Hod Credit: courtesy the artist

Chicago’s Murder City Promotions and Temple of the Old Serpent have scored some massive metal energy for their Gospel of the Serpent III, a ritualistic multiband blowout. (Gospel of the Serpent II will take place August 25 in Hamtramck, Michigan, and next year’s fest has already been booked for July 2018, per the Facebook page.) From “Satantonio,” Texas, come headliners Hod (short for the Norse god Hodur), the fiercely rhythmic and riffing blast machine who dropped the mike straight through to the void on 2014’s Book of the Worm. In terms of locals, Carpathian Funeral return from their first Murder City fest appearance (at last year’s Death to False Metal), and Nucleus are fresh off Fragmented Self, a split release with Macabra that came out in May. Oklahoma’s Black Devotion, Indiana’s Ptahil, and Ohio’s Funeral of God round out a very solid lineup with consistent satanic principles.   v