Employed To Serve – The Warmth of a Dying Sun
Already one of the most promising young bands in the UK’s heavy scene, Woking’s Employed to Serve look set to ascend to greater heights with their sophomore album, ‘The Warmth of a Dying Sun’.
Since the release of 2015’s ‘Greyer Than You Remember’, the band have been busy touring, of course, but it seems like they’ve also been fine-tuning their sound. The songs already released from ‘…Dying Sun’ point towards a more refined and focused direction. Not a reinvention of any kind, and still unrelentingly crushing and heavy, but a progression and consolidation of their existing blueprint. This is incredibly exciting – an album similar to ‘Greyer…’ would’ve been fine, but this takes the band’s sound to the next level. And on a simpler level, the first single, ‘I Spend My Days (Wishing Them Away)’, is just an outrageously enjoyable track.
‘The Warmth of a Dying Sun’ looks to further an already great band’s career, steam-rolling anything in its path as it does so. (AC)
‘The Warmth of a Dying Sun’ by Employed to Serve is released on 19th May on Holy Roar Records.
Gnarwolves – Outsiders
Brighton punks Gnarwolves are set to return with their first LP since 2014’s self-titled release. The three-piece, comprised of brothers Thom and Max Weeks and Charlie Piper, revealed ‘Outsiders’ and a supporting UK/Europe tour in February of this year – signalling the first new Gnarwolves music since 2015 EP ‘Adolescence’. The album’s uncharacteristically moody, mysterious artwork hints at a fresh approach, but the two singles released so far suggest that any departure from their default setting will be slight.
Gnarwolves’ sound continues to fly the flag for wholesomely chaotic British punk rock. If ‘Outsiders’ sees any development of their work, it may lie in increasingly introspective themes. ‘Straitjacket’ offsets a lively, catchy melody with sheer bleakness: ‘My mind is safe in death, it’s motionless, flooding my brain with toxins’. ‘Wires’’ reflections on isolation are delivered with equally contrasting abandon, and it suggests the maturing of the group in all but sound.
Lyrical themes and cover art will be of little consequence when the band take their chaotic live show back on the road this month, promoting the album. Subtleties may mean that ‘Outsiders’ is Gnarwolves most grown-up release yet, but it would appear that, for now at least, it still sounds a lot like three friends playing their instruments as loud and as fast as they can – and there’s nothing wrong with that. (PS)
‘Outsiders’ by Gnarwolves is released 5th May on Big Scary Monsters / Tangled Talk.
Malevolence – Self Supremacy
2017 has proven itself to be a stellar revival for young and hungry metal bands, with While She Sleeps, Code Orange and Power Trip all putting out records which are both innovative and decimating. And you can add Sheffield five piece Malevolence to this crop of bands when they put out their second LP ‘Self Supremacy’ on the 19th.
Anyone who listened to the group’s debut album ‘Reign of Suffering’ will know this band has threatened to do big things, and now with years of touring with everyone from Obey the Brave to tech death-metal pioneers Dying Fetus under their belts, they’ve returned with a new found confidence and determination which shines across this melting pot of hardcore, thrash metal, deathcore and an almighty level of groove.
One listen to ‘Self Supremacy’ will hit you like Thor’s hammer to your jaw and is set to make Malevolence the new Godly figures of their scene. Don’t miss out when it happens. (AD)
‘Self Supremacy’ by Malevolence is released on 19th May on Beat Down Hard Wear.
Full of Hell – Trumpeting Ecstasy
One of the most active and creative trailblazers in extreme music, grindcore masters Full of Hell are set to return with their third full length album ‘Trumpeting Ecstasy’ later this month.
Though the last FOH album ‘Rudiments of Mutilation’ was released in 2013, the Maryland quartet have been releasing new music consistently in the form of split EPs with the likes of Nails and Psywarfare, and full collaboration albums with Japanese noise pioneer Merzbow and with The Body on last years’ critically acclaimed ‘One Day You Will Ache Like I Ache’.
While these collaborations have allowed Full of Hell to expand into atmospheric realms, ‘Trumpeting Ecstasy’ is set to return them to the straight up business of abrasive grindcore, with more BPM packed into songs lasting less than a minute than some bands’ back catalogues. And with guest appearances from members of Converge and Sumac along the way, this sonic deluge is set to be full of surprises and constantly punishing. (AD)
‘Trumpeting Ecstasy’ by Full of Hell is released on 5th May on Profound Lore.
The Tidal Sleep – Be Water
German post-hardcore quintet The Tidal Sleep have been non-stop since their formation in 2011. They’ve toured across Europe on their own and with iconic names in the scene including Funeral for a Friend, Silverstein and Defeater. And during all that time they released their debut record ‘Vorstellungskraft’ which was nothing short of a masterpiece.
With it’s follow-up ‘Be Water’ due at the end of the month, listeners can be sure to come face-to-face with the band at the most emotionally wrought, if singles ‘Undertows’ and ‘Hearses’ indicate what’s to come on the album. Played with an uncompromising intensity vocally and otherworldly guitar passages, this album will be one of the most mature and graceful offerings from the world of hardcore, with riffs that still stampede like a herd of sad elephants.
As bands like Being As An Ocean, Capsize and Casey lead a new wave of emotionally charged hardcore bands, The Tidal Sleep aren’t a band you can afford to avoid and ‘Be Water’ will show you why. (AD)
‘Be Water’ by The Tidal Sleep is released on 29th May on Holy Roar Records.
Words by Alan Cunningham (AC), Andy Davidson (AD) and Peter Stewart (PS)