Gang Green – We’ll Give It To You

We’ll Give It To You Box Set Cover Art

Gang Green – We’ll Give It To You
Cherry Red Records
Release date: 13/01/2023
Running time: 02:49:00
Review by: Alun Jones
8.5/10

As a teenaged skateboarder in the late 80’s, Boston hardcore legends Gang Green were definitely on my playlist. They appeared on a Thrasher Skate Rock tape, what more do you need to know?! Merging Hardcore Punk with a more metallic edge, Gang Green added a technicality and Rock’n’roll, beer drinking party vibe to their unique take on Crossover / Thrash. It was mostly fun, though sometimes dumb, times – with a fast and crazy energy. Eventually finding a home on Roadrunner records in 1987, the albums Gang Green recorded for that label are collected here by Cherry Red Records.

Working through the discs chronologically, we’ll start with the first Roadrunner release, “You Got It”. Featuring what is possibly the worst album cover all time – the band in a sewer? Why is (vocalist / guitarist) Chris Doherty jumping through a fence? And where are his legs?! This atrocious shot always bothered me, so I’m delighted I get to bitch about it now (though it only appears a small pic!). Music wise, “You Got It” is chock full of belters: the storming Thrash of ‘We’ll Give it to You’ setting out Gang Green’s goods; ferocious Hardcore with ‘LDSB’ and ‘Born to Rock’. There’s even a surprise social conscience (and mellow intro) on ‘Another Bomb’. Plus, bonus track ‘Skate to Hell’ is worth the price of admission alone.

If Roadrunner were relieved that they’d done the right thing signing this bunch of unruly punks after that first record, ‘Older… Budweiser’ went even better. Armed this time with a great cover / title (thankfully), Gang Green delivered more of the same, but amped up even further. ‘Church of Fun’ bolts out of the gates; ‘Just One Bullet’ and ‘We Can Go’ show exactly how to meld Hardcore and Thrash into a furious, fun time. The Rock’n’roll edge that began on the previous record becomes more prevalent, adding a distinct flavour to the band’s sound (see ‘Tear Down the Walls’). The humour misfires on ‘Bedroom of Doom’, but the does-what-it-says-on the-tin ‘Ballad’ is a nice attempt to branch out musically before closing time.

On disc three, we have the live album “Can’t LIVE Without It”, recorded at the Marquee Club in London in 1990. Most of the live tracks appear already on this compilation, but it’s a solid recording of an energetic, relentless show. There are a bunch of non-Roadrunner tracks which add value for money; plus, the inclusion of the “I81B4U” EP and ‘Living Loving Maid’ single, which is great news for obsessive nerds like me. 

Finally, the compilation album “King of Bands” rounds out the collection. If you’ve not had enough of hearing some of these songs twice already, prepare to experience some of them yet again with this “greatest hits” set. Although, there are two new tracks and three from Gang Greens first album on Taang! Records for VFM. The two tracks – ‘Thunder’ and ‘Rub It In Your Face’ are OK, but not up to the standard of older material. Still, this last disc seals the lid on this barrel of good times very nicely.

The history of Gang Green proves to be a fascinating tale. Predating Jackass by some years, the party hard doctrine of the band remains resolutely in place. Some of the lyrics are juvenile at best, out right sexist at worst (‘Cum In You’, oh dear); but if you can forgive that, the attitude and fun remains infectious. Yes, it’s all about partying and beer, but the music is still great. Not as Metal as COC, or as Punk as Circle Jerks, Gang Green added a rockin’ flare to their brand of crossover and brought the party home. 

A great compilation featuring tons of interviews, info and photos, “We’ll Give It To You” is a comprehensive guide to beer-soaked thrash punk. It’s time to get out on your skateboard, rock out to Gang Green, and celebrate with a few beers. Afterward, that is. Ever Metal wants you to take care: don’t drink & skate.

TRACKLISTING:

DISC ONE – You Got It
01. Haunted House
02. We’ll Give It To You
03. Sheet Rock
04. Ballerina Massacre
05. Born To Rock
06. Another Bomb
07. L.D.S.B
08. Whoever Said
09. Party With the Devil
10. Somethings
11. The Climb
12. Sick, Sex, Six
13. Skate To Hell* (bonus track)

DISC TWO – Older… Budweiser
01. Church of Fun
02. Just One Bullet
03. We Can Go
04. Tear Down The Walls
05. Flight 911
06. Bedroom Of Doom
07. Casio Jungle
08. Why Should You
09. I’m Still Young
10. Ballad

DISC THREE – Can’t LIVE Without It
01. Let’s Drink Some Beer (live)
02. Bartender (live)
03. Lost Chapter (live)
04. We’ll Give It To You (live)
05. We Can Go (live)
06. Have Fun (live)
07. Last Chance (live)
08. Just One Bullet (live)
09. Born To Rock (live)
10. Rabies (live)
11. Voices Carry (live)
12. Sold Out (live)
13. Bedroom of Doom (live)
14. Bomb (live)
15. Alcohol (live)
16. Bartender *
17. Lost Chapter *
18. Rent *
19. Put Her On Top *
20. Cum In U *
21. Living Loving Maid **

DISC FOUR – King of Bands
01. Thunder
02. Alcohol
03. We’ll Give It To You
04. Bartender
05. Ballad
06. Fuck In A
07. Just One Bullet
08. Another Wasted Night
09. Bomb
10. Put Her On Top
11. Church of Fun
12. Rub It In Your Face

LINE-UP:
Chris Doherty – Vocals, Guitar
Fritz Erickson – Guitar
Joe Gittleman – Bass (You Got It / Older… Budweiser / King of Bands)
Josh Pappe – Bass (Can’t LIVE Without It)
Brian Betzger – Drums
Chuck Stilphen – guitar (King of Bands)
Mike Lucantonio – guitar (King of Bands)
Glen Stilphen – bass (King of Bands)
Kevin Brooks – bass (King of Bands)

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Alun Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s With Heathen Hearts

Heathen Hearts logo

EMQ’s With Heathen Hearts

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Finnish Hardcore band, Heathen Hearts. huge thanks to their Bassist, Juhana, for taking part. 

