8-Track takes a band with a storied history and identifies eight songs throughout their career that define their strengths as a band, musically, lyrically, and conceptually. Read previous installments here . Where to begin with Every Time I Die, Buffalo’s favorite party animals? A career that has thrown out more filthy guitar licks and jarring breakdowns than a kegger at the Red Bull headquarters can’t quite be summarised in eight tracks; not quite anyway, but we’ve given it a go for our latest installment of the 8-Track feature here at Heavy Blog. Over seven albums and fourteen awesome music videos later, this mathcore/metalcore/hardcore/riffcore band have amassed a following that is just at home at Warped Tour as it is in that shitty venue in your hometown where people are scared of entering. As usual, we’ve picked tracks that we feel best showcase this band across the years. We disagree on the best and worst albums and we can’t even agree on the best tracks from some of these albums, but we tried. We gave it our all, just like this band do with every show and every release. If you haven’t heard Every Time I Die before, this is a great god damn playlist for you to get stuck into. Enjoy. Everyone seems to forget about the first album from these guys. While it’s still very rough and does not sound like they do now, noticeably lacking the “southern hard rock” charm they’ve worked into their sound, it does make for some damn fine metalcore/mathcore. The album is chock full of bangers, but none more so than “The Logic Of Crocodiles”. The beginning is standard mathcore, but then it builds into this really awesome breakdown towards the middle of the song that absolutely rips. It’s a shame these guys don’t really play too many songs from this album live, because it definitely could be turned into an anthem and become a staple. The most noticeable thing about this track is how harsh Keith’s vocals are over the entire thing. It sounds at many times as if he’s straining while screaming, which adds to the the sheer intensity of the song itself. There’s also some very cool chugging that goes on in the song, which is abrasive from beginning to end. Trust me, if you’ve never visited their back catalogue, now’s the time to do so, and you can begin with this piece of history. -Spencer Snitil As unique and abrasive as ETID’s early career was, it didn’t take long for it to catch on. Hot Damn! is considered the band’s breakout record, and with tracks like “Ebolarama,” it’s no mystery why the album caught on. Jordan Buckley’s guitar work bears a catchy mix of mathcore spunk and just the right amount of Southern charm to concoct infectiously aggressive riffing throughout the entire track. And while Keith Buckley’s vocals are commanding as always, it’s never clear which way he’ll stretch his larynx next. He’ll be moaning an eerie drawl one moment before launching into a manic roar the next. Of course, the highlights of the track – like every great ETID track – are the moments when the whole band lines up for a full-throttle romp, channeling the unbridled energy of their live performance. Ozzfest may be no more, but the band surely tore up the stage back in the day with tracks like “Ebolarama,” when they first started introducing themselves to audiences as their newest favorite band. – Scott Murphy Can we all take a moment to look back on Guitar Hero 2 and appreciate what that game did for so many of (pre?)teens in our discovery of metal? Dethklok, Shadows Fall, All That Remains, and of course, Every Time I Die were included as bonus tracks to the game’s “official” setlist. Thanks to this game, Every Time I Die were brought into the mainstream for many would-be metalheads in the form of “The New Black,” an almost uncharacteristically catchy and anthemic rock and roll tune that downplayed their hardcore roots in favor of party-ready riffs and the sassiest of hooks. The group have since gone on to become mainstays in the genre — a no doubt creating masterpieces along the way — but “The New Black” maintains as the group’s most iconic track, and for good reason; revisiting this song will leave it stuck in your head for days on end, so get comfy. -Jimmy Rowe At this point in Every Time I Die’s somewhat lengthy and unquestionably respectable career, no song perfectly encapsulates their