And so, another month, another selection of short reviews. As always, it’s an eclectic selection, taking in a dark abmient soundtrack by Guillermo Pizarro; classic speed metal from Wardance; a reissue of some occult black metal, courtesy of Shaidar Logoth and Sentient Ruin; retro-rock from Wheel in the Sky; stomping hardcore from Peace of Mind; and some crushing death metal in the shape of Skeletal Serpent‘s self-titled EP. Enjoy!
Label: BDHW Records
Thronetorcher do not fuck around. The five-piece unleash utter devastation with their beatdown hardcore on debut EP Eden’s Poison, that’s made even more vicious than the norm through the addition of more metallic elements than is the norm, giving the EP a sound that doesn’t stray too far from the beatdown template, but still manages to do enough to distinguish itself. If you’re looking for something angry and heavy, then this has got you covered.
Beat-down hardcore often incorporates the worst sides of hardcore; derivative riffs, empty lyrics, and alpha-male posturing. So it’s genuinely great to come across a band who buck the trend, writing beat-down hardcore that gets pretty much everything right. Rather than sounding like the soundtrack for gym-bros to pound on each other, SOS by Backswing instead comes across as a real burst of energy and righteous rage, muscular without being bone-headed, and with heart-felt lyrics that actually have something to say. All of which makes it such a shame that the band have recently split, as this group held real promise.
The sheer bloody bravery to name your record after a genre of music can’t go un-noted. It’s raising expectations massively. Imagine if your high-school band that ripped off Slayer and Kreator riffs called your bedroom-recorded demo Thrash Metal. You’d be setting yourself up for one hell of a fall. And so it is with Climate of Fear. By calling their new EP Holy Terror, they’re raising expectations massively, bringing to mind as it does mighty bands like Integrity and Rot in Hell. But bloody hell, the English hardcore band get away with it, as Holy Terror is bruising, confident, and so forceful that any objections to the record’s name are promptly forced out the door, never to be seen again.