Staff Infections – April 2019

Hello, dear readers. It’s Staff Infections time. Fortunately, no antibiotics will be needed. Staff Infections is just the clever(?) name we at Last Rites have given to our monthly roundup of staff playlists. We listen to wonderful music, and you read about it and are hopefully inspired to check out said music. That’s how it’s supposed to work, anyway.

This month, however, my colleagues have pissed in the punch bowl. You see, Devin Townsend’s new album, Empath, topped the playlists this month, and I fucking hate Devin Townsend. Not personally, just as an artist and public figure. He’s a visionary, a creative genius, a generational talent, even. I don’t give a shit. Fuck him. Why do I hate him so much? Well, I saw him on Headbangers’ Ball years and years ago when he was singing for Stever Vai, and he annoyed the shit out of me. Fast forward to the new millennium and Devin, and whatever candy-assed prog album he happened to release in any given year, always placed somewhere near the top of the Metal Review / Last Rites year-end lists. Prog rock is fine…for other people, not so much for me. But I always begrudged the places Devin’s albums took on the lists that could have gone to something more metallic. It’s a losing battle that probably isn’t worth fighting in the first place, but what can I say? I’m a miserable, close-minded prick, and I hate Devin Townsend for not-very-good reasons.

At any rate, I traditionally provide an audio sample of the month’s first place finisher, but fuck that this month. If you want to listen to Empath, you can do it some-fucking-where else.

Second place this month is a three way tie between Queensrÿche’s latest, The Verdict, hardcore punk rock band Isotope’s debut self-titled album, and Chevalier’s forthcoming full-length debut, Destiny Calls. Queensrÿche is, at times, a great band, but it strays a little too close to prog. Sorry boys; you caught me on a bad day, now fuck off. Punk rock? Nope. Not happening. Which leaves us with Chevalier. Those vocals are awkward as all Hell, but Destiny Calls seems like a rather glorious and purely metal racket just the same. Enjoy a sample below, and be sure to share your own playlist in the comments…unless you’ve been listening to Devin Townsend. Have a great month…unless you are Devin Townsend.



    • Manny-O-War
      Built to Spill – Keep it Like a Secret
      Iron Griffin – Curse of the Sky
      Motörhead – Overkill
      Pissgrave – Posthumous Humiliation
      Pagan Altar – Lords of Hypocrisy
      Isotope – Isotope
    • Zach Duvall
      Melvins – Lysol
      The Chasm – From the Lost Years…
      Fange – Punir
      Ulver – The Assassination of Julius Caesar
      Rush – Hold Your Fire
      Deathspell Omega – Paracletus
    • Andrew Edmunds
      Queensrÿche – The Verdict
      Motörhead – Ace Of Spades
      Suffering Mind – Discography 2008 – 2010
      Overkill – The Wings Of War
      Dismember – Dismember
      Arsis – A Celebration Of Guilt
    • Ryan Tysinger
      Fates Warning – The Spectre Within
      Chevalier – Destiny Calls
      Summon – Dark Descent of Fallen Souls
      Brulvahnatu – Menstrual Extraction Ceremony
      Lunar Shadow – Far From Light
      Leathürbitch – Leathürbitch
    • Dave Pirtle
      Rollins Band – Hard Volume
      Steve Earle & The Dukes – GUY
      Aephanemer – Prokopton
      Devin Townsend – Empath
      Vltimas – Something Wicked Marches In
      Tyr – Hel
    • Dan Obstkrieg
      Devin Townsend – Empath
      Fennesz – Agora
      Tanagra – Meridiem
      Richard Skelton – Till Fabrics
      Yanni – Dare to Dream
      Armagedda – Ond Spiritism
    • Captain
      Fleurety – Min Tid Skal Komme
      Vulture’s Vengeance – The Knightlore
      Isotope – Isotope
      Chevalier – Destiny Calls
      William Basinski – On Time Out of Time
      Oksennus – Neosmegma
    • Lone Watie
      Devin Townsend – Empath
      Domboshawa – Fyra
      Appearance of Nothing – In Times of Darkness
      Suffocation – Effigy of the Forgotten
      Ed Wynne – Shimmer into Nature
      t – Solipsystemology
    • Jeremy Morse
      Darkthrone – Soulside Journey
      Scorpions – Blackout
      Smoulder – Times of Obscene Evil and Wild Daring
      Monster Magnet – Dopes to Infinity
      Free – Live at the Isle of Wight 1970
    • Konrad Kantor
      Queensrÿche – The Verdict
      Fela Kuti – The ’69 Los Angeles Sessions
      Shai Hulud & Indecision – Split
      Plaga – Magia gwiezdnej entropii
      Svartsyn – Timeless Reign
      Arckanum – Kostogher

Posted by Jeremy Morse

Riffs or GTFO.

  1. I hate Devin Townsend too. I would go so far as to add that he is not a visionary, creative genius, or generational talent. In fact, he is not even the best Canadian guitarist; that goes to Jeff Waters. He is not even the most talented Canadian metalhead; that goes to David Gold. That’s just in the metal field in Canada; we’re not even talking about Geddy Lee or Neil Young or other music fields or even other nations. There are so many not-evens associated with Devin that it’s embarrassing that he is fronted money at all for his next loopy, noodly-prog Ziltoid thing.


  2. Devin Townsend – Empath
    Isis – In The Absence Of Truth
    Inter Arma – Sky Burial
    Rammstein – Reise Reise
    Looking Glass – III
    Slugdge – Esoteric Malacology


  3. Imha Tarikat – Kara Ihlas
    Vanum – Ageless Fire
    Six Feet Under – Warpath
    Maggot Heart – Dusk to Dusk
    Grinderman – Grinderman
    Miley Cyrus/Mark Ronson – Nothing Breaks Like a Heart (Track; first time I consciously heard a Miley Cyrus song; this one’s basically crack)


  4. Crown of Autumn – Byzantine Horizons
    Sermon – Birth of the Marvellous
    Moon Tooth – Crux
    Queensryche- The Verdict
    Magnabolt – Magnabolt


  5. Was/am a fan of the first 2-3 Strapping Young Lad albums, but after that I can’t get into Townsend. It’s not hate, just total ambivalence… anyway.

    Gomorrah – The Haruspex
    Gomorrah – Gomorrah
    Monolord – Vænir
    Bill Burr – discography
    Nixa – Opus Tierra
    Ceremony of Silence – Outis (this was on repeat nearly all of last week)


  6. I just saw Vio-Lence in Oakland on Sunday. Sean Killion Looked healthy and of course They Rule!

    Vio-Lence – Eternal Nightmare
    Vio-Lence – Oppressing The Masses
    W.A.S.P. – Live…In The Raw
    Aoratus – Gods Without Name
    Dread Sovereign -For Doom The Bell Tolls
    Panopticon- The Scars of Man on the Once Nameless Wilderness
    (I and II)


  7. Waste of Space Orchestra – “Syntheosis”
    Voivod – “Angel Rat”
    Voivod – “Nothingface”
    Queensrÿche – “The Warning”
    Queensrÿche – “Rage for Order”
    Queensrÿche – “Operation: Mindcrime”


  8. VLTIMAS – Something Wicked Marches In
    Michio Kurihara – Sunset Notes
    Unsane – Visqueen
    The Budos Band – V
    Optimum Wound Profile – Silver or Lead
    Flower Travellin’ Band – Satori


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