signature sound quite like the intro track to 2007’s The Big Dirty , “No Son of Mine.” With both this record (and song alone) the band came steamrolling back after the oddly-flat mixing job that plagued 2005’s Gutter Phenomenon and positively pummel for the next three minutes. This track also boasts some of the finest Keith Buckley-isms in the land, including such greats like “leave your drunken accident at the prom,” “shoot that dog if we can’t afford to feed,” and the world’s finest breakdown accompaniment ever, “don’t ever say rock and roll.” Keith’s cryptic and often scatterbrained lyrics can probably be interpreted a number of ways, but his delivery and conviction is incontestable. Back this bizarre frontman up with some off-time, Botch -esque mathcore that’s as heavy on the dissonance as it is accessibility and you’ve got yourself quite a winning recipe. The song seems to begin collapsing about two-thirds of the way through, constantly pushing the band’s heaviness to new heights. It’s a remarkable opener, and it’s one of the band’s live staples for a reason. There were very few bands even attempting this sound back in its time, making “No Son of Mine” all that more unique in context. -Kit Brown Another fat, Southern sounding track crammed full of dirty guitar licks and Buckley poetry, “We’rewolf” is easily the most memorable track from The Big Dirty. The audacity required to kick off a track with straight cowbell hits is reason enough to give the party boys a clap on the back, but there is far more to this particular rager. At surface level, “We’rewolf” is a track written from the perspective of the perennial party animal, one I can empathise with down to a tee. “It’s a full moon, denim is tight and my flannel shirt is freaking out”. A real lyric in a real song and one that could only be taken seriously in sandwiched between dirty ETID riffs and a country lick that Muse DEFINITELY ripped off in “Knights Of Cydonia”, the scumbags. On arguably their weakest release, this track will always help dust off the air guitar skills of anyone shotgunning a beer or drinking a bar out of tequila. Things I love to do, especially with ETID blasting; it just makes sense to get shit faced listening to this track. -Matt MacLennan Biting sarcasm and a poet’s lyrical ability have always been trademarks of the Every Time I Die sound, and on their fifth studio album, New Junk Aesthetic, the band finally managed to hone those traits to a razor’s edge, such as is displayed on “The Marvelous Slut”. The track is a biting commentary provided by the band’s own vocalist, Keith Buckley, as well as The Dillinger Escape Plan’s Greg Puciato who helpfully chimes in during the choruses. In a way, it sums up nearly everything Every Time I Die is, speaking of their rather insane partying on the road (the “slut” Buckley refers to is himself, in reference to his own habits) all laid over the classic, southern-tinged metalcore attack that fans have come to expect. If anything, this song is a definitive crash course in the catalog of ETID, offering up all of their key elements in healthy doses all while still being compacted into a nice, two minute chunk for easy listening. -Jake Tiernan “Revival Mode” always sounded like an early Every Time I Die track slowed down to me. Seriously, imagine it played a good bit faster and it could be a B-side from Hot Damn!. The leering, creeper of a riff that lurches in and out of the track is almost dissonant, ties in with the vocal line on some of the notes and eventually gives way to an organ grinding verse that continues to keep the creep factor alive. On an album full of rambunctious rippers, this seedy track still blows up and into a big ETID refrain with a classic Keith lyric; “I need to pay the judge”, well, don’t we all eventually? While the band experimented with slow burning tracks right up until Ex Lives (and further, on From Parts Unknown), this is the first time that they perfectly balanced that finely tuned aggression with the nasty side of pop music. Finally, the guitar solo that ties up the final movement of the track is just phenomenal and is an example of how to get a guest musician to really raise the game of a track. -Matt MacLennan In my books, From Parts Unknown was one of 2014’s best. Although the album in its entirety has finally