What is your name, what do you play and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Hi! I’m Juhana, bassist from the band called Heathen Hearts

We have all played in different bands since our teens. The foundation for this band was built in 2020, when our second guitarist Lauri started asking people to play a Turbonegro tribute show at a local Turbojugend fan club party. Obviously because of Covid that didn’t happen so at some point our drummer Ville suggested that maybe we should try out some kind of hybrid of Metal and Hardcore. And here we are.

How did you come up with your band name?

Our vocalist Antti suggested the name and we all supported the idea 100%! The name resonates with the freedom of making your own choices and being who you are. Walking your own path. Of course the name ”Heathen” also refers to a person who doesn’t share the beliefs of institutional and dogmatic religions such as Christianity. You should be able to be who you are and live your life as you see fit and others should respect that freedom. 

What Country / Region are you from and what is the Metal / Rock scene like there?

We come from a city called Kotka, (which means Eagle), on the south-eastern coast of Finland. The metal and rock scene has always been quite active here and we are home of such bands as Omnium Gatherum and Marianas Rest for example. 

What is your latest release?

We released our S/T debut EP in May 2022 accompanied with two music videos from the songs ”Ichor” and ”World of Ash”. 

Q. Who have been your greatest influences?

I think for us as a band we draw influences from Hardcore bands like Terror, Comeback Kid and Get The Shot. But in our music, there are a lot of influences from Melodic Death Metal and even Black Metal bands. 

What first got you into music?

When I was a kid we listened to a lot of music in our home. So I guess I have my parents to thank for that. I think I also have wanted to make music since I was a kid in the 80’s and saw all these cool rock and metal bands with their music videos. I formed my first band in 1996 and never stopped for a moment. 

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Hard question since there are so many good bands and artists out there these days. But I think it would be kind of cool to collaborate with someone out of our genre like Einar Selvik from Wardruna. Other guys from our band would probably suggest Dua Lipa… 🙂 But if I’d have to choose from metal/hardcore scene then maybe it would be cool to open for a band like Get The Shot. 

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

There are several. Midgardsblot Metal festival in Norway because the surroundings and the feeling are just amazing, and it’s home for all the Heathens of the world. 🙂 Of course, I have to mention Wacken in Germany and Tuska Metal festival in Helsinki, Finland. Last but not least we have an awesome Metal festival called Dark River festival here in our hometown. Looking forward to playing there some day as well. There are probably a lot of cool festivals out there that I am not aware of but looking forward to playing as many as possible in the future! 

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

I have to say that I have not received any gifts yet… 

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Thank you for your support and awesome feedback you have given us so far! Continue supporting live music by going to concerts. Support your favourite up and coming bands. You can make all the difference with your support. Share music that you like to your friends, buy merchandise and spread the word for example in social media. Bands and artists are nothing without your support. 

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Aleksi Laiho from Children Of Bodom / Bodom After Midnight or Peter Steele from Type O Negative.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

I enjoy all aspects of being in a band and doing music. The creative phase of making and arranging new songs. Live shows, everything. I have never grown tired of it. I think I don’t hate anything about it. I genuinely like it all. 

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Easier access to playing live shows for up and coming bands.

Maybe also big radio stations could play more new music instead of hanging on to the playlists with mostly the same songs rotating over and over… Nothing wrong with the classics but maybe it could be good to sometimes make more room for new artists… Might be a good idea to bring speciality shows back that are dedicated to certain genres. And I’m talking about mainstream media here… 

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Oh, man this is hard… I guess I’d have to say ”October Rust” by Type O Negative. 

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

There is a certain feel for Vinyl and CD’s because you get the physical product and you can see the cover art etc. But of course, streaming platforms and downloads are easier and the thing today. 

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

I guess there are two gig that come to mind. The first gig we played. Full house and circle pits going on. People from 2 or 3 hours drive away came to see us. For a new band like us it was insane! The other would be the gig last summer when we participated in a national metal band competition and finished second out of 160 bands. We played in the final show in Helsinki and it was a really good gig! 

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

I also have a day job, so I’m doing that. But art wise probably some other form of art. Video production maybe or writing.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

A bit boring answer but my closest friends and my girlfriend.

Although as a fan of history it would be nice to have a dinner party with some of the most famous historical figures if that would be possible. 

What’s next for the band?

We are currently in the process of recording new material for our next release. It should be out at some point early 2023. We are also booking live shows in Finland for next year at the moment.

What Social Media / Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Here you can find all of our social media sites, music, videos and merchandise: https://linktr.ee/heathenheartshc

Time for a very British question now. As an alternative to the humble sandwich, is the correct name for a round piece of bread common in the UK either a Bap, a Barm (or Barm Cake), a Batch, a Bun a Cob, a Muffin, a Roll or a Tea Cake?

My brother-in-law is from the UK so I should have some kind of clue… I’d say all the above except a muffin. 

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thanks so much for having us and keep doing the good work that you do! 

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with Total Recall

Total Recall Logo

EMQ’s with Total Recall

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Italian Hardcore/ Metalcore band, Total Recall. Huge thanks to them for taking part. 

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

We are Total Recall. Andrea “Ronda” Rondanini (Vocals), Stefano “Stef” Anderloni (Guitars), Daniele “Danny” Calleri (Drums), Luca “Pigo” De Simone (Bass), Stefano “Bleed” Bigoni (Guitars). 

Total Recall was born in 2019. The founding members Luca (Pigo) (K-Aagain, Samaritan, Embrace Destruction), Stef (K-Again, Traces of You, Die Trying) and Danny (Embrace Destruction) were already veterans in the Hardcore / Metalcore scene and decided to start to write music together after their common friend and brother Massy passed away after a long fight with his disease. Massy toured with Pigo and Stef for more than 20 years and he wanted the 2 old friends to come back together in a band as they played in different bands for many years. 

