HomeAuthorDarren Lewis, Author at First Angel Media

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The metallic, burnt taste of the outer limits were in our mouths as extreme music permeated and pummeled our ears. For several hours, we were adrift in space, and yes, we could be heard screaming as we were hurtled towards suns and planets inhospitable.   Ulthar, an upstart Oakland, California act signed to recently transplanted label 20 Buck Spin, released what many believed to be one of 2018’s death metal masterpieces in Cosmovore .  And...

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Children of Bodom turned a Sunday night into a blackened power metal odyssey amidst the storms that howled outside in the sleepy, Old World borough of Millvale. A frail looking Alexi Laiho had no time for jokey pop covers, opening with the vampiric blitz of “Are You Dead Yet?” to the delight of the respectably-numbered crowd who clapped and shouted along to everything as if it were Wacken Open Air. From there on in, it...

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It was an evening of muscle shirts, testosterone, and motivation. An MMA card of a concert, the bodies flew. Stage AE was well-attended enough for this show but was not sold out, giving the mostly male audience plenty room to knock each other around playfully. Being that this event leaned a bit towards the punk side of the spectrum, I almost didn’t bother going, but there were enough positives to make the gig at least...

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  Fallujah are a band that builds elaborate cathedrals of progressive, technical death metal that not enough hessians appreciate with drummer Andrew Baird and guitarist Scott Carstairs being the only constant. This band’s state of perpetual flux is reflected duly on their latest album Undying Light, which is as turbulent as their lineup, which is hard to keep track of. Despite that, things remain seamlessly tight, these intellectual, emotional songs reaching deep into the psyche...

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To observe the blessed birth of a self-titled debut EP, Riparian, a lacerating new Pittsburgh death metal band featuring members of Wrought Iron, took the stage at Get Hip Records on a rainy Saturday night and showed a packed audience that they have plans to turn our scene upside down. Frontman Rob Grisly growled his intestines out on the floor, the stage being too small to contain his unholy, bloody rage, his teeth gnashing as...

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Immolation are a band I haven’t always been keen on, their perpetual blastbeat downpour being somewhat impenetrable to me as a man who prefers his death metal melodic, tricky, and with a sense of groove. Yet upon a revisitation of Immolation’s catalogue, particularly more recent albums such as Atonement, I found many connectable and intelligent moments to latch onto, more so than I had previously. Beginning to feel as if I were a fighter ducking...

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Not to be confused with a German band calling itself “The True Veiled,” this Veiled is Pennsylvania grown and initially began as a two-man project featuring a drummer and a young Norse scholar who handled everything else on their nearly year-old debut, Black Celestial Orbs. Having caught them live last year opening for Uada with a fully fleshed out band, I can attest to the band’s quality onstage as well as that on record, and...

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Yeah, we know Metal is or should be about  anti-authoritarianism and whatnot, but one can be renegade without acting like a heel. What would Wolverine do? Think about it. Shows should be fun, and ruining another metal fan’s night ain’t fun or cool. Here’s a few guidelines I think metalheads could afford to follow. Rule #1 of Metal Concertgoing: Be nice and considerate. Don’t harass or attempt to injure people for whatever reason. Rule #2...

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North Carolinians Corrosion of Conformity are seemingly in the midst of a revival since riff-dealing madman Pepper Keenan rejoined the band in 2014 and have arguably been making records that are even better than their 90’s classics, one of which, Deliverance, marks its 25th anniversary this year. And their set at Mr. Smalls on a slushy Thursday evening with a sludgeoning, stoning, doomstomping threesome in Crowbar, The Obsessed, and relative upstarts Mothership was amply representative...

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Having caught Thunderbird Divine at last year’s second annual Descendants of Crom festival, I was immediately taken by their Kyuss/Clutch/Monster Magnet/Led Zeppelin/Fu Manchu worship and engaging band leader Erik Caplan’s innovative use of the theremin, a lesser-known instrument that is finding its way back into vogue in heavy music circles (see also Pittsburgh’s Pyrithe). I had thought of interviewing Mr. Caplan about the album. https://thunderbirddivine.bandcamp.com/ But I honestly couldn’t think of anything substantial to ask...

Skell ~ “Everything’s Fine”

FAM is a Pittsburgh, PA based music media company that’s all about the personal, emotional and social experience of music. The internet is awesome for finding music – living it is better! We’re bringing you professional photos from shows, articles, videos and more to remind you that your weekend doesn’t have to be spent here in the virtual world but with people who have at least one thing in common with you – a shared taste for music. Music media has been done before, but we flipped the script and concentrate on the stuff you haven’t seen yet – the local and regional bands that aren’t just a name on a billboard and a face on a stage. You’re probably still going to find some national level stuff happening around the Pittsburgh area but that’s because when they come to town, they’re part of our family… and once upon a time they were a local band from somewhere.

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