found its way out of my heavy rotation, I often find myself coming back to certain tracks – far and away the most notable of which is “Moor”. With its minimalistic opening, characterized by a marked piano motif over top of which Keith Buckley croons along with an eerie sense of calmness, Moor presents itself at first as an anomaly in relation to both the album, and, on a larger scale, to ETID’s entire body of work – that is, of course, until the track abruptly explodes into the aural barrage of pummelling power chords and fierce bellowing for which ETID have come to be known (and adored). The sudden impact only serves to magnify the mood conveyed by the callous lyrics spat by Buckley, who sounds at times as though he’s on the brink of coming unglued: “All I want is his head and this horrible fucking world will be wonderful again / There’s so much beauty and love and when I eat his beating heart I can bring it back to us.” No sooner is this line uttered in a final desperate croak than the track once again falls off into the simple piano-accompanied croon exhibited at the song’s start – only this time the calmness strikes as twice as distubring following the violent episode that is the song’s midsection. A final note in the lower register hangs in mid air to conclude the song, leaving the listener to whether wonder the madness that just hit them had really actually happened. -Elizabeth Wood -HB
Posts Tagged ‘signature’
Razor + Tie Hatebreed are back in a big way in the form of ‘The Divinity of Purpose,’ the Connecticut mosh ‘n’ stomp hardcore band’s first disc for new label Razor & Tie. It’s anthemic, full of sing-along choruses and lyrical declarations, chunky riffing, battering ram drumming and more breakdowns than an insane asylum. It’s a totally moshable affair, comprised of tight, efficient and make-their-point-and-move on songs. The album opens with the blazing ‘Put It to the Torch,’ with frontman Jamey Jasta inviting you to burn off everything that threatens to take you down. It’s followed by ‘Honor Never Dies,’ which sounds like it could have fit nicely on the band’s 1997 full-length debut ‘Satisfaction Is the Death of Desire’ or even the 2002-issued follow up ‘Perseverance.’ It’s a true first-pumper, reminding you that “Sometimes, standing for what you believe / Means standing alone.” The unity that hardcore bands often pay lip service to takes actualized sonic form on ‘The Divinity of Purpose.’ On ‘Own Your World,’ Jasta asks, in robust, communal sing-along fashion, “Who’s got more heart than you?” and we can just imagine ‘Breed pits erupting with fists in the air, karate kicks being thrown and every person, regardless of their age or gender, singing along, declaring, “Fists up / Head high / We own the f—ing world tonight” – further proof that Hatebreed know how to construct a deep groove and a catchy chorus. ‘The Language’ begins with Slayer-inspired riffing, and is somewhat similar to ‘Doomsayer’ from ‘The Rise of Brutality,’ with its somewhat more complicated guitar work. But it’s still moshtastic just the same. ‘Dead Man Breathing’ has a similar construction, as well. At 12 tracks, ‘The Divinity of Purpose’ is subcompact and makes its points and moves on. It’s quick pacing, and short, shotgun-blast songs, make it the type of record you blast in the car on a road trip. But you might want to be careful, since the fury in the songs will find you stepping on the gas pedal a little heavier and you might end up with a ticket for your troubles. Other stand out tracks are the razor sharp ‘Before the Fight,’ where Jasta barks, “End the fight / Before the fight ends you,” or the old school punk rager ‘Indivisible,’ which borrows a little, homage-style, from Agnostic Front. The title track boasts some vocal effects, which help Jasta’s message rise to the top. Hatebreed have been delivering choppy, boot-to-the-throat moshcore for nearly two decades and they have returned to their signature, simple but slaughtering hardcore style, with an uplifting message on the album, as it is what made them one of the crucial bands of the ’00s. You can kick up dust in the pit and then just chill out with a frosty beverage afterwards, since a ‘Breed record always fully cleanses you of any anger or aggression you may have. If that ain’t sonic therapy, we don’t know what is.
