Thursday, December 2, 2021

Chaos reigns as Every Time I Die assert their dominance on Radical

Buffalo’s Every Time I Die (a.k.a ETID) are a band renowned globally for their abrasive, destructive and chaotic brand of southern rock-infused hardcore. It has been a long, six-year wait for the follow up to 2016’s critically acclaimed Low Teens, during that time guitarist Andy Williams has become a professional wrestler for All Elite Wrestling (AEW) under the moniker ‘The Butcher’ and as part of a successful tag team known as ‘The Butcher and The Blade’. Now, the band have made a sensational and characteristically anarchic return with their ninth studio album Radical. Packed to the brim with crushing hardcore riffs that are capable of suplexing you into next week!

Crafted in their signature unorthodox style, bringing southern rock riffs to the chaotic, discordant world of hardcore, there is something radically apocalyptic about Radical. Injected with the bands tongue-in-cheek humour, the abstract cynicism definitely stands out, especially with song titles like ‘Planet Shit’. Coupled with the dark dissonance and feedback, this is a triumphantly noisy and ruthless record and then some. Kieth Buckley is a man possessed on this album, his enigmatic and ambiguous lyrics are screeched at you, a visceral anger permeates every word as they smash their way down your ear canals. 

While the songwriting doesn’t stray too far outside of their established formula, it does sound significantly more anthemic. There is definitely potential for this album to be the book of unhinged hymns for this dystopian age, lyrically speaking there is definitely shots being fired at the state of the world. ‘Post-Boredom’ demonstrates this as the anger and frustration associated with being in a constantly terrible predicament, as if the protagonist is locked in a fever dream of self-guilt and self-annihilation. ‘Desperate Pleasures’ delivers a stark message about all the ills of the world, with the hook-like being “The world made us sick, so how can it heal us?”. Amongst the chaos there are also moments of uneasy calm, ‘Things With Feathers’ feels like a Southern Gothic anthem when it first starts before launching into a stoner rock tune. It bisects the album with a moment of tentative relaxation before thrusting you back into the raging mayhem. 

ETID has once again asserted its hulking dominance on the metal scene once again with Radical, wantonly ripping up the rule book and bringing absolute bedlam with every step they take.

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