Stef and Pigo recruited the drummer Danny who played in Embrace Destruction (the last band of Pigo and Massy) and decided to form a band with members who played or toured with Massy. After Pigo decided not be a singer anymore and to take Massy’s bass guitar to keep his legacy alive, with Stef at guitars and Danny at the drums, the line-up started to write music without following any particular influence, with the only purpose to write songs that could reflect the style of music they played with Massy throughout the last 20 plus years. After a few months Andy was added as singer. Andy toured with Massy when he was in Rise Above Dead and his friendship with him went back some 15 plus years, and Stefano (Bleed) as guitarist who also was in Rise Above Dead.

How did you come up with your band name?

After the completion of the line up the band was struggling to find a name that was somehow related to Massy’s memory. One night during the song-writing of a song in the studio we took a break and we had a drink with Massy’s sister. We were just going through some memories and she said that the first ever movie she saw was Total Recall and she saw it with her brother who loved it. We found this story fascinating and the sound of the name was really appealing, on top of that we all love 80’s movies and “The Governator” movies in particular.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We are now all based in Milano, IT after some of us relocated back from Holland and UK. The Heavy Hardcore / Metalcore scene is really struggling to even call itself a scene to be honest. There isn’t a specific scene really. The bands are trying to play their way outside of the city and actually outside of the country. Including ourselves.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

We released our first Full Length Always Together (https://open.spotify.com/album/3ueIOuLueAszSENTqjJE8s ) in July 2021 via the Australian 1054 Records. The album is the follow up to our first Digital EP Wooden Scars (January 2020) and it was preceded by 3 singles videoclip. Poison Flow (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xumKtnl3Wc), Seas of Illusion (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HZ_6VWUOpkQ) and Never Again (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3E23BPuxZ-c).

Who have been your greatest influences?

Music is a crucial part of our life since we were kids so we had several bands who really influenced us throughout the years and most of all the ages. Even now that we are in our late 40’s we still have bands that we consider as influential. This is also a watershed to distinguish what we consider true from the millions of good albums that are only another product on the digital shelf. Also we do not live in the past, we are always on the lookout for new music and new bands even though we are loyal to the great bands of the past.

What first got you into music?

(Luca – Bass Guitar) I started to listen to music when I was just a kid, some tunes were transmitting me emotions and I was fascinated by it. The more I grew up the more I checked videoclips and live concert videos, and I noticed that those emotions could be transmitted by the music not only through a vinyl or a cassette but also live. That’s when I decided to try to play an instrument and the rest is history. 

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Once again… there would be soooo many bands we would love to collaborate with. If we do not mention the big ones (we all come from Metal and Hardcore plus subgenres so you can imagine which bands we are talking about) there would be lots of smaller or underrated bands we would love to collaborate with, but we are not going to mention names as it could be somehow misunderstood as preference for a particular band or genre. We can spoil however that our next release will contain more than one feature.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

We would choose a festival that for us was an absolute milestone, the Ozzfest. We think it was one of the greatest festivals ever made, always with great line ups and fantastic stages and atmosphere.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

We are on the map for 3 years only as TR, 2 of which were heavily influenced by the pandemic. This gave us really little room for touring (we are catching up in late 2022 and 2023) and to create a fanbase in general. As single members we would have more than one story to tell but here we are talking about Total Recall as a unit, so we will stick to that.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

We do not really want to use the term fans, but more people who like and support what we do. We think that regardless the level of notoriety you will reach with your band you always have to remember that you write music to have someone to be able to listen to it. When your form of art is appreciated, and you receive support and feedback from complete strangers who were somehow touched by a song or a lyric you wrote it’s the biggest accomplishment that you can aspire to.

Sometimes this is taken for granted… well… it should not. Ever. 

Our message for them would be to maintain their authenticity and to keep supporting hard working bands who prefer the old school way of playing shows for real instead of showing off on the social media. We prefer to hire a tour manager than a make-up artist.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

There would be sooo many. Too many went too soon. About talents who left too soon for sure it would be great to take back Cliff Burton and Dimebag Darrel among others.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

The best thing of being a musician is to have the opportunity to go on tour. With TR we are just started but some of us toured for about 25 years. The best thing of touring is to have the occasion to experience other cultures and habits, it makes you a stronger and a better person. The worst we would not mention, if you like this music you need to love to tour. So yes… we do not hate anything about being musicians.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

We would enforce the infrastructure. At the moment the industry is more focused on the image then on the product. They focus on numbers (views, streams and so on) not on actual substance.

Back in the days you were earning your fans one at the time trying to go on stage as much as you could and everywhere you could, you could book non-mainstream full tours and so on. This was also a good way to distinguish true bands from figurines, only if you had something more than others you were able to succeed. But this was possible cause there where way more venues doing live music, music magazines, radios and even underground TV channels and actually people were used to go to shows, not to pay tickets to see a live streaming concert from home.

Back in the days Guitar Hero was a videogame you know……

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

That’s really too difficult to answer. We listen to so much music for so many years that is impossible to pick an all-time favourite album. There are so many albums that we think were absolute milestones in heavy music history and we hope there will be even more in the future.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CDs or Downloads?

Vinyl. Also quality wise.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

As we previously said we are active for 3 years only, of which 2 of them were passed in and out of lockdowns, this gave us really little room to have memorable performances. If we review the shows we played from late 2021 till now the best performance was in France during the Perseverance and Alliance Tour in May 2022.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Some of us would enjoy more the pub for sure, some would watch Horror or 80’s movies way more probably starting a podcast or whatever, some would play Basketball and try to become a coach, some would ride a bike, all of us would enjoy to spend as much time as possible with families and friends. Simple stuff.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Ourselves. As long as it is a BBQ.

What’s next for the band?

We are completing the live effort to support the release of our first Full Length Always Together (https://open.spotify.com/artist/4CEQfQQ6l9oOaEJpuaa3co) out pretty much everywhere via the Australian 1054 Records. After a series of club shows in Italy and a package Tour in France we will do a short tour in UK this early November (3-4-5) with No Second Chance and we will embark in small European Run in Italy, Switzerland,Germany, Holland and Belgium in early December (2-3-7-8-9-10). In the meanwhile since a couple of months we are recording some pre-productions.

