24 February 2011

DOWNLOAD: Appalachian Terror Unit - Greenwashing

In someone else's words:

"The long-anticipated full length LP from West Virginia mountain punks Appalachian Terror Unit is upon us. [Seven] raging tracks of angry crust punk with crushing riffs and (mainly) female vocals. They have shed one guitar player since their EP, making for a much more raw and organic sounds (more rock and less thrash). Both musically and lyrically the best comparison I can conjure up is Sabbath Bloody Sabbath meets Nausea’s Extinction LP (original mix). One of the most raw and intense musical experiences Profane Existence has released in a long time and a fitting finalĂ© for Profane Existence Records.

“Greenwashing: The unjustified appropriation of environmental virtue by a company, an industry, a government, a politician or even a non-government organization. Using more money, time and energy on slick PR campaigns aimed at promoting their eco-friendly images, than they do to actually protecting the environment.”

Artist: Appalachian Terror Unit
Album: Greenwashing
Year: 2008
For Fans Of: Nausea, Black Sabbath, His Hero Is Gone

23 February 2011

WATCH: Appalachian Terror Unit live at ABC No Rio, 2008

Check out this video of Huntington's environmentally-polical crust punks Appalachian Terror Unit playing ABC No Rio in New York City in 2008.

22 February 2011

DOWNLOAD: Appalachian Terror Unit - Armageddon Won't Be Brought By Gods...

Hailing from Huntington, Appalachian Terror Unit spend a lot of time touring - with scheduled dates in the France, Germany, UK and much of Europe planned for 2011. Their sincere and brutal brand of eco-conscious crust-core punk metal with angry female and male dual vocals. Compared to a contemporary Nausea, the music is at times frenzied and fast, at times heavy and haunting, and always bitter and confrontational. The band's first EP Armageddon Won't Be Brought By Gods... was released in 2007 on Minneapolis-based Profane Existence, and is now out of print. The album points fingers at greedy coal executives responsible for mountain top removal and the destruction of West Virginia's environment. "You can't replant a mountain," Sarah says in the opening moments of the album, calling out Massey Energy by name. "Every time we turn on the lights, we're guilty." Appalachian Terror Unit is a band that seemingly has never got the respect or attention it deserves West Virginia, as they play a Swedish style of punk not approached by many from the Mountain State. Fitting alongside more familiar bands like His Hero Is Gone or World Burns To Death, Appalachian Terror Unit is a hardworking group of genuinely nice people (bassist Matt Belville is still one of my favorite dudes I knew from Huntington) that not only has a lot of important things to say, but is doing it in an exciting way. Also, the band's entire discography is now available on Profane Existence. If you dig ATU, support them.

Artist: Appalachian Terror Unit
Album: Armageddon Won't Be Brought By Gods...
Year: 2007
For Fans Of: Nausea, World Burns to Death, His Hero Is Gone

17 February 2011

DOWNLOAD: The Minus Tide - Anakuklosis

Following the release of their debut EP The Rock Autopsy Has Begun, The Minus Tide put out a pair of split releases on vinyl - one with Morgantown's Turn Around Norman and one with Pankration. Before the band went on hiatus in 2005 to pursue other projects, they released this exceptional 10-song album on Action Driver Records.

The album is currently being re-mixed by the band, who are considering options for re-releasing it.

"Weird, scary, heavy, brutal and awesome. If only every other crappy metal/hardcore hybrid band could look toward The Minus Tide for inspiration. " - Punk Planet

"Genre-defining. This sonic monster is merciless." - Bettawreckonize.com

"A monster of a concept album... Anakuklosis is a balls-out testimony of the digital age." - The Emory Wheel

"Complex, brutal and expertly played, Anakuklosis is a solid collection of precision-tuned chaos." - Splendid E-Zine

"A short and sweet romp through the fields of ambitious, challenging metalcore." - Deep Fry Bonanza

"I'm not really sure what Anakuklosis means, but I'm going to guess it's something along the lines of 'if you thought our last record was awesome, prepare to have your face melted.' ...The new standard for bands creating this kind controlled chaos." - Smother.net

Artist: The Minus Tide
Album: Anakuklosis
Year: 2004
For Fans Of: Converge, Botch, Mastodon

16 February 2011

WATCH: The Minus Tide live in Marietta, Ohio, 2004

Yesterday I posted the debut EP from Wheeling sci-fi metallic hardcore band The Minus Tide, one of the finest heavy music acts ever from West Virginia. Looking at the photo above, one may not take them very seriously. But watching the video below of a performance of their song "100% Fatality" from the band's split with Turn Around Norman (link courtesy of Dana White) gives you an decent idea of how powerful their music was. Tomorrow I will be posting the band's full length album Anakuklosis.

15 February 2011

DOWNLOAD: The Minus Tide - The Rock Autopsy Has Begun

The Minus Tide has been mentioned plenty on this blog in relation to Killed at Camp, M Iafrate or Drown Culture. They've been mentioned not only because of their relation to great bands from the Wheeling area, but because The Minus Tide still stands as one of West Virginia's finest ever metal/hardcore acts.

Setting itself apart by combining influences of metal, hardcore, emo and rock. Using dueling guitar leads seesawed with heavy, crunchy riffs is nothing new to metalcore. The Minus Tide took it to a new level blending it 16-bit sounding synths adding to the music's menacing, cerebral feel. It is this element combined with throat-melting screamo vocals and conceptual lyrics that created the band's otherworldly sci-fi metal style.

The Rock Autopsy Has Begun, the out-of-print six-track EP released in 2002, is where it all started. It takes thirteen seconds of creepy tension-building synth/guitar sounds before the power of The Minus Tide's songwriting and musical brilliance is apparent. The music is confrontational and abrasive but technical and rhythmic. While some technical metallic hardcore acts such as Converge, The Dillinger Escape Plan or Zao may turn away some listeners with seemingly chaotic noise, The Minus Tide is a rock band at heart with mid-'90s emo sensibilities. It is this that setsthe band apart from other metalcore outfits. Their songs, though dramatic and fierce, are listenable, which attributed to the success of their short-lived career. I will continue to post their records over the next week.

Artist: The Minus Tide
Album: The Rock Autopsy Has Begun
Year: 2002
For Fans Of: Converge, Iron Maiden, Zao

08 February 2011

WATCH: Tim McGraw - I Need You

Tim McGraw wants to ride across West Virginia in a Cadillac like he needs his wife? Apparently so. How romantic.

03 February 2011

LISTEN: Doc Williams, RIP

Though Doc Williams was born in Cleveland and raised in a small Western Pennsylvania coal town, it was in Wheeling where his career in country music began, and recently ended with his death on Jan. 31. Leader of the group Doc Williams and the Border Riders, he was a constant fixture on WWVA in Wheeling, and appeared on the radio for more than 50 years. He was 96 when he died.

02 February 2011

LOOK: Like old times, photos of a house show (in Austin)

When I was 15 years old, I started photographing my friends' bands. It was photography that got me involved in the music scene. Almost fifteen years later, I'm not photographing or going to shows as much as I would like. Over the weekend, though, I found myself at a house show that reminded me of days gone by. And it featured some really good bands (including Dallas's Leg Sweeper and Austin's ELVIS), who were so surprisingly enjoyable that I was inspired to steal my friend's camera and take a few shots. Then the cops showed up. I felt like I was 18 again. It was great. Here is a selection of those images.

Leg Sweeper:


The cops/party: