The Heavy Metal World Tour is a companion piece to a weekly segment on The Metal Dad Radio Show. Each week we play a block of bands from a specific location from around the world, picked entirely at random. This week: Madrid, Spain
While not as renowned as some of their European counterparts, Spain has had their fair share of outstanding heavy metal exports. This week in our brief exploration of metal bands from the country’s capitol city, we played two bands that should definitely be familiar to fans of extreme metal, and two that you should become familiar with sooner than later.
It would not be hyperbole to say that Haemorrhage may be the most influential band to every flow from Spanish shores. Their debut album dropped back in 1995 and they’ve spent the better part of almost 25 years destroying the ear canals and minds of goregrind fans the world over. Their 1998 album, Anatomical Inferno, still stands as a landmark release in the gorgrind genre (and was included in my book 666 Days of Metal). 2017 saw their second full-length album for Relapse and seventh overall, We Are The Gore, to go alongside a litany of EPs, splits and comps. Their output is not only crushing, but prolific as well. Fans of grindcore, death metal, and all their various sonic relatives should have had this band on their collective radar a long time ago, but it’s never too late to jump on this blood-splattered bandwagon.
The other Spanish act played on the show this week that fans of extreme metal should be well familiar with is Avulsed. These masters of death metal madness dropped their first EP in 1994 and followed it up in 1996 with their debut full-length. 2016 saw the release of their seventh full-length, Deathgeneration. These guys have spent 25 or so years delivering groove-laden, brutal death metal, not unlike many of their American counterparts. Fans of such death metal stalwarts as Suffocation, Incantation, and Autopsy should be filling their ear holes with as much Avulsed as possible. Luckily for you the vast majority of their immense and intense back catalogue is available to stream and purchase at their Bandcamp page.
If you asked me who the best black metal band coming out of Spain today was, I may give you Frozen Dawn as my first response. Combining second wave influences with elements of thrash and death metal, Frozen Dawn are a throwback to the days when black metal was first starting to spread its wings and really experiment. Fans of acts such as Rotting Christ, Belphagor, and even early Samael will find a blackened home with this band. Their most recent release, 2017’s Unearthing The Black Arts, was a covers album showcasing many of their first and second wave influences – Bathory, Emperor, Immortal, Enslaved, Hellhammer, Mayhem, etc. Their most recent album’s worth of original material was 2014’s Those of the Cursed Light. Both this album and 2011’s The Old Prophecy of Winterland were solid examples of a band both paying homage to their roots while branding their own stamp on the genre. Fans of well-produced black metal with melodic tinges are asked to proceed to their Bandcamp page post haste.
Sun of the Dying
A relatively new band on the scene, Sun of the Dying released their debut album, The Roar of the Furious Sea, in 2017. These guys are either brand new to me or I simply didn’t pay close enough attention last year, because if I did there’s a strong possibility this album would have ended up on my year-end list. Soaring, thunderous doom metal with death metal undertones is the name of this band’s epic game. The immediate (and admittedly easy) comparisons exist with bands such as My Dying Bride, Paradise Lost, Swallow the Sun, and Morgion. But Sun of the Dying is far from being some cookie-cutter death/doom act. This entire album is a wholly emotive and memorable one from start to finish and the sky is the limit with how far these guys can take their sound.
To listen to tracks from these acts and some other killer bands check out the May 24 episode of The Metal Dad Radio Show.