Words by Jimmy Glinster
Here we go again, another Hardcore band. Is every heavy band called a hardcore band these days? I’m a bit confused with this one, as the previous reviews in the band’s press release talk about metal chaos and how they’ve been added to every metal playlist ever. Let’s see what Blood Youth are all about then, shall we.
The opening track titled a-LTX has me a little confused as I instantly think of the Sepultura release A-LEX. I’m sure it has absolutely nothing to do with that release but’s it similar enough to have me mention it. Even a quick google doesn’t help me out with this one, as it directs me to some kind of bandcamp type deal and a real estate investment opportunity.
Anyway, I should say a bit about the actual track. It starts with a classic metal style clean guitar intro, complete with haunting background samples. A few quick distorted guitar stabs break the mood for some heavily screamed vocals take over. Then it kicks in, in full metal force, but not fast, just heavy. Sounds like metal to me, but then we hear some clean vocals take the lead in the song’s bridge. Luckily though, it’s interrupted by those heavy screams again. Cool song with a great clean, heavy, clean structure.
Iron Lung belts straight out the gates with some heavy guitar squeals and chugs. Once the song opens up, it takes on a much rockier vibe before it gets interrupted by some weird bass line which you might hear in a Bjork song. As weird as this moment is, this is a bloody heavy tune, even when the odd clean vocals pop their head out. For a moment at the end, we get a hardcore style breakdown, but for the most, I’d still call this metal as it’s not quite generic enough to slot into the butt tonne of hardcore that’s around these days.
This might be just what I needed to numb the pain of the endless hardcore albums flooding in for review at the moment. And yes, Something To Numb The Pain is working with its heavy as fuck groove metal riffing and melodic solos. It evens touches on Nu-Metal with an epic clean vocal which you might find yourself singing along to. A heavy bridge breaks the chorus before throwing us straight back into it, and the song ends with an absolute belter of a heavy riff.
Cells fades in with a simple guitar riff until some thumping double kicks and bass join in for the fun. The verse cuts back to standalone bass, which follows the original riff and is filled out with some gated programmed drums. The vocals commence with heavily effected spoken word, which is then doubled and overridden with heavy screams. Another epic chorus rings out with clean vocals. This one almost reminds me of the slower side of Slipknot, but with slightly more commercial edge when the choruses take over.
The next track Body Of Wire opens with some thumping heavy chugs filled out with random samples. The guitar and bass riff is very simple but the rhythm and fills of the drums really work in filling out the track. This is a bloody heavy track, and very modern metal sounding. I definitely wouldn’t call this hardcore or even metalcore. It’s just goddam heavy, with some killer groove. Awesome track!
We again here a classic metal sounding intro for Colony3. The song then takes us on a thrashing adventure throughout the verses and pre-chorus. When we hit the chorus, we hear those clean vocals delivered again in what I’d call pure Nu-Metal fashion. The band blends several different genres in this track, and they do it really well. I’ll say it again, this is definitely not Hardcore.
Bjork returns with her funky bass lines in Open Window. Well, not really, but that is sure as hell what it reminds me of. This track is a little slower paced than those before it, but still super heavy, when it’s not all electronica that is. After hearing the wailing chorus in this song, I’m wondering if this may be released as a single due to its pop sensibilities. It’s an unusual track, but it doesn’t sound out of place amongst the others so far, even though it is heavily drowned by keys in certain moments.
The intro to Synthetic is possibly the band’s heaviest so far. It’s not super technical, but holy hit it’s heavy. The band breaks in and out to allow the lyrics in the verses to fill the gaps. Another clean chorus pokes its head out, and we start to hear a familiar formula in the band’s writing style. This isn’t a bad thing, they actually do it really well, and with the recent announcement of vocalist Kaya Tarsus leaving the band I’m wondering who they will get to fill these quite large and uniquely shaped shoes.
Ok, scrap that comment about the heaviest intro to the last track, this one’s heavier. It’s called Human Blur, and it doesn’t really let up until the good ol’ clean chorus formula kicks in again for a brief moment. Now, I’d hate to say breakdown because that’s a hardcore thing (which they stole from metal), but I’m gonna say EPIC breakdown. After another quick chorus this song just gets heavier and heavier until it eventually destroys itself.
A heavily effected clean guitar intro sets a haunting vibe for Human Blur. The vocals join in for the fun as they shimmer through some thick reverb. Eventually we hear some distorted guitars and heavy screams as the track hits a massive chorus. Rinse and repeat a few times, and it all becomes a bit of a blur … a Human Blur.
The album closer Dogma clocks in at 7 minutes and 38 seconds, and for the first minute and a half or so we hear some background samples and a clean guitar melody which reminds me of something by Machine Head back in The Burning Red days. Gated electronic drums fill the song and build it before the drums momentarily cease, and we hear the first glimpse of some clean vocals. As the drums fill back in, the vocals gain some edge until they become complete screams and the song hits a heavy peak with double kicks, distorted guitars and overlayed samples and keys. By now, you get where the song is going, and it repeats the formula again before holding onto the heavy for a little longer to close out the album.
Honestly, this album Visions Of Another Hell is great, and not what I expected when I first read “hardcore”. This isn’t hardcore, it’s modern metal with elements of groove, thrash, symphonic, electronica, metalcore and I’ll even say Nu-Metal due to its anthemic clean choruses.
Maybe it’s alternative metal? Nah, it’s way too heavy for that!
Get it up ya!