The new songs are more dark and heavy than the previous ones but at the same time they keep the same attitude. It’s a natural evolution of the 5 of us now working together for 3 years. These new songs are reflecting our common influences in a more natural way. According to what our feelings will be about the pre-prods we will decide if we will hit the studio for a Full Length or for an EP, but for sure in early 2023 we will release new music.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

If you want just to hang out and quickly see where to browse feel free to go to our Linktree page (https://linktr.ee/totalrecallhc). You can always use our official web page as a hub as well (https://www.totalrecallhc.com). You can find us on Facebook here (https://www.facebook.com/TotalRecallHardcore/) as well as for Instagram over here (https://www.instagram.com/total_recallhc/). If you want to check out our merch feel free to visit our Bandcamp page here (https://totalrecallhc1.bandcamp.com/) and don’t forget to go check out our video content on TOTAL RECALL TV here (www.youtube.com/channel/UCgVL02wd44dzTDKQdAzDGzA?view_as=subscriber). If you want to listen to all our releases feel free to visit us on Spotify here (https://open.spotify.com/artist/4CEQfQQ6l9oOaEJpuaa3co/)

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

They are depressed cookies. Because they wanted to become cakes, but they did not make it.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you so much for the opportunity it was a pleasure to chat with you and remember: When the seagulls follow the fishing boat, it is because they think the sardines will be thrown overboard.

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Desenser – Aurora Equitum EP

Aurora Equitum EP Cover Art

Desenser – Aurora Equitum EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 19/08/22
Running Time: 24:07
Review by Simon Black
9/10

Sometimes bands can be their own worst enemies. There’s an endemic attitude of “build it and they will come” amongst so many musicians –  particularly those just getting going, which assumes that if they’ve got as far as writing, recording and releasing some music, that this will magically translate into instant success. The reality is that a decent product is only a fraction of what’s needed to even start to get anywhere, and many bands flail at these obstacles helplessly like a squid attempting the one hundred metre hurdles on dry land… 

I always talk about success in the music business as being a magic triangle that has to come together each time a band wants to move up a level – where the right quality product, delivered with the right attitude and persistence and (the one you cannot control) a lot of luck. Lose out on one of these and you stay or fold… Desenser are getting a lot right however…

The first I had heard of them was just prior to their lunchtime slot on the New Blood Stage at Bloodstock. At this point in the weekend, the hangover had been kicked down the slightly longer but badly scorched grass for two days, and most of my camp were cowering under a gazebo by our tents hoping that today was not going to prove to be as blisteringly hot as the last two days had been – heat so intense that just standing in the field all day to see who you got was off the radar and we found ourselves only venturing out for the shortlist of acts that could not be missed. 

Sadly it was hotter than hell that day…

…Into our camp, and full of enthusiasm like it wasn’t torrid enough for your average demon to consider emigrating to one of the poles, comes Defenser front man Tyler Shield. Now Mr Shield clearly understands the point I made in my opening words, because despite having more than one CD available to the market, and despite managing to succeed at the Metal To The Masses and grab a slot at Bloodstock, he has realised that a lot more was going to be needed to get people in to see the band in these (or indeed any) conditions. He’s right, because far too often I’ve seen bands hit that stage like they were on top of the world, never to be heard of again. 

So here he was, telling us that he was playing and trying to drum up support. For that reason alone, we all made it into the New Blood Stage, because that’s the attitude and energy that gets you moving in this day and age, when a label is largely redundant unless you have already made it several levels up. It’s a launchpad, and it needs to be treated as such – Desenser get this. Actually, they were surprisingly good live and that energy came through on stage as well, despite the fact that everyone was probably in serious danger of skidding in their own sweat pools on stage, such was the boundless energy these lads, and Tyler in particular, displayed. 

Tyler was also kind enough to hand me a physical copy of their latest opus, which is why you are now reading this. One thing that grabs you immediately for such a young band, one for who even the humble compact disk might seem an archaic format, is quite how much thought, care and attention has gone into the presentation of the disk (and the same for their 2020 self-titled debut EP as it happens). If a self-produced band just off the staring blocks do release a physical CD copy without label support in those crucial early EP days, then you don’t expect it to come in a lavishly produced digipak, complete with separate booklet and lyrics sheets for each song, and with some truly high-quality artwork to boot. This is a 5-track (+ intro) EP remember, not an album – so a considerable outlay for the band. But then if you want people to buy your wares, you need to make them attractive, and they succeed admirably here.

Then there’s the music. 

Take a little bit of Punk, a dollop of Hardcore, add a Modern Metal tinge and an almost Progressive twist to the instrumentals and you have a combo that would peak my attention anyway, even if they hadn’t got such a good grasp of viral marketing that morning. From the opening bars of the intro ‘Behold, A Pale Horse’, it is clear that there’s a level of musicianship and depth at play here beyond the normal “rip the world a new asshole for as long as we can” that bands on the starting blocks usually opt for. What you don’t get is complex bass work like Daniel Law delivers, which fluidly intertwines with some subtle and restrained synth lines from Daniel Hudson, and some really, really clever drum work from the final part of the jigsaw Daniel Law. Yup, this technically rich, fat sounding and complex piece of work is the work of three lads splattered across the midlands and North West, despite sounding like they might be a five piece. And that’s just the Intro…

When they do turn on the punch, it’s not held back. With lively, energetic and well-written songs that hold the attention that play and juggle the influences whilst sounding unique and individual, which is what you want in this business because let’s face it, originality wins this game. ’White Face’ feels the most obviously Metal of the tracks, and if the music had stayed at this pitch and tone I would probably have been content, but these lads don’t stay still. 

If I had to pick a favourite, I would go for ‘Broken Crown’, because it showcases their variety, as well as the range of front man Shield, who can Hardcore roar, scale the clean note highs effortlessly, and even croon on occasion. Sounds odd? It is, but it works. ‘Passing, Fade Away’ is interesting too, with its haunting opening bars and clean vocal melody lines, layering in the instruments to a rapid crescendo, this is probably the most technically tight of the tracks on this EP. It’s also got the kind of production values in the studio that you really don’t expect from a band at this stage in their career, and the band have managed to produce a remarkably well-made video for the track to boot (see below).

