Primal Rite – Sensory Link to Pain (Review)

Primal RiteThis is the latest release from US hardcore bruisers Primal Rite.

This is a twisted crossover mix of hardcore and metal, weaving punk and death/thrash influences together into three furiously ugly tracks. Continue reading

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I Am – Life Through Torment (Review)

I AmThis is the debut album from US deathcore band I Am.

Life Through Torment is 28 minutes of aural thuggery that blends groovy heaviness with savage extremity.

Mixing 90s styled metalcore with elements of modern deathcore, this is Continue reading

Tenth Amendment – Conviction (Review)

Tenth AmendmentThis is the second album from this US Metal band.

Tenth Amendment play modern Metal with groove and aggression. Back in the 90s when this kind of thing was just called either Metal or Hardcore rather than groove Metal or Metalcore, (usually due to how the band looked more than anything else), bands like Pantera, Fear Factory, Machine Head, Merauder, Skinlab and Pro-Pain we all staples of my CD collection, and Tenth Amendment very much remind me of that time.

Coming across as a combination of the aforementioned bands, we get song-based aggression with an industrial undercurrent that leans towards the heavier end of the spectrum. The album is very riff-based and there’s a purity of intent inherent in this kind of approach.

Continue reading

Raised Fist – From the North (Review)

Raised FistRaised Fist are from Sweden and play Hardcore. This is their fifth album.

This is the kind of infectious, energetic Hardcore that I used to love back in the 90’s. This album could easily sit nicely alongside classics by Sick of it All, Biohazard and Pro-Pain.

It’s heavy but still catchy, angry but still accessible, song-oriented but still nuanced. It’s damn impressive. These tracks have an edge to them but are still largely uplifting affairs.

The songs are upbeat, bouncy and have enough hooks to endanger the average passer by. Not content with throwing out massive grooves when they want to, the band also have a good repertoire of melodic licks and tricks that add a depth and longevity to their compositions that probably wouldn’t be there without them.

The singer has a very energetic high voice that is both unusual and charismatic. This kind of music would be lessened by a generic vocalist and Raised Fist have anything but.

This album has made me both nostalgic and excited. There’s a lot to enjoy here and Raised Fist are, ultimately, just incredibly good at what they do.

Great stuff.

Infest – Cold Blood War (Review)

InfestThis is the fourth album from Serbian Death/Thrash Metal band Infest.

After a perfunctory intro the first track Destroyer of Their Throne starts up and I am momentarily confused – have I accidentally put on a Vader album instead of Infest? I over-exaggerate, (slightly), but the similarity, mainly in the vocal department, is startling.

Infest are not Vader clones of course. Musically they have other tricks up their collective sleeves and these conspire to create an enjoyable Metal experience lasting just under 30 minutes.

It’s an entertaining and speedy collection of Thrash-tinged Death Metal tracks that, yes, takes cues from Vader but also has some almost Hardcore influenced crossover riffs. I hear a bit of Pro-Pain to some of the chuggy guitars on occasion, as well as some Face Down-style Thrash and a bit of Malevolent Creation.

The production is strong and the bass is clear. The songs have a hard metallic sheen to them that accentuates their unyielding nature. They have a very immediate sound and always seem like they’re trying to get through the songs faster than they’re actually played, (if that makes any sense…?); there’s a sense of urgency to the album that gives it a vibrancy and life that some bands lack.

Good songs, good Metal. Hard, fast and straight to the point. I like.