Tuesday, March 15, 2016

It's safe to say that if you're a fan of this blog, you're a fan of metallic hardcore. While many view the 90's as the golden age for this particular brand of hardcore, there is a very strong crop of new bands carrying that torch proudly. Here are ten of my favorite new(er) bands playing a good variety of heavy, metal-tinged hardcore that is sure to pique the interest of readers who frequent the blog. Keep an eye out for these bands!


Hailing from South Florida, DAY BY DAY is one of my favorite bands in hardcore right now, metallic or otherwise. Putting a different spin on metallic hardcore than what most bands are doing today, DAY BY DAY calls to mind bands like Brethren, Neglect, and Cold As Life and the ability that those bands had to conjure up the perfect combination of anger and sorrow, using their lyrics, riffs, and imagery to create a bleak, hopeless mood. It is always cool when a band can conjure up a vibe or atmosphere with their music, and that's exactly what DBD does. Last year they released the Fakes & Liars 12" EP on Eighty-Sixed Records, and have been honing their already insane live show and working on new material. Keep an ear to the ground for this band, they're poised to take over hardcore in the near future.


While Birmingham, Alabama is certainly not the first place in most people's minds synonymous with metallic hardcore, TRUTH'S LAST HORIZON are setting out to change that. Along with COUNTER, another fantastic metallic hardcore band with whom they share members, TLH are putting Birmingham on the map for crushing metal-influenced hardcore. TRUTH'S LAST HORIZON dropped their demo last year, called The Result Of Taking Life, a title referencing the band's Vegan Straight Edge ethics. Fast, riffy, and full of chugging mosh riffs, TLH's sound is reminiscent of the early output from European bands like Caliban, and not-unlike those bands, their songs can go from introspective and melodic clean guitar parts to punishingly heavy breaks in the blink of an eye. This is metallic hardcore in the Vegan Straight Edge tradition at it's finest.


Metallic hardcore is done best when it has that intangible, indescribable sense of urgency. JUKAI is a band that makes you feel that nervous, paranoid urge in the absolute best way possible. The band released their first slab of wax last year on Mass Movement records, and the 7" titled Devoid of Hope, offers 4 songs of cold, calculated HARDcore. Although it's hard to pinpoint a specific two or three bands that JUKAI calls to mind, that's a large part of their appeal. The band takes the best elements of different flavors of metal-influenced hardcore and blends them together in a way that doesn't sound forced or confused.


Over the past few years, the United Kingdom has become a hotbed for metallic hardcore, producing bands like Repentance and Renounced, both of whom have created a massive buzz for themselves both across the pond and here in the States. The newest offering from this group of bands, DIGRESS put out a fantastic 7" last year on Carry The Weight records, titled The Seventh Day. Claiming to take cues from One King Down and Strongarm, DIGRESS wears these influences on their collective sleeve, with songs that bounce between crushing breakdowns and quiet melodic passages. With such a fantastic debut, it'll be interesting to see what this band does next.


Although they put a different spin on the style than the other bands on this list, FL's own BIND are certainly playing incredibly tight, fast, and crushing metal-tinged hardcore. In their short amount of time as a band, BIND has made a name for themselves with their politically charged lyrics backed by neck-snapping time changes and riffs that are equal parts lightning-fast thrash metal and moshy hardcore, this young band shows a lot of promise and is sure to build off the sound on their fantastic demo to come up with a truly badass follow-up.


Violent, ugly and mean, the five tracks on DEPRIVE's 2015 demo dropped out of seemingly nowhere and blew me away. This demo sounds like it could've easily come out of CT in the late 90's. No bullshit filler here, just crushing metallic hardcore done very, VERY right. Salt Lake City has a history of devastating, heavy hardcore, and this demo keeps the tradition going strong.


FOURTH CRUSADE plays crushing vegan metalcore in the vein of European bands who came before them like Arkangel, Reprisal, and Congress. Death Metal and Hardcore come together in perfect fashion when done by these German riffers. With a very small amount of recorded output, this new band has me excited for their next release.


PDC is another band who, while perhaps don't fit the category "metallic hardcore" in the sense that first comes to mind for many, they certainly pay homage to a style of furious metal-influenced hardcore played in the 90's by bands like Left for Dead and The Swarm. Equal parts punk, hardcore, and metal, PDC are a breath of fresh air in current a sea of bands who are decidedly on one end of the spectrum. Despite that, with buzz-saw guitars churning out heavy, crushing riffs, over furious blasts of drums that waver between tempos, their sound is decidedly metallic nonetheless.


While "Clevo" has made a name for itself in the hardcore world with bands like Integrity and Ringworm, HOMEWRECKER is keeping the Cleveland hardcore flame burning with a style all their own. Furious death metal riffs cross with fast, pounding punk drums on the bands most recently LP, Circle Of Death. While this may sound like a combination you've heard a million times before, HOMEWRECKER does it in a way that is truly original. Every bit as heavy live as they are recorded, they have spread the gospel of their punishing sound with a rigorous touring schedule, and show no signs of slowing down, with a split and more tours on the horizon.


A band who's members are spread out across the east coast, MALICE AT THE PALCE, or MATP as they've come to be known, blend crushing metal riffs with groovy NYHC sensibilities to create a final product that is not unlike All Out War or Merauder. With appearances at last years UNITED BLOOD and THIS IS HARDCORE festivals, and a 12" EP on Six Feet Under Records, this band has been causing quite a stir.

Tying in with our most recent post about legendary Miami hardcore band Brethren's upcoming reunion, Eighty-Sixed records has announced the release of Once Again, a selected discography including Brethren's 19 songs of recorded output, remixed and remastered. Along with bands like MINDFRAME and OUT OF SPITE, Brethren epitomizes the style of bleak, heavy hardcore that dominated the landscape of Miami hardcore in the Mid-90's. This is the perfect introduction to the band for a new generation of hardcore kids. Once Again will be available on CD May 1st through Eighty-Sixed records, and you can check out the first remastered track, "Trapped In Reality", a bonafide Miami Hardcore classic, below.

Monday, March 7, 2016

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Mid/Late 90's Miami hardcore legends BRETHREN have announced a second reunion show in April. The line up includes a reunion from Miami's own ALL HELL BREAKS LOOSE, rare appearances from MALDITO and THE LOW LIFE, and two of South Florida's best new bands, GUILTY CONSCIENCE and DAY BY DAY. BRETHREN absolutely crushed it at their first reunion appearance last year in South Florida with Morning Again, so if you missed out on that, here's your chance to catch them now!