“Dawn of the Knights” is what their Latin title translates to, and it couldn’t be more apt for these lads. Two of the three corners are there, fingers crossed for that all important luck…

‘Passing, Fade Away’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Behold, A Pale Horse
02. White Face
03. Broken Crown
04. Torn Apart
05. Passing, Fade Away
06. All That Remains

LINE-UP:
Tyler Shield – Vocals
Daniel Hudson – Guitars / Synth
Daniel Law – Bass
Luke Smith – Guest vocals on ‘Broken Crown’

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Yeah, Sick! – Set To Devour Us All

Set To Devour Us All Album Cover Art

Yeah, Sick! – Set To Devour Us All
Self-Released
Release Date: 26/06/2022
Running Time: 35:00
Review by Rory Bentley 
7/10

I’m not sure why I keep getting so many comedic bands to review, probably some kind of karmic justice for being such a miserable prick and being mean to our Rob Sutton (the hyperactive little bugger deserves it for his crimes – Dark Juan) for doing a humorous band he enjoys rather than a Prog band that nobody cares about like me. But either way here stands before me a band with comedy song titles and a band name that screams ‘we’re not taking ourselves too seriously’. Fortunately Aussie duo Yeah, Sick! Have a pretty unique take on Punk/Hardcore/Metal, based entirely on bass and drums and there are more hits than misses with the more humorous songs.

‘Tinfoil Wizard’ is an amusing ode to that twat you know that’s watched a few YouTube videos and now thinks they’re qualified to disregard the rules of science and nature, ending with a rousing gang vocals of ‘NOTHING BUT A TIN FOIL FREAK!’ The bass and drums lock into a crossover Trash groove and a Nu-Metal bounce which sounds surprisingly substantial thanks to a boat load of distortion and the fact that the smooth transitions between sections is much clearer thanks to their stripped-down approach.

Versatility is incredibly important when the bass is the only melodic instrument at the band’s disposal, and the Grindcore approach of ‘Spill Your Guts’ into the D-Beat attack of ‘Serve It Cold’ is just one of many examples where YS draw from a wide pool of influences to keep things interesting. Despite the often light-hearted lyrics the musicianship and composition here is no joke.

We even get a little taste of Doom in ‘Machine Man’ with some crushing riffs and monotone melodic singing adding more flavour to the mix. The song, like most of them on here, eventually gets tired of sitting on its hands and goes mental for the latter part, but still it shows the band are capable of restraint even for a little while.

Not everything hit the mark for me on “Set to Devour us All”. Although it’s an effective tool for creating hooks, shouting the song title for every other outro does lose its impact after a while and feels a bit route one. I also found ‘The Little Book of Calm’ a tad tedious with its repeated switching between a soothing voice reading zen quotes into chaotic Metal. It’s a joke that wears thin very quickly into the song’s three minute runtime and if they absolutely had to put this little knee-slapped on the record, it would have been better served at half the length.

Any ill will my curmudgeonly brain has towards the more on the nose comedic misfires of the album  is largely washed away by final track ‘The Trickster’ which is just a straight up banger. Stripped of the comedic aspects, it is a lengthier song that begins with a melodic intro higher up the neck of the bass before essentially turning into an Earth Crisis song. It’s a bit of a jarring transition from the rest of the album but I’m very glad it’s on here.

The key thing that sells the album is the overarching feeling that it’s just two mates having fun making a racket. At it’s best it recalls the cut and thrust of noisy Brit rockers Winnebago Deal (ask your older friends, kids) and at its worst it’s just a few gimmicks that don’t land with a grumpy prick in his late thirties. Overall this is a fun listen and contains enough musical chops and tongue in cheek vibes to kick back and enjoy with a cold beverage and your brain on ice.

‘Living Hamburger’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Tin Foil Freak
02. Spill Your Guts
03. Serve It Cold
04. Machine Man
05. John Wick’s Dog
06. Living Hamburger 
07. The Little Book of Calm
08. Vegan Butcher
09. The Trickster

LINE-UP:
Liam (Frosty) Frost-Camilleri – Bass/Vocals
Benito Martino – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rory Bentley and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Made of Teeth – Sociopathogen

Sociopathogen Album Cover Art

Made of Teeth – Sociopathogen
APF Records
Release Date: 24/06/22
Running Time: 30:00
Review by Paul Hutchings
9/10

Holy shit!  THE album to strip wallpaper has arrived. Literally. Welsh trio Made of Teeth roll back into town to take all the spoils with this filthy combination of Hardcore and Metal all rolled up in one nasty, noisy cacophony that crushes from start to finish. 

For those unaware, Made of Teeth comprise members or ex- members of Lacertilia, Spider Kitten and Taint. Formed in 2017, which seems aeons ago, the band provide a formidable force both live and in the studio.

“Scoiopathogen” sees Made of Teeth in imperious form. There are riffs for days. And days. It’s heaviness on a par with a herd of elephants. The compositions are gnarly, ugly, and totally compelling. The driving power is relentless, a crushing feeling that is overwhelming to the point where resistance is ultimately futile. 

Whether it is the punishing sludge of opening track ‘Four’ or the suffocating feel of ‘Never Heard of Them,’ this is an album that simply bristles with energy and ferocity. The songs are short, fast, and furious, and all guaranteed to get the head nodding along in time with the aural onslaught that Made of Teeth unleash.

There are Sludgy passages, Hardcore elements and even some dirty Grind in the shape of ‘What’s the Time’. Basically, this is an album that transcends genres. The Mastodon-esque assault on ‘Four’ is the start of thirty minutes of high tempo, bludgeoning Metal.  You can’t help but nod along to ‘Strutter Bubble’ which gallops at speed, thick riffs and shouting vocals adding to the overall messages contained within their music. 

“Sociopathogen” is unrelenting in its savagery and technical know how. There is the crushing slowness of ‘Low on Water’ with its sudden increase into a Punk-fused vibe and the horror driven ‘J.T.W’ which is musical brutality. The vocals range, all guttural, snarly and angry, whilst the guitar work is probably one of my favourite parts of the album. 

