PICK OF THE WEEK: Earthling set tumultuous fires, cause havoc on punchy ‘Spinning in the Void’

Let’s end the week on a raucous, obliterating note. We’re looking right into the eyes of one of the most drunken holidays of the American calendar year, it’s pretty warm outside, and work, for most of us, has been a fucker. So that release you require can come in many forms, and if you prefer smoke-spilling metal that will mow you down, you’re in a lot of luck today.

We have the return of Virginia-based maulers Earthling, who are dropping their new full-length “Spinning in the Void” into your unsuspecting lap. While the music might be perfect for a late evening out in the yard with some high-gravity beers, you’re not getting content with no value. For those unaware of the band, think a mix of Inter Arma’s twisting metallic brains and Black Tusk’s Southern swagger, and you’ll get a pretty good idea of what’s ahead on these six tracks. “Void” is the follow-up to the band’s well-received 2013 received debut “Dark Path,” and it piles sludge, death, doom, and thrash into a messy bucket that they overturn over your head. The band—Alan Fary (guitar/vocals), Praveen Chhetri (guitar), Sean Weber (bass), Brently Hilliard (drums)—sounds like it’s barreling toward your house in a tank, ready to take you down with force you can’t comprehend. As rough as that sounds, it’s a good time.

“Clay in the Hands of Evil” opens with shifty high-hat taps that lead to guitars boiling over, with a razor-sharp psyche edge. The tempo ruptures as the song stomps open, as gravelly growls from Fary thunder, “Fire in the sky, raining down!” There is a Southern-style drawl to the guitars, as dual lines catch fire, the tempo shifts and gets uglier, and growls maul. The riffs kick back in, dragging this thing to its brawny end. “Howl” slowly unfurls with filthy riff, gruff growls, and the riffs powering everything along. “I hear it every day, it’s the howling of the wolves,” Fary howls, with the guitars taking on a swampy, yet sunburnt feel, turning humid and mean. Then the guitars fire over top at end. “Obedience & Decay” begins with guitars echoing and chugging, as things keep getting faster and punchier, and the vocals start smothering. The guitar work is rubbery and swagger along, while the growls stretch into a pool of psyche weirdness. The song then begins to truck heavily, laying waste to everything, as guitars glimmer with sun power and rage to the end.

“Spinning Void” has cool melodic riffs and raspy growls, as things move at a calculated pace. Soloing explodes and melts faces, but then the fire fades, and the song goes into a trippy psychedelic void. The cut thrashes slowly, as growls lacerate over top, and leads boils again. The pace rips until noises pile and hit a strange vortex before fading. “The Helm” has more of a rock n roll vibe at the start before the pace kicks up and heads into demolition mode. Gruff growls punch away, guitars open up and storm, and then it all goes into a trippy Southern-style reflective area. Guitars trudge, but then the solo takes off, rollicking thrashing dominates, and that leads to a big, punchy finish. Closer “Seed of Anger” crushes and pounds at the start, while growls scrape along, with Fary howling, “Seeds of anger in your mind!” The soloing warms up and spreads oppressive heat, while the intensity throws body blows, and everything starts to crush. All the elements implode and wreak havoc, as the track comes to a slurry, destructive finish.

Earthling’s return could not come at a better time, since a good auditory battering is just what most of us need right now (EDIT NOTE: An astute reader pointed out the release isn’t until 7/7, so maybe you’ll have to wait a week for this release…). “Spinning in the Void” provides that violent outburst, but in a way where you’ll feel energized and not hopeless bruised. While your neighbors are blowing up hundreds of dollars of explosives this weekend, do them one better by indulging in a record that might not light up the night sky but will make you feel like you witnessed, and survived, a nuclear bomb.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/earthling.virginia/

To buy the album, go here: https://shop.forcefieldrecords.org/

For more on the label, go here: http://www.forcefieldrecords.org/site/

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