Record Label: Closed Casket Activities
Genre: Metalcore/Hardcore/Post Hardcore/Experimental
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The hardcore hype machine has been opening many eyes to a resurgence of creativity we haven’t seen in more than a decade, with bands like Code Orange and Turnstile blowing up, but the machine doesn’t stop there. Hailing from Boston, Vein combines multiple styles flawlessly.
With a series of EP’s under their belts, this first full length flows great. Listening through the album in full, each song is seemingly interconnected as the album is paced in an unrelenting manner. The attack never let’s up, while other bands assemble albums which are merely a bunch of songs that were recorded at the same time, this album is more of an experience, something that’s lacking from most hardcore albums in general. Style wise you never know where the album is going next in a good way. You could have something that’s technical or somewhat grindy flowing into either more chaos or into a more jammy post hardcore section. Imagine if all your favorite hardcore and metalcore bands got together and made one album, well that’s this band. You can go from Converge to Poison the Well, to almost industrial parts with samples.
Hands down the drums are the biggest piece to me that stood out on the first listen, very spastic and high energy, lot of break beats, almost makes me think if Joey Jordison played for Snapcase. The riffs are just as chaotic, at any time they could go from Converge to Botch to maybe something a bit more melodic like Deftones or Hopesfall. One can’t help but think some the elements of the album have a bit of the experimental nature of earlier nu-metal and at times I heard elements akin to Earth Crisis’ ‘Slither’ which almost led me to believe that record might be perceived differently today.
Because of the nature of the album, it’s hard to say certain songs stand out from the rest as it’s almost specifically designed to not be that kind of an album. Think of the songs more as moments interconnected in a non-prog concept album. The album goes by pretty fast from the opener “Virus://Vibrance” to “Old Data in a Dead Machine” interspliced by these transitional passages like “Rebirth Protocol” and “Anesthesia” which has an album Slipknot feel to it. These transitional tracks seem less as segues but more as mini songs to keep the constant flow of the album going. With later tracks hitting over the 4 minute mark, nothing overstays it’s welcome and the 27 minute plus album closes out crushingly with “Quitting Infinity”. If you were worried about some of the other bands that have been hyped lately in hardcore getting a little too streamlined, Vein is more than happy to be that band that maintains the chaos and aggression you’re craving.
Notable Tracks: Errorzone, Doomtech, Virus://Vibrance, End Eternal, Old Data in a Dead Machine