Wipe the blood from your teeth and get in the pit: it’s time for a recap of this week’s best hardcore, metal, and punk rock. We dug through the record crates to find the new tunes we think you need to spin and rage to. Looking for some new death metal to set the mood this season? Got you covered. Need some grindcore to get the spookiest time of year off on the right foot? Say no more. Strap in kiddies; it’s time to rock.
We’ve tagged plenty of albums as “one of the year’s best.” There has been some amazing stuff released this year; big stuff from big bands; none of it, however, comes close to Oathbreaker’s Rheia. This is, hands down, the best album of 2016. It’s a huge record that is rightly receiving critical acclaim everywhere you turn. Brilliant, dark, and beautiful, Rheia is at once challenging and catchy. It ranges from stunning harmonies to ragging violence all within the span of a single track. Caro Tanghe’s vocals are unforgettable and simply unlike anything else in the world of metal and hardcore. With Rheia, Oathbreaker have entered the big leagues. This week, the band released a video for the track “Immortals,” a personal favorite from the album, and it’s strange, sensual, and chaotic, just like the song. You can experience it below and once you are done watching it, go buy a copy of Rheia.
Anagnorisis play that dirty, flighty brand of metal we love so much. These guys have been kicking around for a while, but their new record, Peripeteia, is a watershed moment for them. It’s a perfect showcase for what makes this band so great. It’s angry, atmospheric, and mean. Peripeteia is a wall of sound, a constant plateau of pounding drums, furious guitar work, a vocal-chord-shredding growls. All of this is laced through an underlying groove that is present in almost every song. This is black metal that you bang your head to; it’s got rhythm through and through. Check out the song “5306 Morningside” to get a taste of what we’re talking about. Peripeteia is band perfecting their sound, and that’s always cause for celebration.
The return of Dangers was one of the year’s most exciting announcements. Of course, bands returning from long hiatuses doesn’t always mean we get awesome new music, but in Dangers’ case we lucked out. Their rebirth album, The Break in the Bend, is fan-freaking-tastic. It’s chaos personified; it’s frantic and magical. Thankfully, these dudes haven’t lost a step in their years away. You can take a listen to the whole album below, and, man oh man, is it good. Twangy, bitter, and fierce, there’s nothing quite like a Dangers record. We shared the track “Kiss With Spit” in a previous Scream at a Wall, so this time around we’re gonna suggest you check out “Human Noose” and “Darkest Art.” You’ll get a solid idea of way Dangers is so great with those songs and you definitely be craving some more of this particular brand of hardcore.
Okay, we admitted it, we had no idea Death By Stereo was still a band. We’d thought this guys had called it quits, but it turns out The Death lives. They got a new EP called Just Like You’d Leave Us, We’ve Left You For Dead and the track below proves Death By Stereo hasn’t changed one bit. They still have deep love for classic metal and they still bring all that entails into their songs. They’re still punk rock and hardcore, but they’ve definitely cleaned up their sound here. The song “I Think About Killing You Every Day” is a slick track with some clean and bright production. Don’t get us wrong, that doesn’t mean these guys are aiming for a main stream radio hit or anything: Death By Stereo is still as hard hitting as ever, and there are no soft edges. Hopefully, a new EP means the band is also hitting the road, because if you’ve never seen Death By Stereo live, you should really treat yourself to that spectacle. Few bands put on such energetic and intense live shows.
“I Wanna Die in Los Angeles” is a pretty bleak song. The lyrics area real downer, but that doesn’t stop Dead To Me from making this one of the catchiest tunes we’ve heard in some time. It’s a sing-along, up-beat punk number that’ll get your blood pumping. Of course, there’s an undercurrent of death and addiction, but hey, it sounds so fun! Trust us, one listen and you’ll be hooked on this. It’s seriously a damn near perfect song that we’ve had on repeat for days now. Just a constant loop playing over and over again. Stop reading this and click play already.
The sludge lords known as Crowbar are releasing their eleventh (eleventh!) album on October 28th. Titled The Serpent Only Lies, the album is another superb showing from a legendary band that shows no sign of slowing. Some would argue that Crowbar just gets better and better with each album, which is impressive when you consider the fact that they released their first LP back in 1991. Seriously, how many bands do their best work 25 years and eleven albums into their career. There aren’t many, that’s for sure, but Crowbar might be one of them. If the title track – which you can hear below – is any indication, The Serpent Only Lies is going to be one of Crowbar’s best. That’s impressive any way you cut it.
In year of exciting resurrections, brilliant returns, and stunning debuts, few things had us quite as excited as the return of Planes Mistaken for Stars. The reunion shows were cool, but we never really thought we’d get a new album and we certainly never thought said new album would kick this much ass. Fortunately, we were wring on both accounts because Planes Mistaken for Stars just released Prey and it kicks so much ass. So, so much. A true spiritual successor to their masterpiece Mercy, Prey is both an embracing of Planes Mistaken for Stars’ past and a huge leap forward. It’s unmistakably their sound but entirely something new and fresh. It’s just insanely good. Right from the first, blistering track, Planes Mistaken for Stars let you know they are the best there is at what they do. They rock harder than just about anybody and they do it with a raw energy nobody can duplicate. Don’t sleep on this one, kiddies; pick it up now. Like, right now.
Got some heavy tunes you’re into that we need to check out? Name them in comments below.
Images: James Rexroad
Gif: MTV/Beavis & Butt-head
Benjamin Bailey writes for the Nerdist and can be found on Twitter talking about Godzilla, comic books, and hardcore music.