Oh! Yes. This was a good week for listening to great new releases. First up is a new release from GODFLESH titled Decline & Fall, their first release since 2001! I can safely say that the band hasn’t missed a step, and is as heavy as always. I also review Norfolk, Va’s Dead Aim, a band from the early days of Norfolk’s Hardcore scene of 1980-1985, Dead Aim. These guys may be geezers, but they will mess you up just the same. Make sure to support these bands if you like them, that is how they survive. Share the blog with your friends and family, and as always, send band and label materials for review to the address at the bottom of the page.
GODFLESH-Decline & Fall (EP)
Avalanche Recordings (June 2014)
1. Ringer (6:23)
2. Dogbite (3:52)
3. Playing with Fire (6:01)
4. Decline and Fall (4:17)
I was lucky enough to view a Facebook post the other day linking me to the GODFLESH bandcamp page. The good news I found was that Godflesh has put out their first release since 2001’s Hymns, the EP Decline &Fall, consisting of 4 new songs (the digital download of the album comes with 2 extra dub remixes, and is available free with the purchase of the CD or record.).
If you are familiar with the band, I will just say that these four songs are a nod to the band’s early roots, with sludgy, minimalist dirges, pounding out a rhythmic groove of impossibly heavy bass (BC Green) and Drums, combined with Justin K. Broadrick‘s slow burn guitars, and trademark vocals emitting disinterested rage. This release hints at Broderick’s earlier band, Head of David, as well as albums like Streetcleaner (1989).
For those of you who have never heard GODFLESH, I will say this: If God ordered me to run into the street and start punching random people in the face, I would imagine Decline & Fall would be playing on my ipod. This release is out on CD, Vinyl and Digital Download, with the Vinyl being released June 9th. This is classic GODFLESH, and should be consumed immediately.
Dead Aim- Hellfire Stoked
1. Better Off Dead (3:22)
2. Pain ( 1:57)
3. Sick in the Head (2:03)
4. Insane (2:56)
5. By the grace of the Furies, I curse You (3:13)
6. Black death (1:48)
7. End of days (5:51)
8. Push Away (6:34)
9. I’ve Completely Lost My Mind (2:38)
10. be My Friend (1:48)
11. Good Enough to eat (1:47)
Wow! I remember sharing the same stage with Dead Aim at Formerly Dominics in Norfolk, Va. in 1982. They were one of the first local bands to mix hardcore with metal, and they were hard as Hell for that time. This is their 4th album- their 1st being the 1985 release HomeBoy, and if you listen to both in one sitting, you will hear how much better they have become.
From the first song Better Off Dead to the last, Good Enough to Eat, what you have is a balls-out straight ahead hardcore album of the highest quality. Really, these are not sloppy, slap-dash hardcore songs, but expertly crafted songs, painstakingly produced to the last detail. The song By the Grace of the Furies, I Curse You begins with an ethereal guitar intro that bursts open into a head-on collision of guitar fury and drum abandon, and if you listen closer, you will hear progressive rock played at triple speed. These guys know how to play their instruments, that much is certain, because while they are sticking to a Hardcore recipe, their love of prog, country, metal and blues truly shines through, delivering a polished record of in your face blasts of good old American Hardcore Punk.
The lyrics are angry, and confrontational, and most are conveying the fact that Dead Aim has been around the block and will not easily be fooled. The 8th song, Push Away starts out all bluesy, with the soulful vocals of Mark D. Bishop questioning “who do you think you are to be so cruel? And how long did you think I would be your fool?” ‘Nuff said. The song progresses from a 70s blues-infused rock riff into a full blown attack, reminding me of early Necros, which is really a good thing. The lead guitar playing of Bishop is above average, and displays a level of technical prowess not witnessed in many hardcore bands then or now. The vocals are forceful, anguished at times, rising to the demands of the fast pace of the music.. The rhythm section of Lenny Hines (drums) and Darrel Brooks (bass) kills it; pushing everything forward in an onrush of energy, never missing the mark. Simply put, Hellfire Stoked by Dead Aim contains 11 songs of top shelf hardcore punk that just isn’t being made anymore, which is a crying shame. You can download the album on the the Dead Aim bandcamp page linked below.
Stream the album on bandcamp: