https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/IMG_6515-1280x720.jpg

There was a time when black and death metal were considered the same thing. Those days are no more. However, these genres have melded quite often and have remained kindred. Tonight’s gory revue was an opportunity to examine and celebrate that. In one corner, hailing from Austria, we had the occult death/black metalists known as Belphegor snorting brimstone and kicking with cloven hooves. In the other, hailing from Long Island, it would be the baseball...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/IMG_6408-1280x720.jpg

A casual Hard Rock Café-style venue in the unassuming Pittsburgh suburb of Baldwin was where crypts opened, sandstorms raged, curses were realized, and long-dead pharaohs were resurrected last week. Nile, led by founder and metal archaeologist Karl Sanders, were in town to support the release of their latest opus Vile Nilotic Rites and represented it duly as “Long Shadows of Dread,” “Snake Pit Mating Frenzy,” and the title track proved to be highlights of the...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/a2460422275_16.jpg

  Epic, Pittsburgh traditional metal power trio Legendry recently let slip their third full-length concept album within a four-year span, The Wizard and the Tower Keep telling a harrowing, musical fantasy tale of virtue challenging evil in a far-off land that time has forgotten. The album begins with an earnest medieval folk tune and never looks back, its Manilla Road aspirations effectively filling a void left by the death of that band’s key member Mark...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/786446-768x720.jpg

  Throwback metal dominators Savage Master have been campaigning ruthlessly within the underground metal scene for the past 6 years, their Bitch/Exciter alchemy entertaining audiences at large festivals and intimate club gigs alike with a NWOBHM verve to compliment their leathery, spiked, shock-rock showmanship. A mere stroke of luck is not the reason for Savage Master’s growth in stature as a sought-after support act for bands such as High Spirits and even GWAR! Rather, Savage...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/72119347_10156224882011879_371585980446015488_n-960x720.jpg

  The unseasonably humid air was thick with fog and mystique that wafted into the underground lair of Cattivo as two bands who have dueled before in Pittsburgh chose to engage each other once again, on a Monday night no less. Warbringer and Enforcer are each intensely devout regarding their respective metal denominations, the former worshipful of German thrash as the latter prays to the gods of the NWOBHM. Having seen them on two other...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/64741811_2289710607955016_2880872841622847488_n-1.jpg

The air outside was arid and the overall climate broiling, making the gentrified neighborhood of Pittsburgh’s Lawrenceville seem as if it were a battlefield in a hellscape of a forgotten world and therefore appropriate for the conclusion of a music festival that Robert E. Howard himself may have dreamt up had he lived in our era. White Alice broke the champagne bottle with a set of Sunn O)))-like sounds in the vein of yesterday’s opener...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/IMG_4156-1280x720.jpg

Molly Black (Clea Cutthroat) from local shock rockers Hot Pink Satan emceed what would be yet another decathlon for Steel Town hessians, her risqué, dominatrix image and hip-wiggle giving Descendants of Crom III a fun, classy, Midnight Special vibe. She was the hostess with the mostest for sure and led us to our collective doom. Chris Tritschler from local trad metal stars Lady Beast opened the first official day of Descendants of Crom with an...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/DSC2116-1280x720.jpg

  A proper prelude to the third annual Descendants of Crom took place at Howlers yesterday evening, tingling spines with an eclectic mixture of bands doom and stoner and some that strayed far from that particular Venn diagram. Motometer, a quirky hometown power trio, broke the seal for the festival with a set of groovy, progressive 70’s fuzzrock that put Budgie, Primus, Led Zeppelin, and the guitar mathematics of Robert Fripp into a tornado. The act’s...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/64741811_2289710607955016_2880872841622847488_n.jpg

To whet appetites for Descendants of Crom 3, which occurs this Saturday and Sunday at Cattivo in Lawrenceville, Howler’s Coyote Café in Bloomfield will host a pre-party featuring Icarus Witch, Fox 45, Enhailer, Motometer, Void King, and Submachine. Icarus Witch’s trad/power/prog will do battle with Enhailer’s doom/stoner/sludge, Submachine’s punk attack, Void King’s rock-n-roll Sabbath twist, Fox 45’s cosmic molasses, and Motometer’s nameless, genre-defying blues. While DOC may lean towards the slower end of the heavy...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/a3118360963_2.jpg

