The Best Band in Alabama is Phylum

Who will it be?

Last month we asked you to help us find the best unsigned bands in America. After listening to hundreds of submissions, we’ve finally narrowed down our quest for the first state alphabetically in this grand nation. Today, we proudly present our pick for the best unsigned band in Alabama: Phylum. 

When most folks think of Alabama they think about the epicenter of our nation’s hard battle for Civil Rights, or possibly 70’s radio rock tunes covered by morons. Poorly. Twice. Phylum are doing their best to make ‘Bama known for an entirely new reason: brutal, raw grindcore.

Based out of Huntsville, Alabama, Phylum create the kind of crusty grind that sticks in your hair and leaves a weird stain on the couch. Their most recent output, the Divisions EP, was released in late 2012 but the band is reportedly hard at work on their debut full-length. In half the time it takes to listen to one lame-ass Dream Theater tune, you can jam their entire EP. I suggest you do so. The standout track for me is definitely closer “Assimilate”. The band takes the standard fast-and-angry-as-fuck grind template and throws in twisted guitar lines, heavy stomps, tape noise and distortion to create a complete bastard of a song. But don’t just take my word for it. Take a listen below:

Here’s what the judges had to say:

Leif Bearickson: “Phylum is a whirlwind of blast beats and punk rhythms with the occasional Pig Destroyer-esque groove thrown in to falsely assure passengers that this train isn’t about to go flying off the tracks. Its about as filthy, fast and heavy as you could ask for from metal’s favorite -core.”

MoshOff: “It’s raw but really tight and you can hear every element very well (bass included). They’ve got plenty of math-y riffs mixed up with some slow bits, the vocal patterns are interesting and the vocalist is solid. Technical Grindcore? The term popped into my head, especially during “Assimilate”. That song also has a lot of more “prog” stuff going on. Also: Diminished Scale >>>>>>>>>

Go like these dudes on Facebook and say hi. We’re stoked to hear new material from them.


Stoned Cobra (Birmingham, AL)

Sometimes a band name says at it all. If you like throwback metal and heady stoner jamz, Stoned Cobra have your back. Go check out their Bandcamp and just viiiibe out. 

The Toilet ov Hell is on an absurd quest to find the best unsigned band in each state of this glorious union. The purpose? To shine some the spotlight on bands that deserve more exposure. Also, we’re going to determine once and for all the greatest state in the nation. Each state winner is decided by a collection of 25 judges. After we’ve announced the winner of each state, we’re gonna throw them all in a winner-take-all bracket and leave the votes up to you. Who will be the best unsigned band in the United States? Which state is superior? We can’t wait to find out. 

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  • YourLogicIsFlushed

    And so it begins…

    • YourLogicIsFlushed

      We should do only one per week, making this segment last an entire year. With two weeks to decide the overall victor.
      (This has been a segment from The Worst Ideas in History)

      • Hahaha, I’m worried bands will break up by then. Or a newer, better band will come out and we’ll miss them!

        • what’s the proposed timeframe?

          • We’re going to do a few for week right now. We’ll decide later how fast or slow we want to post ’em up.

        • Edward Meehan

          The Suicide Virus broke up…



    this is gonna be fun

  • Edward Meehan

    Stoned Cobra, nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo.

    • It was a close battle!

    • YourLogicIsFlushed

      There are going to be a few where I will be upset that my choice didn’t make it, but I’ll let Stoned Cobra go without a fight

      • Edward Meehan

        I have a feeling my picks might not win for a single state. Lol.

        • Tyree

          Hey now! Vulgaari has a big chance.

          • Edward Meehan

            Vulgaari does have a chance, but last time I looked they were locked in competition against ToH’s Team Power Metal. It will be close!

          • Tyree


          • Edward Meehan

            Tyree I suspect you created the art / banner for this contest, I love it.

          • Our resident br00tal artist!

          • Nordling Rites Ov Karhu

            From which state is a band called Vulgaari, might I inquire

          • Edward Meehan


          • Nordling Rites Ov Karhu


  • Tyree

    Great mini write up’s Leif Bearickson and MoshOff. Hammered that nail right on the fucking skull.

  • NDNOvHell

    Nice. Is it too late to submit more bands? Just wondering.

    • Edward Meehan

      I think there is still time for bands that have not been posted about, but, many of the judges have already made votes for a bunch of the states.

      Joe? MLSD?

      • If you’ve got suggestions past California (alphabetically) we might be able to accept new entries.

        • NDNOvHell

          Ok. I think I’m the only one who submitted anything from Nevada. I’ve been checking more bands out though. Just thought I’d ask.

          • For sure, dude. If you’ve got a band you wanna add, you can either do it here or send me an email or whatevs.

          • NDNOvHell

            Alrighty then good sir

  • love that Dream Theater swipe!

    • Janitor Jim Dvggan

      Dream Theater are not as good as ELP. ELP conquers all prog from Yes and Nektar to Marillion and Spock’s Beard.

      • Nordling Rites Ov Karhu

        Despite the glory of Tarkus they have been defeated before and will be defeated again

  • phylumgrind

    Hey thanks for the love. New album is in the works. New material blows the ep away stsy tuned.

    • Stoked!

    • Howard Dean


    • Hail Phylum.

    • Tyree

      In crust we grind!

    • Awesome!

    • Stockhausen


    • Janitor Jim Dvggan

      The songs were so good I have to give them 13 out of 10. No one has ever got that high of a rating in my book. Electric Wizard and Godflesh both got a 12 with their latest albums and Behemoth, Annihilator, ELP and Breaking Benjamin to name a few have gotten scores of 11 before. Never have I awarded a 13 to anything. Be proud of that rating.

      • this is dripping with lolbuttz

      • King Shit of Fuck Mountain


  • Wow this is awesome. Thanks to whoever submitted Phylum to this list and for the awesome write-up. We are hard at work on the full length and should have it out soon!

    • Be sure to hit us up when you’re getting close to releasing it!

    • No, thank YOU for making badass music!

    • Deputy Dipshit

      Welcome to the Toilet!

  • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

    Gnarly, with emphasis on the gnaaaarrrrrrrrr!

    • Xan

      Ride the gnar, braaaah!

  • Guacamole Jim

    Phylum kicks ass!!

  • Xan

    Hot damn! That is some tasty grind! I always forget that bandcamp plays extremely loud on my computer and it felt like a necro-cannibal wraith butcher shoved an ice pick through my ear.

    • Edward Meehan


  • Scrimm

    Good stuff. Wish I could have been a judge.

  • W.

    This game, dude! So brutal. Vertigo was my go to she-beast.

  • crazytaco_12

    I’m digging this Phylum, congrats to them; good judgment used by the TOH team! Stoned Cobra was sick as well!

  • J.R.

    Huntsville represent! I’ll have to be on the lookout for Phylum shows in the area I guess!

  • Lacertilian

    Wow, Phylum just destroyed my shitty laptop speakers!

  • Renan Ribeiro

    I’ll be damned if this isn’t some good grind. Must be good driving music.