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LIVE AFTER DEATH: Prog-death metallers Dischordia celebrate release of "Thanatopsis"

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OKLAHOMA CITY – When the words “death metal” are uttered, most common bystanders probably pictures spiked wristbands and corpse-paint, unintelligible vocals and a summer home in Norway.

Oklahoma City’s Dischordia, however, has managed to set themselves apart from the pack by displaying, according to critics, a lyrical maturity and an ability to go far beyond the typical three-chord riffage, both of which reach an apex on their newest release Thanatopsis.

“Basically, when we refer to ourselves as progressive death metal, it kind of forces us to push each other and stretch our own boundaries so that we don’t write the same music over and over again,” Josh Turner, bassist, said. “We don’t mind taking taking different angles and not discounting ideas that you might throw out if you were just a straight ahead death-metal band.”

As a three-piece—a rarity in death metal—Dischordia has garnered a “small but dedicated” fanbase over the past few years that appreciates the band’s intellectual leanings as much as their raucous live energy. With a name that is derived from a city in Stephen King’s Dark Tower novels, Thanatopsis has no problem wearing its literary influences on its sleeve.

“The word Thanatopsis comes from a poem and it means “meditation on death,” Turner said. “Because we’re a death metal band, it seemed like a good title for us; it also makes up the first three songs on the album, which are a trilogy, a “Thanatopsis Suite” comprised of “The River,” “The Road,” and “The Ruin.” It’s a trilogy that takes on different views within a storyline about seeing death in different ways. We tried to match a musical style with each view to kind of give ourselves an exercise in being creative in our music and lyrics.”

Fans will have a chance to see the band play tracks from the new album as well as hear older favorites Dec. 17 at Thunder Alley Grill & Sports Lounge, 2127 SW 74th St., for their record release party. The all-ages show is $6 at the door and other guests on the bill include Enfuneration, Horde Casket and Among the Missing.

“I’ve always loved the energy of metal and it really comes out in our shows,” Turner said. “I remember hearing it for the first time in eighth grade and just the raw energy of it and how intense it was, I just loved that about it. Especially nowadays, there’s so much variety in underground metal that as long you not doing the same thing as everyone else, you’ll never get bored; there’s always ways to combine things to make it more interesting and to have fun with the genre.”

And having fun with the genre the band definitely is: Thanatopsis’ early reviews have been overwhelmingly positive, with many people pointing out the use of instrumentation that’s not typical of death metal, such as the flute. But, critics aside, Saturday night, Turner said, is “for their fans and supporters.”

“We always put on a good show and we always get compliments on how we play live,” Turner added. “Especially for a three-piece band, people can’t believe how much noise and energy we make. We’re all nice dudes and we’ll have a beer with anybody and hangout and talk and all the other bands on the bill are also awesome, some guys who been in the Oklahoma City scene for a long time. It’s going to be a real good time for what we believe is a real good record.”

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Louis Fowler

Güicho. Gadfly. Chicano. Choctaw. Cristero. Freelancer. Leftist. Activist. Vilified. PKD....

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Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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