Hello, and welcome to another installment of the “Signmeto” Unsigned Band of the Week feature, which is a profile of a band I’ve discovered on the “Sign Me to Roadrunner Records” website. As always, you’ll find a huge variety of material here; each week you’ll have the opportunity to listen to a few songs from a different band you might never have heard before. My hope is, you might find something you really dig, and then when they explode in popularity and sell a million records, you can scoff at all the bandwagon-jumpers, saying you’ve been a fan since the beginning.
Today’s featured artist is Amorphead, who describe themselves as “melodic death and groove metal,” from Catanzaro, Italy. Since forming in 2007, the band has toured all over Europe, “meeting the approval of the public,” and they have had two releases so far: an EP entitled Psychotic in mid-2009, followed by Chaos Expression which emerged on 3 March 2011. The two songs we’ll talk about today were taken from that second EP.
The first song available on the band’s Signmeto page is “Holes.” This starts off nice and nasty, with Matteo Gregoraci playing a gritty bassline that has a very raw and loose feeling. The guitar parts that jump in with the bass mirror this same quality, dirty and distorty. However, Giorgio Faini‘s drum part (the snare, more than anything else, I think) sounds somewhat cleaner and more precise than the other instruments (including the vocals), perhaps not quite matching the prevailing mood of the recording. Despite that, this track captures a lot of aggression and plenty of head-bobbing groove at the same time. The first guitar solo (between about 1:25-1:55) is both soulful and thrashy, a definite highlight; the second one (around 2:20-2:50) starts off sounding even more impressive, but over the last ten seconds or so, it just sort of falls apart into a bit of a train wreck. The vocals immediately return, though, and bring us back to the shouting aggressive groove from earlier, which builds through a climactic ending.
Also available at Signmeto is the title track from the 2011 EP Chaos Expression. We immediately jump into an aural assault, courtesy of some pounding double-kick with the added punch of a low-pitched chuggy rhythm on the guitar. I really like some of the tandem guitar harmonies (courtesy of Alessandro Morrone and Antonio Mazza) on these riffs, or the times where one of them is playing a screaming lead or solo; the arrangement of a lot of these songs is very reminiscent of groovy thrash or maybe thrashy groove. Vocally, both of these (but especially this second one) feature a very breathy form of yelling that comes sort of close to the style known as “bree,” although I think it would be more accurate to compare what Emiliano Iozzo is doing here with the croaking of a giant bullfrog (rather than the oft-described pig squeals). I mean that in a good way!
More videos are available at the Amorphead Youtube channel (including a feature on the making of their second EP — the little bits of dialogue contained here are in Italian, but they form a very small part of the video itself, and are not essential to enjoying watching). The band are working on their next album, which they expect to release by the end of 2012. Keep updated on their activities by liking them on Facebook, and visit their webstore where you can pick up a copy of Chaos Expression (earlier release Psychotichas already sold out) or a t-shirt.
I hope you enjoyed this post – please feel free to share your opinion in the comments below! Until next week… if you happen to stumble across something you’d like to share (or if you are in a band and are trying to get your music heard), just write to me at my Signmeto “scout” page. Thanks for reading!