Metal needs a facelift. Bands are so overproduced, their music so paint-by-numbers that it’s effectively unlistenable. The Gothenburg sound has been co-opted by whiny mallcore bands who have the audacity to refer to themselves as “punk.” Converge may have been interesting at first, but they managed to produce a sea of bands cranking out jagged, atonal bleatings that I hesitate to call music, let alone “hardcore.” Mastodon…well, I may be coming around to Mastodon, but it’s hard to say yet. Nothing they do comes out and grabs me the way I’d like it to, but that might require repeated listening. You don’t get rennaissance vihuela music right away, either…

Where are the good bands? I mentioned Nasum in my last post. They’re good, but their frontman died in that big Tsunami (bummerville) so we’re left with their legacy. I do like the new Slipknot album, and feel they’re sometimes unfairly lumped into the mallcore thing. I like the new Dissection, but that’s a band with another dead frontman.

You know who is good? Amon Amarth. And the new Machine Head record.