We’re at a point where a hot shit, flavour of the month band can become old hat moments after they are touted as the next big thing. It’s so easy to lose track of who’s who, what’s hot and not and generally what the hell is happening in music and it’s always gonna be impossible to hear everything good out there. That’s where Heavy Blog, and others like us, come in. We have our core features focusing on specific genres—what’s up Grind My Gears fans?!—but today I’m lumping together bands who’s only similarity is their shared suffix. They’re all “core” in some form or another. To make things more digestible, I’ve even added a strapline for each, covering their sound in one fantastically humorous sentence. Please, enjoy and rock responsibly.
Every once in a great while we have calendar years that see iconic releases across a range of styles. It is rare that we see this happen in just one particular style. 1987 was one such year, though, as the entire spectrum of heaviness saw iconic records drop like so many tears from the eyes of mainstream pop music stars that these albums would devour. At the time, it didn’t seem like this was any different of a year for music until fans started to take a look at their growing record collections and what would spin out from the influence of so many landmark albums.
Firstly, by the time I actually came across this next entry into the Hall of Grind and decided to write about them, they released two more batches of hot shit, toxic grind. If this wasn’t a sign from the Holy Grindfather then I’m a two-tone ska fiend. Throat Breach are every single bit as unpleasant sounding as their moniker but in just over a year have consistently released music as and when they feel like it. Presents for everyone indeed. Over the course of sixteen releases this Midwest branch of the Terror Squad have found a sound worth killing for. In like, twelve months. How many releases did you put out the last twelve months?
It’s been five long years; five long years since Converge, the forefathers of emo leaning metalcore, have released music. That all changed last week, however, as the band put out a 7″ with not one, but two brand new tracks. They still remain slightly controversial, with some in the Heavy Blog camp dismissing them. Here at Grind My Tears, however, those tracks are nothing but pure gold and the exact music the band should release after a five year absence. It is for exactly that reason that those tracks will be explored in depth below, putting them under an intense microscope and examining their every detail.
I’ve sat on this release for a few months now, biding my time before finally deciding to share it with my dedicated Grinders. I’m taking ownership of you all because I feel responsible for your lives, in the most minute of ways; my suggestions/turns of phrase could save or ruin your day after all! The Arson Project are responsible for taking my life in a new, positive direction in their own unique way, so maybe my ranting and raving about them can do the same for you. This weeks grind entrée is significantly more punk than you might be used to, but don’t let that spook ya. These Swedes get politically charged, pissed off and drop enough hardcore goings on to keep the push pit poppin’.
Brooklyn’s Couch Slut is a band who is very deliberate when it comes to word choice. How else would you end up with that band name? It certainly doesn’t make finding them on Facebook easy. There’s never an autocomplete suggestion given for their name, even as you get to the second “U”. Zuckerberg & Co. would rather assume we’re trying to get to the personal page of Couch Slug (a seemingly inactive account) instead of insinuating that it’s users would actually seek out something with the word slut in it. It’s not rocket science. It’s an off-putting word. It’s an unsavory word. It makes people uncomfortable. I admittedly had a brief pause about liking their page because I’d imagined how this would come across my family’s newsfeed (sorry for any confusion, Aunt Mel!). So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Couch Slut create hideous music. They cover topics like substance abuse, sexual assault, and a shitshow of the other headfucking kinds of disrespect that humans endure from one another with the instrumentation to back it up.
The late ‘90s and early 2000s were a time of great change in the underground punk and metal scenes. A combination of the rise in popularity of a stable of bands who played differing varieties of metal-influenced hardcore, a flourishing DIY scene, and the fact that bands were endeavoring to…
For fifteen years The Acacia Strain have used brown noise breakdowns and violent lyrical images to win fans worldwide. Whether it’s viewed as dumb narcissism or tailor made nihilism, the music has been used as a weapon to destroy venues and listeners auditory health. Any consumer of extreme music who is aware of this band should be able to tell their sound apart from the droves of down tempo and beatdown acts that infest music today. But with a constant record-tour-record cycle that has seen them shed virtually all of their original members along the way, can they continue to impress at the same level? Do they wind their collective neck in and continue to please the fans or is their room for any form of evolution in their sound? Does anyone still want to hear this anyway? Gravebloom answers all three of these questions. It has The Acacia Strain at their most destructive, venom spitting best, taking cues from the colossal closing act of 2014’s Coma Witch and toying with a sound rooted in doom and gloom; making damn sure that people will pay attention to the world’s angriest band again.
Some bands manage to find that sweet spot where they can emulate their heroes while still introducing some sort of new energy into the music. Unfortunately, it does not seem that Shadow of Doubt is one of those bands, nor is there debut, No Mercy, much more beyond your standard NYHC-in-2017-emulator fare. Truly the gang’s all here on this one, be it from the overly forced gang vocals to the mid-tempo “grooves” to those ever so (lovably) cheesy mosh calls. And, fortunately for those digging into this EP, one does not need to look any further than track two, “No Mercy.”
OK. I’m challenging myself with this one. Taking twelve minutes to write about a twelve minute debut EP can and will be done. Just watch me, I don’t back down from a struggle, even if it’s with hate filled morons on the Internet who wanna send empty death threats to me. Mate, you’re a cunt and I hope that something heavy lands on your head. Something as heavy as this. Not so much grind today but this definitely gets my gears working. Hard. And it’s Scottish too. Moist.