Unleashing a very unique amalgamation of different styles, today we have Germany’s Ancst and their crushing release “Ghosts of the Timeless Void”. Blending Black Metal with Hardcore and Crust elements, the band crafts a very punishing and direct sound that is not for the faint of heart and weak of mind. Delivering over 41 minutes of music, this release will have you listening to it over and over to discover all the intricate layers build on-top a very aggressive foundation.
Opening with the melodic guitars of “Dying Embers”, the band quickly escalates the situation with blistering drums and hyper aggressive vocals. The complexly crafted brutality is quite interesting and it allows the band to explore multiple combinations of genres in a very chaotic and yet directed way. While songs like “Shackles of Democracy” have melodic undertones, the punkishness of “Concrete Views” allows the band to pivot from what the listener expects into what they are most comfortable doing.
Elevating the definition of musical violence to the nth power, today we have Teethgrinder from the Netherlands and their crushing Grindcore/Brutal Death Metal music. Delivering nine pummeling tracks, this release rivals Anaal Nathrakh’s “The Whole of the Law” for the most mercilessly brutal release of 2016.
The band preps the listener with the dissonant sounds of the deranged intro track “Sommambulant”, a piece that somewhat describes the madness that is about to take place in this release. Shit gets instantly real with the violent screams of “The Soil has a Thirst for Blood”, a track that is both intense and punishing thanks to the killer drums and ravaging riffs. We particularly enjoy the sporadic audio clips inserted on tracks like “Isolation” and “Pale Flowers”, which remind us a bit of the song intros Macabre uses.
Hailing from France, today we have Melo-death/Deathcore/Modern Metal outfit Master Crow and their sophomore release “Die for Humanity”. Delivering over 44 minutes of crushing music, the band nicely showcases their influences from bands like The Black Dahlia Murder, Whitechapel, Death, Cynic and others in between. While not very original, the album is quite enjoyable since it features tons of powerful riffs and intricate tempo changes.
Led by vocalist Julien "Nutz" Deyres, the album opens with the strong “Die for Humanity”, a track which mixes melancholic melodic sections with a funky bass guitar line. The band continues their brutal onslaught with the more Deathcore/Modern Metal influences tracks “Down from the Sky” and “Road of Vice”. It is quite interesting how the band manages to blend old-school Melodic Death Metal elements with their more modern influences and still sound fresh.
Hailing from Italy, today we have Deathcore battalion Despite Exile and their latest EP titled “Disperse”. Usually not a fan of the genre, when a band commands of attention it means that the have unique elements to make them stand out from the rest. Delivering five tracks and two interludes, the band crushes the competition with a perfect balance of melody and aggression that only a handful of bands can master. While not as crushing as The Black Dahlia Murder, this band does not lag behind with excellent moshing passages and solid melodic head banging moments.
Leading the charge with the melodic “Act I – Gaze of Leviathan”, we instantly got a certain Soilwork vibe from the first few minutes of the track. This playful and very melodic piece brilliantly weaves back and forth from all out brutality to excellent momentum-building sections. Seamleasly bleeding into “Act II – Panoptic Servant”, the band changes the pace to crushing a more typical Deathcore with funky tempo changes thanks to some killer drum patterns.
While cleaning up stacks of CD’s from our review table we found this little hidden gem from 2014. Necrotted is a German outfit that produces some crushing Deathcore/Death Metal and on their sophomore release “Utopia 2.0”, they state their case for being one of the best German bands in the genre.
Opening with the pummeling “Utopia (We are the light)”, we get a classical DM vibe at first, and it suddenly morphs into more modern sounding Deathcore brutality. This mixture of styles is quite engaging and sets them apart from the majority of bands that just abuses the traditional formulas of modern Deathcore music, more evidence of this perfect blend can be hear on the intricacies of “Rebuild and Revive”, “Assimilation”, and the punishing “Xenophobic Attitude”.
As one of the most extreme releases of 2014, today we have Carnifex and their crushing “Die Without Hope” release. Three years have passed since the band’s last effort and today we have them with their most mature and polished released to date. Evolving away from your cookie cutter Deathcore, Carnifex manages to deliver 10 brutal tracks filled with epic orchestrations, massive drumming, and crushing vocals.
Wasting no time, “Salvation is Dead” produces some demoralizing Death Metal riffs that will crush anybody’s doubts of this band. The growls/shrieks of Scott Lewis are as brutal as they come and they greatly enhance the overall violence portrayed in the band’s sound. The band’s sound is 100 times darker on songs like “Dark Days”, where they exploit perfectly constructed orchestrations and keyboards to contrast their relentless riffing. There is also a certain melodic edge to the music that we found quite refreshing.
Delivering one of the most surprisingly awesome albums of 2013, today we have The Black Dahlia Murder and their imposing release “Everblack”. We have long discarded this band as one of the vanilla Deathcore bands since their earlier days, but today we are shocked in the excellent quality and brutality behind their latest release. Mixing elements of Melodic/Technical Death Metal with some Deathcore influences, the band has managed to craft a very powerful and devastating sound of their own over the years.
Exploding with the technical “In Hell Is Where She Waits for Me”, the band immediately showcases their excellent mixture of melodic elements with brutal DM/Deathcore sections. The music is quite intense and makes you immediately want to start headbanging. “Goat of Departure” continues the riffing onslaught with catchy melodic sections and inhuman growls. The band’s sound has surely come a long way since their earlier stuff and they now sound like a million dollars.
Diving right into “Ghostwatcher” one might immediately think this is just another Metalcore/Deathcore release, but as one further explores Beyond The Shore’s music, there are quite a few interesting elements that make this release standout from the crowd. Released via Metalblade Records, this album features 10 tracks that at times are hit or miss, but there is a general sense of diversity that will keep your attention on this release.
Opening with two very vanilla tracks: “Dividers” and “Half Lived”, things really start to get interesting with the intricately crafted “Transitions”. The band delivers run of the mill Metalcore with some interesting guitar melodies and funky drum patters, making this track quite enjoyable and unexpected. The album’s first single “Homewrecker” is another very interesting piece with very tight melodic sections and cool transitions, only the vocals ruin a bit the moment.
Making its way from Russia, today we have Lost in Alaska and their head-smashing Deathcore sound. Delivering a three-song EP, this band has a sound similar to The Black Dahlia Murder, Oceano, etc., so you know it is pretty intense and well-crafted. For all fans of endless moshing to Core music, this is one release you don’t want to miss.
Opening with commanding guitar work, “The Inevitable Changes”, immediately shows the band’s heavy sound. As the sound warms up, the drumming is pretty solid and the vocal layering is quite crushing, allowing them to sound very brutal. The tempo changes are well-placed and help the song not sound extremely repetitive.
As one of the most ridiculously epic Progressive releases of 2012, today we have Between the Buried and Me’s “The Parallax II: Future Sequence”. As one of the most unique and non-conforming bands in the American Metal scene, BTBM has been constantly changing over the years, but with this release they have reached the pinnacle of their career and produced and album that won’t easily be equaled, let alone surpassed.
Mixing their own brand of Progressive Metal with some harsh elements, most of the core-crap is totally gone, the band delivers completely hypnotic tracks that will puzzle some, and amaze most. Opening with the Cynic-like “Goodbye to Everything”, the band starts hinting at a very sonically pleasing release with the instrumentation and excellent production values. This is immediately felt present with the Dream Theater-esque “Astral Body”. Borrowing from progressive greats like Yes, DT, Magus, etc., the band truly makes these influences their own and shapes them in their own weird ways to craft very intricate and engaging songs.