CVLT Nation Top 6
Hardcore Albums of 2011
Number One HEARTLESS
Have you ever heard them sound of pure anger mixed with the strength of uncut fury? Well I have, and it has come in the form of HEARTLESS’s new album Hell Is Other People, which is out now via Southern Lord. Bloody fucking hell, this record is packed with 13 songs that were written with the mission to punish the listener’s senses and shatter what you might perceive as sonic rage! Okay, the band’s name is HEARTLESS, but everything about them shows that these humans put 300% heart into all of their compositions, and this is one reason you will not be able to avoid how rad they are. Damn, this band’s music makes my face contort & transform because of the different levels of chaotic audio rawness it puts out! HEARTLESS is a three-headed monster, each head reaping various forms of extreme music: power violence, metallic hardcore & mayhem crust. This band does not chip away at your inner demons, because they pound the fuck out them with their cyco drumming attack, the backbone of every track! HEARTLESS represents unity non-stop – you can hear and feel the respect that they have for each other and how serious they take their songwriting. With all of the aggressive vibe you will hear on Hell Is Other People, the band still crafts tunes that have an epic sense of real emotion and sinister melody. On the lyrical tip, these humans don’t sugar coat shit, which is awesome in my book, plus their singer gives 600% of himself on every track. So here is the way to make your skull explode: put your head between two speakers blasting “Pathogen” and the next thing you know you will be skulless. The storm of huge riffs that you will encounter on this album will make your head spin. Actually HEARTLESS have created one huge CAN OF DESTROY ALL with their new album!
The album’s artwork was the creation of Brian D’Agosta
Continue the Countdown after the jump!
Number Two FULL OF HELL
Written by Chris Noir
Full Of Hell could be described as the ultimate of extreme music: Take all the rawest, dirtiest and heaviest bits of Hardcore, Punk, extreme Metal, Grindcore, Sludge and even Power Electronics, give them to a bunch of young, angry and extremely motivated sickos and get wrecked. Read the interview I’ve done with these guys earlier to see what Full Of Hell are all about. They’ve already proven themselves with an EP, a split 7“ and countless shows, but with Roots Of Earth Are Consuming My Home (what an amazing title btw) they’ve built a monument of extremity, a manifest of heavy music. Sounds exaggerated? Listen to this record, fool!
The backbone of this record is fast, aggressive and crude Hardcore in the tradition of bands like Neanderthal, Infest or Pageninetynine. Full Of Hell add loads of metallic riffs, devastatingly slow, sludgy parts as well as sparks of Harsh Noise and Power Electronics. And this stuff is executed tight, to the point, packed in a powerful yet raw, ugly and feedback-ridden sound. All in all ROEACMH sounds like something your avarage Trash Talk fan will not enjoy (at least the ones I know).
The vocals are super sick, pending between fucked up screaming, gutteral growls and harsh shouts, which adds a nice old school Grindcore feeling to the mix, think of early Napalm Death to get the picture. ROEACMH is the soundtrack for endless sweaty nights full of angst, depression and rage.
Of course, like a big bunch of the better Hardcore records these days, ROEACMH is Now on Baltimore’s A389 Records. If you have only the slightest interest in any of the genres mentioned above – or need a record to listen to at your next brain surgery – Full Of Hell’s Roots Of Earth Are Consuming My Home is a definite must-have. If it wouldn’t be for bands like Full Of Hell I’d already have dropped out of all this shit years ago.
Number Three DEATHRITE
Written by Chris Noir
Considering the short time that DEATHRITE is an active band now, they were already able to turn a lot of heads towards their direction. Their demo tape, released in the beginning of 2011, was sold out within weeks, and shortly after they had a deal with Germany’s infamous Per Koro Records, which released this one-sided 12” just about two weeks ago. After putting the needle onto this record you fucking know what’s going on within the first five seconds: feedback, blast beat, fuck. Ripping in the wake of bands like Trap Them or Nails, those two bands should watch out not to be outpaced by DEATHRITE, who are definitely among the heaviest upcoming bands there are these days. You think I’m exaggerating on this one (again)? Well, fucking listen to the track Vultures/Wolves and wise up.
Deathrite – Vultures/Wolves
Take a bunch of part-time alcoholics who basically just finished school, put them into a rehearsal room, form a classic four piece line-up with vocals, bass, one guitar, drums. Let them listen to all the heavy shit from the last 30 years – Hardcore, Grind, Crust, Metal. Put a Boss HM-2 in front of it, there you go. Theoretically, it sounds so easy. In fact you have to add something you can not achieve by practice, money or connections: talent, and the right chemistry between the four sickos. Obviously DEATHRITE is one of those few lucky bands where everything concurs and thus the outcome is way above the average “new band trying to find its way”-bungling.
DEATHRITE’s self titled debut record is a definite shureshot for fans of Trap Them, Nails, Cursed or Black Breath. An affinity to Grindcore in the vein of Nasum or Rotten Sound won’t hurt either, nor to 90ies Powerviolence. Huge riffs, “Swedish” guitar sound, distorted bass, heavy vocals, head smashing drumsound, blastbeats, Crust parts, it’s all in the game. The song writing is really excellent, very diversified, never to much relying on one single ingredient but creating an atmosphere of destruction, misery and bloody knuckles that grabs you by the throat and rips the flesh off your skull with its foul but razor-sharp teeth.
