She Likes It Heavy on Tuesdays, 7pm PST on bostonfreeradio.com, prajmetal@gmail.com (radio show: she likes it heavy)

0:25-7:01
VEILED (Pittsburgh)
Enshrouded
— "Life is born, it burns, it dies, and becomes nothing within nothingness. The great black emptiness swallows whole what once was."

7:57-12:49
USURPRESS (Sweden)
In Books Without Pages
— 4th album; prog and 70’s mixed with modern death and incredible drumming.

13:16-14:57
HELL TO PAY (Philly)
Bleed to Me
— Bold blistering hardcore from Philly.

15:19-19:30
CONJURER (UK)
The Mire
— Plays with both ends of the spectrum: harsh and melodic, deep and high-pitched vocals; quiet and loud, groove and crushing.

19:55-26:57
CRESCENT (fucking EGYPT)
Through The Scars Of Horus
Loud riffing dramatic Egyptian death metal. Fist up!

27:32-33:20
WINDHAND (VA)
Old Evil
— Sultry female vocalist-led Windhand have released another couple of fuzzed-out stoner psychedelic.

33:48-40:17
PAARA (Finland)
Hurmeen hauta
— Frantic emotional Finnish black metal broken up by melody and gorgeous vocals.

40:50-50:47
EIGENLICHT (WA)
Berzerker
— US black metal is stellar, now from Olympia, mixing their style of melodic and dissonant. Seems to be a hella trend nowadays.

51:07-END
BASALTE (Montreal)
Acouphène
— Thick and suffocating, just kill me now.

Behind My Vocals
Witching Hour; Goodbye Horses; The Smiths; Pleasure Symbols; She Past Away; Tropic Of Cancer; Savages; Dead Husband

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Show_255_022018.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 11:44pm EST

0:25-4:49
WRATHBLADE (Greece)
Castration Of Uranus
Vocalist stands out, reminding me of Mike Scalzi circa Hammers/The Bastard. Pagan, riffing and wizards makes up the secret recipe.

5:40-8:49
PORTAL (AU)
Phantom
Alien, bleak, comfortless chaos created only by aliens from Australia.

9:26-16:35
OCEAN OF GRIEF (Greece)
Majestic melodic is so hard to keep from being cheesy. These Greeks do melodic to perfection, creating vivid gorgeous spell-binding stories.

16:59-23:51
GURA (Belgium)
La Pêche aux Chats
Bass-prominent trippy jazz-fusion metal.

24:25-29:17
GNAW THEIR TONGUES (Netherlands)
Cold Oven
Oh the horror-ness. Ghoulish and blistering. These guys are influenced by no one.

29:39-34:42
CULTUS PROFANO (LA)
Cultus Profano OP. 9
LA black metal CAN be brutal.

35:01-35:58
THESE BASTARDS (SF)
Off My Lawn
I am Mr. Wilson. Bay area attitude-filled hardcore.

36:19-41:39
ABYSSAL VACUUM (France)
I
Demon vocals breathing fog over cavernous black metal.

42:11-46:29
MISERY INDEX (Baltimore)
I Disavow
Fuck yes Misery Index is about to deliver us a full-length at the end of the year. These guys are in my top 10 live bands.

47:28-53:10
THE WATCHERS (SF)
Black Abyss
The vocalist is a bit Chris Connelly. The drummer is ex-Orchid; sold local beer rock.

53:29-56:37
GUTSLIT (India)(2017)
Maraschino Eyeballs
BRUTAL GRIND FROM INDIA. This is an incredible album.

57:11-END
GRAFVITNIR (Sweden)
The vocalist splits his throat on a thick frigid indecipherable shriek. Nearly impossible to hear the melody.

Behind My Vocals: Pink Turns Blue, Sad Lovers and Giants, Killing Joke, Joy Division, Linea Aspera, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry, The Sound, Asylum Party, 1919, Corpus Delicti, Skeletal Party

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Show_254_021318.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 1:15am EST

This show is dedicated to the Runners-Up in my Best of 2017 list. 

VAMPIRE (Sweden), album - With Primeval Force
Song: Revenants (0:25-6:18)
— Vampire does this incredible job of capturing a retro style, with bite. Swedish melodic death metal mixed with heavy thrash. It is a fucking versatile album within each song, it hella swings. There is so much to headbang to here, but also a bit of folk and ballad creating a fully-rounded and thoughtful album. And they just let loose, this shit would be wild live. This is their second, more polished album, after a hiatus of 3 years.

ALL PIGS MUST DIE (MA), album – Hostage Animal
Song: A Caustic Vision (6:19-8:16)
— The ferocious intensity of a hardcore and crust band that dives headfirst into brutal death metal. Sounds like they took a good vacation for the last 4 years, pouring out all their pent-up energy, and adding Trap Them's guitarist. Their slowest moments were wicked and pulverizing.

NIGHT DEMON (CA), album - Darkness Remains
Song: Hallowed Ground (8:17-11:38)
— Magical summer night hard rock. Night Demon doesn't shy from their roots, with songs titled Maiden Hell, We Will Rock You, Welcome to the Night and so on. They remind me of Chris Black projects, melodic power and hooks, this is mullet and beer metal.

