You’re Never Too Full For STEAK NUMBER EIGHT

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In 2013, The Ocean’s Pelagial captured the hearts of progressive metal fans the world over, and rightfully so. They are arguably the flagship band for progressive sludge in this decade, as we all know Mastodon aren’t on the track to fill their own Leviathan-shaped shoes anytime soon. But did you know, dear reader, that yet another expansive , melodic, post-something sludge masterpiece was released from central Europe that same year? Barely young enough to have college diplomas, the members of Belgian group Steak Number Eight managed to release their 3rd full length The Hutch, a poignant double-LP length tribute to distortion that is bereft of a single redundant moment.

As a band with crushing distortion, piano interludes, and nine minute songs, Steak Number Eight obviously owes a great deal to Neurosis and their many nations of disciples, but they depart from the herd when they quite naturally wrap approachable, even “mainstream” rock melodies in blankets of fuzz, grime, and bipolar dynamics more typical of post-metal bands. Album opener “Cryogenius” wastes no time getting loud with a classic harmonized doom riff. Casual fans of “rock” music may be confounded by the harsh vocals that initially accompany the guitar melody, but more seasoned metalheads will wait to turn their heads quizzically until the Alice In Chains-esque minor key chorus that comes immediately after. It’s catchy and, dare I say, almost pleasant. Although it now will seem obvious, putting this particular style of singing over this particular brand of riffing is simply unexpected. Then with no break between tracks, we are snapped to attention by the pulsing 5/4 Coalesce-meets-The Bronx verse of “Black Eyed” (video embedded above), which reminds us that post-metal mustn’t always be somber; sometimes it is the soundtrack to your joyous rage.

Hooks are plentiful in The Hutch, both vocally and in the guitar lines. “Ashore” sounds like a radio-rock ballad recorded by Kurt Ballou with the “SUCK” channel turned and taped down at 0. The graceful acceptance of vocal melody within the context of epic sludge metal feels like a validation of the possibilities that modern hard rock bands almost universally miss. Key to their success in this regard is the A+ vocal performance from Brent Vanneste. His singing voice is familiar yet singular, a resonant mid-range croon with a casual gravelly texture. His confidence in a quiet setting gives genuine weight to the moments he chooses to bark his guts out.

The Hutch is a rare gem of an album that ought to be equally appreciated by both jaded longhairs and hockey jocks wearing fitted Fox Racing caps. It’s the sort of record that creates converts, so do your part and share with a friend, and not just one of your “metal” friends. I know if I had heard this as a high-schooler I would have had a massive head start in appreciating bands like Russian Circles or Isis, so do the world a solid and net us some new headbangers.

NOTE: This article was adapted from one originally written by HessianHunter for Skullsmasher.com.

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  • Christian Molenaar

    Leaving out this song is punishable by death. Maybe not, but it’s a big no-no.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AvQDfl0PuqA

    • Gorgasm

      Damn, this is good. Reminds me of Sandrider.

      • Randall Thor

        omg someone knows who sandrider is

        • Gorgasm

          Dude, Godhead is amazing…I’m still having too much damn trouble trying to track a physical copy of their first album.

          • Randall Thor

            I’ve only listened to it once, it didn’t blow me away like their debut did, but it’s still solid. That main riff to Children is just unbelievably good

        • crazytaco_12

          I’ma Seattle boy so I have to know who they are, but yeah, they’re badass. (if you watch football) Did you see the 10 seconds they showed of Sandrider playing live while showing Seattle during the Superbowl? Hilarious but awesome

  • YourLogicIsFlushed

    This punches my eardrums in all the right places. Great post.

  • This is great.

    • cosigned.
      if these bros had a bandcamp, they’d stop talking and take my money right now!

      • Metaphysical Anus

        I can take that money from you!

        • i hear it costs a lot to ship items to Finland.

          • Metaphysical Anus

            Well, sometimes. Just send it to me as bitcoins.

