An amalgamation of talent from Chicago’s underground music scene, Black Sites offer a fresh progressive metal sound that’s catching the ears of music critics and dive-bar concertgoers alike. Former Trials vocalist Mark Sugar is joined by his longtime collaborator Ryan Bruchert on guitar, José Salazar (Satan’s Hallow) on bass, and Garry Naples (Novembers Doom, Without Waves) on drums. Drawing on influences from Black Sabbath to Queensrÿche and Paradise Lost, Black Sites deliver a sound that’s been called “unapologetically modern (with) two feet firmly planted in the feel of yesteryear.” It’s prog that’s dynamic and unpretentious, exemplifying both the grit and brilliance of the Windy City.
Following the 2017 release of their debut album “In Monochrome” via Mascot Records, the band parted ways with their label. Black Sites now look forward to putting out their upcoming LP “Exile” this April.
“Exile” also presents Black Sites’ new rhythm section. The original lineup parted ways amicably due to logistical issues, which led to the addition of Naples and Salazar.
“Garry and I were already playing together in another project, and I thought his approach and work ethic would work well in this band,” says Sugar. “Then we randomly met José in the parking lot of our practice space, and within five minutes we were joking about “St. Anger” and quoting lines from Boogie Nights. We knew he’d fit in nicely.”
“Exile” features artwork by Adam Burke (Vektor, Eternal Champion)and was mixed by Sanford Parker, who is known for his work with underground luminaries Voivod and Eyehategod. Hoove Child Records will release “Exile” on CD, with digital and vinyl formats available directly through the band. The album’s driving riffage, elegant harmonies, and thoughtful lyrics are sure to launch Black Sites far beyond their Chicago home.
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Read our review here.