GRAVE PLEASURES (Finland), album – Motherblood
Song: Joy Through Death (11:39-15:20)
— Previously Beastmilk, Grave Pleasures just annihilates every post-punk sound out there. Beastmilk won my 2013 Best Post-Punk, and soon split up. They have converted themselves to Grave Pleasures and have released their second album. What makes this band stand out compared to other bands in their goth-influenced genre is their production value, their ability to be unrelentingly catchy but completely unique. They surprise you with how emotional their sound is, how romantic, how nostalgic for dark basement clubs.

DYING FETUS (MD), album - Wrong One to Fuck With
Song: Die With Integrity (15:21-20:33)
— You go into battle with Dying Fetus, and their music is the anthem, goring enemies. They hit you between the eyes with precision, tight, technical, brutality. The guitar work is fucking insane, it speaks in tongues, and geezus the breakdowns. They somehow make this a groove-filled viciousness, how does that happen. Genius.

FORESEEN (Finland), album - Grave Danger
Song: Violent Discipline (20:34-23:42)
— Contender for Best Thrash and Best Hardcore. Finnish band Foreseen does a crossover style of thrash, blending in the energy of hardcore into their dirty as hell gritty thrash with tons of ripping groove that you just tighten your hand into a fist to punch the air. Blows Iron Reagan's new album out of the water in terms of crossover perfection.

CLAN OF XYMOX (Netherlands), album - Days of Black
Song: Set You Free (23:53-27:59)
— One of my favorite gothic synthwave bands of all time, released 80's dark synth and goth perfection with some of the best vocals of all time. This album will slam you into nostalgia, that is, if you ever were a goth.

GIGAN (Chicago), album - Undulating Waves of Rainbiotic Iridescence
Song: Hyperjump-Ritual Madness (28:00-33:07)
— It is the manifestation of strange brains dreaming. There is streaming psychedelic pulsating through veins of brutal and master technical extreme. This is their 4th album.

PUBLIC PSYCHE (Belgium), album - No New Violence
Song: Patterns (33:08-36:25)
— Public Psyche has a unique take on post-punk, incorporating a less synthetic sound - post-punk mixed with krautrock and noise experimental.

SEER (Vancouver), album - Vol. III & IV: Cult of the Void
Song: Burnt Offerings (36:26-43:44)
— This is their second album. Lots of unrushed acoustic, nature sounds, and when it finally explodes, the lead singer is at the helm, lush and emotional.

KRALLICE (NYC), album – Loüm
Song: Rank Mankind (44:14-49:16)
— This is the album with Dave Edwardson. Yet another push into complex math structure, difficult and challenging, abstract and completely fucking enjoyable. Let your brain be bludgeoned.

DEMON HEAD (Denmark), album - Thunder on the Fields
Song: Menneskeæderen (49:17-54:32)
— Sexy psychedelic groove, emotional epic vocals accompanied by moody melodies. Just yeah bro.

IMMOLATION (NY), album – Atonement
Song: Thrown To the Fire (54:33-END)
— Serious fucking death metal. Lead singer does his style so well, unflinchingly rumbling guttural, so fucking hot. Versatile and groove-filled, filled to the brim with massive riffs and unusually splintered melodies. The drumming. . . fuck, the drumming.

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Best_2017_Runners-Up_013018.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 11:50pm EST

This set is the conclusion of my Best of 2017 shows.  At the end I announce my Best Album of the Year.

Best Black Metal
NIGHTBRINGER (CO), album - Terra Damnata
Song: Misrule (0:25-6:29)
— Night Bringer is chilling; guitar and screeching vocalist hack away at the little humanity you haven’t killed already.

Runners-Up:
Kafirun (CAN), album – Eschaton — Vicious, so vicious, and the balance of melody coupled with the relentless blasts is perfection. A debut album to boot.
Der Weg Einer Freiheit (Germany), album - Finisterre — You know how black metal boys do: They cast a spell with shimmering, and then in this case, their fucking immense drummer beats your face in. A incredible mix of sparse and dense, cold and emotional. This is brutal and unrelenting mixed with heartbreaking gorgeousness, a welcome intensity and meditation out of my soul.
Wode (UK), album - Servants of the Countercosmos — Guitar-heavy and explosively energetic with a hardcore edge, with hella emphasis on riffs and a jaunt into melody. Those headbanging-worthy fuckin’ riffs. The vocals are a bit tedious, hence runner-up.
Belus (Brooklyn), album – Apophenia — Dense, intense, and hella passionate shimmering black metal with an incredible raspy singer.
Jordablod (Sweden), album - Upon My Cremation Pyre — Crisp, shimmering mixed with prog and death over a core of black. When psychedelic ad rock rear its beautiful head, it isn’t necessarily a respite in the brutality, but pushes your brain out further. I’m so glad that Finnish band Oranssi Pazuzu has proven to be an influence, this sound has so many different facets.
Woe (Brooklyn), album – Hope Attrition — A blast of fury, relentlessness, with plaintive melodies. Woe has created a masterpiece of Brooklyn-style metal, the vocals is one of my favorites, extremely emotive and escalating, heating your blood.

