Even though it's only about two hours away, Tucson and the musical happenings within it can seem distant and obscure to a Phoenix resident like myself.
For instance, I only found out about Tucson metal act Godhunter today -- despite the fact that it appears that they have been consistently issuing records since at least 2011.
Godhunter sounds like..."you took a hit of some Tucson dirt weed and feel loose enough to throw up the horns and headbang with your metal brothers and sisters."
Godhunter plays the kind of metal I have a soft spot for, the sludgy and sleazy kind with excessively repetitive heavy riffs and vocalists growling about smoking weed and not caring about anything.
There's a kind of energy here that a lot of similar bands don't have. Less of the "I ate one too many brownies and now I feel like I am sinking into the couch" kind of vibe you get when you listen to Electric Wizard or something, but more like you took a hit of some Tucson dirt weed and feel loose enough to throw up the horns and headbang with your metal brothers and sisters.
You get this kind of vibe from the band's recently released video for "Wolves of the North" from the band's latest record, Wolves, which features the band and a bunch of Tucson metalheads getting crazy and overindulgent at a practice space show and later some dive bar. There's this sort of endearing small town narrative to the video that I like. I like to imagine that metal is the escape that a lot of these jean-jacketed misfits have from the banality of living in Tucson.
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For Godhunter, metal is something that will literally help them escape Tucson for a bit: The band has planned tour dates for the next few months covering the Southwestern part of the United States, including shows at South by Southwest, as well as some dates in Louisiana (one of the sludgiest states in the Union, naturally).
You can catch them in the Phoenix metro area when they tear through on Friday, February 8, at Rocky Point Cantina in Tempe.