Virginia grindcore aficionados Pig Destroyer's latest album, Head Cage, is undoubtedly one of the best of the year, 32 minutes of venomous noise-rock and face-melting blasts. Riff-master Scott Hull and Co. made their mark on 2018, and 2018 left an impression on the guitarist, too. We asked Hull to share some of his favorite shit from the last 11 months and counting. Below is what he offered up.
I love METZ and originally wanted to put Strange Peace on here, but that LP was originally released in 2017. So, this being the only thing released by Metz in 2018 gets it on my list. Anything they do in any year will be on my year-end list.
I don't think this is technically out yet, but Gene sent it to me and I listened to it like 25 times in a row (yes, at the gym). One of the best newer grind bands out there. And I haven't even seen them live yet.
It's quickly becoming apparent that all the best new grind bands are all on Bandcamp, which is fine by me. I like that they insist on recording live in the studio, which is why there is a single guitar track. This gives GI a real purity that comes across live as well. Great band. Great record.
As longtime 1977 Suspiria fans, Blake and I waited patiently for months. We left our opening week viewing unsatisfied and very confused about the different directions in which this new take had gone. Much like the new Twin Peaks season, Suspiria 2018 implies a lot of things that don't necessarily get fleshed out. However ALSO like the new TP season, I haven't been able to stop thinking about different layers. Ultimately, that's really the kind of thing that makes something successful ... whether or not it sticks with you. The instant you simply unlock a thing completely, it's dead. This movie has a LOT to unpack if you give it your attention. And the Thom Yorke score is amazing, as well.
One of the many joys of Bandcamp or Spotify is being able to go through suggested listening titles and finding a real gem. This is super bleak, harsh and very beautiful. Full of serious weight and urgency. I don't know anything about this group, but this record got heavy play by me since it came out.
I almost never miss seeing Pat Metheny when he comes through town. I guarantee I have seen PM live more than any other performer or band. This time I was able to take the family, so they were able to understand how unique an experience going to see incredible musicians like this is.
It's not a big surprise that Panos Cosmatos's follow-up to Beyond The Black Rainbow would be a visual stunner. But what is a huge surprise is how the tone of Mandy changes to subvert the viewer's expectations about what this movie sets up in the first half. The "Cheddar Goblin" advertisement happens during the deadly serious first part of the film, which is completely disorienting. Then the entire film just goes off the rails into a drug-fueled psychotronic revenge film. This movie is almost beyond criticism because it establishes and changes its own rules throughout the film. You can only say if you liked it or didn't. I fucking loved it. It's almost the opposite of Suspiria 2018 in that Mandy is pretty simple story-wise, but it sticks with you for very different reasons.
It was definitely a gift that CC released Multiple Maniacs in a fully restored 4K transfer back in 2017. Female Trouble has always been my favorite John Waters/Divine film (followed very closely by Polyester) and I was blown away by the quality of the FT blu-ray restoration. Criterion are doing very important work. I still buy their blu-rays even if I stream their releases because it's important to keep contributing.
I'm sure this book is incredibly funny on paper, but with a cast including James Urbaniak, Andy Daly, Paul F. Thompkins, Jon Hamm and Rhea Seehorn, Stinker Lets Loose is one of the funniest fucking things I've ever heard. I'm not a big LOL guy, but this classic by Mike Sacks had me LOLLING, even ROTFLMAO-ing (in my car). It hits that sweet spot where trucker classics such as Smoky and the Bandit, Every Which Way but Loose and Convoy sit, but WAY more off the hook.
I might be impartial, because FFF's second beer collaboration with PD has a much cooler-than-real-life representation of the band on the label, but this beer is fucking amazing. IMO even better, if possible, than Permanent Funeral, which itself is close to unbeatable.