Album reviews: Aglo, Threat, Inner Light, Northwalk. FFO: Death-Doom, Hardcore, Metalcore and more Hardcore.
BulletBelt Reviews by Devil's Horns Zine
(By Mark J).You know the drill, straight up no bullshit reviews like the zines of old. No fancy writing, just straight-up facts. Four killer releases here, all bangers!!!.
Wow, what a refreshingly punishing EP. This is a one-man project, be it an utter fucking legend Aaron Osborne of many incredible bands and Aglo is a very sci-fi-based death/doom/sludge masterpiece. Into the Maze is six tracks of erosive and foul heavy riffs with some wicked samples and fantastic songwriting. Another key selling point is it veers away from some of the mindless repetitive doom and sludge that seems to pop up in every second gig in Melbourne.
Indeed there is a huge groove and utter Eyehategod/Sabbath worship, but it also builds on from Aaron's iconic I Exist band. The scope of the tracks is broad, intense and alluring. The guitar wizardry is wild and often the vocals sound like Bolt Thrower becoming a Doom band, yes please sir!. The whole EP is epic and breathtaking, and the Side A-Into the Maze marginally is slightly my preference over the Side B-Collector side, but that's like picking Black Sabbath's Paranoid over their self-titled debut; both are killer. Highlights are the soul-destroying pace of Parasites, the sheer skin-slicing Voivod-like brilliance of Darkened Mirror and the scratchy magnificence of the funeral hymn closer that is The Journey Home.
This is a fucking beast of a release and the meaty production was sublime.
This is yet another sick band out of the new centre of Hardcore, Frankston. As expected this is riff-driven, energetic as sculling ten cans of Red Bull at the same time. This definitely reminds me of early Terror, First Blood, old-school sxe hardcore and Adelaide's finest No Peace. Only six tracks, but the brilliant quality makes you crave for a full album after one listen. These cats can play well, write catchy tunes and they excel at wild breakdowns; so I am a very happy man. Plus it has Joel from Hitlist; so you know it'll be a banger. All tracks are ripping classics, and have those nasty earworms in every track. Just stop reading this and buy the release and support these legends hard!!. Fuck me there must be some nuclear waste in that Franga water, drink it up, drink it up!!!!
Inner Light-S/T EP. This is a newish band from Normandy, France. And they absolutely crush it on this solid release. This chunky Five track Ep is
very much in the vein of Walls of Jericho and Venom Prison etc, but with more metallic hardcore-style vocals as opposed to death metal style. But the confidence shines on every track, the band definitely has some very skilled musicians.
The knowledgeable songwriting is crisp and intelligent, and the stellar production is aggressive but has a strong live feel. Every track captures your attention, is penetrating as hell and is very memorable. Opener Inside My Veins is nasty and punchy and Monsters is a wild spotlighting showcase for this band. But a solid, metallic hardcore release of depth and they have a huge future ahead of them. Amazing sound and is an instant classic.
Northwalk-Steadfast EP. Man, I love this band they simply get better with each release. Bit by fucking bit, they add more grit and anger. This four track beast is gnarly and nasty as hell. This EP has a real old-school NYHC feel, in the abrasive ballpark of both Skarhead and Merauder. I love the rawish production and the guitar tone, shit is so dense and the vocals are caustic as hell. The release is flawless, but Cutting Ties is my highlight. A band that just keeps improving!!
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