Jul 232020
 

American Arson offer up rock n roll hardcore on their album, “A Line In The Sand” released on Facedown Records. Their debut full album release on Facedown is a energetic blast that offers both melody and aggression with a solid rock n roll punch in the face.

Akin to a top fuel dragster staging you just know you in for one hell of a ride from the first track, and when the rubber gets grip the velocity is maintained at times sending ones brain ears in to adrenaline O.D. The music drives with simplicity yet when complexity is demanded Evan Baker and Jesse Gentry musical relationship does a fantastic job at it, digging into the catalogues of both new school and old school hardcore with star studded excellence.

One of my favourite tracks is “Drop Your Draggers”, which does just that mixing up some old school hardcore with new school elements and its driving momentum hits hard like Thor’s Hammer. Its hardcore punk edges I can identify with as a 80’s hardcore punk kid. It’s also quite poetic they used punk as the back bone for a political message. Well done.

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Deathbreaker – “Isolate”

 Posted by on June 30, 2020 at 00:09  No Responses »
Jun 302020
 

I like some good hardcore, get’s the blood flowing, and now being winter down in South Africa and lockdown because of covid 19 added to the mix, to have some energetic music to warm up ones blood is a welcomed retreat from it all. So when I hear the label Facedown mentioned, I sort of relate to it as Christian music’s fraternity of hardcore. So a good place for Deathbreaker to find themselves within.

The energy capsulated in ‘Isolate’ sharpens the edges of the bands hardcore roots driving a more assault driven harder approach than their ‘Disconnect’ release 3 years ago. Right from the start images of hardcore kids in the pit hardcore moshing hit my frontal lobe. Images of crowd chaos abound, guess I am going to have to move the furniture out the way to fully appreciate the aural aggression of Isolate.

As the listener you are brought to the attention of the raw characteristics of the songs, not a single song is marred by the production of the album. Like a good bottle of ketchup when poured, it has substance, and not at all a watered down interpretation of the band, the sound comes across rich and ‘live’ and rich in flavour. Those characteristics set it up nicely in the energy department.

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DENS – “Taming Tongues”

 Posted by on May 31, 2020 at 19:12  No Responses »
May 312020
 

Hailing from Richmond Virginia, Dens have come out with their sophomore album, “Taming Tongues”.  The band found their mission in using music as a platform to creatively and honestly explore themes of faith, hope, redemption, and grace. In 2018 the band released their guitar-driven post-rock Facedown debut EP No Small Tempest and won the hearts of Facedown fans with their outstanding, catchy choruses.

Their new album comes to grips with the current state of shattered communication and subjective truths. “Taming Tongues” explores how words can be life-giving or destructive, and emotions can be the salt of life or the fuel that gets thrown on a fire. Something that should catch your attention is the song listing, when put together it becomes a well worded sentence, “Even Foolish Men Are Wise When They Learn To Keep Quiet”.

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Apr 262020
 

American Arson are back with their Facedown Records debut full length “A Line in the Sand.” The new album leans heavily on rock ’n’ roll with a hint of post hardcore discontent and the unmistakeable vocal hooks that fans have come to love. The duo’s massive sound derived from instrumental looping and multi-amp stacking is irresistible especially on the first single ‘Unbreakable.’ The brand new album which will be released July 3rd. follows the 2019 EP “Rise & Fall” Ep and will be American Arson’s first full length label release.

Check out the new single ‘Unbreakable’ below.

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Northlander – “Forces of Light”

 Posted by on March 6, 2020 at 17:35  No Responses »
Mar 062020
 

Chris Ratzlaff, vocalist and guitarist of Northlander, inspired my February listening journey. You see, I’d had only my own rough idea of what metalcore and post-harcore was about and to be honest, equated it with My Chemical Romance’s emo stylings, mistakenly. I’d also recently taken Bring Me The Horizon’s crib notes anthology “2004-2013” for a spin, and if you’ve heard “Amo” (2019), marvelled at their brutal musical beginnings before turning pop. The difference between Fallstar and Northlander is like this in a way. Northlander are Chris, Bryan and Cody from Fallstar but in a different guise.

In an interview around the time of Fallstar’s 2013 album “Backdraft”, Chris listed bands that influenced how he wrote music, as well as his vocal style. He mentioned bands like August Burns Red, Beloved, Senses Fail, Taking Back Sunday and The Used, and listening to “Backdraft” I could hear how these influences may have shaped Fallstar’s sound. With less of a hardcore bent than some of the others, and perhaps not as stylistically experimental as The Used are, Fallstar has a heaviness that puts them outside what might be conventionally considered “worship music”. I also get that many churches questioned whether heavy metal music could glorify God, and that many bands like Fallstar were given a cool reception. Christian heavy metal bands continue to fight ridicule from secular bands, but like Fallstar gospel joy continues to shine through in their performances. It is in this time that members of Fallstar composed songs for a future project now known as Northlander.

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