly into their next chapter with a change in lineup and an album that proves the lifeblood of Atreyu is stronger than ever.Full Feature More from Atreyu
When rock emerged from blues and 'heavy metal' began to surface, faith-based metal acts also rose to start their own journeys. Initially shunned by both believers and non-believers, they were fighting for their spot at the table, ultimately building a legacy that would go on to change the genre forever. HM presents an oral history of the beginning of Christian metal music, featuring Guardian, Tourniquet, Holy Soldier, Whitecross, and, of course, Stryper.Full Feature More from Guardian