Shadow Snakes – Shadow Snakes
Syracuse’s Shadow Snakes rip and roar through 11 tracks of unrelenting, chaotic hardcore on their self-titled debut. Comprised of the former members of Ed Gein and former Breather Resist frontman Steve Sindoni, Shadow Snakes use their combined experience to their advantage and deliver a heart-attack inducing hardcore album that takes no prisoners. Rather than revive the spastic styles the band’s predecessor’s became known for, Shadow Snakes subverts expectations and opts for a sound that is a bit more straightforward, but no less dizzying and aggressive. The songs featured on this recording are hellacious bursts of concussive drumming and battering guitar riffs. Many of the songs tow the line between grindcore and hardcore, bleeding in and out of blast beat-laden cacophonies and mosh-worthy stampedes. Angular, off-kilter grooves often rear their ugly heads at surprising moments to displace a rather straightforward song. Noisy, dissonant structures also make appearances at opportune moments to give more grime to already grimy recording. From start to finish, Shadow Snakes is a whirlwind of vitriolic instrumentation that will have listeners picking their jaws off of the floor.
Release Date: August 31, 2018
Favorite Tracks: “Heck”, “Feedback Years”, “Againagainagainagainagain” and “Insured Erections”
For Fans Of: Cult Leader, Graf Orlock, Rotten Sound and End
Touching God – Touching God
Canadian duo Touching God deliver bombastic, industrial noise punk on their debut, self-titled EP. Comprised of five cacophonous tracks, Touching God melds multiple, seemingly incompatible styles into a glitching, harsh assault. The music presented on this release could be likened to a more spastic Uniform, or early Daughters material processed on a malfunctioning computer. Pounding industrial drum sounds collide with various forms of electronic insanity, ranging from sci-fi soundscapes, to bursts of mechanized noise. The guitar work ranges from huge, rusted riffs (“Messiah, Dismissed”), to jittering freakouts (“An Absolute at Large”, “Civilian”), or could be completely absent in favor of discombobulating electronica (“Kind Wolf”). It’s a bit messy and frantic for its own good at times, but it’s clear that was the band’s intention and it’s hard not to find the chaos endearing. Touching God isn’t perfect, but it’s definitely one of the more unique releases of the year.
Rating: April 11, 2018
Favorite Tracks: “An Absolute at Large” and “Messiah, Dismissed”
For Fans Of: Uniform, Daughters, Blanck Mass and Youth Code
Accident Prone – Deep Wound Red
Accident Prone subject listeners to 15 unrelenting minutes of head-spinning metallic hardcore on their newest EP, Deep Wound Red. Fully embracing the spastic aspects of metalcore/mathcore, the six tracks featured on this release bludgeon and seizure at unpredictable moments. The songs deliver an abundance of dissonant, rhythmically-jarring riffs that detonate in listeners’ faces like IEDs. Frenzied hardcore instrumentation seamlessly transitions into these explosions of six-string chaos, or vice versa, which makes for hellacious and concise beatings. Elements of modern hardcore à la chugging beatdowns makes an appearance as well, but filtered through the bands off-kilter lens. These noise-laden breakdowns chug and shriek in typical metalcore fashion, but are spliced with bursts of discordant riffage to ensure listeners that the band has no intention of dialing back the chaos. In short, Accident Prone‘s Deep Wound Red is the perfect soundtrack to those who just adore getting maimed.
Release Date: August 23, 2018
Favorite Tracks: “Jonestown Family Reunion”, “Deep Wound Red” and “Yellow Spectacles”
For Fans Of: Vein, Scarlet, Spitfire, End and Year of the Knife
Flood Peak – Plagued by Sufferers
Flood Peak excel at being dark, dreary and devastation on their debut EP, Plagued by Sufferers. Falling somewhere between the most dismal and sprawling material from bands like Neurosis and Amenra, and the unpredictable nature of bands like Starkweather, Portland’s Flood Peak clearly have no interest in the typical post-metal tropes. This is immediately made evident by “Precursor”, the shape-shifting number that opens up their debut release. Haunting melodies give way to lengthy marches of avalanche-inducing riffs on this seven-minute tune, which is soon wrought with volatile rhythmic shifts and angular sludge riffs. “Scourge” follows next with a tension-building slow-burn that transitions into huge, menacing riffs that would not sound out of place on Through Silver in Blood. The record is then rounded out by two leviathanic tracks “Mire” and “Veiled by Summoners”. The former track is rife with powerful grooves and dissonance, while the latter track brings everything to a close with an intense, 10-minute amalgam of the album’s most soul-crushing moments. Lovers of all things doom and gloom would be remiss to let this record slip by them.
Release Date: February 1, 2018
Favorite Tracks: “Precursor” and “Veiled by Summoners”
For Fans Of: Amenra, Neurosis, Grief, Starkweather and Inter Arma