Visual Rhetoric: September 2017

Sunday, 8th October 2017

The second edition of our newest monthly column, we are never at a loss for quality videos to be released in a given month. Even without MTV (and Headbangers Ball), videos are just as important as ever – especially when many folks out there use YouTube as a place to listen to music as well as watch. This month we look at Angel Nation, At Dawn’s Edge, Beast in Black, Beyond God, Cannibal Corpse, Cripper, and Origin (pictured above).

Angel Nation
“Burn the Witch”
Aeon
Inner Wound Recordings

The first released track from Angel Nation’s sophomore effort (formerly EnkeliNation) tackles our obsession with the digital world. A catchy track that features a soaring chorus from Elina Siirala surrounded by some catchy galloping riffs, you can see the progression of the band playing and all the people are staring into their device of choice (phone/tablet/etc) and the band intervening towards the end of the track. Intriguing to see the only interaction between the people occurring after their devices have been disabled. A thought-provoking commentary on something that seems to be seen at shows nowadays, not to mention the world in general. – Kyle McGinn (Angel Nation official website)

At Dawn’s Edge
“Evil Flamingo”
Through Glass Eyes
Self-Released

Again this month, offering some proof that you don’t need your video to look like a blockbuster film to make a point, At Dawn’s Edge provide an enchanting video for “Evil Flamingo” by simply having two women dancing. The djent-y grooves and choreography pairs very effectively, drawing in the listener in. Some gorgeous female vocal work is a effective change of pace for the usual djent/progressive riffing patterns – and paired with the video, gives a more epic and sprawling vision. And one that seems to have some deeper than just surface level meanings. A pleasant introduction to a fresh-sounding band with plenty of potential. – Kyle McGinn (At Dawn’s Edge on Facebook)

Beast In Black
“Blind and Frozen”
Berserker
Nuclear Blast

Following his exit from Battle Beast, guitarist Anton Kabanen recruits a new set of musicians for Beast In Black. “Blind and Frozen” is the first single from their upcoming album – a video that cuts back and forth between a storyline and band performance sequences. The slow-motion action with snowfall, candles, and aerial castle work sets the stage from some high-octane male vocal action (almost feminine in spots) and a song that melds together Anton’s familiar melodic power hooks with a bit of that classic crunch. It’s a damsel in distress type of story – the princess touching certain mystical objects who needs to find safety in the end. Another catchy anthem that should keep fans satiated until the late fall release. – Matt Coe (Beast in Black official website)

Beyond God
“No Other Way”
Dying to Feel Alive
Painted Bass Records

While the usual ‘band rocking out’ theme does indeed apply to a good portion of this video, it’s not without its little charms. The forest in the beginning and spliced into a few places (along with some flowing liquids), which turns into fire as the track intensifies towards the end. Some of the silhouettes at the beginning of the video are interesting as well. The music itself is a bit more guitar-centered than some of the other acts of this type, which gives vocalist Meryl Foreman some more energy to work with. That dark groove toward the finish is worth checking out on its own, with Foreman gracefully building the mood to a fitting climax and resolution. – Kyle McGinn (Beyond God on Facebook)

Cannibal Corpse
Code of the Slashers”
Red Before Black
Metal Blade

The first ‘cut’ from the upcoming Cannibal Corpse serves to be a fulfilling one in both auditory and visual mediums. A bit more of a raw approach in the actual sound of the band, and one that’s sounding more concerned about aggression than technical fireworks. That main groovy riff is both dark and addictive. The video itself is a twisted one, with plenty of gore and violence (it is Cannibal Corpse after all). The Cannibal Corps van is a cool little motif (one can sense a future t-shirt idea there) as a few victims are chased and eventually caught, with a delightful/macabre turn of events bringing it full-circle to the couple in the grocery store that are featured throughout the clip. – Kyle McGinn (Cannibal Corpse on Facebook)

Cripper
“Into the Fire”
Follow Me: Kill!
Metal Blade Records

Performing at a feast-style gathering in a barn, you get the notion that Cripper take full advantage of the acting out many of the lyrical thoughts for “Into the Fire”. The opening of a little girl discovering a pendant as she looks at the sun gives way to attendees of the feast – including paparazzi taking pictures of five corporate, masked people who participate in gluttony with wine and food of the largest capacity. The band appear in various sequences – even performing on the table, in the corner, as well as with masks during the lead break. A political song relating to the disconnect between the public and these leaders, it’s an attention grabber to the good – as a thrash track can elevate the mind and body through its word/music connection. – Matt Coe (Cripper official website)

Origin
“Infinitesimal to the Infinite”
Unparalleled Universe
Nuclear Blast Records

Taking the alien abduction theme and flipping it upside down is the idea of Origin’s latest video. The quintessential Origin track from Unparalleled Universe, it blisters and eradicates with over the top speed. The video is just as unrelenting and certainly not for the squeamish. The alien is tortured and nothing is too extreme – genitals are annihilated, vomit is spewed, eyes are stabbed. You get the point. But there is something to be said for the act of cutting off one of the alien’s fingers and then smoking it. Clearly there’s some dark humor in addition to just being gore for the sake of it. A brutal video for a brutal song. See if you can stomach it. – Kyle McGinn (Origin official website)