Staff Infections – July 2020

Greetings, friends. It’s time for Staff infections—the feature wherein the Last Rites staff shares what it’s been listening to for the last month, and you, dear readers, get to marvel at our spectacularly good taste in music. There’s no getting around the fact that, despite the abundant sunshine, the world is a pretty dismal place right now. So, lacking anything particularly pleasant to talk about, let’s skip the current events section of the intro and get right to the metal.

It’s a narrow field of competition for album of the month this time around, as only two albums appeared in more than one playlist. And by more than one, I mean two. Consequently, Falconer’s From a Dying Ember and The Spirit Cabinet’s Bloodlines are tied for first place, with no runners up. Longtime Falconer fan, El Capitan, renders his well-informed opinion on Falconer’s final album right here. While we have no stand-alone review of Bloodlines, Ryan Tysinger provides a pretty thorough rundown of the album in the second volume of our Missing Pieces series, which features outstanding 2020 metal albums that we neglected to review at the time of their release. Better late than never, as they say. You can find volumes one and two of Missing Pieces here and here.

Finally, since the U.S.A. doesn’t seem to be too adept at fighting Covid-19, let’s focus on something that America is good at for our discussion question this month: Which style of metal do you think the U.S. does best? Share your answer and your playlist in the comments. While your are doing so, have a listen to the staff-curated Spotify playlist just below, and enjoy some of the tunes we’ve been enjoying. Until next month, stay safe, and stay healthy.

  • Andrew Edmunds
    Unholy Grave – Grind Killers
    Agathocles – Humarrogance
    Brutal Truth – Need To Control
    Meth Leppard – Woke
    Birdflesh – Extreme Graveyard Tornado
    Elixir – The Son Of Odin
  • Danhammer Obstkrieg
    Ambrose Akinmusire – On the Tender Spot of Every Calloused Moment
    Drautran – Throne of the Depths
    Bob Dylan – Rough and Rowdy Ways
    Khthoniik Cerviiks – Æequiizoiikum
    Do Make Say Think – You, You’re a History in Rust
    J Majik – Always Be
  • Ryan Tysinger
    The Lord Diabolus – Down There…
    Greyhawk – Keepers of the Flame
    The Spirit Cabinet – Bloodlines
    Trelldom – Til et annet...
    Mekong Delta – Wanderer on the Edge of Time
    Pa Vesh En – Burial
  • Zach Duvall
    Neil Young – Homegrown
    Lamentari – Missa Pro Defunctis
    Drottnar – Welterwerk
    Liturgy – H.A.Q.Q.
    Ulver – Messe I.X-VI.X
    Raw – Languish
  • Manny-O-War
    The Spirit Cabinet – Bloodlines
    Ludvig Cimbrelius – Atmospheric Presence
    Immolation – Atonement
    Michael Olatuja – Lagos Pepper Soup
    Incantation – Sect of Vile Divinities
    Samuel Hällkvist – Epik, Didaktik, Pastoral
  • Dave Pirtle
    Hum – Inlet
    Local H – Lifers
    Primus – Pork Soda
    Falconer – From a Dying Ember
    Melvins & Mudhoney – White Lazy Boy
    Mantar – Grungetown Hooligans II
  • Lone Watie
    Falconer – From a Dying Ember
    Mekong Delta – Tales from a Future Past
    Virgin Steele – The House of Atreus, Acts I&II
    Death – Discography
    Frank Zappa – Hot Rats
    Rick Wakeman – The Six Wives of Henry VIII
  • Spencer Hotz
    Obscene – The Inhabitable Dark
    Couch Slut – Take A Chance On Rock ‘n’ Roll
    Wilderun – Veil of Imagination
    Marsh Dweller – Wanderer
    Yes – Tales From Topographic Oceans
    Kamasi Washington – The Epic
  • Fetusghost
    Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin kynsi
    Hällas – Conundrum
    Hällas – Excerpts From a Future Past
    billy woods – Hiding Places
    White Ward – Love Exchange Failure
    Kylesa – Time Will Fuse Its Worth
  • Jeremy Morse
    Church of Disgust – Consumed by Slow Putrefaction
    Slayer – Reign in Blood
    Minor Threat – Discography
    High on Fire –  Spitting Fire Live, Vol. 1 &2
    Monster Magnet – Spine of God
    Al Di Meola – Anthology

Posted by Jeremy Morse

Riffs or GTFO.

  1. Vampire – Rex
    Haim – Women In Music: Pt. III
    Ludicra – The Tenant
    Tribulation – The Children of the Night
    GAS – Narkopop
    The Black League – Ichor


  2. Getting Stabbed – Atmosphere of Decay
    Skeleton – Skeleton
    Pyrrhon – Abscess Time
    Wolfbrigade – Run With the Hunted
    Wolfbrigade – The Enemy: Reality
    Oranssi Pazuzu – Mestarin Kynsi

    The style of metal the US does best? Easy. Thrash. I’d take the finest from Testament, Slayer, Exodus, Overkill, Megadeth, Metallica, Anthrax, Sacred Reich, et. al. against any countries thrash catalog.

    Yes, there’s The Teutonic Big Four (and by that I mean Sodom and Kreator – fight me).

    Canada’s ’80s underground was metal AF.

    Sepultura and Brazil had a solid run.

    Ditto Mortal Sin and other Australian thrashers.

    The regular Scandinavian front runners for national metal prestige are noticeably light on notable thrash bands as well.

    Hell, I’d take the state’s thrash lineup versus the entire world and argue that the US would still come out on top. U! S! A! U! S! A!


    1. Tough to choose between US death and thrash for me!


      1. Well, I’m feeling a little sheepish. I now see that the initial question was what does America do best, and not what does America do better than everyone else. That makes my Americentric, RA-RA response seem a bit foolish in hindsight.

        With that being said, and a bit of critical reframing of the question, I think I’d still pick thrash. Death is a close second, but, and maybe it’s just a flawed perception, the glut of subpar death bands that seem to exist takes a bit of the shine off the whole.


  3. At The Gates – Slaughter of the Soul
    Sanctuary – The Year The Sun Died
    Stargazer – A Great Work of Ages
    Ihsahn – After
    Rainbow – Rising
    Black Flag – Damaged
    Bad Religion – No Control
    Corrections House – Last City Zero
    Ufomammut – Eve

    In terms of what the USA does best, it would be hard to go past sludge (and its offshoots – stoner sludge and post metal). It seems almost exclusively American, bands within the genre are still exploring it in new and exciting ways, and the music damn good.


  4. Inopexia – Unrest in Gorenoise
    Esophagus – Defeated by their Inferiority
    Pantera – Far Beyond Driven
    Biohazard – Urban Discipline
    Broken Hope – Loathing
    Dropdead / Totalitar – split


  5. Maggot Heart – Mercy Machine
    Pale Divine- Consequence of Time
    Bethlehem- Lebe dich leer
    Lantern – Dimensions
    Them Moose Rush – Dancing Maze

    Best US Metal export is US Power Metal, much better than the European version


  6. Kudos Dave Pirtle on putting Hum’s Inlet on your list. I cannot stop listening to it. Maybe this will introduce some to the excellent and forgotten band.


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