Album of the Month... February 2015

Eternal Misery by No Zodiac

26 Mar 2011

Landlocked and Bays: 'Splitnificant Other'

This new split from Manchester (UK) band Bays and Missouri (USA) band Landlocked is awesome. There are always new bands popping up everywhere, some are not as good as others but ‘Splitnificant Other’ has two decent bands playing quality hardcore. I have not listened to a split record in a while so I was pleasantly surprised when I gave this a listen, it’s definitely a winner and as they are offering the link to these tracks for free it’s a bonus. These are two recent bands and have recorded two songs each for this release so make sure you check it out. 

First two tracks kick off with Landlocked showing an angry and aggressive sound that everyone loves to hear. The song ‘Simple Requests’ sets the pace of the record and has a harsh sound to it. The crushing guitar sounds capture an energetic but sort of D-Beat sound, which I think is a very promising sound. This band deserves a lot of support as everything they have recorded and released has been completely funded from their own pockets. They have a great dedication to the music they play and this is shown through the songs. Also be sure to check out their EP ‘From a New Perspective’ and their 2009 Demo.

Bays two songs add a more metal/hardcore sound to the split and are definitely worth the listen. The UK scene is still going fairly strong and this Manchester based band will certainly not disappoint. There are only two songs but you can tell they are played from the heart and straight to the point. Although the sound of the instruments and riffs are very generic it does work in favour for Bays. ‘Reality of Death’ and ‘Foundations Hollow’ contains a much crisper sound, opposed to their earlier demo and brings a more mature sound for this band. If you enjoy these songs then you should check out their Demo and their EP ‘Immovable.’ 

My only proper complaint is that there are only two songs by each band (I was hoping for a little more.) Nice Limp Bizkit rip off of the artwork and release name as well. These are both promising bands so don’t you dare sleep on this.

23 Mar 2011

At the Old Blue Last Tonight

Vice and All the Way Alive Records are presenting a free show tonight in East London. If you happen to be about then don't miss out on this!

22 Mar 2011

Handguns: 'Dont Bite Your Tongue'

‘Don’t Bite Your Tongue’ is the second EP release from Handguns, a Pop Punk band from Pennsylvania. This record takes a slightly different approach to the usual positive outlooks but instead reflects on the basis that we shouldn’t bother to stand up for ourselves as it is simply a waste of time. These 7 tracks might not be to your taste but I found myself enjoying them.

I still cannot decide if it has topped their last release ‘Anywhere but Home’ but it is still within the Handguns sound. With fast paced and fun songs, this is everything that you can expect from a good quality Pop Punk band. Forget all the breakdowns, screams and other hardcore influences for a second and just remember what it should sound like. This record is simply what a band consists of, vocals, guitar chords, a bass and some catchy drums, nothing special but it works perfectly. The sound from this EP reminds me of when I was in my early teens and will have you jumping for joy at every listen.

Their previous release was made completely independently and reflected upon their ‘living for the moment’ attitude and a couple of years down the line and they have come quite far as this is released through Pure Noise Entertainment. Most of the topics covered are typical for this genre, talking about the past youth times, looking for better times and of course love. These topics have been written to death but to be honest who cares, to me it makes a successful pop punk record.

I’m pretty sure this will be a successful release and will please the ever hungry pop punk fans. The audience this record attracts are already used to this sort of sound and will definitely be influential to new listeners. All in all a quality EP.

20 Mar 2011

Etnies: 'The Legend Of Boxton Square'

Check out this Etnies video from the Skate and Create competition. Etnies have a pretty sick team who totally rip this creative location. I don't really understand why a Girl skateboard is pulled out from the box as i'm sure it's supposed to promote Etnies but apart from that I have no complaints. I wish I could have a package like that delivered to me and i'm pretty sure i'd have the same reaction as Sean Malto has.

