Tuesday, February 24, 2015

UnaxManoxAlxCuello - UxMxAxC

I love when a band can't be easily categorized.  Such is the case with UnaxManoxAlxCuello. This band will take you for a ride through a few different genres without sounding awkward or forced. There's a tinge of desperation expressed no matter if they're giving you mid tempo melodics or full on blast beats. "Lo Provisional de lo Definitvo" even gives you a glimpse of clean guitar.  The recording quality is raw, but aggressive, matching the bands sound perfectly.

Highly recommended.

Check it out here.

Tharsis They - Formless/Shapeless

A band like Tharsis They will bring you back to the mid 2000's when chugging guitars were meeting off time drum signatures for the first time.  While the band makes great use of the noodly guitars and off time drums, they also have a tendancy to bring on some straight forward fast parts and even the occasional 4/4 time breakdown.  I have to admit to liking the parts when this band thinks outside of the box, employing crazy guitar scales and abrasive drum fills. There's no lack of musical ability on this team.

Lyrically the band stays on the abstract side of things, but the words seem well-written and thought out, while still open for interpretation.  The vocals can, at times, fall a little bit too far to the tough guy side for me.  Songs stay around the 2 minute range, delivered a really focused sound that has no need for extra frills.

Check it out here

Double Me / Lifes - Split 7"

Double Me gets things started with some fast, no-nonsense hardcore.  It's aggressive music that maintains a nice interweaving of tempos and changes. You might throw this in the power violence category, but some of these songs surpass the 1 minute mark, breaking the golden power violence rule. A nice, full guitar sound with tight drumming really give you the impression that Double Me are accomplished at their craft. The vocals have a low, brutal tone to them that I would usually stray away from, but for Double Me it seems to compliment the music very well and sit in the mix just right.

Lifes take over side 2 with a very distinct brand of two piece hardcore featuring just bass and drums while the two players split up the vocal duties. The use of the 8 string bass employs a bit of circus music type feel to the more noodly parts, however adds texture to the more straight forward sections.  The tight drum stops and harsh vocals add more throttle, making you forget all about the absence of guitar.  

Check it out here.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Under A Sky So Blue / Celebration split 7"

Under A Sky So Blue return with more passionate, lyrically-smart and hard hitting songs. With commentary on capitalism and racism, the anger and honesty boils to the top giving us a glimpse at a new generation of politically consious hardcore.  Musically you're going to experience some excellent dynamics that blend aggression and melody together to convey a desperate sense of emotion.

Celebration immediately took me back to the early 2000's with a noisy, chaotic sound reminiscent of New England bands like Jerome's Dream and Orchid.  Dual vocals sit just beneath chaotic drumming and sharp octave chords, with songs that come and go before you know what hit you.

Check it out here.

Oriana Raeo - s/t

Oriana Raeo starts off with some beautifully textured guitars that feel like a warm blanket on a cold day.  They keep things at a pretty moderate pace while some nicely executed screaming falls in, sounding like another instrument in the composition rather than a spotlight on top of the music.

By track three ("Questionable Remarks") they've decided to give you a glimpse at what a faster, more chaotic approach would sound like if they were offer it up.  However, it seems Oriana Raeo is more at home with keep things slower, sad and textured.  Picture Portraits of Past without the fast parts.

Check it out here.

Facility - The First Four

Facility is a new band from New Jersey that basically took everything I love about hardcore and turned those aspects into songs.  There's chaos, groove, melody, intelligent lyrics and good musicianship.  Really, I couldn't be more pleased.

Picture an updated version of early 2000's bands like To Dream of Autumn or Choke The Rivers With Their Dead and you'll start to get an idea of what Facility is putting forth here. If the quality of these first four songs this band has written is any indication of their potential, we have some good material to look forward to in the future.

Check it out here.

Friday, February 13, 2015

End Year - Kursk

I caught end year at a show a couple months ago. It was one of those instances where you know nothing about a band and they totally catch you off guard.  Their instrumental compositions were powerful and well done.  It was easy to get lost in the canvas these guys were painting.

They had no merch of any kind at the show but informed me the record would be up online in a couple of weeks.  I suppose I can say this falls into the Explosions in the Sky sort of instrumental camp, but End Year has a voice all their own here.

Have a listen here.

Of Feather and Bone - Falsehealer

For fans of noisy, brutal onslaughts of hardcore, similar to Host, Tragedy and Dead in the Dirt; Of Feather and Bone carve out a niche for themselves taking some elements of traditional hardcore and fusing them with a dirtier sound laced with feedback and powerful drumming.

The song structures are well planned keeping the listener on their toes with quick changes and diverse tempos.

This might please the crusties and the camo shorts crew alike.  Check it out here.

AkallabĂȘth - 7"

I took some time off from doing this blog. This was mostly as an effort to disconnect more aspects of my life from an online presence.

Then my friend Shawn introduced me to Akallabeth and I just thought "damn, this is the type of band that made we want to start a blog about music".

Akallabeth is a perfect blend of aggression and melody without sounding awkward or forced. Try to picture mid 90's bands like Inkwell or Julia, but with more aggressive vocal styling.  The first song has a drawn out clean guitar intro, but stick around, once things get going they are sure to please.

Check it out here