Eager for a punk fix? Check out two brand new songs from New Jersey band Singaya that we’re premiering exclusively right here on HXC Magazine! The two new songs, “Toxic” and “Get Away,” are hard-hitting punk jams that aren’t afraid to get a little heavier. Fans of The Offspring and fans of metal and hardcore can all get in on these tracks. Listen to the brand spankin’ new songs right here and see what the band have to say about the new material below. You can also watch their music video for previously released song “You’ve Got The Bite.”
Motionless In White are back yet again with their new release, Graveyard Shift. This band has always had a knack for genre transition, and Graveyard Shift is no exception. They stay on the industrial path they’ve been going down with tracks like “Queen For Queen” and “Necessary Evil,” the latter of which features Jonathan Davis, frontman of Nu-Metal juggernaut, Korn. MIW also introduce a more punk-inspired vibe on their single, “Loud(Fuck It).” Most refreshing to hear is that they’re not afraid to still get heavy, which is obviously apparent on the ironically titled, “Soft.”
A Day To Remember is one of the few bands that remains impressive as the years go on and the record sales go up. Releasing their new material through their very own ADTR Records, they stay true to themselves and their sound and yet still move forward. Their new single, “Paranoia,” proves it beyond a shadow of a doubt. The only thing that would’ve made this video better is if the ADTR dudes transformed into actual superheroes. But given the split second AP comic book cover shown at around 1:10, maybe they’re saving the tights and the capes for the next video.
Ice Nine Kills have stepped up their artistic game with their latest full-length record, Every Trick In The Book. As the title implies, the band borrow from some of their many literary inspirations to create their most melodic (“Tess-Timony”) and most heavy (“Hell In The Hallways”) songs to date. William Shakespeare, George Orwell and Stephen King are just a few of the authors INK turn to for their own brand of musical storytelling, and as a lit nerd myself, I’m pretty goddamn giddy about it.
Creating songs based off of personal experiences alone is a perfectly good way to go about writing music. However, when artists look to the works of other artists both in admiration and for inspiration, something special happens: A dialogue is created between the old tales and the new tracks, and in INK’s case, the conversation is exceptionally moving. Reimagining known stories in modern ways makes for not only a fun listen but an engaging one. As the listener, you start to look for clues; little pieces of the story you already know and little embellishments added in that you’re just hearing for the first time.
While the overall sound of Every Trick In The Book is very similar to that of their last full-length, The Predator Becomes They Prey, the most noticeable and impressive difference is the band’s use of added sound effects and dialogue to enhance and enliven the stories they’re telling. “The People In The Attic,” for example, based off of The Diary of Anne Frank, is not only a great song musically, but goes above and beyond when it incorporates suspenseful dialogue and threatening sounds that recreate the terrifying moment of an S.S. officer coming for the hidden Jews upstairs. Something similar happens in “Hell In The Hallways” (Carrie is announced prom queen followed by screams) and “Communion Of The Cursed” (the possessed little girl from The Exorcist adds a demonic twist to a prayer). These moments of theatricality give the record that extra umph, turning a standard Ice Nine Kills record into a noteworthy one.
One of the many albums that dropped on October 30th was Crown The Empire‘s deluxe edition of their album The Resistance via Rise Records. A music video for one of the new tracks, “Cross Our Bones,” premiered yesterday and it gives you a chance to hear the metalcore band at their most catchy. The song still has some heaviness and unclean vocals, but is far more melodic than most of their previous releases. The video also features some intriguing contrasting visual imagery; light and dark, brightly colored flowers and skulls shrouded in black smoke that are reminiscent of the new record’s cover artwork. It’s a cool one from an artistic perspective as well as a musical one. So check out the video below and let us know what you think of it and the new deluxe edition!
Remember how often you jammed those Flyleaf songs a few years back? How “All Around Me” was part of your personal daily soundtrack and “I’m So Sick” perfectly understood your angst? Well ex-Flyleaf frontwoman, Lacy Sturm, has just debuted a new track via SiriuxXM called “Impossible,” and you’ll definitely be adding this one to your playlist. This is the first peak at her solo effort; the full album, Life Screams, is expected to be released early 2016. Read up on the details over at SiriusXM and peep the new track. And in case you were wondering, Sturm clearly hasn’t lost her killer screaming abilities or her ethereal voice.
