ALBUM REVIEW: Lionheart – Welcome To The West Coast III


 

LHHC, baby.

 

Singer Rob Watson is one of the most adept frontmen in hardcore when it comes to being able to both hype up a crowd and tell grim, streetwise lyrical tales over bouncy grooves. Nothing has changed with their latest release, Welcome To The West Coast III (Arising Empire). While the series of ‘Welcome…’ releases started with an EP, it is now halfway to keeping pace with Lil Wayne‘s Tha Carter albums. “Welcome” implies an introduction, but ironically the band no longer need one. Think of the title as more akin to an ongoing episodic documentary at this point.

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ALBUM REVIEW: R.A.M.B.O. – Defy Extinction


 

As shitty as the political climate can be, the one silver lining you can rely on is that it’s going to inspire artists and musicians young and old to create some remarkable work. After a long slumber the boys in R.A.M.B.O. woke up to a world of alternative facts, conspiracy theories run amok, Boris Johnson and tales of “rigged” elections. All that kind of nonsense is the stuff that stimulates folks to create albums like Defy Extinction (Relapse Records).

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ALBUM REVIEW: Ashenspire – Hostile Architecture


Ashenspire follow up their debut album Speak Not of The Laudanum Quandary (2017) with this second release for Code666 Records. Lyrically Hostile Architecture is themed around the return of fascism in our mainstream politics, and the alienation of society created by the ever-increasing vast wealth gap between the working classes and the elite. And instrumentally the record is one of the most bizarrely original creations of music I’ve heard in some time.Continue reading


ALBUM REVIEW: Ignite – Ignite


Self-titled albums can be something of a double-edged sword (just ask Suicide Silence…) particularly when you’re jumping in twenty-five years into a career and following a significant line-up change, Zoltán Téglás having departed in 2020 after over a quarter of a century behind the mic stand. Understandably, there is always caution and concern about such an integral part of a band’s sound changing, let alone that happening this deep into their innings. Here, though, Californian punks Ignite benefit from never having been the most prolific of outfits – Ignite (Century Media) being only their sixth album overall despite the band debuting in 1994 – and the fact that their last outing, A War Against You, was not their strongest. More melodic than his predecessor, though not to the detriment of any gusto, Eli Santana (actor, guitarist for Holy Grail, Incite, ex-Huntress) is the voice of their return to competitive action some six years on, and fits in seamlessly.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Vein.fm – This World Is Going To Ruin You


Fresh off an instant classic and a slight name change, Vein.fm have returned with another chaotic work of art entitled This World Is Going To Ruin You (Nuclear Blast). The Boston (yes, I am very biased on this one) hardcore outfit came back swinging in this sophomore release that certainly lives up to its predecessor without being a copy/paste job. While the expected frantic song structures and nu-metal influences are here as expected, I felt an increase of melodic moments in this record, and that is not a disparaging remark at all.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Hatebreed – Weight Of The False Self


 

In a year which has seen a global pandemic, mass protests and rioting, explosions, fires, floods, earthquakes, and even fucking murder hornets, wouldn’t it be nice to not have to worry about what final cruel tricks 2020 might still have left up its sleeve, and just have something nice and dependable to enjoy?

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ALBUM REVIEW: Dropdead – Dropdead 2020


Punk music continues to be the most outspoken genre of heavy music in terms of political/social issues. This is no different from the hardcore punk/grindcore outfit known simply as Dropdead. Formed back at the beginning of 1991 and has released many recordings over the years, this is only the third studio album, however, it has come about in perfect timing. Simply titled Dropdead 2020 (Armageddon), is a twenty-four-minute sonic attack on all things evil such as the ever-growing right-wing extremists, animal abuse, and overall human stupidity.

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Terror – Total Retaliation


No airs, no graces, no gods, no masters; this is hitting hard, beating down, aggressive music. Armed with their seventh studio album, Total Retaliation (Nuclear Blast/Pure Noise) and bucket load of muscle and testosterone to palm-mute chug into your face, LA five-piece Terror, bastions of traditional Tough-guy Hardcore, bring the chants, the slams, the pit-anthems and the attack in their own inimitable and unmistakable approach.Continue reading