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. Spring is upon us, the flowers are in bloom, and it’s the perfect time to get amped up on some new heavy tunes. Looking for some new death metal to bring into your life? Got you covered. Need some grindcore to get your wedding reception off on the right foot? Say no more. Strap in, kiddies; it’s time to rock.
Metal legends Obituary have just released their 10th album–that’s right, 10th!–and it’s an absolute killer. You’d think a career that spans over three decades would slow a band down, take a little wind out of their sails. It’d be understandable if they fell into a routine and just focused on playing to the faithful and churning out the same album over and over again. Obituary clearly are not interested in taking that road. They are not slowing down and this self-titled album proves they’re still pushing themselves to the very limits. The guitars sound amazing, maybe the best they’ve ever sounded; top-notch from the solos to the mean riffage. The band is as heavy and crunchy as ever, but they are also at their catchiest. There’s some serious mainstream appeal on this record, but not at the sacrifice of Obituary’s edge or raw intensity. These guys are heavy metal royalty, no doubt. Whether you’re a long time fan or just looking for some fast and heavy tunes for the weekend, Obituary deliver the goods. You can pick this awesomeness up from our friends Relapse Records right now.
Silence Equals Death play straightforward hardcore and they play it well. Within thirty seconds of their song “Peacemaker,” it becomes apparent these guys are from the East Coast: you can just hear it. Close your eyes and picture a band that would have toured with Sick of it All in the ’90s, and that is what Silence Equals Death sounds like. These New Jersey boys have it dialed in: the riffs, the shout-along choruses, the hard-hitting breakdown. Silence Equals Death knows the formula and they play it well. This stuff will get in your ears and stay there, leaving you with a burning urge to stage dive and circle pit. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix. You don’t always have to reinvent the wheel. This is the sort of hardcore we grew up on and we’ll never get tired of it.
When you hear the name “Sloth Herder,” you may not immediately think “death chorus grindcore,” but that’s exactly what Sloth Herder is. They play some fierce numbers that are filled with deathly screams and brutal licks. The guitar sounds like something straight out of riff-fueled nightmare, complete with soaring highs and crushing grooves. Punishing and relentless, Sloth Herder are not messing around, even though their name might lead you to believe otherwise. This band is ugly, dark, and wonderfully strange. Their time signatures are all over the place and they jump from blistering blast beats to furious breakdowns at the snap of a finger. If you are looking for something different, check out Sloth Herder. Sonically, they are in a class all their own.
French monsters Fange are an angry, angry band. Their sound is somewhere between Daughters, Helmet, Unsane, and Full of Hell. They ride the low end hard and find some serious grooves on their new album Pourissoir, but the vocals are a violent, jagged edge that cut through any attempt at melody or rhythm. You can’t get comfortable listening to these guys, because they are assaulting you vocals that sound like the death screams of demons. Listening to this album is a chaotic and savage experience, in the best possible way. Fange is raw like freshly burned flesh, sticky and stinging. They’re infectious and you’ll find you mind drifting back to these songs long after the last track has ended. Challenging and complex, Fange is a band you listen to at 3 a.m. on Saturday after watching a couple Cronenberg movies. They are audio horror and we love them for it.
Menacing and atmospheric, Dodecahedron’s new album Kwintessens is a black metal masterpiece. It’s a wall of noise, fury, and wrath. If you are familiar with Season of Mist’s catalogue, you have a rough idea of what to expect here, but these guys take it a step further. Like labelmates The Great Old Ones, Dodecahedron play black metal that is epic and grand in scale. It’s big, cinematic stuff. Unlike other black metal bands, Kwintessens also spends lots of time wallowing in noise and heavy breakdowns. It’s freaking anarchy; audio mayhem that washes over you in a sea of disorder and brutality. You can hear all of Kwintessens below, but be warned, this stuff will haunt you. Once you’ve unleashed this maelstrom, it will consume you.
And that’s all the time we have to bludgeon your earholes this week. What tunes are rocking your world lately? Leave us some pointers in comments and we’ll try to check ’em out.
Image: Obituary/Relapse Records
Gif: Cannon Films
Benjamin Bailey writes for the Nerdist and can be found on Twitter talking about Godzilla, comic books, and hardcore music.