Rat King – Garbage Island (Within the Mind Records, 24 June 2016)
Rat King – Vicious Inhumanity (Within the Mind Records, 17 January 2020)
As much as I hate to admit it, during the almost eight and a half years I’ve been administrating this website, I have amassed a list of literally hundreds of albums I’ve hoped to find time to write about and share with you folks. Realistically I know I won’t ever get through ALL of them, but at the moment I am striving to keep up with the new ones as well as I can so it doesn’t get any worse; and if I can knock off an older one here and there while I’m at it, wonderful.
So having said that, here’s a record that just came out within the past month, as well as one that’s been sitting on my to-do list far too long. Both are by Seattleite trio Rat King, released on their own label Within the Mind, and both were recorded by the legendary Mr. Tad Doyle — but that’s pretty much where the similarities end. As you will soon discover. Please to enjoy!
Body Void / Keeper – Split (Tridroid Records [cassette] / Roman Numeral Records [vinyl], 15 January 2020)
Keeper / Sea Bastard – Split (Medusa Crush Recordings [N.A.] / Dry Cough Records [U.K.], 03 February 2015)
Hello there! Today we’re going to take a look at a split record that’s been generating a little bit of buzz since it came out last month, but not nearly as much as it should — considering the caliber of the two bands who released it (Californians Body Void and Keeper).
But I realize at this point that we have never mentioned Keeper previously, which is really a shame because they were involved with another fantastic split LP that came out about five years ago, along with Brightonian band Sea Bastard. Somehow we just never got around to covering it, so to rectify that error, let’s revisit that one today as well. So you can have a little “bonus review” as a treat.
Sâver – They Came with Sunlight (Pelagic Records, 08 March 2019)
Here in the Valley of Steel we don’t pay much attention to what’s trending or getting a bunch of recognition elsewhere; all we care about is listening to what we enjoy, and (sometimes) writing about it.
But having said that, sometimes it’s also nice to feel vindicated and validated, when something we identify as “good” achieves recognition from elsewhere.
Case in point: They Came with Sunlight, the debut offering from Oslo trio Sâver — which upon its release about eleven months ago made quite an impression upon this reviewer, later to become firmly entrenched in our selection of last year’s best records.
Ether Coven – Everything is Temporary Except Suffering (Century Media Records, 10 January 2020)
Ok, first things first — isn’t that a fantastic title? Really sounds like it was lifted straight from some Woods of Ypres lyrics or something, doesn’t it?
Well technically, it was lifted from Ether Coven lyrics, as the phrase appears a few times in the opening track from the Floridian band’s second album, released exactly one month ago today, which we will be diving into starting right now…
Friday 21 February through Saturday 22 February 2020
at Clarion Inn Frederick Event Center, 5400 Holiday Dr, Frederick MD 21703
Weekend pass $89; single-day tickets $30-60 each; hotel stay not included in ticket prices.
So you keep reading about the annual Shadow Woods Metal Fest, that huge outdoor festival held at a Maryland summer camp, and you’d love to attend except you’re completely averse to camping and summertime and anything outdoors. What a quandary!
But not to worry, the Shadow Woods folks have got you covered — with an indoor gathering in the relative luxury of a hotel’s ballroom, right in the dead of winter! Shadow Frost will feature a selection of bands from the local region as well as all over North America, plus art/music/craft vendors, and lots of games and activities, aiming for a similar vibe to a comic con or horror con type of event.
See below for lineup of bands; updated 16 February to include set times.