I warned you all, so I hope you’re prepared. This week, we’re flooded with new music. We’re overwhelmed by it. And while that certainly isn’t a bad thing, it does mean you all have your work cut out for you in terms of required listening. No point in delaying – just dive in, and don’t say you weren’t prepared.
Hatebreed, The Concrete Confessional (Nuclear Blast)
The hardcore stalwarts return with album number seven, their first as part of a worldwide deal with Nuclear Blast. We’ve spoken to both Jamey Jasta and Chris Beattie recently, and based on what they have to say, The Concrete Confessional is not going to pull any punches on being lyrically intense and musically crushing. With three singles already dominating the charts, Hatebreed are assured to be in their usual position of dominance with this new album.
DevilDriver, Trust No One (Napalm)
After releasing 2013’s Winter Kills, Dez Fafara took some time away from DevilDriver to revive Coal Chamber and tour with them. During that time off, most of DevilDriver moved on to other endeavors, with only guitarist Mike Spreitzer remaining in the lineup. Undeterred, Fafara picked up guitarist Neal Tiemann (ex-Burn Halo) and drummer Austin D’Amond (formerly of Chimaira and Bleed the Sky) to complete the lineup, and together, the four-piece group has created Trust No One.
Kvelertak, Nattesferd (Roadrunner)
Since bursting onto the scene in 2010, Kvelertak has quickly become one of the most talked-about bands in the heavy music scene. The group’s mix of black ‘n’ roll and hardcore is as intriguing as it is intense, and their live show captivates everyone present with its fervor. Although 2013’s Meir did not break onto the Billboard charts, it’s a reasonable expectation that Nattesferd will accomplish that feat.
Gorguts, Pleiades’ Dust (Season of Mist)
It’s not unusual in the metal world for bands to create albums or EP’s that are just one continuous track. Meshuggah did it most famously with the I EP, and Edge of Sanity had two such albums with Crimson and Crimson II. Add Gorguts to that list now, with the 33-minute long Pleiades’ Dust. Described by some as being composed more like an orchestral movement than a death metal song, this release is not for the faint of heart, but it will certainly be a memorable musical experience.
Destruction, Under Attack (Nuclear Blast)
With their 35-year anniversary approaching next year, Destruction shows no sign of slowing down at all. Album number fourteen from the German thrash veterans is every bit as fast-paced, frenetic, and powerful as those that have come before it. Frontman Schmier Fink has always been outspoken about his views on world affairs, so expect this album to contain some powerful lyrical messages as well.
Grand Magus, Sword Songs (Nuclear Blast)
Grand Magus has earned a reputation over the course of their career for being consistently excellent, even though they may not have the biggest sales numbers or following in their scene. The Swedish stoner-doom group is uncompromising when it comes the quality of their music, and Sword Songs promises to be no different. Frontman JB has stated that this album has some heavier and more extreme elements than the band’s previous albums, so expect the unexpected when listening to this album!
Avatar, Feathers & Flesh (eOne)
During the first decade-plus of their career, Avatar gained a huge following in their native Sweden and most of the rest of Europe, but they didn’t manage to break out in North America until they were put on tour with Avenged Sevenfold and Five Finger Death Punch in 2013. As a result of the buzz they gained from that tour, 2014’s Hail the Apocalypse debuted at number 97 on the Billboard charts, and the band hasn’t looked back since. They hope to gain an even bigger following with Feathers & Flesh, their sixth album.
Discharge, End of Days (Nuclear Blast)
The relative infrequency with which Discharge releases full-length albums makes each one special. End of Days is the first full-length that the British crust punk group has released in eight years, and it’s made even more special by being the first album recorded as a five-piece band. Discharge still has the same attitude as they did when they formed in 1977, so don’t expect this album to be politically correct or respectful – Discharge says what they want in the way that they want to, and that’s why they’re so beloved.
Pierce the Veil, Misadventures (Fearless)
2012’s Collide With the Sky debuted at #12 on the Billboard 200, cementing Pierce the Veil’s position as one of the top bands in the American post-hardcore scene. As such, Misadventures has been a hotly anticipated commodity since recording first began in the summer of 2014. And even though recording took much longer than expected, Misadventures is still expected to debut in the top 15.
Broken Teeth HC, At Peace Amongst Chaos (Nuclear Blast)
Once known simply as Broken Teeth, this young British hardcore group operates similarly to the old guard of the New York hardcore scene, playing underground shows like there’s no tomorrow while releasing two EP’s and a split album in less than a year. That DIY ethos and respect for tradition is part of what earned the group a deal with Nuclear Blast for the release of their first full-length record.
One Hundred Thousand, The Forms in Which They Appear (Self-released)
This Jersey rock band has been making a huge buzz in the local scene with their unique style of progressive hard rock, influenced by everyone from Dream Theater to Sevendust to Devin Townsend. The band released EP’s in 2013 and 2014, leading up to today and the release of their debut full-length. Vocal production was handled by Sevendust’s Clint Lowery, and recording was done at Architekt Studios in Butler, NJ, the same studio where Sevendust recorded their last three albums.