One of my favorite new bands, He Whose Ox Is Gored, just released their video for their song “Paralyzer.” This track was recorded by Jack Endino (Nirvana, High On Fire) at Avast Recording Studio as part of Converse Rubber Tracks Seattle Series.
He Whose Ox Is Gored is a tremendous band, and they write great songs. Check them out when they come through your town (tour dates below).
There are a handful of bands that I’ve written about here that really get me excited. One of those bands is He Whose Ox Is Gored. Ever since I first heard them, I’ve become enthralled by what they do. This four piece from Seattle is starting to really take the underground music scene by storm. Their mix of doom, shoegaze, and ambience are perfectly blended into their heavy and emotional sound. Their full length album The Camel, The Lion, The Child is still in constant rotation on my stereo and turntable. One thing that I really love about He Whose Ox Is Gored is the way the sparse vocals resonate through their songs. The lyrics and vocals add another dimension to their hypnotic sound. It’s almost as though the vocals invoke a whole different beast.
He Whose Ox Is Gored is the type of band that can transcend just being another heavy band. They have all the parts to make them not only stand out among their peers but, also the talent to really leave their own mark and inspire other bands. Do yourself a favor and buy their album and play it loud and proudly. You’ll thank me later for it.
He Whose Ox Is Gored- The Camel, The Lion, The Child:
2016 was a great year for music. So many great albums were released. I’ve mentioned this before, but I really think that in ten years, 2016 will be looked back on as a great year for music.
So as 2017 is right around the corner, here are my most anticipated albums for the new year.
With Our Arms To The Sun- Orenda
AFI- AFI (The Blood Album)
Black Map- In Droves
Code Orange- Forever
Marilyn Manson- Say10
Wear Your Wounds
The Black Queen?
Alice In Chains?
Corrosion Of Conformity
A Perfect Circle?
L.A. Guns with Phil Lewis and Tracii Guns
Killer Be Killed?
He Whose Ox Is Gored
Spirit In The Room
Here Lies The Hero
A while back I wrote a band of the week piece about a band from Washington called He Whose Ox Is Gored. They have fast become a band that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed since I found out about them. Their influences of multiple genres have allowed them to experiment to zero in on just what their sound is. I coined them as doom-gaze for their love of doom metal and shoe gaze. Now they have just released their debut full length The Camel, The Lion, The Child. This album is epic by nature and pulls you in with each song. The band has really found their stride especially with songs like “Oathbreaker,” Crusade,” and “Cairo.” There is something aggressive and heavy to the songs, but on a deeper level. Lyrics are scarce yet meaningful, and the band lets the music do the talking, just like how Isis used to do. Another thing that I’ve noticed in the progression of He Whose Ox Is Gored, is that they have really adopted more melody into their songs. Rather than it being a wall of noise, there is a balance between the heaviness and the more delicate nature of some of the parts, especially with the keyboards. The album was mixed by Matt Bayles (Mastodon, Isis) and Randall Dunn (SunnO, Earth) and it really shows. This album is a great leap for this band, and it’s only the beginning of where they can go from here.
In no particular order (wait till the end of the year for that). These are the best albums I’ve heard all year!
1. Mastodon- Once More Round The Sun
2. Every Time I Die- From Parts Unknown
3. Chevelle- La Gargola
4. Seether- Isolate and Medicate
5. Sevendust- Time Travelers and Bonfires
6. Crosses- Crosses
7. Royal Blood- Out Of The Black EP
8. Against Me- Transgender Dysphoria Blues
9. And We Are Them- Align
10. Wild Throne- Blood Maker
11. New Cathedral- Ghost
12. Machines Learning- Machines Learning
13. He Whose Ox Is Gored- Nightshade EP
14. With Our Arms To The Sun- A Far Away Wonder
15. Black Map- Driver EP
16. Royal Blood- Royal Blood
17. The Last Internationale- We Will Reign
18. Wovenwar- Wovenwar
19. And We Are Them- City Of Ghosts
20. Obliterations- Poison Everything
21. Black Map- And We Explode
22. Bush- Man On The Run
23. Slipknot- .5 The Gray Chapter
24. Aeges- Above and Down Below
Heavy music has a zillion sub genres ad sometimes it’s hard to keep up with them all. There are a few that have come about recently that really stick out above the rest. In particular doomgaze, which is equal parts doom metal and shoe gaze. One of the bands from that genre that has really grabbed my attention is He Whose Ox Is Gored. This Seattle band was founded by members Brian McClelland (guitar, vocals) and Lisa Mungo (synths, vocals), later joined by current members Mike Sparks (bass, vocals) and John O’Connell (drums). They have been decimating the underground of Seattle since 2009. Thetechnical guitar work and atmospheric synths over walloping rhythms create a uniquely cinematic soundscape that paints a world ready to be thrown to the wolves. Currently He Whose Ox Is Gored is gearing up for a tour to promote their upcoming full length and recently released limited cassette. This band has what it takes to make it in the world of heavy music.