Schecter Guitar Research Schecter guitars and Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx have teamed up to create a new model of bass. The guitar company is planning to reveal the ‘Schecter Sixx’ signature series bass at the winter NAMM conference in Anaheim, Calif. on Jan. 26. Rock guitarists and bassists with a little extra cash in their pockets have been flocking to Schecter Guitar Research for decades to harness the company’s signature sound. Schecter has created guitars for Avenged Sevenfold ‘s Synyster Gates and Zacky Vengeance , Disturbed ‘s Dan Donegan and many more. The company is planning to release many new signature models in the near future, but the first of 2013 will be the Nikki Sixx ‘Schecter Sixx.’ “It was an exciting and creative process to work with Schecter on the new Schecter Sixx Signature Series Bass,” says Sixx. “It was important to all of us to design a bass that would feel right as well as sound amazing in the hands of all players, not just me. Every detail about the new Schecter Sixx comes from all of our collective experiences – whether it’s my 30 years of playing live and recording orSchecter’s unprecedented standards for making quality instruments for players of all genres. Simply said, this bass rocks!” Schecter’s Executive Vice President, Marc LaCorte adds, “I really felt as if we instantly gelled and were looking to accomplish the same goal with this project. Above all, it was so refreshing to see an artist of Nikki’s stature be so involved and genuinely concerned about every detail in the creation of this instrument.” Check out all the details and specs on the ‘Schecter Sixx’ bass here . Nikki Sixx is currently working with Motley Crue to create the band’s 10th full-length album, which Sixx is already calling “the best Crue album yet.” He’s also announced plans to work on a new disc from his other band Sixx: A.M. [button href=”http://loudwire.com/nikki-sixx-bassist-of-the-year-2012-loudwire-music-awards/” title=”Nikki Sixx Wins Bassist of the Year in the 2012 Loudwire Music Awards” align=”center”]
Sony The best Rage Against the Machine songs showcase the band's unique ability to deftly mix rap and rock to deliver music of the most powerful kind: politically charged, pointed and with a purpose. Frontman Zack de la Rocha's venom and vitriol was wrapped around a message, and he was often seen performing maniacally, with his signature dreads flailing around his head, while Tom Morello's guitar functioned like a turntable, thanks to whammy bars and wah-wahs. The rhythm section of bassist Tim Commerford and drummer Brad Wilk added some bluesy and jazzy heft. All those factors combined were what made the music so explosive and incendiary. While RATM's catalog of studio albums isn't vast by any means, the superb quality of the music the band has produced is undeniable. Here, we present our picks of the 10 Best Rage Against the Machine Songs: ? 10 'Freedom' From: 'Rage Against the Machine' (1992) ? ? 'Freedom' closes out the band's debut album, and it's full of bluesed out, groovy riffing, chippy percussion, pulsing tension, a blunt theme, pregnant pauses and false outros, a jazzy breakdown (starts at 2:09) and mostly rapped lyrical delivery. The slowly builds to a monster breakdown and the moment when Zack de la Rocha screams, “Freedom? Yeah right!,” RATM have you in their musical vice grip. It's one of the 10 Best Rage Against the Machine songs because the music is as combustible as the message. It must've sucked to have been a politician when RATM were in their prime, pointing out all that ails the government machine. Listen to 'Freedom' ? ? 9 'Testify' From: 'The Battle of Los Angeles' (1999) ? ? 'Testify' features an effects-laden performance from Tom Morello, while Zack de la Rocha is as fired up as ever. There is a lot of distortion and chaos all over the song, so much so that it might mess with your equilibrium. The song encapsulates all the elements that Rage fan have come to love: anger, groove, aggressive, turntabling guitars. It's also clearly a band favorite, since they opened several of their reunion shows with the song. Listen to 'Testify' ? ? 8 'Bombtrack' From: 'Rage Against the Machine' (1992) ? ? It could be argued that all Rage Against the Machine tracks are bombtracks, but the actual (and literal) 'Bombtrack' is another exercise in RATM's deftness with rising and falling tension, which is executed with masterful precision. On a purely sonic level, it fuses just the right amount of rap and rock. It's probably the least overly political song of the band's self-titled debut, but it's still fun to scream “Burn, burn, yes you're gonna burn” in the chorus. Fire it up. Listen to 'Bombtrack' ? ? 