You can download this record for free from the band’s website (see end of post), but all you vinyl lovers out there should try to get your hands onto the one sided 12”, which comes with an insanely awesome silk-screen-print on the flip side.
If DEATHRITE doesn’t end up on a US label like Southern Lord I’ll lose my last bit of remaining hope in humanity. You can quote me on that. Get this record, tell your mum, grind your fucking head in. Thanks.
Number Four OATHBREAKER
What happens when the body of hardcore gets possessed by the speed demons of murder metal? They create a bastard hellspawn named Oathbreaker who plans on conquering the world by releasing a killer album titled Maelstrom out now via Deathwish. This is some straight get the fuck out my face blackened punk, cooked with some metallic rage that will get you aggro for sure. Do not get it twisted – what’s extra epic about this recording is the level of madman emotion that weaves it’s way in & out of each track. Meaning that even though Oathbreaker punches you in the skull with their controlled chaos, they still hit these notes & tones with their songs that construct paths of empathy for beams of hope to illuminate. One of the raddest instruments that this band has in it’s arsenal is their caustic throat, who has one awesome decaying vocal delivery & creeps you out while drawing you into desolate world at the same time. Trust me, I’m not taking nothing away from this band because musically is fast moving damaged radness that has the force to snap necks. Songs like “Fate Is Nigh” are a perfect example of how this band can bring the pain & wipe your tears away at the same time. Dude, the drumming on Maelstrom will give you bangover which is caused by too much excessive head banging which will occur when listening to this album. What I dig about this band is they have taken the foundation but transformed into their own dark mass of black sound. Oathbreaker’s music will take you down many different roads & directions while never getting lost, you will even be walked down into the pit of doom on certain songs then into to the cave of brutality. Check this – it’s the last song on the album that gets kudos for the weirdo factor. It’s the title track on the album Maelstrom it’s a simple & haunting acoustic number with awesome vocals to lead you away into nothingness…
Number Five NIGHT-HAG
What’s drawing me into this black hole of chaos, what’s pulling me into this worm hole of nothingness? It’s the unseen force of Night Hag…this band is sonic murder in action. Their 2011 release, Gilded Age, out via Capitalgames Records, is a blackened head fuck that the whole of humanity should experience. If I break it down to the nitty gritty, they have created an album that is 9 songs of havok meant to torment the darkest parts of our being & they do a damn good job at it! Night Hag’s songs are audio bad weather that never let’s up, but they have the groove of a Southern black college marching band possessed by the spirits of the underworld. These dudes also have songwriting skills that bring the death blow to every tune on this album. When you hear a Night Hag composition, the vibe of haunted fury will over take your reality, and not even the might of the corporate giants will be able to stand up to your wrath. I guess you could call their music scorched earth hardcore infused with stench hate black metal…that sort of describes how rad this band is. Unholy hell, these dudes have riffs that could make legless humans slam dance – it’s like their riffage is speaking it’s own language. You don’t even want to get me started on the vocalist, whose screams are oven-roasted death served for us all to devour. When you allow them to tie you up in their melodic madness, then you will start to realize you are listening to the real black magic! Here is a test – put on their song “Cynic”: if you don’t start heading banging instantly, something must be wrong, run to to your nearest doctor, you just might need an injection of metallic hardcore. Now you should be straight, Night Hag is my new drug of choice, who needs weed when you can have sonic speed!
[audio:http://www.cvltnation.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/04-Mongrel.mp3|titles=Night Hag Mongrel]
[audio:http://www.cvltnation.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/08-Cynic.mp3|titles=Night Hag Cynic]
Number Six HORDES
Did I just get kicked in the head? Why is there blood in my mouth? It’s because of the sonic violence inflicted on me by the new HORDES record, Abarognosis, being released by King of the Monsters Records (pre order HERE). This Inland Empire band is in full-on attack mode on this set of songs – at times it seems like Napalm Death is at war with BL’AST. What gets me hyped about HORDES is the way that they have brought some weirdo shit to power violence. These dudes write killer fucking tunes that have extra rad sludge breakdowns that ooze out this demented blues vibe. Then the next thing you know you are being decapitated by intense, razor-sharp speed. This bands music occupies a space where Wall Street bankers’ limbs are broken and burned for fun! I’m so impressed by the way they use space and emotion in their songs. One thing you will take away from listening to this is how different musical influences can be molded into something awesome and not contrived. The production on Abarognosis is right on fucking point – it’s clean and huge, with a sense of cosmic dirt swirling all around it. Their song “Anvil” is a stellar example of how this band has matured since the release of their radical demo. HORDES play by one rule: there are no rules, just insane power! I extra dig their singer’s delivery; he reminds me of an old blues man, but on a hardcore tip. It makes perfect sense, because this band deals with some urban shit on this record, no tree-hugging steez happening here. If I could figure out a way to bottle up the rage that this band kicks out, we would have a new brutal energy drink on our hands. The world would be a better place if we all ran around spazzed out on HORDES!