Thursday, June 5th
Massachusetts hardcore act Bane has only released four full albums during its 15-year existence, but they posses great power and strength. Their new album Don't Wait Up - their first full-length in nine years - rewards the patient with a tightly-packed, 30 minute effort full of expertly timed breakdowns and shout-along choruses.
Friday, June 6th
Meshuggah, Between The Buried And Me
This show will have plenty for those who enjoy geeking out to incredibly technical metal. Sweden's Meshuggah is celebrating 25 years of off-kilter, polyrythmic riffs that inspires their listeners to engage in circle pit carnage and spend many hours laboring over tablatures, figuring out exactly where they zigged when most bands zagged. Openers Between The Buried and Me have also carved out a nice niche for themselves by infusing death metal and hardcore with a prog-rock circus atmosphere.
Saturday, June 7th
Devil You Know
The headliner on the marquee may reference Zakk Wylde's Black Label Society, but we're most excited for the prospect of Devil You Know as the support act. Their debut album The Beauty of Destruction features former Killswitch Engage vocalist Howard Jones, and his vocal performance here is a great reminder of why KSE was one of the premiere bands of the 2003-2008 metalcore boom. Lead guitarist Francesco Artusato - also of Bay Area deathcore greats All Shall Perish - provides some extra weight, with shred work that's equal parts beauty and brutality.
Wednesday, June 11th
Secrets of the Sky
This Oakland group's 2013 debut To Sail Black Waters was one of the most artistically ambitious debut albums in recent memory. The four lengthy tracks this sextet put together reference the heavier moments of instrumental post-rock greats Pelican and the epic moments of New York goth-metal giants Type O Negative. It's a "you got your chocolate in my peanut butter!" moment, pulled off with a stunning level of poise for such a young act.
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Friday, June 13th
El Rey Theatre
Brooklyn metallers Tombs made an impressive mark with their first two albums, proving to be masters of sludge, hardcore and doom, with a little goth-rock thrown in for good measure. New album Savage Gold also shows the group to be quite adept at Swedish death metal worship. In an era where so many bands are having trouble truly mastering one sound, Tombs continues to inspire with their mastery of multiple metallic noises.
Friday, June 20th
When this Oakland quartet performed here last year, they had just released their debut album Tempest. It may have been the finest slab of funeral-doom released in 2013, and as of press time we're not sure anything released in 2014 has topped it. Lycus takes the listener on a hypnotizing trip, but their Bay Area roots shine through on moments of sludge. They stand out from the norm in the funeral-doom genre.