19 Mar 2011

The Memory: 'Call it a Comeback'

The Memory is a fairly recent Italian melodic hardcore band. They started out back in 2009 and have just released their debut EP titled ‘Call it a Comeback’ which contains 6 tracks of powerful, angry music. I had never heard of this band until a few days ago and after giving their EP a listen I think they could be the next big thing. I’m quite fussy with melodic style hardcore but this is something I don’t think I could get bored with.

There is a strong emphasis on the vocals throughout this release and is comfortably added to some extremely fast paced and complex guitar melodies and fast paced drum beats. There is a certain similar style that can be heard from the Florida based band Casey Jones and also slight resemblance to parts of the band Anchors Away but still managing to maintain an original sound for themselves. If you’re into those two bands then no doubt you’ll be into these. If anything The Memory are enhancing the sound of the modern day style of melodic hardcore into something more exciting.

This record could very well pave the way for the next generation of hardcore bands and will definitely be a huge influence (I’d like to hope so anyway). Containing all of the essential areas of what melodic hardcore should sound like The Memory combines a fantastic amount of heavy(ish) but sensibly toned down guitar work leaving quite a less aggressive sound to the music. This is when the screamy/emotional vocals kick in at the right time to provide the traditional yet still angry twist.

This EP is a 6 track gem which focuses more on the melodic sound but still managing to maintain the amount of emotion and aggression that should be evident in a modern day release. Buy it here and help support this band.

Line of Scrimmage: 'Denounced'

Line of Scrimmage from New York have been around for quite a while now and have released a demo, a split with Enemy Mind and an album ‘Cinderblock Solution’ but ‘Denounced’ is definitely a winner for this band. This band has come a very long way and this release proves it! If you haven’t heard of this band then now is your time to get into it.

This album is a monster and explodes into a fury from track one all the way until the end. There are a lot of bands that sound very similar to this style of hardcore however Line of Scrimmage seem to straying away from this slightly but still producing equally angry and aggressive music. Track one ‘Penance’ instantly kicks off with some fast paced riffs and with an extremely heavy sound, no sound clips, no introductions that keep us waiting for the album to start, just straight up brutality. Other great songs that stand out include ‘Nothing Out of Reach’ and ‘This Time Around’ which will leave you with an image you just cannot compete with.

The raw, throat ripping vocals mixed with the down tune guitars and bass are a perfect combination. Also the catchy, fast tempo drum beats and fat chunky breaks really makes this album a beast of a release. A certain degree of the bands personalities definitely come out through their powerful music and after listening to this I am pretty sure you will be on the same sort of wavelength. From listening to their 2006 demo and their previous releases you can hear how they have progressed into something much more. ‘Denounced’ is a top notch heavy record and with guest vocals from members of Suburban Scum you just cannot go wrong.

Do not pass the opportunity to listen to this record. If you think you’ve heard all the Beatdown hardcore that you can handle then you’re wrong as ‘Denounced’ offers you something new and improved. Do yourselves and the band a favour and buy this record.

7 Mar 2011

Black Haven: 'Harmbringer'

I listened to this record with great anticipation as it is Black Haven’s first ever full length. I feel that this band is underrated however recently they seem to be attracting a lot of attention. In this album they explore an even heavier, darker sound which is utterly mind-blowing. If you decide to give this album a chance then prepare yourself for some extremely fast paced and aggressive music.

Containing a huge mixture of genres including hardcore, metal, punk and some other bits and bobs it gives a great raw sound which will make you want to cause mayhem! If you’re into bands like Rise and Fall, Integrity and Ringworm then this will probably be the cup of tea for you. Some parts are a little slower and little more metallic than I would prefer but taking this into account I cannot really complain as the rest of the 90% of the album makes up for this. It’s a great listen and nobody can deny the fact that they must have Rise and Fall as one of their influences due to certain song elements but can you blame them both being from Belgium and having a similar sound. Could very well be a coincidence.

Definitely one of the more promising bands from Europe at the moment and the modern day sounds of hardcore are most definitely getting darker.

Support Black Haven by buying 'Harmbringer' here:

5 Mar 2011

At 12 Bar Club Tonight

Go and support Rucktion Records monthly hardcore night at 12 Bar Club tonight at 8.