4. Cultivation Of Infection
5. The Hunt Begins
6. Hard Lines Downfall
7. King Of The Arctic
9. No Reprisal
10. One With The Sun
I can recommend reading a recent Marvel Comic in their ‘What If’ series. It is called ‘What If? Marvel Comics Went Metal, With Ghost Rider’. Why a comic recommendation? Well I reckon the new Unearth album, ‘Extinction(s)’ would make the perfect soundtrack to that particular comic. The band’s hard-edged Metal Core is a perfect foil to the adventures of the flaming skull headed character.
‘Extinction(s)’ is Unearth’s seventh album, their first was ‘The Stings Of Conscience’ in 2001. They formed in 1998 in Massachusetts. Three of the five members have been there for twenty years since the band were plopped from the Metal womb; Front man and singer Trevor Phipps, Lead Guitarist Buz McGrath and Ken Susi on rhythm guitar and backing vox. The engine room consists of Nick Pierce on drums (who joined in 2012) and Chris O'Toole on bass guitar (who joined in 2014).
The music on display throughout this album is a relentless barrage of some of the finest riffs in the known universe. This is most apparent on two of the three songs released so far; “Incinerate” and “One With The Sun”. The third single to date is “Survivalist” and if Trevor Phipps vocal chords didn’t need a rest after recording that then his throat must be made of pure Wakandan Vibranium! This is one sabre toothed ferocious beast of a record that would rip you to shreds if you let it. If you were open to that, the sheer scale and power that Unearth pump out would likely mean that you would enjoy the whole process. That tune asks “Will I become just a fading memory?”, well after 20 years together and possibly their best album yet I believe that will be highly unlikely.
Unearth are a band that totally understand Metal, its history and its fans. They are on a par with some of the genre’s mega Metal stars; Slayer and Pantera to mention just a couple. The album, as the title might suggest handles the plight of our now fragile planet and addresses many of the problems faced by the human race. Global warming is raised in “King Of The Arctic” and the ridiculousness of gun control and gun violence in the USA is punched head on in “Hard Lined Downfall”. The passion and power in every message and issue tackled by the band is completely palpable. They might not be politicians but they speak with far more intensity and integrity than many who consider themselves politicians. There are many massive tracks on ‘Extinction(s)’ but my favourite is “One With Sun” which slams us humans for the way we have destroyed our planet. This has the potential to be the greatest Unearth song ever and deserves a wide audience. It should be obligatory listening in schools when studies of the environment are discussed.
If you are a Metal fan then this record is certainly in your sights, but even if you’re not you ought to check it out. The album is released on November 23rd on Century Media. It was recorded at Graphic Nature Studio with Will Putney in the producer’s chair.
Website - www.unearth.tv
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/unearthofficial/
Review - Bill Adamson