We’re officially in the holiday season now. Stores are lined with decorations, shoppers are obsessively searching for the best deals, and everywhere you go, the holiday music abounds. Surprisingly, the holiday metal releases thus far have been few and far between. This is a far cry from the past couple of years, which saw anthology releases and collections in great abundance. Still, though, there are some holiday metal releases worth paying attention to, and we will cover be sure to cover them as they appear.
Today is a day that nu-metal and hard rock fans will appreciate. The two lead releases are from bands that have been prolific in those scenes for some time now. There are plenty of other highlights to be had, so read up and get in the holiday spirit!
Chevelle, Hats Off to the Bull (Epic)
The Chicago group’s sixth album is highlighted by the single “Face to the Floor”, which is already at #1 on the active rock charts. It’s a very different style for Chevelle, as “Face to the Floor” is an extremely angry song striking at Bernie Madoff and his Ponzi scheme. Fans have been getting a taste of the album during the group’s recent shows with Bush and Filter, and they will likely get to hear even more during their upcoming tour dates in December. And if you want a preview of the album, check out the full stream of the album over at Loudwire.
Korn, The Path of Totality (Roadrunner)
Korn frontman Jonathan Davis said he wanted to “trail-blaze” with this album. It’s debatable whether that happened or not, but they certainly did make the most different-sounding album of their careers. The Path of Totality was produced by a number of dubstep and electro house artists, most notably three tracks by rising star Skrillex. If you want to try something that has the Korn sound with a new “twist,” this album is worth checking out. Whether or not it’s Album of the Year material is definitely up for debate, though…we’ll just to have to wait and see when we all publish our end-of-year lists in the coming weeks.
Volbeat, Live from Beyond Hell / Above Heaven (Universal)
It’s funny to think that, just five years ago, hardly anyone even knew about the Danish group known as Volbeat. Now, they’re one of the most popular metal acts on the planet, thanks to high-profile touring and their infectious and inimitable sound. Now, they are unleashing a new DVD with footage taken from three extremely popular shows: a headlining arena show in front of 10,000 fans in Copenhagen, a much more intimate setting at the House of Blues in Anaheim, and an explosive set from the Rock am Ring Festival of 2011. There are a number of big-name musical guests that also make appearances throughout the DVD content, so keep an eye out for familiar faces while enjoying the solid classic groove of Volbeat.
Also being released this week:
Austrian Death Machine, Jingle All the Way EP (Metal Blade)
Becoming the Archetype, O Holy Night Digital Single (Solid State)
A Hope for Home, In Abstraction (Facedown)
Vektor, Outer Isolation (Megaforce)
Necrotic, Necrotic (God of Thunder)
Next Week: We effectively close the book on 2011 with an anthology release from one of Europe’s biggest rock exports. Also, I’ll give you a list of underground releases from the past year that deserve your attention, as a primer for MetalInsider’s upcoming lists of the best albums of 2011. Come on back and help me end the year on a high note!