Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Feature: Five bands to watch

There are certainly hundreds of bands bands which are worth keeping an eye on, which, while sill relatively young, and in many cases quite obscure, are already set to make waves. Lamentably, I wish I knew them all, but sadly, I can only keep my eye on some of them. I can tell you, however, that I expect great things from this collection of young bands, and for each and every one of the five on this list to be well known names among metal fans within the next decade, and it is already apparent that some of them are already embarking on this process. Since thinking of this feature this morning, I've thought up a couple of bands who very snugly fit the criteria, so here they are, highlighted in no particular order.

Ketzer: From Germany, Ketzer play a explosive and ferocious style of black-thrash which is already going down a storm with many metal fans who keep their eye on the emergent underground bands. "Satan's Boundaries Unchained" (right) is the bands well received début album, which I anticipate reviewing shortly, and, at some point this year, will hopefully be accompanied by a follow-up album. I consider Ketzer a band to watch on account of the sheer raw, ripping quality of their début, and with the promise of an follow up, hopefully of the same calibre, I firmly have my eye on them.


Skull Fist: Skull Fist's brand of cheeky, retro speed-metal seems to have gathered them a very large cult following, and with only one full length album out; "Head of the Pack", this is impressive indeed. Very much a love-hate band, the waves Skull Fist have made in the metal scene are felt by most, and enjoyed by many. The band deliver a fairly unique sounding, musically talented Canadian punch to the face with the intensity, virtuosity and over the top vocals which are impossible to ignore. Skull Fist are like Ketzer, in the sense that if they continue to release material of their current quality, they will become renowned indeed.


Vektor: Vektor really need no introduction. Their two "proper" full length albums; "Black Future" and "Outer Isolation" are already propelling the band into significant renown. Many hail the band as one of the bast things to happen to thrash-metal in a long time, and certainly, the band's alarmingly technical, fast, all-encompassing and distinct playing-style doubtless has the potential to go down in the metal history-books. Vektor are among the furthest down the path to classic-status on this particular list, and the band, while younger than a lot of the "modern" thrash bands out there, definitely possesses the potential to overtake many of them.


Wodensthrone: Many bands now-a-days combine post-rock with black metal, but Wodensthrone happen to do it quite exceptionally well. With one album released, and another heralded to be on the way, the band don't have the largest discography among it's peers, but "Loss" the bands début full-length, certainly makes up for it in haunting beauty, brought together by harsh but melancholic vocals and guitar, combined with astoundingly beautiful, ancient sounding synth. I can only proclaim that if the bands second album doesn't propel them to great renown, then there is no justice in the world, that is, assuming, that the album is good, which, judging by "Loss", it should be.


Thrall: I mention Thrall quite a lot on this blog. I refuse to take any blame for this, as the band insist on making some of the most fantastically desolate, eerie and altogether epic and complete-sounding black metal I've heard. On the right is their second album "Vermin to the Earth" which continues the band's anti-human, extinction crazed brand of music in pleasingly consistent and improving fashion. While perhaps one of the more obscure bands on the list just now, I cannot imagine the gem remaining undiscovered forever, and I'll certainly be keeping an eye on the band, as I expect them to shoot to renown in the near future.


Of course there are a great many bands of a similar status, poised on the edge of becoming greatly revered, and I can safely say I'm ever searching for them. These five immediately come to mind, but there are without a doubt others, which, perhaps, I shall write about another day.