Alex Skolnick's Planetary Coalition Breaks All the Rules

Categories: Jazz, Metal

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Photo by Tom Couture
Brooklynite Alex Skolnick is best known as the lead guitarist of thrash outfit Testament and the jazz group Alex Skolnick Trio. But his latest project, Planetary Coalition, represents a radically new direction, as it unites 27 musicians from around the globe onto an album of world music. Tuesday night, over a dozen of these musicians will perform with Skolnick at Meridian23 for the official record release show.

"You're not supposed to do a project like this," says Skolnick of industry expectations for chart-toppers like himself. "I'm supposed to be the guy from Testament."

See also: Testament's Alex Skolnick Went From Geek to Guitar God

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Let Brooklyn's Mortals Punish You

Categories: Metal

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Photo courtesy of Relapse Records
One of the most striking features of Mortals, a blackened metal trio from Brooklyn, is also one of the things they're most reticent to discuss. They are three women in extreme music, a genre dominated by men, but they see this fact as secondary to their band's identity.

"We try not to make it an issue," bass player and vocalist Lesley Wolf says about the topic of gender. "People can think whatever they want."

See also: The 10 Best Male Rappers of All Time


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What Do Deathcore Quintet Born of Osiris Have in Common With the Lumineers and Lorde?

Categories: Metal

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Via
A weird thing happened in 2013. Chicago-area deathcore quintet Born of Osiris smashed into the Billboard Top 200 charts with their Tomorrow We Die Alive album, coming in above the Lumineers and Lorde, bands distinctly unlike the ultra-heavy and underground metal assault of BOO.

Vocalist Ronnie Canizaro, a 25-year-old whose speaking voice sounds like he's 17 (his growled vocals in the band are ageless), was surprised, to say the least. Calling from outside the evening's venue, Atlanta's Masquerade club, he recalls, "I didn't expect that, I was very happy. There are more people that are appreciating metal now. There are always fads...I mean, nu metal is what got me into all this: Korn, Slipknot, who are still going strong. I think our band, we never follow the trend or fad, we've been on this slow rise with each album, growing, gaining more fans, playing bigger shows. It's cool to see the progress."

See also: Ten Metal Albums to Hear Before You Die

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"Wonder Woman Would Hang Out at Saint Vitus": Comics Creators on NYC Hero Haunts

Categories: Metal

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Rob Menzer
Saint Vitus in Greenpoint: This is where Wonder Woman would hang out.
Making the most of New York Comic Con can be exhausting, and navigating the crowds can be as taxing as fighting Skrulls or thwarting Brainiac. So where in the city do comics heroes unwind or cut loose?

Some of the top creators at NYCC shared their heroes' favorite New York hangouts.

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Father/Son NYC Grindcore Band Vomit Fist's New Video Is 48 Seconds of Blood and Puke

Categories: Metal

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Photo by Chris Carlone
Some teens spend their last year of high school succumbing to senioritis, but New York drummer Leo "Lurkrot" Didkovsky started a grindcore band -- with his dad. Behold the bloody fruits of Vomit Fist in "Under the Rind," the new (48-second!) music video by this multigenerational trio.

See also: The Top 20 New York Hardcore and Metal Albums of All Time

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Sometimes Earth's Dylan Carlson Feels Like a Dinosaur

Categories: Metal

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Photo by Samantha Muljat
Earth
A cursory investigation may well elucidate Earth's oeuvre: They've got a three-song album that's more than 73 minutes long. In 1968, a nascent Black Sabbath went by the name Earth. Song titles include "Torn by the Fox of the Crescent Moon" and the 11-and-a-half-minute "From the Zodiacal Light." There are no vocals. Descriptives often associated with the band include "drone" and "ambient."

See also: Ten Metal Albums to Hear Before You Die

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Heavy Metal Spin Class Is a Thing

Categories: Metal

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Halston Bruce, cycling instructor
A tune by Death pumped through the speakers in the basement of SYNCStudio in Williamsburg. Halston Bruce, a tattooed chick with curly red hair, donned a headset microphone and mounted her stationary bike. This innaugural heavy metal cycling class (last Thursday) had been her longtime vision, and she percolated with excitement.

"Let's turn this basement into a double bass-ment!" she proclaimed.

Cue the Led Zeppelin.

See also: Heavy Metal Yoga Is a Thing

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10 Death Metal Albums to Listen to Before You Die

Categories: Metal

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Morbid Angel
Death metal is such a vague term, even though it is in itself a sub genre of the greater umbrella of heavy metal music. But, when it comes to extreme metal, a death metal band can writing good songs is important. But more impressive is if a band can write a collection of good songs, thrown together cohesively in the form of an album. We now present our list of the10 Death Metal Albums to Listen to Before You Die.

See also: Ten Metal Albums to Hear Before You Die

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Unlocking the Truth: "They're Natural Kids and That's the Way Its Gotta Be"

Categories: Metal

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Photo by Ignacio Photos via unlockingthetruthband.com
Unlocking the Truth at Coachella
Most rock stars don't squirm and look pleadingly to their mother for rescue when asked about their song lyrics. Nor are they "approaching" 90 pounds, just finishing up seventh grade--or making $1,000 a day busking on the street. But Malcolm Brickhouse, 13, is not your average rock star. The guitarist/singer of pre- and teen metallers Unlocking the Truth recently took time away from his classes at PS 22 in Brooklyn to, oh, nothing, open for Guns N' Roses at The Joint at the Vegas Hard Rock, whose gaming floor/bar he won't be able to legally populate for another eight years. Not to mention playing Coachella and the ultimate "how I spent my summer" essay-in-the-making thanks to this summer's Warped tour.

See also: At Metal School with Unlocking the Truth

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Grim Reaper's Steve Grimmett Loved the Beavis & Butt-Head Spoofs

Categories: Interviews, Metal

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Photo by G. Sfikas
Steve Grimmett
Grim Reaper may be best known for the jokes Beavis and Butt-head cracked at their expense, but they're enjoying a new wave of genuine appreciation from fans younger than the songs that made the band famous. The New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) veterens recorded only three albums--See You in Hell, Fear No Evil, and Rock You To Hell--that found minor U.S. success in the 80s before legal troubles with record labels split up the band.

Tonight, 6/10, vocalist Steve Grimmett leads a revamped line-up (without original guitarist Nick Bowcott, who has tendenitis) in the first of a two-night stint at Saint Vitus in Brooklyn. We talked with him about the groundswell of renewed interest in Grim Reaper and, yes, about Beavis and Butt-head.

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