Album Review: Cane Hill – Smile

After 2015 bought us a self-titled debut EP, nu-metal newbies Cane Hill are back with a 10-track record. With obvious pioneering influences such as Slipknot, Korn and Limp Bizkit, the New Orleans quartet alongside their counterparts like Hacktivist and Islander are now part of the so-called nu-metal revival and are bringing revitalisation to the scene. Angry, outspoken and honest, voicing ye olde “controversial” topics, Cane Hill are bearing all with their new record ‘Smile’.

‘MGGDA’ is immediately reminiscent of Slipknot, with its ferocious ‘Iowa’-like compositions and is packed full of dark attitude. ‘(The New) Jesus’ is equally chaotic, Elijah Witt’s gruff but dynamic vocals complimenting the crunch and collision of drum work and heavy guitar.

‘True Love’ brings risqué to the forefront. Slower in pace, it still has the ferocity of the previous tracks but has a macabre sensuality to it. If you want a blast from the past, ‘St. Veronica’ and ‘You’re So Wonderful’ are standouts, channelling their inner Korn circa ‘Coming Undone’.

Disclaimer: I strongly advise wearing headphones whilst listening to ‘Cream Pie’. Filthy at its best, this song pushes the boundaries in terms of taboo and is cemented together by perfected head-bang instrumentation – most likely not the most suitable singalong though. There’s also a revamp of ‘Screwtape’ from their EP which unfortunately is a lot less raw than its predecessor and a bit of a filler-esque. Finishing off is ‘Strange Candy’ and it’s almost a shame that their most original material comes right at the end, but encourages you to come back for more!

There’s a very thin line between taking influences and imitation. Cane Hill escape that narrowly with ‘Smile’, balancing between jumps from most prominently Slipknot and Korn, putting in their own malevolent energy and somewhat disturbing take on things. They’re definitely here to shake things up.


’Smile’ by Cane Hill is out now on Rise Records.

Cane Hill links: Website|Facebook|Twitter

Words by Phoebe Messenger (@kangaezu_ni)

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