Best Darkwave/Goth/Industrial
STATIQBLOOM (Brooklyn), album - Blue Moon Blood
Song: Black Walks Eternal (8:15-13:27)
— This is my second year Statiqbloom wins in this category. Fade Kainer of Batillus is Statiqbloom, a genius with dark electronics and production. He creates yet another danceable industrial album, reminiscent of the best of Skinny Puppy.

Runners-Up:
Clan of Xymox (Netherlands), album - Days of Black — One of my favorite gothic synthwave bands of all time, released 80's dark synth and goth perfection with some of the best vocals of all time. This album will slam you into nostalgia, that is, if you ever were a goth.
Godflesh (UK), album – Post Self — Metallic industrial with harsh vocals, seething under the surface, full on atmospheric, melodic and rounded.

The following are excellent goth, synth pop, deathrock, industrial bands that should not be missed:
3Teeth (LA), album – shutdown.exe https://3teeth.bandcamp.com/album/shutdown-exe
Pawns (NYC), album - The Gallows https://massmediarecords.bandcamp.com/album/the-gallows
Ritual Veil (Portland), album - Wolf In The Night https://ritualveil.bandcamp.com/releases
Night Sins (Philly), album – Dancing Chrome https://funeralparty.bandcamp.com/album/dancing-chrome
Virgin in Veil (Finland), album – Twisted Thrills https://virgininveil.bandcamp.com/
Orion (Sydney), album - S/T https://orionsydneyglam.bandcamp.com/releases

Best Technical Death or Grind
PYRRHON (NY), album - What Passes for Survival
Song: The Happy Victim's Creed (14:12-19:14)
— Pyrrhon had to be perfect to win this category over Buckshot Facelift and Gigan. And they were.

Runners-Up:
Buckshot Facelift (NY), album - Ulcer Island — Intelligent, angular grind, wildly different from song to song. I like that this band is meaty on top of being technical. They've got a ton of genres represented here, death and grindcore and hardcore and punk and heavy as fuck fuck. The absolute highlight of the entire album is the lead singer who is a monster in the best possible way, and is also from Artificial Brain.
Sunless (Minneapolis), album – Urraca — Sunless has the hard, angular head-spinning transitions, mixed with dissonance, but sprawls deliciously in atmosphere.
Dying Fetus (MD), album - Wrong One to Fuck With — You go into battle with Dying Fetus, and their music is the anthem, goring enemies. They hit you between the eyes with precision, tight, technical, brutality. The guitar work is fucking insane, it speaks in tongues, and geezus the breakdowns. They somehow make this a groove-filled viciousness, how does that happen. Genius.
Gigan (Chicago), album - Undulating Waves of Rainbiotic Iridescence — Totally the weirdest album in the bunch. It is the manifestation of strange brains dreaming. There is streaming psychedelic pulsating through veins of brutal and master technical extreme. This is their 4th album.
Full of Hell (PA/MD), album - Trumpeting Ecstasy — Full of Hell was my favorite brutal band to see live last year. They didn’t just hold their own with Cattle Decapitation and Revocation, they blew me away. The lead singer is in-fucking-sane.

Best Psychedelic/Space
DRUG HONKEY (Chicago), album - Cloak of Skies
Song: Sickening Wasteoid (19:53-25:48)
— Drug Honkey isn’t your mom’s psychedelic: Chicago grit, a very dark world of cold mechanical structures, noise effects, versatile vocals and jazz sax.

Runners-Up
Ufomammut (Italy), album – 8 — Ufommamut has become massive in the spacey psychedelic metal genre. The new album have infiltrated the doom sound, but still retain their unique fuzzed-out distorted spacey effects. It feels like a 70's acid trip in a hella stellar production.
Ecstatic Vision (Philly), album – Raw Rock Fury — These guys bring in a lot of 70's psychedelic groove and love to dissolve into the layers that make up their very complex compositions.

Best Hardcore
CONVERGE (MA), album – The Dusk in Us
Song: The Dusk in Us (26:33-33:36)
— These guys slaughter on their 9th album; how the fuck is that possible. Legendary band that brings an emotional depth that adds yet another facet to their sound.

Runners-Up:
Foreseen (Finland), album - Grave Danger — Also a contender for Best Thrash. Finnish band Foreseen does a crossover style of thrash, blending in the energy of hardcore into their dirty as hell gritty thrash with tons of ripping groove that you just tighten your hand into a fist to punch the air. Blows Iron Reagan's new album out of the water in terms of crossover perfection.
All Pigs Must Die (MA), album – Hostage Animal — The ferocious intensity of a hardcore and crust band that dives headfirst into brutal death metal. Sounds like they took a good vacation for the last 4 years, pouring out all their pent-up energy, and adding Trap Them's guitarist. Their slowest moments were wicked and pulverizing.

Best Epic/Crushing/Massive
AMENRA (Belgium), album – Mass VI
Song: Children of the Eye (34:10-43:10)
— Bold, crushing devastation.

Runner-Up
Elder (MA), album – Reflections of a Floating World — Their 4th album that builds tension and expands to groove and riff, and an eventual expansive dreamy melodic structure weaved with kraut and psychedelic, filled with piano and keyboard and vocals.

