Band to watch: KILL THE KONG. In an oversaturated metalcore scene it takes something special for bands to stand out nowadays. KILL THE KONG offer an enticing package in the form of seven, yes, SEVEN members; two vocalists but it is the two percussionists which give the band from Sweden their unique sound. With an irresistible groove and chugging riffs, KILL THE KONG are hard to ignore and impossible not to enjoy. The hardcore screams in tracks such as Bring The Heat bring the energy, yet the melodic clean singing in songs such as Ignite, demonstrate the band’s ability to pen a catchy vocal hook. Newest single Ashes In The Wind is a straight-up metalcore banger, with obvious influence from bands such as PARKWAY DRIVE and FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH. There’s no denying listening to KILL THE KONG is an entertaining experience, and with the additional percussionist it adds an exciting dynamic to a style which is running out of ideas. If you’re looking for a fresh perspective then you could do worse than giving KILL THE KONG a listen.
Video to watch: GHOST IRIS. Last week these Danish metallers released the new video for single Save Yourself off their new album Blind World which was released today! The video is probably what any djent party in a limo would look like, along with dapper suits, champagne and sunglasses. The humour in the video is what makes it shine, but it is also backed up with a tune which is absolute killer. This isn’t djent by numbers, heck it probably shouldn’t even be classed as djent but there’s no denying the sound is there nestled amongst the catchy chorus and just downright good songwriting. With a single as good as this, don’t be surprised if the album is quality too.
In the stereo: VIPASSI. This year ain’t half been a treat with regard to instrumental, extreme progressive metal. We’ve already had an album from ALLUVIAL but January also saw the release of Sunyata by VIPASSI through Season of Mist. Who is VIPASSI you might be asking? Well, they are somewhat of a super group, comprising of members from bands such as A MILLION DEAD BIRDS LAUGHING and a little band called NE OBLIVISCARIS (you might have heard of them). Together they compose gloriously dark yet technical songs (what else would you expect) with album highlights including Benzaiten and the stunning closer Samsara. Black metal vibes run through the album at times, and Samsara is definitely on the darker end of progressive metal. The atmospheric wispy hints of vocals take the track to a dramatic level, making the song the perfect finale. With only seven tracks, Sunyata feels a bit like a tease, a bit like a punishing starter before a main course. Go on, indulge.
Band to rediscover: THE HOPE CONSPIRACY. Following on from last week’s trip down memory lane with the likes of EIGHTEEN VISIONS and THROWDOWN, another hardcore band we’ve been reminiscing about is THE HOPE CONSPIRACY. The album Death Knows Your Name released back in 2006 was a sickeningly good hardcore record with riffs as big as its production. A massive sound without losing any rawness, standout track Suicide Design is still an impressive slab of relentless hardcore energy. The driving riffs, the rumbling bass, the desperate shouts, all mount up to a killer track. Released on Deathwish Inc. you know you’re in for a mucky treat. Masters of no-nonsense heaviness, the band never officially broke up, so here’s to hoping THE HOPE CONSPIRACY remerge in the near future.