Funeral Chic – Superstition (Review)

Funeral Chic - SuperstitionThis is the second album from US blackened hardcore band Funeral Chic.

Fourteen tracks of violent, foul, ugly blackened hardcore? Yes please! How could I resist? Continue reading

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Lambs – Betrayed from Birth (Review)

LambsLambs are an Italian blackened Hardcore band and this is their début EP.

You gotta love Blackened Hardcore. A sub-genre that takes the best of the violence and darkness from Hardcore and Black Metal? Yes please! This style is getting more and more popular and has already resulted in a plethora of good bands such as Hexis, Plebeian Grandstand, Dark Circles, Ancst, Cowards, Funerals, Protestant and Flesh Born, to name just a few. Some bands go slightly more one way or the other, while others, like Lambs, meet both genres in the middle. That, and a bit of Post-Hardcore thrown in for good measure.

This is a quality little release that showcases what Lambs are capable of, and it seems that they should have big things ahead of them if they can keep this level of quality control and intensity up for a full album. Well, big things for a small sub-genre at any rate.

The aforementioned intensity doesn’t mean it’s a Blackened blast fest, (although they can blast when they need to); Lambs have a darkly emotive and fanged assault that never lets up regardless of the speed they play at. In this way they can be compared to any number of modern violent Hardcore bands, as they keep on pushing and pushing with the relentless riffs, to make sure their point is rammed home; be this by straight forward assaults, dirge-fuelled slower sections or angular, atypical melodies. Lambs cover all of the bases.

There’s only three songs here but contained within them is a lot of dark intent and malevolent ambition. As calling cards go this is up there with the best of the style and I can’t wait to see what they do next.

Play at full volume.

Unsacred – False Light (Review)

UnsacredThis is the début album from US Crusty Black Metal band Unsacred.

This is blistering, raw and nasty but still boasts a powerful sound.

This style of Black Metal that incorporates the visceral, harsh nature of Crust and Hardcore is a particular favourite of mine of late. Unsacred join the ranks of top bands like Hexis, Ancst, Vermin Womb, Protestant, Flesh Born, etc. who all play the style with power and presence.

False Light boasts songs that have a very direct impact with quality riffs that are halfway between the scything, frozen Black Metal style and a more direct and energetic Hardcore one. Combined like this they mix the best of both worlds and the tracks on this album come across as pure class.

The singer has a very satisfying rasp, somewhat akin to a higher, sharper version of the At The Gates singer in some ways. His voice suits the acerbic nature of the music and is another feather in the cap of Unsacred.

The dark energies flow freely through Unsacred. The suffering and pain they inflict is exquisite.

At only 22 minutes in length False Light is over far too soon. I can easily listen to this over and over again, and I suggest that you do too.

Great stuff. Now bring me more.

Protestant – In Thy Name (Review)

ProtestantProtestant are from the US and play Blackened Hardcore Metal.

This is raw, dirty and exceedingly violent in nature.

The riffs have a real Blackened colour to the melodies, which are merged with a Punk attitude and delivery style. The Blackened Punk style has yet to be done to death and Protestant do it very well indeed.

Protestant inhabit a similar space stylistically to bands such as Hexis and Flesh Born, and if you like them you should check out Protestant, (and vice versa). All three bands are exemplars of this kind of music.

Protestant write good riffs and sound thunderously impressive. They let the darkness pile on thick and heavy, all the time allowing the driving Hardcore mentality to energise the songs and propel them forwards.

The vocalist croaks and rasps his way through the 8 tracks like his lungs are going to give out at any minute. He accompanies the apocalyptic sounding music like the final harbinger of the worst things yet to come. His is the voice of anger, rage and dark tidings.

Protestant have released an album that bridges the gap between the sometimes dissonant worlds of Hardcore and Black Metal in a way that sounds like they were born to do this.

In Thy Name is an album propelled by exquisite Blackened riffs and Hardcore energy the likes of which we don’t see very often.

Listen, listen loud and listen now.