I still remember the first time I heard that raspy snarl. The charisma that could ignite a crowd into a frenzy. Far removed now from his time in Gallows, Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes have solidified their place in modern rock today. End Of Suffering, the bands third album, sees the group moving along in away that still connects with their roots but lays down a foundation of where this band can go. 2017’s Modern Ruin was a great benchmark for just how talented this group is. End Of Suffering takes that level and adds a few layers of optimism as well as tenacity.
The entire album is quite interesting. There are many different speeds to this record. On one hand you have a song like the opener “Why A Butterfly Can’t Love A Spider.” This track sets up the album in a tonal way by the feel of the music and the lyrics. There’s a sense of pain but hope in the way it’s delivered and that carries through the rest of the album. Songs like “Anxiety,” “Crowbar,” “Heartbreaker,” “Kitty Sucker,” and “Tyrant Lizard,” which features Tom Morello ripping it up, all provide the uptempo tenacity that Frank is known for. Then songs like “Love Games,” “Angel Wings,” “Supervillain,” and “Latex Dreams” have a bit more of sensitive side but still contain a sharp edge and gruffness. Ending the album is the title track “End Of Suffering.” This soul bearing song gives a deeper glimpse into the mindset of Frank and where this album is truly coming from.
End Of Suffering is the kind of album that has something for everyone. It’s diverse and full of life. Nothing about this is phoned in or fake. If you’ve been following Frank since his days in Gallows, you know you are going to get a guy giving his all. While this album may seem to be more “straight forward” in terms of sound, it does show what the band is capable of doing as songwriters and how not to constantly repeat what they’ve done before. Frank and The Rattlesnakes (Dean Richardson, Tom Barclay, Gareth Grover and Thomas Mitchener) have really found themselves as a band. End Of Suffering was a not where you think they would have gone after Modern Ruin but, it’s definitely the right move.
Overall Rating: 7.5/10
Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes- End Of Suffering:
Ever since rock music hit the airwaves, there’s been something about the Boston area that just really rocks. Be it rock, metal, or hardcore, there’s something in the water that really makes the music that good. There is a band from the Boston area that I’d like to introduce you to, Labor Hex. This four piece post-hardcore, punk rock band is quite the band. It’s also worth mentioning that Labor Hex features members of Doomriders and The Red Chord. Their EP Lost In Calling, is a robust and exciting 4 song taste of what this band is. There’s an energy in these songs that harks back to a time when punk energy was free flowing and changing things. The song “I Wanna Be Ignored” is a perfect example of this. The song “Valentine Coast” is one hell of a good song. It’s a prime example of just what this band is capable of as songwriters. Labor Hex is a band at the right time and place and I’m stoked to hear more!
Labor Hex- Lost In Calling:
Punk music has always been one of those genres that I’ve loved since first listen. It goes all the way back to being about 5 or 6 and hearing the Ramones. From that point onward, I was hooked. There was something about the simplicity of the music that hit home but also the honesty. Granted the latter part didn’t really hit till I got older, I could still sense there was something special about this style of music. As time passed I got more and more into punk music from the Sex Pistols and The Clash. Then 1994 happened and punk music exploded yet again with bands like Green Day, The Offspring and Rancid. It was then that I really delved into what punk music was all about. I then discovered bands like Black Flag, Bad Religion, etc. It was then that I realized the “heavier” side of punk music was for me. So over the years I found myself seeking out those bands that fit that style more. Which brings me to a band I heard a few years ago that has always stood out to me.
Back in 2013 there was an album that came out called Home by a band called Off With Their Heads, and there was something about this record that really left a mark. This band had the whole package, from hard hitting riffs and super punchy bass and drums to the honest lyrics and vocal delivery that made it all believable. Home, Off With Theirs Heads’ third full-length (though it could be considered their fourth depending on if you count the Hospitals record as an album), found the group diving deeper into experimentation without compromising their roots. This album is “real” and it’s grit shows through. When you have songs that tackle topics like anxiety, anger, and self loathing, it’s tough not to feel a connection. There is an underlying sense of catharsis to these songs which makes the end result feel very positive and optimistic. Songs like “Start Walking,” “Shirts,” “Nightlife,” “Focus On Your Own Family,” “Don’t Make Me Go,” “Always Alone,”and “Stolen Away” are not only standout songs but, anthems as well.
Singer Ryan Young has a voice that you feel every word he sings. It’s one of those immediate voices that will stay with you and act as a mantra of sorts. Musically, Off With Their Heads hit you like a ton of bricks. There is a real sense of urgency to the way they play and deliver the songs. You can really hear that on Home. Off With Their Heads are the type of band that has much in common with their punk influences but also bands like Jawbreaker and Jawbox. The realness and honesty (there’s that word again) really shines through in this band. That is something that will always have a lasting effect on those that listen and take the words to heart. Do yourselves a favor and take a listen to this unsung masterpiece and, celebrate a true work of art!