Within The Ruins
Who says a band needs to disappear for years at a time between albums? Pantera dropped a classic album every other year from 1990 to 1996. The late Chuck Schuldiner unleashed seven classic Death albums in the span of just over ten years. So when a band hits the kind of creative stride, chemistry and metallic momentum WITHIN THE RUINS tapped into with last year’s breakthrough album they’d be fools to slow down now.
Within The Ruins wasted no time in crafting a new career-defining landmark, Phenomena. The band’s new album is the next step forward from Elite, further jettisoning all but the best components of the oft-maligned “deathcore” genre to reveal a band whose all out assault of heaviness won’t be confined by genre. The band shreds with the best of them of course, maintaining a place next to Between The Buried And Me and The Faceless, but the new album is even more about songs than scales.
Phenomena maintains an emphasis on showmanship with ever increasing diversity, smartly sidestepping predictable structures and contrived breakdowns. Within The Ruins are exploring the type of sonic textures and esoteric territory explored by Gojira. In some spots, a more nuanced vocal assault creeps in, with powerful might.
Speed demons and hell-raisers, take heed! Circle-pitting, beer drinking, hair-swinging, spider-fingered goodness, that’s the name of the game for BLACK FAST, America’s newest neo-classic riff masters. Ripping pages from Death's technical death metal guidebook, the St. Louis foursome conjures the spirit of the late, great Chuck Schuldiner while channeling the viciousness of Megadeth's young-and-hungry Dave Mustaine and blistering aggression of Kreator’s Mille Petrozza.
Creating a modern twist on the energetic riffs of metal’s glory days, BLACK FAST harness the spirit of their metal forefathers, whether exploring hand-cramp-inducing riffs or blazing through straightforward thrash. BLACK FAST songs have a hungry ferocity reminiscent of the Bay Area thrash scene, the likes of which haven’t been this raw or hyper-charged in decades.
BLACK FAST has the musical chops to move seamlessly between the progressive licks of Voivod and the scorched-earth devastation of vintage Megadeth with reckless abandon and a bleak but empowered vibe as wrought by the Midwest. Both guitarist Trevor Johanson and bassist Ryan Thompson have jazz degrees. Drummer Ross Burnett has been playing since kindergarten while Akin knew he wanted to be in a metal band very early in life.
Since 2011 BLACK FAST has fit right in on lineups with thrash revivalists like Havok, Battlecross, Revocation, Toxic Holocaust and Warbringer and modern metal merchants like Cavalera Conspiracy and Shadows Fall. BLACK FAST won the 2012 St. Louis ‘Headbang for the Highway,’ contest and played the Sumerian Records stage at the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival in Kansas City.
In 2013 MetalSucks.net selected BLACK FAST as one of the best unsigned acts in their 'Unsigned and Unholy' column and the band's self-released EP Starving Out the Light nabbed "Best of the Year" nods by Metal Storm and No Clean Singing. Standout tracks “Progenitors of Predation” and "Starve" display the mix of thunderous thrash, filthy riffs and full-on swagger that is BLACK FAST. “Obelisk” has become the band’s calling card, instantly connecting in the live setting, like Black Fast’s very own “Angel of Death.”
BLACK FAST’s soundtrack to society’s collapse is relentless. Possessed by unbridled energy and a palpable desperation, the band has a fierce vitality that will not go unnoticed. Watch for their label debut on eOne Music in 2015.