There’s Metal Here? Vol. 5 – New Zealand
It’s been a while since the last one, so I figured I’d throw out another installment in this series, and introduce you all to some new bands in a remote forested area of the world. This time we turn our attention to NEW ZEALAND. Lurking between Peter Jackson and his hobbits (and Stephen Fry currently, if Twitter is to be believed), there are between 200 – 250 metal bands in New Zealand, most of which stick to the main cities such as Auckland and Wellington, although of course there are exceptions to that rule, including a groove metal band from Otago, a small section in the south of NZ with about 4% of the entire NZ population. What are the chances? Anyway, on with the show:
I am forever in the debt of Steff Metal Blog (guesting on No Clean Singing here) for introducing me to this band. They’re a symphonic death metal group from Auckland, and I’ve been hooked on the song provided since I heard it. They’ve been around since ’08, have one EP out (if anyone knows how to get a copy, I’d be grateful), and it comes highly recommended. More info can be found here and here.
These guys are probably the most famous of the New Zealand lot, playing a brand of atmospheric tech-death metal that sounds akin to Neurosis mixed with Immolation. They have three releases out, all of which with critical acclaim, and have done worldwide tours with big-name death metal bands. Not too shabby for a relatively recent band from a tiny metal scene. Good on ’em. Provided track is from the latest album, more details here.
Set On End
Keeping up the groove and thrash end of things are Set On End, who do a pretty fine job. They’ve got one EP out, and I’m interested to see whether a full-length is in the making or not. For now, sit back and point out the influences (feel free to take a guess in the comments section below). Myspace link here.
Cripple Mr. Onion
It’s amazing how bands you briefly discover come back years later. I still remember when I first saw the Six Days Of Silence video back in ’07, and it creeped me out then. Still kinda creeps me out now, but the music itself has ‘improved’ in my mind. Progressive alternative metal with some industrial touches awaits, and it’s as bizarre as it sounds on paper. More info here.
The Mark Of Man
An interesting band I came across by pure coincidence, and fronted by the previous vocalist of Ulcerate (Ben Read) is this ‘metalcore’ band from Auckland. I put metalcore in inverted commas, because it’s actually closer to a hybrid of melodeath and hardcore punk, completely eschewing the normal metalcore sound. One album out, and it’s on my list to buy. Furthermore of interest is this band are completely vegan, and their videos (in a style similar to Rise Against) make videos of animal cruelty. They also run a Tumblr with very interesting posts and articles, well worth reading.
Warning: this video contains scenes of humankind destroying nature.
And now, to my favorite discovery of all, mostly for its hilarity. Before relocating to the UK due to a “poor metal scene” in NZ (I beg to differ, given the bands I’ve shown already), Demoniac were a blackened power metal band (what?) containing none other than Sam Totman and Herman Li, who went on to play with DragonForce. I’ll just let that sink in for a second.
I listened to one song of this, and I can’t stop laughing. I hope it brings you similar levels of enjoyment.
And so another section closes of There’s Metal Here?, to be followed at some point with a new episode, where I’ll be taking a trip to an island in the Mediterranean in search of even more metal in unlikely places. ‘Til next time, folks!