7 'People of the Sun' From: 'Evil Empire' (1996) ? ? 'People of the Sun' is one of the 10 Best Rage Against the Machine tracks, partly due to the story that Morello dragged a pencil and a wrench against his guitar strings in the beginning to make those definitive sounds. We can't even begin to come up with a name for that sound, but it's inimitable. The song features de la Rocha largely rapping in his clear and concise way. There were other versions of this song floating around prior to 'Evil Empire' being released, but this is the most well known and it made quite the impact. Listen to 'People of the Sun' ? ? 6 'Sleep Now in the Fire' From: 'The Battle of Los Angeles' (1999) ? ? 'Sleep Now in the Fire' addresses the plight of Native Americans in the context of American colonialism. The point is hammered home by de la Rocha's rapid-fire raps, and since his syntax and diction are always clear as a bell, it's hard (but not impossible) to ignore what he's ranting about. Morello drops a feedback-fueled solo and it again leaves us wondering if he moonlighted as DJ Tommy M during the band's heyday. Listen to 'Sleep Now in the Fire' ? ? 5 'Know Your Enemy' From: 'Rage Against the Machine' (1992) ? ? 'Know Your Enemy' opens with funkdafied riffing, before quickly escalating into a punky rock track. Some of Morello's riffage sounds influenced by Metallica in a few parts of the song. It's one of the most noteworthy RATM songs because it features a guest vocal from Tool's Maynard James Keenan, who delivers his distinct, nasally vocal over a chunky breakdown, singing “I've got no patience no / So sick of complacence now.” Two '90s alt metal titans collided in the space of one song. “Legendary” pretty much sums it up. Listen to 'Know Your Enemy' ? ? 4 'Bulls on Parade' From: 'Evil Empire' (1996) ? ? Lyrically, 'Bulls on Parade' addresses the governments usage of military contracts for revenue purposes. Musically, well, Morello whammies like his life depends on it. Then there's the solo (which comes in at the 2:30 mark), where he sounds like he is scratching vinyl, 1985 rap music style. See what we mean about Morello making his axe sound like a turntable? That sound is most prominent on 'Bulls on Parade,' and that's why it is a standout track. Listen to 'Bulls on Parade' ? ? 3 'Bullet in the Head' From: 'Rage Against the Machine' (1992) ? ? Rage Against the Machine raged against the fact that the media is controlled by the government in this fan favorite anthem, easily one of the band's best songs. 'Bullet in the Head' is erected on thudding rhythms, rising and falling tension throughout the song and more of Morello's whammy barring away. It sounds like he is playing a sampler onstage. In 1992, that was unheard of. Take that, Electonic Dance Music fans! The groove-laden breakdown at three minutes in a moshpit igniter. De la Rocha also gets credit for screaming “a bullet in your f—ing head” with such fervor that our blood pressure went up a few notches. Listen to 'Bullet in the Head' ? ? 2 'Guerilla Radio' From: 'The Battle of Los Angeles' (1999) ? ? 'Guerilla Radio,' which earned the band a Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance, is more polished than anything on their debut, but it's still frontloaded with chaos, wah-wahs, some '70s bass thwap courtesy of Commerford and Morello's “spinning.” When Zack de la Rocha barks, “Turn that s— up,” the listener is compelled to follow his orders…stat. And damn if Morello's riffing doesn't sound like a MacBook at 2:30 in. He was so ahead of his time and ahead of the curve. Listen to 'Guerilla Radio' ? ? 1 'Killing in the Name' From: 'Rage Against the Machine' (1992) ? ? 'Killing in the Name' is the most explosive RATM song. It's funky, bass-driven opening, it's subsequent build up of tension throughout the verses and choruses, de la Rocha's repeated whispering, “Now you do what they told ya” to Morello's wailing during the 'F— you I won't do what you tell me' crescendo embodies everything that RATM were about. It's not pretty, the music blows up in your face like a nailbomb and makes you stare down things that are difficult. You don't need to see it live to know de la Rocha's veins in his temples are bulging when he spews those lyrics best accompanied by a middle finger salute. That's why 'Killing in the Name' tops our list of the best Rage Against the Machine songs. Listen to 'Killing in the Name' ? ? Favorite Rage Against the Machine Song? Now that you've gone through and combed our 10 Best Rage Against the Machine Songs list, how about you tell us your thoughts. Agree? Disagree? Is there anything we left off, of which you feel you can argue a strong case for inclusion? Let us know in the comments section below: ?