Best Male Warm Vocals
PAGAN ALTAR (UK), album – The Room of Shadows
Song: Dance of the Vampires (44:21-50:47)
— Pagan Altar are old dudes, around since 1978, and about 20 years actively making music. The original singer and guitarist are father and son. In 2014 they were set to release Never Quite Dead, and then Terry Jones, the singer, died of cancer. His son and some original members spent time touching up the album, the sound melancholy and nostalgic, and finally released it. There is a touch of folk, the vocalist spinning stories with a lilting vocal. The sound is reminiscent of their sound 40 years ago, and that is just badass.

Runners-Up
Demon Head (Denmark), album - Thunder on the Fields — Sexy psychedelic groove, emotional epic vocals accompanied by moody melodies.
Kadavar (Germany), album - Rough Times —Won Best Retro/Retro Doom

Best Male Cold Vocals
BELUS (Brooklyn), album – Apophenia
Song: Avarice (51:03-57:07)
— High pitched to rasp to screech to pure evil to throaty guttural, employing so many creepy styles. This is a band is one to watch, shimmering and passionate black metal. The vocalist is also in Woe.

Runners-Up
Full of Hell (PA/MD), album - Trumpeting Ecstasy — Full of Hell was my favorite brutal band to see live last year. They didn’t just hold their own with Cattle Decapitation and Revocation, they blew me away. The lead singer is in-fucking-sane.
Primitive Man (CO), album – Caustic — This vocalist is fucking unearthly. Growls and acidic-toned. This album is just a wall.

Saturday Album
SPECTRAL VOICE (CO), album - Visions Of Psychic Dismemberment
Song: Thresholds Beyond (57:45-1:05:04)
— Saturday album is the album I played the most at home.  Bloodied vocals and the harshness of death mixed with sweetness and pummeling badassery. I couldn’t help myself spinning this almost every week.

Runner-Up
Vampire (Sweden), album - With Primeval Force — Vampire does this incredible job of capturing a retro style, with bite. Totally Swedish death metal with melodic mixed with heavy thrash. It is a fucking versatile album within each song, it hella swings. There is so much to headbang to here, but also a bit of folk and ballad creating a fully-rounded and thoughtful album. And they just let loose, this shit would be wild live. This is their second, more polished album, after a hiatus of 3 years.

Best Female Vocals/#1 Album of the Year!!
COUCH SLUT (Brooklyn), album - Contempt
Song: Company Picnic With Dust Off (1:05:46-END)
— The lead singer’s bleak angry screech is weaved with Tormented raw emotional aggro noise; the emphasis on lyrics perhaps show a woman’s touch: “I will fuck you”.  We are angry, abused and we’re not going to take it. We’re not going to apologize for the anger. She touches on mental illness, drug abuse, anger, loss, the spectrum of human emotions living in such a fucked-up reality. This is my soundtrack, and once I thought about it, it was easy.

Runner-Up
Satan's Hollow (Chicago), album – S/T — Debut album with a powerhouse of a female vocalist leading a rifftastic classic heavy metal band with speed and power.
Myrkur (Denmark), album – Serpent — Her voice is ethereal until it's demonic, floating above dense, and playing with soft, light and dark.
Maggot Heart (Sweden), album - City Girls — Melodic pop and guitar is at the forefront; Linnea Olsson’s voice is sharp and sexy croons. This band is just going to get bigger.

Behind My Vocals
Alma Mater, Wolfsheim Kein Zurück, The Frozen Autumn, Page, Human Puppets, Metro Decay, The Chameleons, Chromagain, Aroma Di Amore

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Best_of_2017_Part_2_012318.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 1:36am EST

This is the “Best of 2017” Part 1: winners in my categories  Next week is Part 2, where I let you know my favorite album of the year!

Best Thrash
KREATOR (Germany), album - Gods of Violence
Song: Gods of Violence (0:25-6:07)
— It was Sophie’s Choice between this and Power Trip, but everyone picked Power Trip. I went for the legendary band. Chomping power riffs and anthemic heavy metal says that old people can still make badass rippin’ metal. Fuck Metallica.

Runners-up:
Power Trip (Dallas), album - Nightmare Logic — Power Trip skips out, fists flailing, legs kicking, tongue in cheek, savage and gleefully groovy. Catchy to the extreme, but every song has its own story, powerful and just made to blast your face in.
Foreseen (Finland), album - Grave Danger — Finnish band Foreseen does a crossover style of thrash, blending in the energy of hardcore into their dirty as hell gritty thrash with tons of ripping groove that you just tighten your hand into a fist to punch the air. Blows Iron Reagan's new album out of the water in terms of crossover perfection.
Earthling (VA), album - Spinning in the Void — Earthling excels in what I love about thrash - the riffs bro, the riffs. Tempo-changing adds to their well thought-out compositions. This ain't just the straightforward thrash diddlies of yore.
Bloodlust (Perth), album - At The Devil's Left Hand — Tight, evil, hard-hitting, galloping, moshpit skipping melodies.

