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Music, Mastodon exposes its inner prog

Mastodon exposes its inner prog

Despite the trend in consumer downloads, singles are for dilettantes. Full albums are still where a band's real art lies. That's a point many musicians are out to prove, anyway, and in recent years there's been a concerted effort across…
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Music, Metallic Apex

Metallic Apex

For many independent bands — especially those playing heavy music — jumping to a major label often translates to jumping the shark: Edges soften, radio-ready choruses get shoehorned into sub-par tunes, and hardcore fans are handed a musical turd intended…
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Music, Let's Get Killed Reign in blood and BBQ at Slayer in San Jose

Reign in blood and BBQ at Slayer in San Jose

Last week's Unholy Alliance Tour had summer inked into its pores like a thick, black pentagram tattoo. The air around San Jose's HP Pavilion smelled like grilled meat; the arena's outdoor smoking section offered a view of the sort of…
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Music, Satan's Pilgrims

Satan's Pilgrims

Much as the continuing freak-folk explosion draws heavily on the patchouli-soaked sounds of the Summer of Love, a growing movement of retrofitted hard-rock and metal bands has emerged, lording over the modern music landscape as the raging yin to the…
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Music, Reinventing the Steel

Reinventing the Steel

As singer/guitarist for the New York quartet Early Man, Mike Conte has been fortunate enough to witness firsthand the power metal possesses to bring people together. But one such moment, which came toward the tail end of the band's last…
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Music, The Elephant Men

The Elephant Men

Brent Hinds is putting on some weight. Right now, his band, Mastodon, is in the middle of a megabudget, liquor-sponsored arena tour with Slayer and Killswitch Engage. And apparently the catering is too good to pass up. "The fucking food…
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