Review: Bleak – We Deserve Our Failures

WDOF

Syracuse, NY’s Bleak has come of age on their first full length release We Deserve Our Failures via the venerable HEX Records. Since I first encountered the band at a very random live show in 2013, they’ve changed considerably.  Most notably, they changed vocalists later in that same year, eschewing the raspy scrape and sneer of former singer Mike, and trading it in for the vicious growl of current frontman Skot.  With that altered lineup and a couple of shorter releases under their belts (2014’s s/t EP and a split 7” with PA hardcore crushers Sovereign), the band has grown from a noise drenched, simplistic assault into something somehow beefier, more mature, and more complexly heavy. Continue reading

Review: SPYLACOPA – “Parallels”

Parallels cover art

Greg Puciato of The Dillinger Escape Plan, John LaMacchia of Candiria, Julie Christmas of Made Out of Babies and Jeff Caxide of Isis. Just the mere prospect of these musicians coming together would excite any fan of forward-thinking heavy music. In November of 2008, it happened with the first self-titled Spylacopa EP. The six-track release was commendable for deviating from the formulas of each of its members respective musical outlets in favor of something more accessible but no less heavy and catchy. A follow-up release was scheduled for 2011 but never came due to the passing of drummer Troy Young. Isis and Made Out of Babies broke up and Julie Christmas’ musical output stopped after her 2010 solo record, The Bad Wife, and her Coextinction Recordings release. Spylacopa was beginning to feel like a distant memory. But, not far into 2015, LaMacchia announces that the group’s long-delayed debut full-length will be released. Sure enough, March saw the unveiling of Parallels, a 40-minute tour de force of metallic eccentricity.     Continue reading

Review: ABSTRACTER – “Wound Empire”

 

Wound Empire cover art

The dust settles and the smoke clears as you crawl out from underneath the protection of a corroded vehicle. You search the polluted skies for any signs of approaching aircraft. The bombings have become more frequent and the city you once viewed with awe is now crumbled, decrepit and in ruins. As you put on your gas mask to avoid potential poisoning, the air raid sirens begin to signal another impending attack. But emitting from their speakers instead of the traditional siren sound is something more fitting. It is the sound of Abstracter‘s Wound Empire. The Apocalypse, the End of Days, World War III, a global nuclear assault, every potential world-ending scenario could be set to the tune of this Oakland-based quartet’s compositions. Through four lengthy opuses, Wound Empire paints a picture of dystopian life in which all hope is exhausted, and provides the soundtrack for the only instinct the inhabitants would have left; survival.

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Review: WOLFNOTE – “Wolfnote” EP

cd694-wolf2bcover2bwebI am one of those people who always crave something new and interesting. This is most definitely reprensented in the music I listen to. At the end of every year I clear out a large amount of my iPod to make room for new music, something intriguing that I haven’t heard before. Well, this year I have experienced one of my favorite records of the year and it consists of only three songs. The band is Wolfnote and they consist of two members of Harm’s Way. However, if you go into this EP think you’re going to experience Harm’s Way-style hardcore, you may be disappointed. If you go into it with an open mind, I think you will be happily surprised.       Continue reading