Best Doom
RED SCALP (Poland), album - Lost Ghosts
Song: Lost Ghosts (7:47-17:30)
— Lumbering, multi-instrumentation, crooning lovely vocalist, psychedelic and space. From beginning to end, just perfection.

Runners-up:
Pallbearer (Arkansas), album – Heartless — The focal point of Pallbearer is the vocalist, who has been extremely influential, including bands on this list. Melodic-heavy and lyrically-beautiful. I'm a little tired of this "funeral" doom-style; I think it is getting dated. Hence, I picked Red Scalp, who blew me away.
Destroyer of Light (Austin), album - Chamber of Horrors — Crooning, moody doom that breaks into chugging riffs. Beautiful, epic song-writing
Spirit Adrift (Arizona), album - Curse of Conception — Take Over and Destroy's guitarist created this one-mand band, which is a full band now. The vocal style of Pallbearer - a bit whiny, emotional. On the slow spectrum of doom, but breaks into great riffs.
Obelyskkh (Germany), album - The Providence — When it breaks, it breaks into full headbanging riffage. Huge lead-ups.

Best Death Metal
VENENUM (Germany), album - Trance of Death
Song: Trance Of Death Part III - There Are Other Worlds... (18:40-32:34)
— Please listen to the runners-up: Vampire is the best retro Swedish melodic death; and Immolation was serious death metal. Venenum is like a death metal demon did peyote with Oranssi Pazuzu.

Runners-up:
Vampire (Sweden), album - With Primeval Force — Vampire does this incredible job of capturing a retro style, with bite. Totally Swedish death metal with melodic mixed with heavy thrash. It is a fucking versatile album within each song, it hella swings. There is so much to headbang to here, but also a bit of folk and ballad creating a fully-rounded and thoughtful album. And they just let loose, this shit would be wild live. This is their second, more polished album, after a hiatus of 3 years.
Immolation (NY), album – Atonement — Serious fucking death metal. Lead singer does his style so well, unflinchingly rumbling guttural, so fucking hot. Versatile and groove-filled, filled to the brim with massive riffs and unusually splintered melodies. The drumming. . . fuck, the drumming.
Spectral Voice (CO), album - Visions Of Psychic Dismemberment — Members hail from Blood Incantation, but this is another style of death – falling into horror noise and the unexpected.
Necrot (Oakland), album - Blood Offerings — More speed-infused than most of my list; this rages forward, head down and horns up. But it is not unrelenting - it breaks into slower tempos and less-dense compositions. Heavy on the guitar work.
Artificial Brain (NYC), album – Infrared Horizon — Pummeling, technical, progressive death that is just fucking painful all around; and with aching melodies strung through.
Witch Vomit (Portland), album - Poisoned Blood — A formerly 2-piece, now 3-piece creating a grisly, bloody, indecipherable but somehow groovy straight-forward style of death.
Incantation (PA), album - Profane Nexus — Dense, intense, and what you expect from a death metal band - bombastic and crushing, and unafraid to slow it down.

Best Noise Rock/Punk
IDLES (Bristol), album – Brutalism
Song: Exeter (33:26-37:23)
— Young, intelligent, emotionally-driven punk album with fantastic lyrics. The vocalist is a huge part of this album, grieving his mother through the songs.
[NSFW] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuQG6_evFc8

Runners-up
Maggot Heart (Sweden), album - City Girls — Linnea Olsson was a guitarist in the legendary Beastmilk who changed their name to Grave Pleasures, who are in my "Best of Post-Punk" category. She now fronts her own noisy art punk band Maggot Heart. Melodic pop and guitar is at the forefront, her voice is sharp and sexy croons. Just four songs pack a punch.
Dead (AU), album - We Won't Let You Sleep — Australian two-piece alternative noise-rock band mixed with doom and sludge. a bit of nostalgic Pixies-style rock minimalist, some songs dive into a distorted thick psychedelic sound. It's got the energy of a middle-aged punk band. They're weighted with experience and wit.
Public Psyche (Belgium), album - No New Violence — Public Psyche has a unique take on post-punk, incorporating a less synthetic sound - post-punk mixed with krautrock and noise experimental.

Best NY Metal
EX EYE (NYC), album – S/T
Song: Opposition / Perihelion; the Coil (38:00-48:43)
— Liturgy drummer and Secret Chiefs 3 bro, creating an album that is surprising at every turn. The fact that I chose this band from the list below should say it all. Part improvisational, part jazz, part extreme, part meditative.

