Top 5: Cult of Luna

Top 5: Cult of Luna
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Ascending out of the black abyss after five years of quietly lurking in the adumbrative shadows, Cult of Luna released their album, Vertikal I, which transcended the norm and boundaries of the typical metal wavelengths. With all the cultivation and care that went into Vertikal I, however, the album did not illuminate the full spectrum of sound that the band had intended to highlight. In 2013, Vertikal I was made whole, as Cult of Luna introduced three extra songs and a remix on a separate EP: Vertikal II.  … read more

Top 5: Light/Black

Top 5: Light/Black
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When talking shop over recordings, you sometimes hear of bands “catching lightning in a bottle” with their music. If that analogy rings true, Light/Black didn’t just bottle it, they christened their amps with it. Make no mistake, the way they wrote and structured this album was no accident, nor did they cater to any minor niche group who may not like a certain kind of tone. This is a fucking good, heavy rock album. … read more

Top 5: Danny Brown

Top 5: Danny Brown
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Right from the first track (“Side A [Old]”), it’s obvious that this ain’t that old Danny Brown shit. He takes us there, into his old life—his mom braiding hair on the front porch (“25 Bucks”) and a crackhead burning off his lip doing stove hits (“Torture”). But this is new territory for Brown. Old strays from the minimalist and vocal-centric emphasis of XXX and the ’90s-worship of The Hybrid, and shows that Brown is as versatile and conceptual as ever. Old is more put-together, more focused around each song’s vibe or story. … read more

SLUG Mag’s Top 5 Albums of 2014

SLUG Mag’s Top 5 Albums of 2014

Every December, SLUG Magazine sounds the rallying call and gathers the staff’s lists of Top 5 albums from the year. In the next few pages, find a wide range of genres, artists and records that were of note for 2014—with a few other Top 5 beats like video games, comics and movies peppered throughout. … read more

Top 5: Pink Mountaintops

Top 5: Pink Mountaintops
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Get Back received mixed reviews across the board—some reviewers lauded the album as a rock n’ roll tour de force (Mojo, PopMatters) and others expressed wishy-washy reactions (Paste, Pitchfork). Most seemed, to some extent, to decry the sixth track, “North Hollywood Microwaves” because Annie Hardy (Giant Drag) raps about the joys of cum, declaring “I am a slut!” amid her blithe confessions of bestiality with donkeys and bears (because men no longer satisfy her). The prank worked. … read more

Top 5: Necrophagia

Top 5: Necrophagia
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The legacy of horror, terror and old-school death metal that is Wellsville, Ohio’s Necrophagia keeps getting better and better. Their seventh release, WhiteWorm Cathedral, is sure to open up the seven seals of Hell and unleash the apocalypse in the form of aural destruction and mental imagery assaults. Necrophagia incorporate an almost obsessive love for horror films which, in addition to the band’s own ideas and interpretations of those horrors, have always made for fun listening. … read more

Top 5: Hundred Waters

Top 5: Hundred Waters
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Following the subtly intricate formula of their first album, Hundred Waters’ new release continues with the same airy splendor, but with more refinement. The musical foundation of this album perfectly represents 2014, a year of revitalization and self-discovery, by sounding neither senescent nor ahead of its time, but flawlessly fit into the fringes of current music. … read more

Top 5: Horseback

Top 5: Horseback
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Jenks Miller, the father behind Horseback’s latest album, Piedmont Apocrypha, has again created a twined nest of experimental sound by combining a base of seething feedback and altering levels of oozing drone. The album as a whole lifts up the listener in a cradle to help see Miller’s vision of music as a single, fluid entity with this nongenre specific album. … read more

Top 5: Foster Body

Top 5: Foster Body
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Foster Body’s debut album, Landscapes, which was released on cassette and digitally in March, captures the Salt Lake City–based, punk combo at a brilliant moment of process—merging strong aesthetic sentiment and live performance practice into a compelling vision for contemporary noise-punk. With eight tracks lashing across the album’s 20-minute duration, Landscapes is a quick yet thrilling listen. … read more

Top 5: Ered Wethrin

Top 5: Ered Wethrin
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Just like the epic themes of fantasy and esoteric mysticism that inspired Ered Wethrin’s lyrics, Tides of War takes its time unfolding a vast and enchanting audial world. From the Glen Cook–inspired “Bloody Annals and Brooding Skies” to the Steven Erikson tribute in “Requiem for the Fallen,” Sven Smith’s solo recordings recall the stoic and battle-hardened tales of lesser-known fantasy realms. … read more