Desecendants of Crom III begins this Friday night with a pre-gala at Howler’s in Pittsburgh’s Bloomfield neighborhood and continues at Cattivo in Lawrenceville for the remainder of the weekend. One of the many bands that will grace the fest with its collective presence is New York’s Sun Voyager.   Self-reporting as “earthy heavygaze rockers,” Sun Voyager simply wail regardless of what they call themselves and do so with a bent towards the more unusual 70’s...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/IMG_5223-1280x720.jpg

Scott “Wino” Weinrich has found himself darkening the corridors of the Pittsburgh metropolitan area numerous times with his many bands, but it his particularly free-wheelin’, easy ridin’ biker doom vehicle The Obsessed that will roll into Cattivo next weekend. Yes, Pittsburgh’s Descendants of Crom III festival has seen a change in its lineup for its 2019 edition. ASG were to headline Day 1 (Saturday 9/21), but due to unforeseen circumstances, The Obsessed are taking their...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/IMG_5193-1280x720.jpg

Beginning the evening of Friday September 20th at Howler’s and running through until Saturday September 21st and Sunday September 22nd at Cattivo, Pittsburgh’s third annual Descendants of Crom festival brings doom and stoner metal to the forefront while touching on some other sub-genres and leaving no hessian dissatisfied. I chatted with the event’s organizer, Shy Kennedy, who also fronts the band Horehound and heads up Blackseed Records when she’s not promoting shows. Here’s what she...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/IMG_4804-1280x720.jpg

  Iron Maiden are my most treasured band bar none, so expect some bias in this review. But instead of being euphoric about seeing them this past Saturday night, I was a tightly-wound ball of nerves. Would I have a problem getting into the venue? Would their ticketless anti-scalper entry procedure thwart me? Would my old iPhone 5c betray me (it’s no longer compatible with the Ticketmaster mobile app)? Would I get a decent vantage...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/67123550_10156054828711879_3285179850024812544_n.jpg

One could say that nascent  promoter Steel & Bone Productions has a Marshall Plan in store for the Pittsburgh underground metal scene. To kick off their campaign, we were given a seven-act Saturday night showcase at Cattivo featuring a number of bands that played last year’s Migration 2 Festival, allowing fans to sample what they may have missed out on or relive it if they attended it. Note: Migration returns in 2020. Abysme, a local act...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/60928681_600243403829794_7214874191978299392_o-800x720.jpg

In October of last year, golden-throated warrior angel Deb Levine appeared at Ventura, California’s fourth annual Frost and Fire Festival as a performer with her remarkable band Lady Beast. It gave her an idea for a throwback metal festival to be held in the Pittsburgh area, one where the sounds of early thrash, power, speed, and New Wave of British Heavy Metal would be celebrated and elevated a la Germany’s Keep It True or Chicago’s...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/DSC0030-1280x720.jpg

Robert Collins is equal parts Angry Anderson, Bon Scott, and Howard Stern, and the ex-Dirty Charms crooner has a new joint you need to be schooled on. They’re called Royal Honey, and if you like your rock hard, a little red, sleazy, greasy, and vintage, I regret to inform you that you missed a right corker of a homegrown jam if you didn’t catch their record release shindig at Howler’s this past Saturday night. The...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/62487432_10155976372721879_7960991564132515840_n-960x720.jpg

  The morbid Yakuza known as Church of Misery have been at large for around 24 years, with only bassist Tatsu Mikami remaining since the day they were born in blood and decided to dedicate their careers to musically documenting the lives and crimes of the very real ghouls that have walked among us. These samurai of doom were to play Pittsburgh once before in 2013 only to be halted by visa restrictions, making this...

https://www.firstangelmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Royal-Honey-Hype-Money-Misbehavior-Front-Cover-1280x720.jpg

Royal Honey have been slinging, raw, dirty, fun, retro hard rock for almost a year now, and their debut EP, Hype, Money, and Misbehavior is set to drop tomorrow night at a record release show at Howler’s Coyote Café upon the stroke of ten. While they may be a new group, what this quintet has recorded thus far makes them sound as if they are a decades-old veteran act. Opener “Dirty Romance” gets the party...