Iron Maiden – Book of Souls (Parlophone)
The statement, “It’s Iron Maiden” should be enough to make it a highly anticipated album, but beyond that succinct point, Book of Souls marks a triumphant return of a very important band. Bruce Dickinson has beaten his cancer and led Maiden’s charge back into metal with their 16th studio album and coincidentally their first ever double-album. Early reviews for it are for the most part incredibly positive. I haven’t had the opportunity yet to sit down and digest it entirely (it’s over an hour and a half long) but it is pretty high on my to-do list this week.
Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats – The Night Creeper (Rise Above)
Cambridge, England psych doom band, Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats, have returned with their fourth full-length album, entitled The Night Creeper. It’s a Sabbath-meets-Slasher film concept album best described by the lead singer Kevin Starrs himself, “The idea is that this album could have started life as an old cheap, grime-covered 25 cent pulp paperback like the type sold at news-stands outside subway stations… but then perhaps it is adapted into a film noir, which itself is then re-made twenty years later as an ultraviolent, slasher Italian Giallo film. The album follows this aesthetic lineage as it descends from to trash to noir to something discernibly darker.” I want this album.
Cruciamentum – Charnel Passages (Profound Lore)
This makes the anticipated list for September because the 4th is its official release date. However, you can listen to this album right now. There is an incredibly high likelihood this is the death metal album of the year. After a rather long hiatus, UK’s Cruciamentum returns with their latest effort, a no-holds barred lesson on the influences of old-school death metal. It’s the kind of album that puts hair on your chest, face and areas that can’t grow hair.
The Black Dahlia Murder – Abysmal (Metal Blade)
I love The Black Dahlia Murder. They have been a model of consistency in death metal for many years now. With each album their sound gets tighter and they manage to adjust their formula enough to not drastically change their sound, but add a subtle edge to their new songs. Abysmal is following up a stellar Everblack (2013) and Ritual (2011). The songs I have heard from Abysmal have been in the same vein as their previous albums. I’m expecting great things from the rest of Abysmal.
Windhand – Grief’s Infernal Flower (Relapse)
If you don’t think Windhand is awesome, then you need awesome lessons. The Richmond doom metal group are taking over this month with their upcoming album, Grief’s Infernal Flower. The followup to the brilliant Soma is finally arriving as Windhand look to break into the upper echelon of doom metal bands. The first two tracks from the album, “Crypt Key” and “Two Urns” bode well for what’s to come.
Caspian – Dust and Disquiet (Triple Crown)
The Beverly, Massachusetts-based Caspian is a post/instrumental rock band whose music borders on cinematic in epicness. They’re teaming up with Matt Bayles (Mastodon, ISIS, Minus the Bear) to produce the album, whom they worked with on their 2012 album, Waking Season. Dust and Disquiet will also mark Caspian’s first album since the passing of their bassist Chris Friedrich. Caspian have described the new album as, “… a maturation of the quiet/loud dynamic that Caspian has been exploring since their debut EP, You Are the Conductor. Now, that dynamic extends beyond a matter of volume, suggesting a more figurative exploration of polarities such as dark/light, dry/wet, and tired/awake.”
Heat Dust – Heat Dust (The Flenser)
Sticking to the “post” theme; dark post-punk quartet, Heat Dust, are releasing their self-titled debut full-length album this month. With distortion and energy to the max, the New Orleans group are looking to make a splash with their record. A lot more time and effort has gone into the writing process and there a greater sense of cohesion between all the members of the band. Heat Dust is a super-sneaky pick for September’s best. The gentlemen of Heat Dust are heading out on tour with The Body and Thou in October.