Album Review: All Is Dust And I Am Nothing by Slaves BC

Slaves BC

Concept albums are very hit or miss. The wrong concept can ruin an otherwise great sounding album, while the right concept can elevate an album. Slaves BC’s first full length is a based on the book of Ecclesiastes, one of the stories from the Old Testament. At first glance, using a religious book as a framework for a metal band is risky because everything is supposed to be evil. But when you dig deeper into the story, it makes sense. It’s a story I was unfamiliar with before hearing the album and looking into, but it becomes clear as to why they chose it. Short story is that everything is meaningless. The one aspect of the story I really like is the imagery of nature staying as humanity marches to the grave.

All Is Dust And I Am Nothing is a bleak affair that was written over a 3-4 year span. It’s a punishing blend of hardcore, black metal, doom, with small flurries of grind in the mix. Imagine Breather Resist writing Charmer under the influence of Trap Them and High On Fire. There are pockets of slow and heavy doom to break up the intense movements of blackened hardcore.

The mixing of genre influences is one of Slaves BC’s strong points and keeps the album from becoming stale. The overall sound is incredible bleak and has an almost morose tone while still making you want to smash your house to pieces with hammers while listening to it. The song ‘All Find Their Way To The Grave’ is destined to be a live staple for sure. It’s almost five minutes of mid-paced  neackbreaker riffs that will get any crowd pumped. It works as a perfect centerpiece for the album as well.

The absolute highlight of the album is the vocals of the closing track, ‘Why Are We Here’. The vocals throughout are brutal and sound so painful that I can barely fathom them being human. The last 20-30 seconds of the album languish on these tortured vocals and guitar feedback and leaves you feeling uncomfortable and desperately wanting more. In fact, my only negative for the album is that I wish it would never end. The nine songs fly by and will leave you wanting more.

Humanity is garbage and everything is meaningless, but Slaves BC have recorded the perfect album to tide you over until the world collapses in on itself.

Album Highlights: God Has Turned His Back, All Find Their Way To The Grave, There Is Nothing For Me Here, Why Are We Here.

All Is Dust And I Am Nothing will be available for pre-order on February 1st through Veritas Vinyl with a digital release on February 16th. Visit Veritas Vinyl to grab a copy of the vinyl when it goes live. It will be a limited release and you’ll definitely want it in your collection.

Follow Slaves BC:
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Band Crush Wednesday

simpsons bowie

I’ve been working on this for 2 days, trying to articulate what I feel, and still don’t know what exactly to say. This weeks Band Crush Wednesday is David Bowie, for obvious reasons. I’m still in shock and very mournful about his death. Bowie, along with The Cure, are the two longest lasting musical imprints on my life. My mom listened to both while she was pregnant with me and both have lasted with me to this day. A lot of people way more eloquent than I have written much better things on the man and his music, so I won’t try. If you have listened to David Bowie, you know. If you haven’t, I urge you to jump into his vast and amazing discography.

Life On Mars?

I’m Afraid Of Americans

Rebel Rebel

Blackstar

And finally, as a fitting tribute, this is Seu Jorge playing Life On Mars?, which is one of my all time favorite covers.
 

#MetalBandcampGiftClub

The world of metal, like the world in general, is a constant bombardment of shit. Metal news sites and blogs are usually a pile of negativity. There is a lot of “OMG Dave Mustaine said something stupid again!” or “Justin Beiber spotted in a Slayer shirt. Get outraged!”. Most sites that cover metal seem to be more interested in the clicks that negativity and shit talking bring them than actually covering cool things that happen in metal or promoting up and coming bands. How many times can someone really read a ranking of Metallica songs or a post making fun of something the singer from All That Remains said?

Last week, in the midst of a bad night, a friend of mine on Twitter named Jeremiah Nelson (@_jeremiahn on Twitter) decided to go onto Bandcamp and send people gifts from their wishlists, trying to turn his bad night into something positive for his friends. In the morning, as people were waking up and seeing emails about new albums they were gifted, Zachary Issac (@MannyOWar on Twitter) came up with the simplest of ideas: people should randomly gift Bandcamp albums to each other all the time. Thus, the #MetalBandcampGiftClub was born.
The idea is that anyone who was interested in partaking, get on Twitter and post your Bandcamp profile with the hashtag #MetalBandcampGiftClub. People follow you, you follow them. You gift people albums from their wishlist (or if you know their email, you can send them albums you think they would like) and you get albums gifted to you. The first day, I received 13-15 new albums, most from people I had never even talked to before and now we have back and fourths on Twitter daily. It’s incredible. You’re receiving the gift of new music, the gifter gets the satisfaction of making someones day a bit brighter, and bands / labels are getting their cut, while metal sites have settled for just writing scathing takedown pieces aimed at dismal Spotify rates without, you know, actually offering a solution of any kind.
There have been some pretty amazing positives that have come out of this whole idea in the last week alone. A lot of people will gift albums from bands they are friends with when they see them in a wishlist. We actually got the Couch Slut album ‘My Life As A Woman’ into the top ten best sellers for about 2 days straight and a bunch of Slaves BC albums into the top ten as well. It’s extremely gratifying to see bands be like “Hey, we were able to fill our gas tank and buy ourselves dinner for the first time in a week!” all because of some metal fans being nice for once. Funny story: David Hall, the man behing Handshake, Inc., actually tweeted out about how he was worried someone from Couch Slut had died because of the spike in sales. Which in itself is a sad condemnation of the way the media in general works. “Oh, someone died? I guess I should buy their album now.”
It’s amazing to me how many metal news sites basically decided that this rad thing “wasn’t news.” But so be it. That’s the world we live in now. If it isn’t clickbait-y enough, who cares? All that matters in the end is bands are making at least some money from fans being nice to each other instead of bickering endlessly about how everything is terrible. Bandcamp has taken notice and has contacted some of the people who spearheaded this whole thing about interviews. They’ve stated that in the first 4-5 days, over 250 albums were gifted. Take into account that a majority of those albums are at least $5, meaning bands and artists have made roughly $1250. IN FIVE DAYS! All from the simple idea of giving things to friends and trying to put a smile on someone’s face. Viva #NiceMetalTwitter and the #MetalBandcampGiftClub.
If you are interested in getting involved, check out the Metal Bandcamp Gift Club website (created by Mr. Skull Toaster and all around excellent human being, Seth Werkheiser) for all of the details. (There is also a list being compiled of everyone’s birthdays so you can be bombarded with a bunch of new music on your birthday!)
Also, the podcast As The Story Grows had Jeremiah and Zach on to talk about the whole thing. It’s about 30 minutes and a fun listen. Check it out HERE!
And a shameless plug: My Bandcamp profile is HERE if you want to follow me. And follow anyone I follow on their because they are all amazing people and linking 65 something people on here would be too much.