Hardcore Making For A Strange New World Of Music

If you have ear enough to distinguish between hardcore and, well, several other styles of heavy and not heavy music alike, then surely you’ve also noticed the sudden obsession with breakdowns rising and plateauing.  I believe it’s begun it’s downward spiral, because frankly, it’s getting repetitive.  Metal aside, the heavy and fast of hardcore has found a way to incorporate virtually any other style, and even weave its way into others.  This includes metal, obviously, but more interestingly pop, acoustic, hip-hop, and especially electronic, with the recent popularity boost of dubstep in America.  All this being said, the bands that have continued to make ‘hardcore’ (and with this, I include pop-punk, metalcore, deathcore, grindcore (obviously)) have either started to sound the same (and I mean really sound the same) or are beginning to move on to genres that haven’t had the life sucked out of them yet.  Think about the endless list of new additions to the hardcore (metalcore/deathcore/whatever) scene: We Came As Romans, Motionless In White, Abandon All Ships, A Day To Remember, Blind Witness, Her Demise My Rise, Chelsea Grin, and so on.  All are great (well, some) and have something fresh to display, but how long can this last?  And how much have these bands already digressed from hardcore?  A good example of the dubstep-influenced hardcore is the metal or death core, or whatever, band Asking Alexandria.  I’ve heard their new album Ruthless and Relentless, and it’s pretty much way better than their first one.  That being said, this is due to a slight variation in the genre, and at its core (ha), it’s still based around the exhausted concept of breakdowns throughout.  I’m not making any grand prediction, but to maintain the style, there have to be less diversions in the future.  If everyone is alright with leaving the genre to the fate of Hair Metal, then I suppose it’s not a big problem.  It’s arguably already influenced more music than Hair Metal ever did, but that’s not the point.  The scene is getting boring, no matter how persistent the artists are.  It’s not their fault, really.  If one thinks of the number of bands competing for fame in this age, compared to virtually any time in the past, most likely due to mass-media, it seems impossible for anyone to be truly labeled original, even if they are.

Just some thoughts.  That said, check out Reckless and Relentless by Asking Al, and perhaps some of the following:

Attack Attack!- Attack Attack!

Blind Witness- Nightmare On Providence Street

Chelsea Grin- Desolation Of Eden

We Came As Romans- To Plant A Seed

Abandon All Ships- Geeving

Her Demise My Rise- The Takeover

Motionless In White- Creatures

A Day To Remember- What Separates Me From You

Sleeping With Sirens- With Ears To See And Eyes To Hear

Miss May I- Monument

I See Stars- End Of The World Party

Full Blown Chaos- Full Blown Chaos

Emmure- Speaker Of The Dead

Dr. Acula- Slander

Salt The Wound- Kill The Crown

Each have a little something of their very own to offer the music world but branch from the same roots.  Some sound like different styles completely, until they start playing breakdowns.  Good or bad, it’s nice to see all the kids playing heavy music and all, but it’s just not what I was expecting.  Music is in a weird place.  It’ll be interesting to see how all this shakes out, what music will be like in ten years, and how they’ll view this stage in music history.

Probably my favorite of the LPs I mentioned

Sumerian Records Is Awesome

The young label Sumerian, started in 2006, has already gained my attention as if they were a seasoned signer.  With bands like Asking Alexandria, I See Stars, Born Of Osiris, The Faceless, Stick To Your Guns, and several other up-and-coming artists in the heavy metal and pop rock circles, they are growing quickly.  They have even signed 20+ year rapper Bizzy Bone, of Bone Thugs-n-Harmony fame.  All of this is interesting enough, but the whole Sumerian/Ancient Culture theme has more of my attention.  Themes from the ancient world are prevalent in several of the bands’ lyrics and art.  The new Bizzy Bone album Crossroads 2010 displays Egyptian pyramids and aliens on the cover, suggesting a connection to a recently heightened belief about the world, which is a completely different story.  But it all goes back to the first recorded civilization of the world, Sumer, after which the label is named.  I don’t know, maybe it’s just the three (Born Of Osiris, The Faceless, Bizzy Bone) that push my attention in this direction.  Maybe I’m just another conspiracy theorist waiting to happen. Either way, check them out, it’s a good label making good music.

featuring guest appearances from some surprisingly non-hip-hop artists