This edition of Top Shelf Tuesday takes a look at two sludge metal bands that delve into realms of stoner, hardcore punk, blues and funk metal. Before we dab into the sludge madness currently on display we will shine a light on two heavy influences, for if these bands didn’t exist we wouldn’t have some of the great bands we hear today.

(The) Melvins

Formed in 1983, Montesano, Washington, performing as a trio for the most part with lead vocalist and guitarist Buzz Osborne joining a year after. Drummer Dale Crover and Osbourne have been the only constant members since. The band have released a staggering 26 studio albums and 16 EPs to date with their first LP, Gluey Porch Treatments (1987) and most recent A Walk with Love & Death (2017)


“Queen” taken from Stoner Witch (1994)


Melvins were a big influence on grunge and sludge metal as a whole. Crover played drums on “Floyd the Barber”, “Paper Cuts” and “Downer” on Nirvana’s debut Bleach (1989), and on “Downer”, “Aero Zeppelin”, “Beeswax”, “Hairspray Queen and Mexican Seafood” off Incesticide (1992) Crover and Osbourne have recently formed Crystal Fairy with Le Butcherrettes songstress, Teri Gender Bender and At the Drive-In‘s Omar Rodríguez-López, with both of their bands touring our shores only recently.

Melvins will be touring down under bringing hardcore/pop-punk outfit Redd Kross along, with their longtime bassist Steven Shane McDonald the current bassist for Melvins.


“Jimmy’s Fantasy” taken from the Redd Kross album, Phaseshifter (1993)

http://Grab tickets to Melvins and Redd Kross here


“Honey Bucket” taken from Houdini (1993)



Clutch, residents of Frederick, Maryland, has kept the line-up of Neil Fallon (vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards), Tim Sult (lead guitar, backing vocals), Dan Maines (bass, backing vocals) and Jean-Paul Gaster (drums and percussion) since formations in 1991.


“A Shogun Named Marcus” taken from Transnational Speedway (1993)


Clutch has released eleven studio albums, with their debut LP, Transnational Speedway (1993) and most recent being Psychic Warfare (2015)


“The Soapmakers” taken from The Elephant Riders (1998)


Clutch fuse their own blend of stoner, blues, and hard rock influencing many bands of today. Fallon the busy man that he is also a member of The Company Band, The Bakerton Group, and Dunsmuir


“The Mob Goes Wild” taken from Blast Tyrant (2004)

Now that you have a feel of two of the major influences let’s roll on with two recent sludge/stoner bands of today.


Child Bite

Detroit, Michigan based noisemongers Child Bite, a recent signing to Phil Anselmo‘s Housecore Records deliver their own style of sludge metal showing influences from Melvins, Clutch, Dead Kennedy’s and the like.

With Shawn Knight behind the mic, Sean Clancy on the four string, riff-master Brandon Sczomak and Jeff Kraus behind the kit the band of brothers make for one tight musical ensemble.


“The Nab Munch Is On” taken from the EP, Monomania (2012)


Formed in 2005 originally signed to Joyful Noise Recordings and Forge Again Records.


“Abysmal Splatter” taken from the EP, Vision Crimes (2013)


The video for “Ancestral Ooze”, also a tribute to the cult horror film, Street Trash (1987), features a cameo from major influence King Buzzo of Melvins fame. The clip can be seen in all its glory below.

“Ancestral Ooze” taken from the EP, Strange Waste (2014)


Also making a cameo on “Mongoloid Obsession” another horror-filled clip, from that same EP, sees Phil Anselmo.

“Mongoloid Obsession” also taken from the EP, Strange Waste (2014)


On the most recent offering, the clip below see’s horror actor and icon Bill Moseley star in the short film and genius video for “Vermin Mentality”


“Vermin Mentality” taken from the LP, “Negative Noise” (2016)

Child Bite is definitely one band worth checking out if you haven’t already and let’s hope they make a trek down-under even if that’s in King Parrot‘s suitcases as they have been touring alongside the lads and Anselmo’s Superjoint in the States.


http://Get some Child Bite tunes via Bandcamp now!


Black Rheno


Now taking things homebound with our very own sludge, stoner three-piece from Sydney, Black Rheno.  Formed in 2015 with frontman Milla, guitarist Nano, and Dougy on the drums they are one group of down to earth chaps with some out of this world tunes to share among the metal troops.

The hilarious video for the first single features a cameo from King Parrot vocalist Matt Young Check it out below!


“No Time for Numbnuts” taken from the EP, Let’s Start A Cult (2016)


Black Rheno have been tearing up stages in support of their debut EP, recently killing it locking in the support slot on the Campaign for Musical Destruction tour, alongside grinders Napalm Death, Brujeria and Lock Up



Showing influences on a sleeve with a worthy cover of Clutch’s “Pure Rock Fury” on the recent compilation for Hardcore Hits Cancer, Black Rheno have struck gold!


“Pure Rock Fury” taken from HxC HxC Compilation Vol.2 (2016)


Good things are to come on the Black Rheno camp with waters tested at recent shows, with punters taking the bite to new material, with fisherman knowing they used the right bait.

One thing for sure is the amount of talent we have in our own backyard is world class and it’s bands such as Black Rheno as it is with many unsigned artists where exposure at these big events is crucial and well deserved!


Get some Black Rheno tunes via Bandcamp now!