The Power of the Riff lead

Though I’ve been slowly straying away from the metal scene since I left high school, I still feel like there are some acts within the genre that deserve my attention. High On Fire and Sunn O))) are definitely on that list. So mark your calendars: High On Fire along with Sun O))), Corrosion of Conformity, Black Breath, Dead in the Dirt, and Loincloth will be cultivating circle pits at the Fonda Theatre in LA this Thursday, December 20th, as part of the Power of the Riff event, and we’re giving away TWO pairs of tickets to the show!

I first took notice of High On Fire when I was actually making my way out of the scene. Their style of stoner thrashcore metal was right up my alley. That, coupled with their Danzig-esque image, drew me to the band like a moth to a flame. This April the Oakland-based power trio dropped their sixth studio album, De Vermis Mysteriis, via E1 Music, and the album was produced by my second favorite metalcore guitarist of all time, Kurt Ballou.

“It’s a concept record, a little bit,” said Matt Pike of the release. “I got this idea about Jesus Christ and the Immaculate Conception: What if Jesus had a twin who died at birth to give Jesus his life? And then what if the twin became a time traveler right then?” So if you like stoner thrash and Quantum Leap (ME! ME! ME!), you should at the very least appreciate De Vermis Mysteriis.

Sunn O))) is legendary in the drone/sludge scene and has been for the better part of two decades. Their diverese vibe gives them a leg up on most of their competition within the genre, and their stage presence is second to none. You can often see them performing in hoods with waves of feedback and ambient disdain flooding out of the PA.

This year they released Rehearsal Demo Nov 11 2011 via Ideologic Organ and Southern Lord Records. The demo was actually recorded here in LA at Southern Lord Caves and was mixed at 10 R. D. Montiboeufs in Paris. Unfortunately, the demo was only available on their June 2012 European tour and September 2012 US East Coast tour BUT! I found a link on YouTube for a full stream, so enjoy!

Corrosion of Conformity is, in my opinion, one of the godfathers of modern sludge/stoner metal. Their first album, Eye for an Eye, was released in 1984 amongst a backdrop of glam, arena rock, and thrash metal, yet they still managed to stake a claim on a share of the droves of fans that were coming into the hard-rock scene at the time. Their unique blend of Southern aesthetics and psych-rock riffs set in a metal arrangement is something that few groups were doing at the time and even fewer could do it as well as COC could. This year they released their self-titled eighth LP, and with it they have proven that they will not come back after a few years off only to rest on their laurels.

Black Breath is a hardcore thrash band from Bellingham, Washington. In 2008 they self-released an EP called Razor to Oblivion that managed to turn some heads at LA-based Southern Lord Records, who in turn signed the band in 2009. In March of this year, they released Sentenced to Life, their second studio album with Southern Lord. They should make an excellent addition to the line-up and be well worth showing up a little early for.

Dead in the Dirt is a grindcore trio hailing from Atlanta, GA. DITD was formed by Blake Connally in December of ’08, and with the addition of Hank Pratt and Bo Orr, they self-released their debut EP, Vold, in the summer of 2010. This eventually landed them a spot on Southern Lord Records, which released their second EP, FEAR, in 2011.

Loincloth is a trashcore band from the NC/Virgina area. They were formed in 2000 by Steve Shelton and Cary Rowells (from Raleigh) and Pen Rollings and Tannon Penland (from Richmond), and this year they finally released their first LP, Iron Balls of Steel, via Southern Lord Records. Like many bands from the South, Loincloth loves to manipulate time signatures and chug out those 8th, 16th, and 32nd notes, and from watching videos of them performing live, they seem pretty solid doing it. Just another reason to show up for the openers.

As always, to win a pair of tickets to this fine event all you have to do is leave us a comment below. Yep, it’s seriously that easy. Make sure you include a vaild email address that you check more than once a day (as that is how we will contact you if you win). Let us know in your comment why you should get free tickets to High on Fire, Sunn O))), COC and more!

Tickets are still available for this show, and for more information:

The Power of the Riff
High On Fire
Sunn O)))
Corrosion of Conformity
Black Breath
Dead in the Dirt
Loincloth