          • It’s very expensive to pay for the wardrobe that contains the portal to that wondrous place.

          • Metaphysical Anus

            There’s no portal here. You’ll get here if you’re deemed worthy of it.

  • Metaphysical Anus

    I prefered the instrumental version of Pelagial.
    This is some really great stuff right here.

    • I preferred the instrumental of some songs and the non-instrumental of others.

      • YourLogicIsFlushed

        I’ll be the third option and say I prefer the vocals on every track.

        • I’ll be the fourth option and say I really like Loic’s singing, but his harsh vocals are unbearably “core.”

          • Guacamole Jim

            Though you’re right, I don’t dislike the “core”-esqueness of his voice. I think it compliments them, and kinda sets them apart from just being another Mastodon.

        • i really feel like he honed his skills on that three-album streak. passable -> good -> great.

        • Cock of Steele

          I’m more of an isolated kick and snare guy myself.

  • W.

    I can dig this, but man is that a terrible name.

    • It makes me think of Peelander Z.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cT0ZhOV6Bl8

      • W.

        I know a power metal nerd who loves those guys.

        • If you get a chance to see them DO IT. So much fun.

          • W.

            That’s what I’ve heard.

          • Randall Thor

            If you have heard, but not heeded, you are false. This band rules so hard you can’t even imagine it until you see them.

          • Randall Thor

            I was their drummer for a song

          • Metaphysical Anus

            I don’t think that I believe you.

          • Randall Thor

            Guess you haven’t seen Peelander Z yet, you could be their next drummer!

          • Metaphysical Anus

            No thanks man.

  • Metaphysical Anus

    Now I remember how sad I’m because Burst is not together anymore :(((((((((((((

    • Owlswald

      I love me some Burst. Lazarus Bird was such a killer last album.

  • Scrimm

    I’m so fucking hungry right now

    • Tyree

      There is steak in my future.

      • Scrimm

        Me too. Stuck without a car today, and Denny’s sucks, but it’s like 300 feet from my front door.

        • Tyree

          Yeah, if you want some quality diarrhea then go.

          • Scrimm

            I’m hungry enough.

          • Guacamole Jim

            Perfect for the toilet.

          • Tyree

            Trve.

          • W.

            Dennyrhea. We used to hit up a Denny’s after every concert I went to.

          • Tyree

            It’s the best drunk food.

          • W.

            This is true.

          • white castle, krystal, jack in the box tacos

          • Tyree

            no white castle’s here. Fuck!

          • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

            Whataburger bro. No white castles or krystals here, and jack in the box is just disgusting grease disguised as food.

          • you’re not wrong about jack in the box. however alcohol can make a guy crave grease somethin’ fierce!!

          • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

            Very true.

          • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

            Serious Pizza>>>>>>>>all other drunk food ever.
            http://seriouspizza.net/

          • Tyree

            Ooooooo, that looks serious brah.

          • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

            It’s so good. They usually have a line around the block at 2:00 AM after the bars and venues close. The slices are enormous, and their sauce is the tits.

          • Tyree

            We have a pizza place that dose the same here too. It’s just a sloppy mess of drunken students at 2:00 am falling all over the place. Canyon Pizza is what it’s called. Been there to many times in my drunken state.

          • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

            There’s plenty of drunken peeps at Serious too, but the pizza is so good and the girl cashier is just the sooo fucking hot. Just the right amount of tatoos, with a perfect ass and big…. sorry, we were talking about pizza. It’s good bro. Check it out if you ever find yourself in Deep Ellum, Dallas, TX.

          • Tyree

            Hahaha! Poor girl, she probably gets hit on all the time.

          • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

            I know. I’m always the sap who’s super polite and just places an order while trying not stutter, says thank you and sits down. Then I imagine myself riding in on a mighty steed, rescuing her from the drunken slobs and pepperoni fumes, and riding off into the moonlight to an epic power metal soundtrack. Then my massive pizza slice arrives and I snap back to reality, devouring the entire thing with the manners and table etiquette of a drunken manbearpig, and then slip away into the dark night. Forever alone. And in desperate need of TUMS.

          • Tyree

            This made me sad. Hail Tums though, I eat those like they are M&M’s.

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan

            I love that they’re open 24 hours a day. I could go find one and go in there at 2:30 in the morning and order a T Bone and shrimp from there. Goddamnit, now I want Denny’s!

        • Janitor Jim Dvggan

          I haven’t had Denny’s since I was 8. It provided me with memories of when me and my mom would go there with her dad and mom. My grandma on my mom’s side died 10 years ago and the two Denny’s in my area closed by 2006. I miss their food more than most things. I prefer them over IHOP.

          • Scrimm

            Fuck Ihop. I got a piece of bloody cardboard in an omelet there that I didn’t find until almost the end of the meal and the dumbass manager told me he’d take 20% off my bill

          • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

            Gross. I’d have told him to I’m not paying for shit and then walk out.

          • Scrimm

            Oh I did, cussing him out the whole way.

          • Tyree

            Bloody cardboard?! What the fucks!

          • Scrimm

            Yeah. Haven’t been to one in well over 10 years.

      • Howard Dean

        I literally ate steak three dinners in a row over this long weekend. Hanger steak with frites and an herb butter aioli, a strip steak medium-rare with kale, beets, and parsnip, and a steak chimichanga. Yes, I ate like a kingly glutton over the Labor Day weekend. And I will not apologize. ‘merica.

        • Tyree

          Only the fucking best for Howard Dean! Jealous.

          • Howard Dean

            It was truly a weekend (week?) of gluttonous proportions. That doesn’t happen all the time (if it did, I would probably be dead), but when it does, I go all out.

        • Janitor Jim Dvggan

          You lucky bastard. I want steak so bad but it’s so expensive.

  • HessianHunter

    Big ups to Jeremy from Skullsmasher who gave me a place to put the original version of this post last year.

  • Guacamole Jim

    As both a Mastodon and The Ocean fan, I really really fucking REALLY like this. I also like steak.

  • guest

    Love it, been discovering a lot of awesome shit on here

    • Hail, guest and friend!

    • there are no guests in the Toilet, only turds. everyone is welcome to stay and play.
      welcome friend!

      • guest

        haha thanks, I’m sure I’ll change my profile at some point -_-

      • J.R.

        ah, a floater. maybe he will end up flushed like the rest of us.

  • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

    Win. This is fun stuff.

  • Gorgasm

    Call me fickle, but i do enjoy some good rock riff in a metal setting. Red Fang immediately comes to mind. I don’t consider them metal, but more of a stoner/sludge rock. But i personally like to describe this type of music as BEERD Metal….of course a combo of beard and beer.

  • Gorgasm

    My torso cavity aka stomach cannot handle eight steaks….how about just one steak from London

    http://youtu.be/axvgptqxeSA

  • Randall Thor

    Steak? I prefer chicken

    http://imgur.com/ozLEuks

    • God that is creepy.

      • Randall Thor

        Want sum chiken? 😉 😉

      • man likes his chik’n. it’s a natural urge.

        • CONAN THE MOTHERFUCKING KING

          the guy who got those pictures is like luke blowing up the death star, it was probably a billion to one shot but he did it god bless em. I did get to see a few shots but i missed out on a lot of the fappening. hahahhahah, wonder what m night thinks of his crappy movie being forever connected with a mass leak of nude pictures. Its a real fucking twist ( sorry for that one)

    • Thank you so much for making my dream a gif reality.

    • Tyree

      Dis fucking guy.

    • is this you???

  • CÖÄL RÖLL FRÖM THE TÖILET BÖWL

    this brothers, is how we cook our beef here in FORD COUNTRY