Article By: Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker ‡ Edited By: Leanne Ridgeway
If you are someone remotely interested in underground music or modern U.S. based heavy metal, then odds are you have discovered Louisville, Kentucky’s STONECUTTERS by now.
Kudos if this applies to you because the band is one of The Bluegrass State’s best representatives of genre-morphing extremity. However, if the quartet – Brian Omer (guitar and vocals), Nick Burks (guitar), Kevin Redford (bass), and Chris Smith (drums) – are unknown to you, then rejoice for that is about to change. Closing in on a decade and a half of aggressive metallic activity, STONECUTTERS seems determined to end 2019 in some big ways and on top of their game.
That victory lap was recently initiated by way of the new, season-appropriate, two-song EP entitled ‘The Living Dead’. Arriving a little over a week ago from GrindEthos Records, the short-player is the latest substantive proof that STONECUTTERS are still doing what it is they do best. Which is creating some of the hardest to pigeonhole sonic heaviness happening anywhere in this universe. While it is usually a bit of a task to narrow down what styles of acidic audio this fearsome foursome is tinkering with this week, that is not so much the case today.
No, this time is a bit easier and not because there’s a reduced number of songs or anything like that. The reason for that ease is because a singular genre covers what we are looking for… and it is Death Metal. Yes, our infamous monster musicians celebrate the Halloween season with one of their most savagest recordings to date. Pulling out all the stops, STONECUTTERS go full-on in a frenzy of thrash-infused, old-school death metal and no one is safe.
Like some mutated bastard union of Kreator and Deceased, title track “The Living Dead” is a battery of discharged guitars, pummeling drums, and inhuman vocals. Incessant and injurious, this dizzying homage to the zombie hordes is just as sinister as its subject matter.
Just as impressive is the B-side track, “Outside The Presence Of God“, another malevolent composition to be sure. With a lumbering pace, the song’s crushing advance is made even weightier by its wording. Both stark and thought-provoking, the lyrics explore the eternal consequences of self-will. Bolstered by the double bass drumming and dual vocals, certain points in the song brought some ‘Seasons In The Abyss‘ era Slayer nuances to my mind.
STONECUTTERS nails it with ‘The Living Dead‘ EP, once again revealing themselves as an aurally volatile band. Experience this reality for yourself by streaming the EP provided or go to the STONECUTTERS Bandcamp [HERE] for further streaming and purchase options.
In related news, STONECUTTERS are set to launch “The Living Dead Tour 2019” in the U.S., with a hometown show in Louisville on Halloween night. They will be joined by Maryland’s doom-driven metallers YATRA for the first leg of the tour, then War Cloud will take over the direct support slot for the dates along the left coast. Find all of these dates listed in the tour routing below.
– STONECUTTERS “The Living Dead Tour 2019” –
Oct. 31 – Louisville, KY @ Mag Bar*⠀
Nov. 01 – Wichita, KS @ Barleycorns*⠀
Nov. 02 – Denver, CO @ 7th Circle*
Nov. 03 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge*
Nov. 05 – Sacramento, CA @ Cafe Colonial#
Nov. 06 – Oakland, CA @ Elbo Room#
Nov. 07 – Las Vegas, NV @ Vamp’d#
Nov. 08 – Oceanside, CA @ Pour House#
Nov. 09 – Pasadena, CA @ Old Towne Pub#
Nov. 11 – San Diego, CA @ Brick By Brick
Nov. 12 – Tempe, AZ @ Yucca Tap
Nov. 14 – Oklahoma City, OK @ Blue Note
Nov. 15 – Dallas, TX @ Wits End
Nov. 16 – Little Rock, AR @ Vino’s
* w/ Yatra
# w/ Warcloud