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KAOSPHERE: In Scars We Trust

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May 3


I caught up with the Kaosphere last week on Anzac Day in support of Witchgrinder at Mo’s Desert Clubhouse before they blasted out a ferocious set which included some of the tracks I’m about to review.

Concerningly, frontman Ricci Dyer had one very serious question to ask me that day, “Who’s reviewing our album, is it you?”. At that point, I told him “No”, and he let out a massive sigh of relief. To his disappointment, and my elation it very much turns out that I am though, so let’s get this done and let me belt them with my brutally honest stick.

In Scars We Trust kicks off with some heavy breathing, screams and some other ominous background noise before a massive drum roll rumbles my speakers and the guitar riffs start. It’s a riff fest for a short while but then the songs backs off a little for Ricci to show off some clean vocals, not overly clean, but much nicer than the massive screams that follow shortly thereafter. The production is tight thanks to Nik Carpenter at Core Studios, and it really shows off the multi-faceted elements of the band. Big riffs, melodic harmonies, thumping drums and a triple prong vocal attack including cleans, screams and a touch of rap and spoken word here or there. That was Insomniac, and I just might lose some sleep over it

Guitarists Tane Jacob and Tane Baylis rock out some massive riffs in the intro to Chainbreaker while the drums and bass hold down some very solid rhythmic pulses. Ricci shows off a little more of his rapping side in this one, but when he hits those screams, they are earth-shattering. For such a nice dude, he seems very angry. I might need to give him a big hug when we run into each other again. The outro riff in this one could literally break a chain.

Some weird children of the corn type chant echoes over dark synth samples in the intro to Bring Out The Dead. Once that gets out of the way, the guitars take off with interweaving melodic harmonies. When the verse kicks in, the song takes on a very early Fear Factory vibe, a very syncopated heavy one. It does take on its own style though as it progresses, but Ricci does give Mr. Burton C. Bell a run for his money on this one. The song pulls back for a moment, and we get to hear Leon Fris’s tasty phat bass push through. The track ends as strong as it began!

The video for Bring Out The Dead drops on Friday, and so does the album. Well, today by the time you read this, so stop reading this tripe and get to it!

Oh no, slow clean melodic guitars, what is going on here, is this some kind of ballad? It sure sounds like it as Ricci starts swooning me with some sweet melodic vocals. I’ve never heard this band do a slow song, and this may be the last I hear of it as May I takes off in a brutally heavy fashion. It does circle back around into cleaner vocals, but the song tends to stay on the much heavier side. That outro riff though … Ooft!

Don’t be so Kind … well, I’m trying not to be because that’s just not my style. These guys have really put their best forward here though, so I’m struggling to pick some shit to have a dig at. What I will say, though, is as much as I like a bit of rap and spoken word, it may be a little off-putting for some of the elitists out there. Fuck them, though, cause this shit is rocking heavy, and it’s well integrated to not become too overbearing. The kicks are thumping in this one thanks to Kaosphere’s newest member Sam Phillips.

Just when I think these guys can’t get any heavier, Birth of Conflict kicks me in the nuts and straight-up tells me I’m wrong. And that never happens because I’m never wrong! Well, maybe just this once. But I digress, and as I do some shared solo duties commence, so I stop typing for a second to listen to a much too short stint of noodling guitars.

Where’s Your God? I’ve been asking that for years, so this song title piques my interest. It opens with that spoken word style that Ricci does so well. Dualling guitar harmonies and thumping toms provide the soundtrack behind Ricci’s thoughts and then take over the track in full force to lay down a solid base for some big clean vocals to soar upwards. A very fast drum fill then rocks through, and the track takes a turn for the heavy. Solid, solid as fuck!

You may or may not have already heard the War Cry, and it’s exactly that. A heavy, heartfelt and dramatic War Cry with melodic guitars shuffling in and out of the big fast syncopated riffs, and Ricci again giving us some thoughts in his very distinct spoken word style. Oh, and here we go, another banging outro riff. If ya gonna end it, ya might as well end it big aye!

Don’t do it boys, don’t hit me with a ballad. Fuck, they hit me with a ballad, although a bit of a weird one. It’s clean, it’s slow, and it very hip to the hop, but it does have some really melodic and haunting guitar work through the second half of the track. It’s called Alone, and it really does stand alone amongst the other tracks on the album. Ricci shares vocal duties with bassist Leon on this one. I’ll let you decide if you like it or not, I don’t mind it.

Alright, the final track is here, and it better be a fucking good one boys! It’s alright, but to be honest it sounds a little out of place in the way that it might either be an older track, or possibly a newer one. It’s just got a vibe that to me doesn’t 100% sit with the other tracks. The guitar work in the bridge is killer though, as is the bass that pushes through behind it. Hole in the Head, and you’re not even dead … or something like that.

I’m not a fan of reviewing bands that I know by either sharing the stage with them and later becoming friends or vice versa, but Kaosphere just made this really easy for me. How, you say? By releasing an absolute banger of an album that I try my hardest to rip shit on because I know they were expecting it, and to be honest are probably a little disappointed that I didn’t. Here we are, though, and here they are surviving one of my reviews without a serious case of butthurt.

Maybe I’m getting soft in my old age, or maybe it’s just a fucking banger! I’ll let you decide because the album is out today, May 3, everywhere!

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