By the time you get to the finale of ‘Pearly Whites’ there can be no denying what you’ve experienced. Hard, fast and with an edge that Is both reliable and yet completely unpredictable. It’s a musical oxymoron but one that reaps the benefits.  If you worship at the Lord of the Riff, then Made of Teeth’s new release should be one for you to check out.

‘What’s The Time’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Four
02. Three4a1er
03. Stutter Bubble
04. Low on Water
05. J.T.W.
06. Small Operation
07. Pick a Pocket
08. Shotgun Steve
09. Never Heard of Them
10. What’s the Time
11. Pearly Whites

LINE-UP:
Steve-O Jones – Drums And Vocals
Tom Cole – Bass And Vocals
Chris West – Guitar And Vocals

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Hutchings and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Straight Opposition – Path of Separation

Straight Opposition – Path of Separation
Time To Kill Records
Release Date: 21/03/2022
Running Time: 30:00
Review by Rory Bentley 
7.5/10

If I had a penny for every time a press release says that a band has produced their most diverse album to date that includes all their influences, I probably wouldn’t be typing this review in secret at my crappy day job. Inevitably, 9 times out of 10 I put the record on and roll my eyes that what they mean is that they’ve put some samples in a few bits or had a go at doing a bit of singing. Italian Hardcore crew Straight Opposition make this very claim, yet there is far more of case made on their latest full length “Path of Separation”.

Not everything here sticks the landing, but I’d never accuse them of not having a proper go. Things get underway in relatively straightforward fashion with two absolute ragers in ‘Outsider by Choice’ and ‘July 019’. Both bring all the atonal chords, d-beat drums and scuzzy guitar tone you could wish for, sounding like an early 90’s Roadrunner release and delivering short blasts of righteous intensity. Then things get very interesting.

‘Workstation- Dead Box’ brings ominous guitars, filthy Sepultura grooves and eerie melodic backing vocals to the mix. This theme is continued to even greater effect in ‘The Next Revolution’ which has more creepy sung passages, delivered this time over bouncy grooves and wonky melodic passages that cram a whole lot into its short runtime. The vocals then shift to a gravelly pentatonic croon on ‘Delusion of Omnipotence’ where vocalist Ivan channels his inner Phil Anselmo (in a non-racist way) over the main hook before going full throated Max Cavalera for the verses. Somehow, he manages to squeeze in another vocal icon, adopting a powerful Mina Caputo tone for the final section.

This would all be impressive enough at this point but ‘Path of Separation’ goes full on Goth vibes as unsettling drums and atmospherics leave you wincing for a punch that never comes. ‘Persona’ and the two tracks that follow deliver that killer blow and clearly show that these guys worship Napalm Death. As they bloody well should. By the time you get through the Death Metal nod of ‘From Cradle to Grave’ and the closing mantra-like ‘No Father’s Flag’, you’ve been through a lot.

Although Straight Opposition stay within the Hardcore / Extreme wheelhouse, they accomplish a great deal within these often sub two-minute songs, providing a tapas menu of all things crusty and mean. Ivan doesn’t always pull off everything he’s going for with technical prowess, but the effort is evident throughout and his rawness and passion lends authenticity to everything he does even if the death metal vocals verge on parody at times.

In a genre that can be very one-note, here is a band throwing everything they have at you and really trying to push themselves. A little more refinement on the next one and we could have something really special on our hands. You miss every shot that you don’t take and Straight Opposition are trigger-happy and proud.

‘Workstation DeadBox’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Outsider By Choice
02. July 019
03. Workstation- Dead Box
04. The Next Revolution 
05. Delusion of Omnipotence 
06. (She’s Still) Pro Choice
07. Path Of Separation 
08. Persona
09. The Secrets Of Your Militance
10. It’s Killing Time
11. From the Cradle to the Grave
12. No Age To Xclaim!
13. No Father’s Flag

LINE-UP:
Ivan – Vocals
Luca – Drums
Flavio – Bass
Nicola – Guitar

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rory Bentley and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

BillyBio – Leaders And Liars

Leaders And Liars Album Cover Art

BillyBio – Leaders And Liars
AFM Records
Release Date: 25/03/2022
Running Time: 42:38
Review by Rory Bentley
8/10

I need a vest, chain and a bandana stat! BillyBio has dropped a new album and I’ll be damned if I’m spin-kicking in this stupid Ensiferum shirt I’m wearing!

You know the drill by now, I love Hardcore, I especially love NY Hardcore and beat downs and gang chants are my shit. I also obviously love Biohazard, so Billy Graziadei’s excellent decision to go solo in lieu of Biohazard getting their shit together made me very happy in 2018, with that iconic bark and jackhammer right hand guaranteeing a concrete ass kicking New York style which is exactly what we get on “Leader and Liars”.

If that sounds like it’s not for you I’d suggest you skip this one but if that makes you feel like you want to headbutt the nearest wall and destroy your place of work, then this will see you right. You want songs about wanting to snap people like a twig after you’ve been patient with them? ‘Blackout’ has got you covered with a rousing chorus and macho rapping over a searing crossover riff. You want somebody to be angry with an authority figure over a head-snapping punk attack? ‘Leaders and Liars’ will stick it hard to whatever corrupt douchebag you’d like to give a haymaker to. How about if you need a pep talk to pick you up out of the mud from an angry tattooed lad shouting in your face? ‘Turn The Wounds’ will see you right my downtrodden friend.

There’s nothing wrong with doing what it says on the tin if the tin is full of rousing metallic Hardcore that has all the menace and nostalgic joy of the early 90’s with a modern gut-punch of a production job. The riffs are front and centre, the drums slap you round the chops and Billy sounds as commanding as ever. He has a great way of introducing a melodic sing along hook to a song without ever dropping the intensity, possessing an alpha male grit that never sacrifices clarity or feels like forced machismo. Although this is the core makeup of the record, Billy’s not afraid to throw a few surprises that distinguish his solo career from his day job.

There are some very well-placed Alice In Chains style eerie harmonies in ‘Fallen Empires’ and ‘Leaders and Liars’ that add an extra sense of menace to the melodic sections that work beautifully with sludgy riff work that Jerry Cantrell would be proud of. On the more upbeat end of the scale the posi-vibes of ‘Generation Kill’ and ‘Our Scene’ provide the answer to the question “what would The Offspring sound like if they had gang signs tattooed on their knuckles?” These upbeat and almost poppy excursions are once again prevented from sounding soft by the band playing them at a million miles an hour and Billy still singing like he’s passing a kidney stone.

The pacing of the album is excellent throughout as interludes ‘Sheep Dog’, ‘Just in The Sun’ and ‘Remission’ (the latter two featuring stirring female vocals), break up the record nicely and stop the faster numbers blurring together and tiring the listener. By the time you get to final fist pumping strains of ‘Cyanide’ you’ll wonder where the time went.

Essentially this record has the potential to keep everyone happy, serving up enough familiar fun to satisfy Biohazard diehards without the pressure that the legendary name brings. If Billy’s plan is to keep churning out songs and releasing albums of this quality whenever he needs to express himself, I’m more than happy for Biohazard to take all the time they need to get on the same page. This is good, dirty fun and I’ll take another of these pick me ups in two years’ time please Billy!

‘Black Out’ Official Music Video 

TRACKLISTING:
01. Blackout
02. Fallen Empires
03. Leaders and Liars
04. Lost Horizon
05. Turn the Wounds
06. Sheepdog
07. Deception
08. Generation Kill
09. Looking Up
10. One Life to Live
11. Our Scene
12. Just the Sun
13. Enough
14. Remission 
15. Cyanide

LINE-UP:
Billy Graziadei – Vocals, Guitars
Fred Aching Rios – Drums
Ra Diaz, Dan Manca – Bass
Dan Palmer, Robbie Davidson – Leads

LINKS:

BillyBio Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rory Bentley and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Beyond The Styx – Sentence

Sentence Album Cover Art

Beyond The Styx – Sentence
WTF Records
Release Date: 04/02/2022
Running Time: 30:10
Review by Rory Bentley
6/10

The term ‘one trick pony’ is often used in music criticism in a disparaging way to outline an artist’s lack of versatility and sonic diversity. A derisive snort from a snobby writer pouring scorn on a band for not reinventing the wheel every time they pick up their instrument, as if this is the be all and end all of musical achievement. While there is certainly merit in innovation and being blown away by something you’ve never heard before, not every record needs to rip up the rulebook to hit the spot. For example I don’t want AC/DC to take me on a jazz odyssey that stretches the fabric of my mind – I want four minute songs with big simple riffs that fire me up, make me want to chin pints and pump my fist like a dishevelled uncle at a wedding reception.

Hardcore is a genre where this approach definitely has its place. The no-nonsense slug to the gut of a Madball song is often just what I need to scratch an itch when I’m having a rough day and I need an endorphin rush to drag me through to five o’clock. But other times I crave the angular, unpredictable catharsis of Converge to take me to another exhilarating realm far away from the tedious reality of modern life. There’s value to both ends of this spectrum and these two examples demonstrate why Hardcore is so exciting and why so many people gravitate to this raw, painfully human style of heavy music.

French quintet Beyond The Styx are firmly in the former camp with their confrontational metallic Thrash crossover approach. In fact it was their scabrous first single ‘Overload’ that made me want to review “Sentence”, evoking the kind of beat down heavy, tempo shifting attack that gets my pulse racing and makes me want to start a one man circle pit in my living room.

The album certainly lives up to the promise of the single and the gnarly album art, something abundantly clear on scorching opener ‘DC’, its title and sound a nod to the Washington scene that spawned so many legendary acts. Every chug, snare hit and passionate roar is performed with the precision and urgency of a unit that has cut its teeth through gruelling tours in sweat-drenched venues, doing the hard miles between gigs and leaving everything out on the stage. 

As the frenetic momentum carried through to ‘New World Disorder’ I was struck by the excellent production job that captures the kinetic feel of a noisy rehearsal space without compromising the clarity needed to make each down tuned groove leap out of the speakers with optimum potency. I went back to earlier BTSTX releases for comparison and while there is a ramshackle charm to their previous recording, the benefits of this more polished execution are evident and allow everyone to shine from the scraping guitars to the thumping rhythm section. 

One thing that is certainly undimmed by the upgrade in recording is the unhinged, glass-throated vocals that carry a feral intensity that sells every single lyrical attack on social injustice with bitter sincerity. Even if mosh calls like ‘Listen up you ain’t shit’ do verge on Biohazard levels of macho pastiche. The bruising concrete jungle mentality of Biohazard is further evoked by the news-report style samples littered through the album that gave me a warm, nostalgic feeling for the early 90’s and tick off another genre touchstone. 

By the midway point of the album it became clear that BTSTYX weren’t in any hurry to deviate from the crossover formula and while I was still having a good time fluctuating between being slowly stomped and vigorously pummelled, I did start to pine for a little more variety to my aural mugging. ‘Scorch AD’ and ‘Cyclops’ do introduce the welcome addition of some guest vocalists to stave off monotony, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that songs were blending into one another and the lack of memorable hooks was becoming a problem. Thankfully at 30:10 the album narrowly avoids outstaying its welcome and it left me  bruised but not completely broken, however I did have the lingering feeling that “Sentenced” could have delivered a little more in terms of memorability and variety.

The band clearly have the fundamentals nailed and their forceful demand for social justice is a worthy one, but there is very little to separate them from the pack. They may perform this style to a much higher standard than most and I’d happily do further damage to my ailing neck if I was at the front row of  one of their shows,  but as an album this has been little more than an enjoyable way to spend half an hour. If you’re down with the ‘core I can’t see you having a bad time with “Sentence”, it’s as caustic and belligerent  as one could hope for, but I can’t in good conscience call it an essential listen.

As I stated in the beginning, sometimes being a ‘one trick pony’ can be a strength if it’s a really great trick, but when there’s bands that have already been doing it before you maybe it’s time to learn some new tricks? Gripes aside though, this is a bloody-fisted bouncy effort that gets in, spin kicks you in the chops and gets out. My only hope is next time BTSTYX give me a good kicking they hit me with a few more surprises. I should probably clarify that I’m speaking entirely figuratively here lads. Please don’t beat me up.

‘Overload’ Official Music Video

TRACKLISTING:
1. DC
2. Collateral
3. New World Disorder [feat. Luis Ifer / Teething]
4. ESC XIX
5. Self Hatred
6. Chain of life
7. Overload
8. Scorch AD [feat. Guillaume / Final Shodown]
9. Machination
10. Cyclops [feat. Vincent / The Butcher’s Rodeo]

LINE-UP:
Emile Duputie – Vocals 
Arnaud Morfoisse –  Guitar / Vocals)
David Govindin – Guitar / Vocals)
Yoann Cesar – Bass / Vocals
Adrien Joulin – Drums

LINKS:

Beyond The Styx Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rory Bentley and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Gloves Off – Life … And Everything After

Life... And Everything After Album Cover Art

Gloves Off – Life … And Everything After
Upstate Records
Release Date: 28/01/2022
Running Time: 32:00
Review by Rory Bentley
8/10

There are some styles of music that make me act like a fussy toddler if the balance isn’t just right for my ears. Too much cheese and helium screeching on a Power Metal song and I spit my dummy out; excessive Euro-pop synths on a Symphonic Metal cut and no amount of airplane noises is gonna make me swallow it down. Then there are some genres where I’ll greedily clear my plate before I’ve even been strapped into my highchair, which is kind of where I am with Hardcore.

Putting aside this bizarre man-baby analogy for a moment, the point I’m making is that if you play metallic Hardcore with an Entombed-style guitar tone, my objectivity goes out the window a little. This stuff is catnip for me and my default setting of snooty cynicism is somewhat nullified; replaced by a two-stepping guy in a bandanna that shouts ‘FAMILY!’ a lot.

Gloves Off tick a lot of my boxes from the get-go: violent band name, angry faces on press photos and cool song titles like ‘My Death Was a Banquet’. I’m also pleased to say that the execution matches the imagery and throws in enough sonic curveballs to make them stand out from the crowd.

Hailing from Pennsylvania, a rich hotbed of Hardcore, Gloves Off deal out a savage brand of down-tuned depravity and abrasive noise that recalls the crushing chugs and harmonic screeches of their fellow natives Code Orange at their most feral. Aided by a production job that blends surgical clarity with a delightfully grimy overtone, the sonic palette here strikes the exact balance between extremity and accessibility that I gravitate towards. Essentially it doesn’t sound like it’s been recorded in a shoe but it’s also filthy enough to avoid any unfavourable Warped Tour Metalcore comparisons.

The album opens with tar-black hanging power chords booming ominously before accelerating into a crossover Thrash riff that could conjure a thousand circle pits. I was immediately struck by the unconventional but very welcome use of blast beats that punctuate the beat down sections here, adding a flavour of Death Metal while still retaining the streetwise feel of a Hardcore banger. 

By second cut ‘Death Awaits’ it is quickly apparent that Gloves Off are adept at switching up tempos frequently in a way that adds variety to their relentless barrage without disrupting the overall song structures, bringing cohesion to chaos. ‘In Reflection’ switches up the formula slightly and if you’re a Gojira fan (and why the hell wouldn’t you be?), then you’ll be lapping up the immensely satisfying pick scrapes and screeching natural harmonics that litter the scorching riff-work as the track segues into the eerie octave chords of the album’s catchiest chorus so far. Not for the first time, it’s worth acknowledging the savage beat down section at the end, which is just straight ignorant and makes me want to spin kick until my ligaments snap!

This would be a good time to give some shine to vocalist Cody Clark, who has an unhinged razor blade ferocity to his scowling bark that may not be good for his vocal cords but is great for selling the existential rage contained within the weighty lyrics of ‘Life… And Everything After’. He tackles the agony of existence with a philosophical approach while retaining the scowling demeanour of a street-brawler. This more literary approach to prose essentially allows me to have my cake and eat it – I feel like I can shout the mosh calls with permanent screw-face without the sensation that I’m descending into the world of macho parody that the name Gloves Off might infer.

If I had to pick a standout track then that honour would go to ‘Conqueror Worm’, which blends all the elements of the album that have had me salivating and closes with a gargantuan breakdown that I fear one day will put me in hospital, before frantically escalating in speed to an anxiety-inducing sprint to the finish line. Like the album itself the song offers a delightful buffet of the best bits about modern Hardcore, collated into a satisfying feast of Converge-worshipping malevolence.

Taking my over-sized baseball cap off and donning my critical hat, there are areas for improvement. Predominantly I would love the band to explore a little further beyond the self-imposed borders of the genre; as there’s plenty of evidence they’re more than capable of this. Like nearly every band from the scene since Code Orange dropped their seminal 2017 opus ‘Forever’, there are samples and ambient moments stitching the record together that hint at roads yet to be travelled. 

The outstanding closer ‘Between Greetings and Goodbyes’ sees the band employing dissonant arpeggios and moments of pure black metal destruction that recall Bleeding Through in their blackened Hardcore pomp, showing that there’s plenty more tools left to play with should the band veer from the palm-muted beaten track. More of this please!

‘Life…And Everything After’ is modern Hardcore done to a very high standard with the green chutes of future growth and innovation excitingly peppered through its perfectly pitched 32-minute runtime. Far from just being a thuggish haymaker to the gut, this is a sophisticated lesson in violence performed with proficiency and panache. If Edgar Allen Poe owned a pair of brass knucks he’d probably love this album.

‘In Reflection’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Pinnacle In Timelines
02. Death Awaits
03. In Reflection
04. By A Thread
05. Decay 
06. Conqueror Worm
07. My Death Was a Banquet
08. Winter Solstice
09. Between Greetings and Goodbyes

LINE-UP:
Cody – Vocals
Ethan – Guitar
Sean – Guitar
Brian – Bass
Phil – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rory Bentley and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.