Best of 2021: Whitechapel’s Zach Householder picks his favorite music, movie of the year

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Revolver teamed up with Whitechapel for an exclusive splash vinyl variant of their new album, Close. It is limited to 500 copies – order yours before they’re gone!

2021 has been, without a doubt, one of the most memorable years in the history of modern music. The invisible elephant in the room was obviously COVID-19, which triggered the unprecedented year-long blackout on nearly every live show. Fortunately, this spring’s widespread immunization rollout proved effective enough that restrictions were lifted, and in the summer the groups were finally able to take to stages across the country.

While we’re not quite in the ‘post-COVID’ era yet, the sheer joy of experiencing the heightened sounds and singular energy live from gatherings large and small – from sweaty concerts at the Turnstile club and from loud Slipknot road shows to major festivals run by Metallica – has been beyond rejuvenation.

Plus, there have also been a bunch of killer albums released this year to keep us entertained between mosh pits. Old-school heavyweights Iron Maiden, Carcass and At the Gates brought the heat, stage directors Mastodon and Gojira upped the ante, Converge and Chelsea Wolfe unleashed a bombshell collaboration and a handful of pioneers in the making. – Spiritbox, Jinjer, Turnstile, Scowl, Portraital of Guilt and more – have taken heavy music to exciting new territories. (See RevolverThe 25 favorite albums of 2021 here.)

As we close the books on 2021, we’re catching up with some of our favorite artists to get their picks for the best of the best from last year. Below, Whitechapel guitarist Zach Householder shares his favorite shit: Mastodon killer hooks and NIN-channeled Australian metalcore to Tarantino-style thrillers and more.

Mastodon Video – Pain with an anchor [Official Audio]

Best Album: “Hushed and Grim” by Mastodon

Mastodon just gets better and better with each album. Their songwriting formulas are just intriguing and they know how to hook a hook. The production of this album was also excellent. Really enjoyable to listen to, just a rad album overall with killer hooks.

Video of Thornhill – Casanova [Official Music Video]

Best Song: “Casanova” by Thornhill

Dude, it’s just the perfect mix of modern and 90s and mid-90s influenced rock music, before that genre morphs into less than desirable music later in the decades to come. The singer [Jacob Charlton] gives me the vibes of Trent Reznor / Filter / Jane’s Addiction and I love it. I can’t wait to hear more from them. The production of this single is also excellent.

GUNPOWDER MILKSHAKE Video – Official Trailer

Best Film: Gunpowder Milkshake

Honestly, I don’t have a lot of time for TV and movies. I have a long list of movies and shows to catch up on, but I always feel like I’m wasting time when I sit and watch TV. I happened to catch a movie called Milkshakes with powder, although. I really enjoyed it. Had a stellar cast and a very Quentin Tarantino /Kill bill ambiance… and I love Tarantino movies.

Best book: Astrophysics for people in a hurry

I will listen to books on tape while driving, but these are mostly historical or science related non-fiction. I managed to go through Neil Degrasse Tyson Astrophysics for people in a hurry [2017]. I really like it. This gives a lot of information for a slowpoke like me.

Best musical moment

I went to see Gojira in my hometown last month. It was the first concert I attended since December 16, 2019. Although I have seen them several times at festivals, seeing them inside a hall is something truly amazing. This group is unstoppable live, and they know how to put on a show. They are definitely one of my top five favorite live metal bands of all time and a huge musical influence on me.

What excites you the most in 2022?

Hit the road again in February with Cannibal Corpse. Not only do I love this band, we haven’t toured since 2019. It’s been long overdue. Also delighted to possibly have a little more studio work or to be in the studio. I really hope to work with more groups on the engineering / production side. There are a lot of really brilliant engineers out there so I know how flooded this market is. However, I appreciate it very much and have realized how much of a smokescreen there is for a lot of “professionals”. So now I have even more confidence in my knowledge and my abilities. I will continue to market my small business called Titan Audio Project and make products for it. Other than that, I plan to release solo material in 2022… So I hope I have a full year ahead of me.


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