Tag Archives: Unsigned

So Stressed – “ATTRACTED TO OPEN MOUTHS” Review

So Stressed - Attracted To Open Mouths

So Stressed – Attracted To Open Mouths
Genre: Noise Rock / Emo / Experimental

Label: Unsigned

So Stressed are a three-piece band from Sacramento, California who pump out a brash yet melodic vein of noise rock with emo tendencies. Despite the noisy existence of Pg.99 or Jerome’s Dream, it sounds like this mixture shouldn’t work, but it really does: imagine if At The Drive-In had been influenced by White Suns, Lightning Bolt and Rolo Tomassi and you might get a vague idea.  Continue reading

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Gas Axe – “GAS AXE” EP Review

Gas Axe - Gas AxeGas Axe – Gas Axe
Genre: Doom Metal/Sludge/Death Metal

Label: Unsigned

South Wales is an extremely frustrating place to live if you’re a metal fan whose appetite isn’t easily fulfilled by the likes of Disturbed, Bring Me The Horizon or Lamb Of God. If you’re someone who prefers to dabble in the filth and grime of doom metal, black metal, drone, death metal, grindcore, etc. then South Wales can be a soul-destroying place at times… Your standard local metal band usually consists of a group of bored teens or 20-somethings who aspire to be the next Killswitch Engage, and while it’s better to have some sort of metal scene than no scene at all, you’re still hungry for something more… Continue reading

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Submission Round Ups #1

This will be a new segment where I review submissions sent in via mini-reviews. If you send stuff for me to review it, I will review it, and so this is the best way I can keep on top of the growing number of submissions. If you like/hate the idea, let me know! Continue reading

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Submission Review Ideas.

Due to the growing number of submissions and falling number of free time, I’m thinking of knocking out maybe five mini-reviews of submissions in a post from now on, so I’m wondering if that’s a good idea to any readers?

I must have a good fifteen submissions now that I’ve left piling up (my bad, I know) and due to more hours at work (which I really need) and other sites to write for, my free time for this is getting smaller.

Sorry to anybody who has sent me their music looking for those full in-depth reviews I’d do, but it’s looking unlikely I can do them, so mini-reviews seem like the best way. Something is better than nothing, right?

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Teeph – “VIETNAMASTE” Quick Review

Teeph – Vietnamaste
Genre: Noise Rock/Math Rock/Sludge

Label: Unsigned

Teeph are a groove-filled noise rock trio that consists of originators Sesar Sanchez (guitar) and Alex Coffin (drums) as well as later member Matt Shilts (bass). “Vietnamaste” is their second album, following 2009’s self-titled, and takes a more light-hearted approach, although there are still some pretty intense moments to be had. Continue reading

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Tongue – “Who Fired The Workers Of Happiness Factory?” EP Review

Tongue – Who Fired The Workers Of Happiness Factory?
Genre: Rock/Stoner Rock

Label: Self-released

Tongue are a band from Serbia, fronted by guitarist and vocalist Bizic Vladimir (AKA. Ripkid), formerly lead guitarist of the unfortunately disbanded hardcore punk pushers Lets Grow, who put out a strong amount of LPs and splits from 2001 to 2010. However, Tongue sees Vladimir taking a turn to a slower, groove-orientated rock direction. Continue reading

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The Portrait – “Infinity” Quick Review

The Portrait – Infinity
Genre: Metalcore/Experimental

Label: Self-released

The Portrait are a refreshing downtempo four-piece metalcore band from New Mexico, and even then it’s pretty hard to describe the band as ‘metalcore’ alone, as there seems to be influences of a sparse range in their sound – especially ‘djent’, ambient and progressive metal. If you’re hoping for a The Devil Wears Prada sound-a-like, then you’re looking at the wrong band.

This 6-song EP runs along a concept of the relationship between the Royal Stars and the Earth. Earth discovers the Royal Stars, a collective entity above the planet that watch over it. Then Earth creates humanity while giving it conscience; a right reserved only for the Royal Stars – eventually the gift becomes clear and the stars are initially unhappy with Earth’s actions, and events unfold.

So, with this story in mind, you can expect philosophical lyrics involving Gods, scenes of apocalypse, denial and acceptance, etc. The EP is split into four parts with an instrumental intro and outro. The opening track Arches prepares you with this ground-shaking rumble with all these echoing sounds, before these deep, tremelo-picked guitars jump in and the rest of the band follows in this metalcore/’djent’ mixing sound.

This sound is pretty continuous for the whole theme, obviously with alterations. The second track Part I. Gaia starts with this really nice spacey high-end guitar riff while vocalist Matt West introduces himself with clear pronunciation despite the almost spit-like shouting, with slight reverb. The track also features guest vocalist John Luzietti, who speaks as the Earth, having this mean guttural shout which morphs into growls. It’s pretty intense.

The following tracks also feature different guest vocalists with their own styles, speaking as the stars or Earth, keeping the listener on their toes the whole time. Matt Sanchez on Part III. Taurus has this very emotional hardcore sound which is accompanied by sombre waves of low, ringing guitars. Polyrhythm riffs also come in and out of each song – Part IV. Leo opens with one that just sounds punishing and judgemental.

The problem with “Infinity” is that its story seems so deep, yet only explored so briefly, that it should be material for a full-length album and maybe explained in more detail. It can be difficult to distinguish different tracks too, instrumentally.

But “Infinity” is definitely worthwhile for anyone looking for something more thoughtful and experimental than most metalcore bands, and sounds like unimaginable mix of Brutality Will Prevail, Hopesfall and “Hollow Crown”-era Architects.

You can download the EP for free here: http://theportraitnm.bandcamp.com/

7/10
Favourite tracks: Part I. Gaia, Part III. Taurus.

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