The five best metal shows in Denver this month
3. IMPENDING DOOM @ MARQUIS THEATER | WEDS, 1/9/13
Although Impending Doom is a Christian death-metal band -- normally a contradiction in terms -- the act isn't some cartoonish, mutant purveyor of death grind. Singer Brook Reeves sounds like he's listened to more than his fair share of '90s-era Napalm Death, as the music he and his bandmates produce is similarly brutal and dynamically precise. These guys also do the nearly impossible with genuinely clever turns of phrase, coining terms like "Repentagram" and "Gorship." Both words clearly reveal a playful sense of humor that extremists such as James Dobson and Pat Robertson do not possess. Nevertheless, the music is very serious, and the band's latest record, Baptized in Filth, is its darkest offering yet.
2. WHITECHAPEL @ SUMMIT MUSIC HALL | SUN, 1/27/13
Tennessee's Whitechapel crafts its malevolent deathcore with three guitarists. The down-tuned doom of this act is marked by finger-widdling flurries and false harmonic squeals, Phil Bozeman's disturbingly possessed post-Pantera vocals and a rhythm section that attacks with a cornered, Gaddafi-esque cruelty. Albums like A New Era of Corruption is both a triumph of actual songs over pure riffs and, in the wake of the tragic death of Bozeman's mother, a monument to pessimism ("The Darkest Day of Man" and "Single File to Dehumanization"). Technically excellent yet utterly heartfelt, Whitechapel is a soundtrack for cynical teens moving out of their parents' shadow and into the world -- and that's no small achievement.