The Pitch: Punishing, uncompromising metallic hardcore from Pennsylvania's Jesus Piece via Southern Lord. FFO: Harms Way, Vein, Code Orange.
What I Like: The past two years have been very good to the heavier side of the hardcore scene. In the wake of skull crushing albums from the likes of Wolf King, Left Behind, Sectioned, Frontierer, and others listed above comes another fantastic foray into brutal beatdowns and malevolent moshing. Only Self is pure punishment; enough so to turn the most cowardly weakling into a chiseled masochist. To quote one of my favorite films, "A guy who came to Fight Club for the first time, his ass was a wad of cookie dough. After a few weeks, he was carved out of wood." Just replace "came to Fight Club" with "listened to Jesus Piece" and "a few weeks" with "35 minutes." What more can I say? The riffs are crushing, the vocals intense as they come, and the drums absolutely pulverizing. Those breakdowns... and I love the somewhat surprise conclusion of "I" and "II," channeling some serious Primitive Man vibes.
Critiques: Speaking of which, while I like "Oppressor," I argue its placement. These two atmospheric tracks better cap off the mood. On a more general note, pretty soon we may hit similar peak oversaturation with this style that we did with metalcore and nü metal. I'm more than happy to ride the wave until then, but all of these groups, Jesus Piece included, will have to fight to survive. Will they experience the legacy and evolution of Deftones or flounder out like Mudvayne?
The Verdict: This ain't an album: it's a battleground. I love my artsy-fartsy metal with all of its innovation and progressive intrigue...but I also love venting aggressive mental energy to a soundtrack of pure embittered hatred. Only Self is that soundtrack. Try not to break anything. STREAM IT EARLY HERE.
Flight's Fav's: Punish, Curse Of The Serpent, Neuroprison
- Review by FlightOfIcarus
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