That whole “kitchen-sink” approach to metal, particularly that peculiar strain of emo, screamo metalcore that insisted on 101 riffs per second and demanded alternating screeched and clean vocals was EVERYWHERE in the early 00s. I remember slowly getting back into the swing of extreme music and being presented with bands like The Fall of Troy, Protest the Hero, Horse the Band (holy cow, remember Horse the Band?) and countless others but it was He Is Legend and a small album called I Am Hollywood that really stuck with me. Part of it was their unabashed love of a good lick and being unafraid to write songs that captured the spirit of 90s rock, but c’mon: part of it was also the astounding range and delivery of vocalist Schuylar Croom. So it pleases me to no end that 18 years since discovering them I get to dive into Endless Hallway, their seventh album and continuing affirmation that the band still has the juice to rip a room apart without sacrificing that special sauce that made them stand out from the crowd back in the day.Continue reading
Album Review: Norma Jean — “Deathrattle Sing For Me”
Nostalgia is a powerful force indeed. Nostalgia is a huge draw in modern media, and for me there are still plenty of bands that I listen to mostly because of nostalgia. This doesn’t mean that they have no merit outside of “I used to like them when I was younger” but the thing about nostalgia is that sometimes it slaps a big old pair of rose colored glasses on your face, and we tend to overlook faults in the name of the warm, fuzzy feeling we get, especially as our favorite bands get older. Norma Jean is a band that is very nostalgic for me, but Deathrattle Sing For Me is definitely not an exercise in nostalgia.Continue reading
Album Review: Ithaca — “They Fear Us”
Oh so long ago, back when I was a fan of, as opposed to a contributor to, this site, we featured Ithaca’s debut The Language of Injury as an album of the month chat, and I distinctly remember listening to that episode and feeling compelled to immediately dive into it. Needless to say, I was not disappointed, and Ithaca have been on my radar ever since. Now, three years later in a world that seems completely and utterly different, the South London metalcore hotshots return with a new fire, new perspectives and a whole lot more to say on They Fear Us. It’s the Rawring 20’s, y’all.Continue reading
Album Review: Misery Signals — “Ultraviolet”
My brother and I started high school at the heyday of the metalcore scene. We listened to quite a bit of awful, vapid breakdown-bots, but Misery Signals always stood out as a cut above the rest, right from the first time the guy sitting next to me in Spanish class put me on to them. Lyrically, sonically, technically, emotionally, there was something about them that made them resonate deeper with us, and it’s something that we still come back to. When I snagged Ultraviolet, I thought it would only be fitting that Vince and I tackle this one together. Continue reading
Nine Circles ov…Random VNYL Metal Records
It started about two years ago, and I have our Fearless Editor Josh to blame. For Christmas I received a flat, square cardboard box containing a creamy white edition of the self titled album from Succumb. I didn’t have a turntable…yet.
Two years later and I have a hefty collection spanning a plethora of genres, largely thanks my inability to stop my subscription to VNYL, a curated record subscription service. Every month I get three albums created to my tastes based on my listening history on Spotify as well as my Discogs collection. It can be hit or miss, particularly with their metal selections, but every time I start to pick up the phone to cancel another batch comes in with a surprise that makes me think, “Damn…maybe I should hold off another month.” So for this edition of Nine Circles ov…let’s dive into nine curated metal selections sent to me and see if they’re truly reflective of my listening tastes.
As always, let’s do this. Continue reading