Thinking man’s Five Finger Death Punch
This week from Sam and Josiah
Sam told me a couple weeks ago that he wasn’t going to let his dog kiss him, and then they were making out on camera. He also told me the dog is not allowed in his bed, so I don’t even want to know what kind of secret boundary-breaching they’re doing betwixt the sheets.
Here’s some other stuff we’re thinking about this week.
Asinhell “Fall of the Loyal Warrior
Sam: For professional reasons cutely hinted at below I recently made Sam Dunn talk to me about nu metal again and he used the opportunity to insist I listen to a non-nu metal band I genuinely thought was call “Ass In Hell” (which is probably a real and terrible Municipal Waste knockoff that played a few locals shows in Tallahassee in 2009). Asinhell lacks the imagined goofiness of their fictional Floridian counterparts, but this album is indeed sick even if it’s not nu metal. The guy from Volbeat has spent 20 years accumulating sick death metal riffs and now all the old heads are telling you to listen to it and you know what? They’re right.
Jos: Ass in Hell is such a cool band name. I’ve never heard Volbeat but I always assumed they are like a thinking man’s Five Finger Death Punch, like the preferred version of something that pinkies-up deathcore snobs say they prefer even though it’s basically the same thing. Maybe it’s because I saw the Metal Blade logo, or maybe it’s the egregious double kicks, but this kind of reminds me of when 3 Inches of Blood stopped being an inside joke and replaced all the scrawny metalcore guys from Vanderhoef, BC with a bunch of metal beardos and stopped being fun. But man, it was so cool when they were just a band that existed to goof around.
Worriers “Trust Your Gut”
Sam: I’m a terrible aging orgcore guy because this album came out mid-September and I only just got around to listening to it and I FUCKED UP. Like all of us, honestly, Worriers has been moving away from pure “Fested” hat vibes for a while but DAMN this really works. Like if Carly Rae Jepsen had put this song about a few years ago it would be an ANTHEM. I just let the video play for a bit while I was writing and it’s also very nice. I want to clean and sing with my pals.
Jos: Sam, you already know I was in a bad mood today and was delighted, charmed, and ultimately saved by a nice little video chat with an adorable little pup (and your dog was there too). But now I see you’ve written ANTHEM in all caps in a sentence with Carly Rae Jepsen in it, and I’m starting to feel the dread again. Okay I hit play and was immediately shocked by the high production value of this video, but the song matches it. This seems like an FX series about some friends who inherit a bar that’s probably a great show but no one’s seen it. Okay, it’s an anthem. But I’m not capitalizing it.
Arvo Pärt “Littlemore Tractus”
Jos: In the spirit of Sam, please read each of these sentences as if you are the increasingly excited wrestling executive from that meme (I just Googled it, I’m talking about “Vince McMahon”): There’s a new album from 88-year-old Christian classical composer Arvo Pärt. Its opening composition “Littlemore Tractus” is seven-minutes long and full of lush strings and choral singing. NPR describes it as “a prayer for support and peace at the end of a frenzied day — or perhaps at the end of life itself.” The closing track is described as “a lyrical, gentle plea for the basics: bread for our table, safety, and the ability to forgive and be forgiven.” NOW THAT’S ANTHEMIC.
Sam: We’re putting on ambient music every night for the dog (for vibes but also to mask how intensely creaky our house is so he doesn’t hear every breath us or our neighbours take) and I feel like he would really enjoy sleeping to this. I just stopped typing and kind of blissed out to it for the last three minutes without thinking. Wow just did it again. This is really changing me.
Wishy “Too True”
Jos: As the year winds down (or, as I like to call it, Q4), I’ve been thinking about how strange this one has been. We did two live shows and ended the pod. My brother got married. And perhaps weirdest of all, I went to Bloomington for a hot-air balloon ride that didn’t happen. My trip to Indiana left an impression on me, though, and I keep thinking about it. One thing I loved was seeing the first official show for Wishy in Indianapolis, fresh off a name change (and the name change must’ve worked because I can’t even remember what they were called before). This new one from Wishy continues to showcase what’s so great about them. It’s easygoing and rockin’, with lots of pop appeal, but the melodies and hooks aren’t easy. Instead, there are advanced chord changes and little aural treats that keep you coming back for more. There are so many bands still doing things in the general vicinity of power-pop/shoegaze, but what I love about Wishy is that they’re not really trying to sound like anyone else. They just sound like Wishy.
Sam: What a sick band name. And honestly even though I wrote about it earlier and talked to Josiah about it only hours ago, the idea that the pod ended this year is pretty wild. Like just a few months ago! This is so excellent, it’s warm and sunny in Toronto today and you know we’re on the verge of eight months of darkness and this perfectly captures that bucolic loungey feeling I have trying to finish all my work right now when I just want to go lay down in the yard.
Hey it’s Sam again. Getting a dog isn’t the only thing I’ve done with the hot fresh new hours that I have every week now that the pod is over. I go on longer walks, I read more books, I film incredibly dumb stuff with government arts funding.
Free every Friday.