Welcome back to another edition of Chaos is Me. For those that might be here for the first time, this is the second edition of my monthly column where I highlight my favorite screamo releases from the month prior. September was a slower month than the previous one in terms of releases, at least to my ears, but there were still several albums worth noting. Take a look below the cut to see which September releases made the…well the cut. If the header image didn’t give one away already…
Gillian Carter – …on Audiotree Live
Gillian Carter’s 2018 album …This Earth Shaped Tomb would have easily landed on my best of list last year…had I listened to the album in 2018. Consider my inclusion of the band’s half-hour live set at Chicago’s Audiotree studios in this month’s round up both a ringing endorsement and a formal apology to Gillian Carter themselves. The band rip through a set list consisting of mostly material from the aforementioned album (including standout favorite of mine ‘Distant Blue Ambiance’), and as much as I enjoyed hearing this band on record, seeing the band play this set is on a whole other level. The energy they bring to the live venue is frightening at times; watch the accompanying video of their performance to see limbs flailing, people jumping off of amp stacks, and guitarist/vocalist Logan Rivera literally swinging from the rafters while playing. This is frantic, furious, passionate hardcore that doesn’t hold anything back.
…and its name was Epyon – Visit to a Grave
Anime and screamo is like peanut butter and chocolate to me. There’s something about the two that just meshes together so well in my brain, perhaps because the best of both art forms tends to draw out a wistful feeling in me that I like to bask in. …and its name was Epyon take their name and imagery from the Gundam universe and combine that with powerful emotional hardcore to great effect. The group’s second release, Visit to a Grave, is a twelve-minute, four song affair that touches on personal loss, grief, and moving forward from tragedy in the way that screamo does best: through pure, unbridled energy as catharsis. Visit is a heartfelt, moving tribute to a lost loved one and a powerful example of art as part of the process of grieving and healing.
Author’s Note: Someone please find me an easy to follow series/episode watching guide for the Gundam universe. I’ve wanted to get into it for so long but its timeline is complicated to say the least. You will have my undying affection in return.
Joliette – Luz Devora
As with the last edition of this column, I wanted to go back and talk about screamo albums released earlier this year that I thought deserved attention, in addition to those released this month. Joliette‘s Luz Devora was released back in June and is one powerhouse of a hardcore album. More focused in feel than some other albums we’ve covered in this column, Luz Devora trades some of the spastic energy of emoviolence for something much more rooted in mainline hardcore a la French contemporaries Birds in Row (whose album did make my favorites list from last year), but still packed full of the kind of hooks you’re all here for. There is a huge amount of frustration, grief, and energy put into the songs here, and they practically explode out of the speakers, backed up by a robust production job that gives the instruments weight behind them. If you missed this when it came out, sleep no longer.
Until next time,