Runners-Up:
Buckshot Facelift (NY), album - Ulcer Island — Monstrous, meaty and mind-blowing.
Belus (Brooklyn), album – Apophenia — Dense, intense, and hella passionate shimmering black metal with an incredible raspy singer.
Belltower (Brooklyn), album – Hereafter — Wicked black metal erupting in brutal riffs, head wrenching, melody underlying.
Floods (Brooklyn), album – S/T — Debut album with roovey riff element, chugging sludge, unexpected dynamics, and erupts in cold black metal when needed. The vocalist is a treat.
Luminous Vault (NYC), album – Charismata — 2-piece supergroup, includes the bassist of Artificial Brain.
Artificial Brain, album – Infrared Horizon — Pummeling, technical, progressive death that is just fucking painful all around, but with aching melodies strung through
Krallice (NYC), album – Loüm — This is the album with Dave Edwardson. Yet another push into complex math structure, difficult and challenging, abstract and completely fucking enjoyable. Let your brain be bludgeoned.
Yellow Eyes (NYC), album - Immersion Trench Reverie — Yet another dive into melodic black metal with mind-melding tempo changes, rousing riffs. Dense and spectacular yet again.
Couch Slut (Brooklyn), album – Contempt — Tormented raw aggro noise mixed with emotional vocals, bleak and anger mixed, the vocals are difficult to come to terms with, but I like that in my face. Like fuck me, you're right. I want to hear a woman scream, it makes me pull the blanket to my side a bit more.
Pyrrhon (NYC), album - What Passes for Survival — Pyrrhon is just out there. They are brutal death and grind, angular, and drift to the unexpected. They are here to torture, and you won't know what hit you. Fucking weird, but effortlessly. Which obviously is the highest compliment.
Woe (Brooklyn), album – Hope Attrition — A blast of fury, relentlessness, with plaintive melodies. Woe has created a masterpiece of Brooklyn-style metal, the vocals is one of my favorites, extremely emotive and escalating, heating your blood.

Best Retro/Retro Doom
KADAVAR (Germany), album - Rough Times
Song: The Lost Child (49:43-55:20)
— These bands borrow from the best decade – the 70’s, infusing floating psychedelic and a vocalist with honeyed vocals. Lovely.  One of my favorite bands, and this is their best album.

Runners-up:
Demon Head (Denmark), album - Thunder on the Fields — Sexy psychedelic groove, emotional epic vocals accompanied by moody melodies. Just yeah bro.
The Wizards (Spain), album - Full Moon in Scorpio — Sexy blues rock fully immersed in their love of the 70's, jamming solos, the power vocalist and song-writing is epic. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2&v=bw7ezvR-fuM
Doublestone (Denmark), album - Devil's Own/Djævlens Egn — Stunning stoner psychedelic. Frigging warm jamming delicious. Holy shit. Fuck yes, Denmark. Lyrics-rich, vocalist crooning magnificence.
Night Demon (CA), album - Darkness Remains — Magical summer night hard rock. Night Demon doesn't shy from their roots, with songs titled Maiden Hell, We Will Rock You, Welcome to the Night and so on. They remind me of Chris Black projects, melodic power and hooks, this is mullet and beer metal.
Pagan Altar (UK), album – The Room of Shadows — Pagan Altar are old dudes, around since 1978, and about 20 years actively making music. The original singer and guitarist are father and son. In 2014 they were set to release Never Quite Dead, and then Terry Jones, the singer, died of cancer. His son and some original members spent time touching up the album, the sound melancholy and nostalgic, and finally released it. There is a touch of folk, the vocalist spinning stories with a lilting vocal. The sound is reminiscent of their sound 40 years ago, and that is just badass.
Demon Eye (NC), album - Prophecies and Lies — I'm just fine with Americans taking influence from the Swedish revitalist gods, especially when the result is as perfect as North Carolina's Demon Eye.

Best Sludge
HELL (Oregon), album - S/T
Song: Inscriptus (56:20-1:01:20)
— Filthy bleak sludge, pure and distilled, shrieking through a black hole.

Runners-Up
Sloth Herder (MD), album - No Pity, No Sunrise — Holy shit, their first fucking album; and they definitely have the Maryland influence of brutal and grind. This album shreds and pummels, from harsh disjointed sharp notes into epic fist pumping into haunting atmosphere into thick melodic sludge and a stint into grind, short as fuck songs infusing their album; and all of it results in this massive claustrophobic journey of an album.
Seer (Vancouver), album - Vol. III & IV: Cult of the Void — This is their second album, lots of unrushed acoustic, nature sounds, and when it finally explodes, the lead singer is at the helm, lush and emotional.
Céleste (France), album - Infidèle(s) — Sinister French music is the trend, and Céleste creates that dense black metal structure with hardcore, gritty doom that creates a sonic sludge sound.

Best Post-Punk
ROPE SECT (Germany), album - Personae Ingratae
Song: Pretty Life (1:02:05-1:05:58)
— Shimmering guitars and emotional vocalist, blues and doom thread through.

Runners-Up:
Grave Pleasures (Finland), album – Motherblood — Previously Beastmilk, Grave Pleasures just annihilates every post-punk sound out there. Beastmilk won my 2013 Best Post-Punk, they have converted themselves to Grave Pleasures and have released their second album. What makes this band stand out compared to other bands in their goth-influenced genre is their production value, their ability to be unrelentingly catchy but completely unique. They surprise you with how emotional their sound is, how romantic, how nostalgic for dark basement clubs.
Partisan (Belgian), album - We Have Been so Terribly Betrayed — Lyrically dark, enough for you to shiver into your black cloak. The thickly plucked guitar is melancholy; and shoe-gaze, but in the right way.
Nerve Quakes (Perth), album - A New State — Political goth mixed with post-punk and synth pop.
All Your Sisters (SF), album – Uncomfortable Skin — A local duo creating their modern take on this genre.
Public Psyche (Belgium), album - No New Violence — Public Psyche has a unique take on post-punk, incorporating a less synthetic sound - post-punk mixed with krautrock and noise experimental.

