I've been a HUGE fan of Alkaline Trio since I first sat down and listened to 2001's From Here To Infirmary. From there, I became equally addicted to their previous releases, Maybe I'll Catch Fire, Goddamnit and the self-titled collection of out of print EPs, 7"s and one-offs. The last album I really liked a lot was 2003's Good Mourning though. The two albums released since then, Crimson and Agony & Irony, are both good, but the angst and rawness that was a huge part of the appeal of their earlier material is gone (and had started to disappear rapidly on Good Mourning). The band has now started their own imprint and signed with legendary punk label Epitaph to release their latest album This Addiction, but that doesn't necessarily mean anything as Epitaph isn't just all about Pennywise, NOFX and Bad Religion anymore and has their fair share of emo bands on their roster with pretty haircuts belting out completely generic material. But like I said, I haven't disliked anything Alkaline Trio has put out, I just happen to like the earlier material better, so this album in my mind is certainly worth getting and while I know it won't be a return to the sound of Maybe I'll Catch Fire or Goddamnit, I'm at least hoping I'll hear strains of Good Mourning or hopefully From Here To Infirmary.
I was never the hugest Sleep fan (didn't love 'em, didn't hate 'em), but have found former singer/guitarist Matt Pike's work in High On Fire to be pretty solid. They aren't the type of band I leave on my iPod so that I can hear them any time I want or have them randomly pop up on shuffle...I have to specifically be in the mood for them, but when I am, their albums rip. They've gotten progressively better with each release and their last one Death Is This Communion was their best so far. Logic would dictate that they will continue to outdo themselves on their latest release Snakes For The Divine and from what I'm told by people who have already heard the album, that is certainly the case.
Mutiny Within is a new Roadrunner Records signing that is more in line with their current radio friendly bands then their classic bands of yesteryear, but they still have a fairly metallic edge (think Slipknot and Stone Sour more than Nickelback as these guys obviously own and enjoy a couple melodic death metal records). I've heard a couple tracks from their self-titled debut and they are intriguing. The singer definitely has a great voice and since it is on Roadrunner, it is worth checking out.