Burn Everything - Hollow Victory 7''
2012, Dullest Records
This short ep by Rochester quintet Burn Everything has quickly become a recent favourite of mine and one that I've spun more times than I can count now and every time I am blown away by how a band with musical chops like these aren't better known. They should be written up fucking everywhere! But for whatever reason there seems to be very little coverage of them so far (or maybe I'm just looking in the wrong places). Anyway, this is the band's third ep so far. They play a mix of slightly complicated (or 'mathy' if you prefer) hardcore and metal with faint touches of grindcore, sort of in the same way Converge does, minus the more overtly chaotic parts.
There's an insane amount of intensity to their music; with lots of blistering speed and a few instances of full on blast beats, loads of fast hooks and really energetic, dynamic, snaking and twisting riffing; awesome heavy breakdowns, lots of extremely dense, monotone guitar passages, sometimes accompanied by smattering double bass drums. I keep thinking of Burnt By The Sun - for many reasons, not just because of some minor details in some of the songs or because of the very similar vocal style and patterns of Burn Everything's vocalist Matt Dalberth; but also the fact that their songs, like those of BBTS, maintain a strong metallic core while obviously integrating loads of influences from various other styles, such as old school hardcore, grindcore, mathcore, thrash and death metal etc.
There's also a brevity and sense of real urgency to these four short songs that appeal to me. The band manages to write brief, extremely dynamic songs that never really sit still for very long, though without ever becoming exhaustingly chaotic. And they're also really memorable from the get-go, which is always a bonus for those of us with ever-shortening attention spans. There's also alot of melody infused into the songs, underneath all the aggression and ferocity, that lend Burn Everything's music yet another layer of complexity. Beside the fact that these guys write fucking amazing songs, I am hugely impressed by the vocals on display here. Raw, raspy and covering lots of range, but never falling into clichéd boring guttural growls or high, monotonous shrieks, Dalberth display a vocal talent that is all too rare in heavy music these days. All in all, a truly immense ep, that is impressive as hell. I urge anyone into bands like those previously mentioned, as well as Dillinger Escape Plan, Botch, Code Orange Kids etc, to check Burn Everything out. Their previous eps are available for free download at their bandcamp site, as is this ep for merely $4.