Best Avante-Garde/Experimental + 2nd BEST ALBUM OF THE YEAR
THE RUINS OF BEVERAST (Germany), album – Exuvia
Song: Maere (On a Stillbirth's Tomb) (1:07:24-END)
— I always lean towards experimental; and this album is unique, ethereal, black, demonic, tribal. My brain floated in their vivid imagination. This album grows the more I listen to it.

Runners-Up
Drug Honkey (Chicago), album - Cloak of Skies — Gritty, experimental groove, a bit of industrial vocals and epicness, death vocals, tied to a weird personality of jazz sax and psychedelic noise effects and just loud.
Gigan (Chicago), album - Undulating Waves of Rainbiotic Iridescence — It is the manifestation of strange brains dreaming. There is streaming psychedelic pulsating through veins of brutal and master technical extreme. This is their 4th album.
Pyrrhon (NY), album - What Passes for Survival — Pyrrhon is just out there. They are brutal death and grind, angular, and drift to the unexpected. They are here to torture, and you won't know what hit you. Fucking weird, but effortlessly. Which obviously is the highest compliment.
Czar (WA), album - Life Is No Way To Treat An Animal — Animal-loving psychotic weirdos Czar create a bubbly electronic grind album that will soundtrack your fever dreams. FREE DOWNLOAD: https://czar.bandcamp.com/album/life-is-no-way-to-treat-an-animal
Venenum (Germany), album - Trance of Death — Won my Best Death Metal album

Behind My Vocals
New Order, Ministry, Cabaret Nocturne, She Past Away, Zanias, Sixth June, Dead Husband, Manicure

 

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Best_of_2017_Part_1_011618.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 11:06pm EST

0:25-3:44
TRIBULATION (Sweden)
Lady Death
— Tribulation is such a unique mix of old school death rock mixed with horror and metal. They also delve into ambient and drone.

5:15-11:42
BELUS (Brooklyn)
omens
— Brooklyn-style: passionate, dense and intense.

12:13-15:06
ABIGOR (Austria)
Our Lord's Arrival - Black Death Sathanas
— Rasp to shriek and oh so unique. The vocalist slices. Each song is a fresh angle on black metal.

15:25-20:53
BEASTIALITY (Sweden)
Apocalyptic Storm
— Yet another Swedish groove-filled death metal band. Hells yeah.

21:18-27:09
SHADOWMASTER (Sweden)
Lost Reality
— Sinister and thick, the Swedes erupt in sludge.

27:45-32:22
WATAIN (Sweden)
Sacred Damnation
— Working man's Swedish black metal.

32:53-38:25
MYSTAGOS (Spain)
Drowning in the Sea of Unconsciousness
— Spanish brooding melody envelops black metal and spacy meditative.

38:48-45:47
VEXOVOID (Italy)
The Starforger
— Italian Vektor, and fucking good.

46:50-54:00
TAAKE (Norway)
Havet i Huset
— Lush melodies, smart guitar work, hella solid album.

54:29-END
CLERIC (Philly)
The Treme
— Contemplate, ingest and digest this mind-bending explosive craziness.

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Show_250_010218.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 11:40pm EST

0:29-6:33
VINCE GUARALDI TRIO
Charlie Brown

7:17-11:07
DIO
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

11:08-15:27
KING DIAMOND
No Presents for Christmas

15:28-19:40
JOAN JETT
Little Drummer Boy

19:41-24:19
TWISTED SISTER
Oh Come All Ye Faithful

24:20-26:57
GUNS N ROSES
White Christmas

27:28-30:49
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Run Run Rudolph

30:50-32:48
ERLSUNG
Carol of the Bells

32:49-37:02
ALICE COOPER
Santa Claws is Coming To Town

37:03-40:45
DEAD KENNEDYS
Holiday in Cambodia

40:46-44:47
CINDERELLA
Blue Christmas

45:19-49:16
DOKKEN
Santa Claus is Coming to Town

49:17-52:08
LOUIS ARMSTRONG
Christmas in New Orleans

52:09-55:35
FRANK SINATRA
The Christmas Song

55:36-end
SCORPS
Winds of Change
— The Scorpions sing about a new year or end of the world, you take your pick

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Happy_Holidays_121917.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 1:11am EST

0:25-7:38
DSNKT (Switzerland)
Resurgence of Primordial Void Aperture
— Suffocate in swarming, dense, primordial, black metal noise.

8:41-13:15
GENOCIDE PACT (DC)(releases 2018)
Conquered And Disposed
— Bludgeoning death, but in that super fun way.

13:38-21:17
TONGUES (Denmark)
Grove Of Mithridate
— Rock and doom and black and groove.

21:40-25:32
BURIED IN A WOMB (Germany)
Spectrality of Inborn Neuroticism
— Thrash and hardcore-infiltrated death.

26:08-29:25
HARM'S WAY (Chicago)(releases 2018)
Human Carrying Capacity
— I mean, the lead singer. Wow. Also, this is Chicago hardcore.