For Today have shared a new music video for heavy ballad “Bitter Root” from their new album, Wake, which officially hit stores today. The video, like the song, is relatively minimalist, but within that apparent simplicity lurk some exquisite flourishes. “Bitter Root” is calm, clean-sung, and cleverly percussive for more than half of the song until it crescendos into a well-placed burst of unclean vocals and heavy chords. It’s a bit outside their usual MO, but For Today meet the challenge of evolution beautifully with this one. Check out the music video below and let us know what you think of “Bitter Root.”
Blessthefall’s latest and fifth album, To Those Left Behind, is, regrettably, more forgetful than their last endeavor, Hollow Bodies. This is one of the softest metalcore albums ever, which isn’t necessarily bad. Some people are into that. The rhythms are catchy and the unclean vocals are on point when they show up. The record’s largest flaw however is that the songs, for the most part, stand well enough alone to earn themselves a play or two, but one after the other is more of a burden than a pleasure. In short, the songs are extremely repetitive. It’s not only that each song is formulaic, but that they all blend together.
You’ve heard all Blessthefall has given in To Those Left Behind after the first half of the album. (Thankfully, there is always their past to remind you that this is not all the band has to offer.) Songs like “Decayer” and “Dead Air” offer little glimpses into Blessthefall’s harder side. “Decayer” starts off quietly and then springs into aggressive metalcore instrumentals with some hard unclean vocals giving a false sense that the record is going to be equally brutal.
Then you get to “Keep What We Love & Burn the Rest,” which could easily be found on a local alt rock radio station. The majority of the tracks lean more toward this sound. Blessthefall’s direction is clear, and the harder verses on the album are an attempt to hold on to their oldest fans, but it might be too little too late. Unfortunately, there is no sign of the breathless, impassioned screaming that was the norm in Blessthefall’s first couple of albums. That being said, if any one of these songs were to pop up on a shuffled playlist, it wouldn’t be so bad to have in the background.
by David Marulanda
Atreyu‘s first full-length album in six years, Long Live, blends the band’s beloved signature sound with an almost classic metal vibe. While songs like “Start To Break” and “Heartbeats and Flatlines” echo the Atreyu of 2004’s The Curse, tracks like “Do You Know Who You Are?” offer a bigger break between then and now. The question is, is the change in sound worthwhile or a little too jarring?
The answer: a bit of both. Long Live definitely sounds like a more grown up Atreyu. Screaming is still a very present element on this record, but it’s clear the band give clean vocals and starker melodies a leg up. The soloing found on songs like “Live To Labor” and “Start To Break” are much needed moments of ornamentation on an album that sometimes becomes too bare, and “Revival” is a lovely palette cleanser in between all the heaviness. However, “Do You Know Who You Are,” though an intriguing deviation in song structure, is like “I Would Kill/Lie/Die (For You)” in that it gets somewhat boring after a while. As so often occurs with bands who have been around for years and aim to evolve, their maturity gets in the way of some of the more unrestrained elements that made releases like 2002’s Suicide Notes and Butterfly Kisses so exciting.
Where Atreyu is perhaps most successful is with the dark and enchanting “Moments Before Dawn.” It begins with a few twinkling and hypnotic notes taken from, as the bassist explains in the track commentary, Marc McKnight’s niece’s music box. The band builds off of these childish notes, using them as a guiding leitmotif that haunts the track. A beautiful example of how inspiration can come from the most unlikely sources, “Moments Before Dawn” gives Long Live a unique, albeit odd dimension that would otherwise be lacking on the record.
Atreyu may still have a bit of soul-searching to do, but Long Live absolutely has its merits.
Vanna fans rejoice! New music is here!
The last year has been monumental for the Boston-based hardcore band, Vanna. After releasing their most acclaimed record to date, VOID, in the summer of 2014, playing house shows across the country, and even being one of the first contemporary hardcore bands to tour the grand cold state of Alaska, Vanna have finally found time to record some new tracks for their fans to enjoy.
But there’s a twist!
On October 2, Pure Noise Records will be releasing Vanna’s latest EP ALT, however, instead of being a collection of new Vanna tracks, fans will be introduced to some old punk and metal classics revamped and redone Boston-style. That’s right, ALT is a collection of songs that inspired Vanna throughout their own musical careers so much so that they decided to cover them as tribute to the musical influences that made them who they are today. So take a look at ALT‘s first single “The Beautiful People,” originally written and performed by Marilyn Manson and let us know what you think of this video and new take on such an influential song.