New & Noteworthy is a weekly column in which we highlight some of the newest rock and metal releases coming out each week. This week features new releases from Mastodon, Body Count, Demon Hunter, as well as a live album from Arch Enemy, and a Death vinyl reissue. If you want to check out last week’s releases you can do so here. You can check out last week’s sales numbers in Metal By Numbers, Obituary had an all-time peak at #43 on the Billboard charts.
Mastodon, Emperor of Sand (Reprise)
Atlanta based progressive metal group Mastodon have released their seventh album, Emperor of Sand. The album was produced by Brendan O’Brian (AC/DC, RATM, Aerosmith, etc.), and recorded at The Quarry in Kennesaw, GA. Like most of Mastodon’s albums, there is a concept, with this one following the story of a dessert wanderer handed a death sentence. Death, mortality, and survival are themes that appear throughout, and drummer/vocalist Brann Dailer says “it’s about going through cancer, going through chemotherapy and all the things associated with that. I didn’t want to be literal about it. But it’s all in there. You can read between the lines.” Earlier in the month they released a music video for the single “Show Yourself.” Emperor of Sand is also available as a double LP, on 180 gram vinyl, and if you order the special edition it comes with a color-in vinyl jacket and a set of color pencils. Mastodon will be embarking on a US tour next month with Eagles of Death Metal and Russian Circles, kicking off the tour in Missoula, MT.
Body Count, Bloodlust (Century Media)
Body Count, the L.A. rap metal group fronted by Ice-T, have released their sixth album Bloodlust. Like their previous release, Manslaughter, it was also produced by Will Putney (Northlane, Miss May I, Thy Art is Murder, etc.). Never afraid of controversy, the band tackles current social issues such as the Black Lives Matter movement and the Trayvon Martin shooting in the tracks “No Lives Matter” and “Black Hoodie.” It is also their first release since signing to Century Media records. The album features guest appearances from Dave Mustaine, Max Cavalera, and Randy Blythe on the tracks “Civil War,” “All Love is Lost,” and “Walk With Me…” respectively.
Demon Hunter, Outlive (Solid State)
Fifteen years since the release of their debut album, Seattle’s Demon Hunter has just released their eighth studio album, Outlive. Just like their previous album (Extremist), Outlive was produced and engineered by the band’s own Jeremiah Scott. The group successfully crowdfunded the release of Outlive, raising 161% of their goal, with just under 5,400 pledges. Last month the band release a music video for the track “Died in my Sleep.” The band currently only has one upcoming show in the US announced, at Chicago-Open-Air. Outlive is also available in vinyl, and a deluxe box set.
Warbringer, Woe To The Vanquished (Napalm Records)
Woe to the Vanquished is the fifth studio album from American thrash metal group Warbringer, and their first since IV: Empires Collapse. After a few line-up changes through 2013 and ’14, the band’s future seemed up in the air, but have since returned with guitarist Adam Carroll and drummer Carlos Cruz, as well as bringing aboard bassist Jessie Sanchez. So far the band has released two music videos, “Remain Violent” and “Silhouettes.” The album is also available on vinyl. Vocalist John Kevill has called the first half of the album “probably the most fast and brutal side A of any warbringer record yet,” while the second half is “more progressive/darkly melodic.”
Arch Enemy, As The Stages Burn: Live at Wacken 2016 (Century Media)
At Germany’s yearly Wacken-Open-Air festival, Swedish melo-death group Arch Enemy recorded a live album in front of 80,000 screaming, moshing fans. As the Stages Burn is also available on vinyl, blu-ray, and DVD. The band has already put clips of “Nemesis,” and “War Eternal” on YouTube if you need a preview of what to expect.
Death, Human (Remastered Reissue) (Vinyl)(Relapse)
Death’s death metal classic Human gets a remastered vinyl reissue.