30:04-37:35
THAW (Poland)
Wielki Piec
— Poland does it again, what a fantastic scene. The album art is top-notch: black and white minimalist alien bird creatures. Need a t-shirt!

38:06-45:28
VEILED (PA)(releases 2018)
Luminous
— 2-piece does shimmering black.

46:22-48:59
MAMMOTH GRINDER (Austin)(releases 2018)
Superior Firepower
— Mammoth Grinder has members of Iron Reagan and Power Trip. This is going to be a powerful album next year.

49:39-55:01
SORXE (Phoenix)
Hypnotizer
— Do NOT be turned off by the genres: post-metal and sludge. It is diverse and rich with rock and melodic psychedelic; each song takes you in different directions. The lead singer is a highlight.

55:44-END
HOODED MENACE (Finland)
Cascade of Ashes
— Of course, the Finnish are fucking weird. Wonderfully so. Aliens living on earth, making creepy weird music. We bend a knee.

Behind My Vocals
Carpenter Brut, Dynatron, M.O.O.N., Mega Drive, Trevor Something, Magic Sword, Speed Machine, Daisuke, Lifelike

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Show_249_121217.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 12:31am EST

0:25-5:22
INQUISITOR (Netherlands)
Castigate into Divine Apostle
— Inquisitor released this second album 22 years after their debut, which is a long time to bake. This is a brilliant contribution to the art of thrash and death, bold and technical, fun and rage.

6:22-13:02
CLARET ASH (AUS)
Essence Of Fire
— Australia is a brilliant cesspool of aggressive metal.  This is yet another compelling addition.

13:38-20:36
SVARTIDAUÐI (Iceland)
Exultation
— I’m in love with Iceland in general, well before this black metal wave. And now Iceland has their own version: atmospheric and bleak and romantic. Matches the country to perfection.

21:02-29:20
CRYPTIC FOG (Chicago/IN)
Eternal Internment of the Prolific Paradigm; Staring Through the Veil of Aberration
— Yes, this band is a 2-piece; and they are so fucking badass. Plenty to sift through, death and melodic black metal.

30:00-34:50
PORTAL (AUS)(releases 1/2018)
Phreqs
— YET another Aussie band; and this one is relentlessly brutal; it will be a great way to start next year. Menacing death: the way it was meant to be.

35:22-37:42
MARGINAL (Belgium)
Barbarians
— And now the Belgians do death, but infused with a wave of hardcore. The recording has no drum editing, and everything is mostly off their first or second take! Bros got it down.

38:08-44:55
CALLIGRAM (UK)
Scourge
— Fine, I’m middle-aged, and these guys are the future.

45:57-53:22
INCONCESSUS LUX LUCIS (UK)
The Crowning Quietus
— As I say on the show: this is a blood and gore-filled black metal, but they also gleefully skip over your dead body breaking between minimalist and catchy rock, breathing fresh spirit in dank filth.

53:45-55:57
FULL OF HELL (MD/PA)
The Cosmic Vein
— My best live band of the year.

56:49-END
CORPORATE DEATH (Brazil)
In the Vastness of Time
— Corporations need to die. Also, this Brazilian act is brutal, and catchy.

Behind My Vocals
Rory Gallagher, Traffic, Out of Focus, Frame, Dreams and Nightmares, Missing Link, Carmen Maki & Blues Creation, Moondog & The London Saxophonic, Magic Potion

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Show_248_120517.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 11:46pm EST

0:25-9:01
AOSOTH (France)
Contaminating All Tongues
— Melodic black and death immersive metal seems to be a French specialty. Mixed with a Oranssi-style psychedelic elevates this sound.

10:06-15:43
GENEVIEVE (MD)
No for an Answer
— Assaultive death bordering on grind, but neck-breaking ability to dissolve into sparse minimalist.

16:05-19:52
ANIMA DAMNATA (Poland)
Your Life Is Cursed
— A twisted disjointed Polish beast. Aw! Sounds so cute.

20:10-28:42
AMENRA (Belgium)
Plus Pre`s De Toi
— Blistering brooding Belgians. These guys know how to do heart-wrenching.

29:27-34:07
CODE (UK)
Plot of Skinned Heavens
— Dude from Grave Pleasures (ex-Beastmilk)/Hexvessel, so you know this shit is good. Vocalist is the highlight; a stunning ability to be sweet while breaking your face in.

34:40-40:58
BLOODWAY (Romania)
Midlight Scout
— Romanian metal is melancholy, vampiric, and fierce; of course. The vocalist is a standout, and also created the album art.

41:17-48:08
APOLOGOETHIA (Spain)
De Aeterno Praesentia
— Flamenco guitar introduces a bit of folk in atmospheric black metal.

49:21-END
THANTIFAXATH (CAN)
Self-Devouring Womb
— Cloak-wearing and anonymous, continuing to create horrorscapes. These guys got my 2015 Best Horror album.

Behind My Vocals:
Ideal Husbands; The Soft Moon; Dead Husband; She Past Away; Trisomie 21; Molly Nilsson; Boy Harsher

Direct download: She_Likes_It_Heavy_Show_247_112817.mp3
Category:Radio Show: She Likes It Heavy -- posted at: 12:29am EST