New Ocean Media In the past few years, Steven Adler has made more headlines for his wacky one-liners and past substance abuse than he has from his musical endeavors, but all that’s about to change with the release of his new disc ‘Back From the Dead.’ With a title that’s as literal as it is figurative, it delivers one of the purest, straight-up rock albums of the year — chock full of the grit and grime that only comes with experience. Adler , who finally saw his future beyond the looming shadow of Guns N’ Roses frontman Axl Rose, formed his own band of talented gunslingers to create his new eponymous outfit Adler. The rocky past that led him here from being booted out of Guns N’ Roses for drug addiction so many years ago to his subsequent stints in rehab and reality TV, certainly wasn’t an easy road, but in retrospect it’s made him who he is today, and that is someone who’s hard not to root for. He’s a real rock star in the truest sense, having experienced the rise and fall of it all, only to pick up all the pieces and do it all again with reckless abandon. Arguably, one of Adler’s best decisions this time around was recruiting his current band. Tapping singer and, most importantly, songwriter Jacob Bunton from Lynam, Lonny Paul on guitar and bassist Johnny Martin, the collective known simply as Adler are not resting on the talent of Adler alone, functioning as a band in the truest sense with all parts equal, and that is felt throughout from start to finish. Oh, and while we’re on the topic of the finished product, the disc was produced by Jeff Pilson, who also played bass on the recording before Martin became a permanent fixture. ‘Back From the Dead’ starts off with the title track, a swanky little number that invites the listener in with a soothing bluesy vibe before exploding into the general theme of the disc: “ I’m back from the dead / I’ve got no regrets / I may forgive but I won’t forget .” With a Stone Temple Pilots feel throughout, the song makes a serious statement and that statement is a simple ‘f— you’ to anyone that stands in their way. It’s that common sentiment that plays throughout, as Adler finally finds his footing, unhinged from his past and forging on with his future. And what’s a great rock disc without a few special appearances, especially when those appearances come from two of the best guitarists of the modern era. Adler’s old bandmate and friend Slash joins the fun on the track ‘Just Don’t Ask.’ A song that starts out with a beautiful instrumental courtesy of the aforementioned top-hatted one before morphing into a ballady love song with a huge chorus and a signature Slash solo mid-song. Overall, it’s a beautifully executed spot of vulnerability in an otherwise rough around the edges collection of songs. But that’s not where the guest spots end. Rob Zombie ace John 5 lends his talents on ‘Good To Be Bad’ and his signature fretwork helps mold the song into one of the most dynamic the disc has to offer. Without so much as a stumble along the way, it was hard to make it through the 11 tracks without wanting to hear them all again. From the sexy vibe of ‘Your Diamonds’ to the harrowing lyrics of ‘Habit,’ and the straight up ass-kicking delivered courtesy of ‘Blown Away – ‘Back From the Dead’ delivers on all facets. Perhaps the proverbial nail in the coffin on closing out the past, the disc ends with the prophetic anthem ‘Dead Wrong,’ “ You’re dead wrong / I was right to let you go / Cuz I’m better off on my own / I’m alright and I’m moving on / You were dead wrong ,” Bunton screams out over a punishing bass line. A song about overcoming the odds, moving on, and conquering the rock world, something that Adler has truly accomplished with ‘Back From the Dead,’ we can only hope they stick around for awhile and enjoy the ride.