Continuing with our unofficial, in-studio day, let’s dive in to a bunch of albums-in-the-making that we here at Gear Gods are most excited about. It’s that time of year, when it’s too goddamn cold to tour, that bands hoard themselves up in the studio and get crackin’ on a fresh batch of tunes. In the last few days, a whole bunch of serious-fucking bands have teased on social media or through quiet press releases that they’re making a new record, and we’ve weeded through a bunch of crap to give you the lowdown on the freshest bullshit that’s well on its way to your Spotify playlist.
Perennial rock workhorses Clutch have been holed up down in Austin, Texas with producer/engineer Machine, recording the follow-up to 2013’s Earth Rocker. What makes these sessions of additional interest is they are some of the first to take place in Machine’s new recording studio in Texas, an incredible barn-sized building that they built from scratch in what looks like the middle of nowhere. Anyway, Jean-Paul Gaster tracking drums in a big room and Neil Fallon singing over riffs is enough for me. Check out some photos from the sessions below:
What asteroid were Failure flying on for the last twenty years that suddenly crash-landed back on Earth? All of a sudden the space-rock legends have got a new album in the works, they’re building rigs that dumbfound gear website editors-in-chief in Asbury Park, New Jersey, and their 1996 album Fantastic Planet is getting bigtime praise from magazines like Decibel.
The band has now set up a PledgeMusic campaign to help fund the follow-up to that album, which already has two in-studio update videos posted with plenty of clips of new music. What’s kind of cool about their take on the donation-based album-fundraising tool is that in addition to the ordinary “we’ll sign stuff” and “you’ll meet us backstage” type of donation incentives, you can actually purchase cool shit like: guitar pedals, vocal microphones, and other pieces of gear used on the album, a trip to a mixing session, and packs of Fractal bass and guitar patches.
3) Head Wound City
This grindy, noisy, chaotic hardcore band, featuring Justin Pearson (The Locust, Retox, etc) and Nick Zinner of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, reuinted last year and is recording the follow-up to their awesome self-titled 2005 EP, which was so short we barely got a chance to see what kind of potential the group has. We also know that the band is recording in San Diego with producer Ross Robinson, which is a great pairing, in my opinion – having someone who is more experienced with making “normal” metal albums with bands like Slipknot, Sepultura, and Machine Head handle the boards on something so psychotic is an exciting prospect. Pearson has been teasing new music on his Instagram and various band’s social media profiles, and from what he’s put out there, it sounds like it’s gonna be nuts:
Check out “I’m a Taxidermist – I’ll Stuff Anything” from Head Wound City’s first album:
4) Mutoid Man
We’re cheating here a bit since this band just finished basic tracking with Kurt Ballou at GodCity studios in Salem, Massachusetts, but let’s go ahead and sneak ’em in. Mutoid Man are just like, a rad band. Their 2013 debut Helium Head – the result of a collaboration between Converge’s drummer, Cave In’s guitarist, and Saint Vitus Bar’s sound dude – kind of came out of nowhere to just like, rock. It also felt too brief, and not just in terms of length, but also in terms of how spontaneous some of the ideas and riffs felt. But now with a bit of touring legs and a little over a year’s distance from their debut, Mutoid Man seem poised to really kick it into high gear this year.
Ben Koller also made the following post on Instagram a few weeks back, which is pretty exciting:
5) High on Fire
I don’t really know what more to say: High on Fire is in GodCity right now with Kurt Ballou, recording the follow-up to 2012’s De Vermis Mysteriis, according to press releases and a photo dump Kurt made on Facebook over the weekend. This is a band that’s been getting better with age, who only two and a half years ago put out possibly their best album yet, are back at it with one of the great metal producers working today. And with production notes like “frost punk,” “sick tribal,” “Peru riff,” and “Zep,” well, like, c’mon dude.
What’s pretty exciting about these photos that Kurt has posted is that it appears as though the band is tracking live together, as opposed to individually. Could be that they trash the scratch tracks, but it could also be that the band is actually just making the album live. Get a sneak peak into the sessions below: