Stray From the Path are anything but subtle. Outspoken, straight up and furious, their newest album, Only Death is Real, says a lot of the things we’ve been trying to say for the past year. This record is pure venom.
Counterfeit Culture manage to do more with a three track EP than some manage to do with an over-saturated full-length. The only thing I can find fault in with Deathwish is that it is too short. 30 seconds in, I wanted to enjoy at least ten songs worth of this dysphoric, resentful bundle of fun.
I happen to enjoy Florida’s production of metalcore more than it’s oranges or theme parks. Phantoms from Jacksonville are not an exception, especially with their melodic. sometimes edging-on-symphonic brand of it. Their latest release, and second under their current name, Screaming on the Inside, is a fun blend of all the things you’ve heard under the metalcore label. Is it fun? Yes. Is it catchy? Yes. Will my head bang to it? Yes. What about my arms? Yes. “If I rip out your tongue will you cry about that?” Yes.
The downside is it actually uses too much clean vocal for my taste. Phantoms also don’t seem like the kind of band that will produce meaningful and deep lyrics, but offer more in the way of reckless abandon, head-moving, fist-throwing kind of shit that is always a good time. Get your copy of Screaming on the Inside August 25th, 2017 via Outerloop Records.
Probably not too many people are aware of the band Shattered Sun from Alice, Texas, but the band have been around for a few years with two previous records and a third newly released, The Evolution of Anger. So what is that next evolutionary step? Based on what the band has to say, it’s action.
Where We Are Now, The Sun Sets Here for Vanna
For over a decade, Boston’s Vanna have been creating aggressive music for us to sing along and swing our fists to. Vanna has helped me get through some tough times and made others great. They will remain a part of my life through their music that I will continue to listen to even after they’ve closed the curtains.
The Acacia Strain are sixteen year veterans of the aggressive music scene and their latest product, Gravebloom, shows they know what they’re doing, but also that they’re not afraid of experimenting. Hailing from a small, old, western Massachusetts town that would have inspired H.P. Lovecraft, the band excel at making brutal music with a dreary overtone. Basically, they create the aural equivalent of a winter night in a foggy, empty New England town – harsh and unforgiving.
Gravebloom is slow, sludgy, and depressing and tends to blend together at times. Then it changes to a frenetic pummeling assault without warning. The title track maintains a faster pace than “Model Citizen” or “Worthless,” which are good representations of the record overall, and then it switches gears with a melodic instrumental section. “Abyssal Depths” is slow enough to be boring, but it’s an outlier. The album sounds like it’ll play much better live while you’re swinging your fists and hitting your friends. I still recommend checking it out.
Massachusetts metal masters Within the Ruins are releasing their fifth album, Halfway Human. It is political, personal, progressive, technical, and triumphant. It is a record that’s easy to lose yourself in both lyrically and instrumentally. Halfway Human is full-way wonderful.
“I don’t think this story has ever been told!”
We recently wrote to France’s Betraying The Martyrs as they tour Europe and we got some inside info from frontman Aaron Matts. In this interview we touch upon all kinds of wonderful things, such as their new album, The Resilient, European cuisine and using steaming water to burn someone’s skin off. Fun, right?
France upgraded bread to the baguette, manual decapitations to the more efficient guillotine, and now in a delicious twist for our ears, Paris gives us the a new record from Betraying The Martyrs.
The Resilient is a fresh take on an existing genre. The band’s third studio album is a twelve-track amalgamation of several “-core” and metal subgenres; metalcore, deathcore and symphonic metal are just some of the ingredients. It is a well thought out inquisition into our purpose in life without feeling weak or overdone. It calls out cowards that harm, kill and take advantage of the innocent while forcing listeners to question their actions (or inactions). Aside from resilient, the record is existential and nostalgic.
What’s Lorna Shore? Black metal not from Norway you say? Technical black metal deathcore? From New Jersey? And it’s actually good?
The answer to all of those questions is simply “yes.” Lorna Shore have been around for a few years. Building on the strength of their first album, Psalms, they have crafted a fast-paced, brutal and philosophical full-length that should surely propel them to the forefront of the genres they dabble in. Flesh Coffin, which arrives officially on February 17th, 2017, is a foray into the mysteries of death and life and what they mean. “Denounce The Light” forces you to wonder how far you would go to keep living once your time has passed. “the//watcher” suggests your life is not your own. Throughout the album, the bass drums and relentless shrieking often drown out the inquisitive lyrics and render them nearly unintelligible, but that is par for the course with heavier music.
You can feel the heat from the burning churches when Flesh Coffin comes on. Lorna Shore’s black metal side is on display in this release. The technical, progressive and deathcore elements show through as well, making the album fun, brutal and potentially overwhelming. It is an album to look forward to and listen to repeatedly as every playthrough will offer you a new perspective.
by David Marulanda