The third weekend in May of 2019 was one for the books, vastly due to the appeal of the metal masses from the generation-changing juggernaut known as Slipknot. Just when we thought this band couldn’t get any better, they do and it comes in typical fashion. Famous Last Words is alive and well after a hiatus of three years. Their newest EP, Arizona, is here and luckily for us, it was worth waiting for. Lastly, Oh, Sleeper reminds us why we loved metalcore in the mid-2000s. Let’s analyze these releases a little further..
Slipknot – “Unsainted”
I don’t remember a time over the years where I have been so excited for a Slipknot release, both before and after listening to “Unsainted”. Plain and simple, this song absolutely slaps the listener silly. Even more so, the most recent Slipknot release gives fans a first look at the new masks for the We Are Not Your Kind era. Many took to Twitter to express the liking for the new masks, with comments surfacing that frontman Corey Taylor is still working on his mask that is very similar to that of the All Hope is Gone mask, aside from the lower portion that is cover in a dark bandana. Taylor also sports a trenchcoat, putting the cherry on top in terms of making this my favorite mask era to date. A new member has also been revealed, taking the place of long-time percussionist Chris Fehn. Aside from all of the chatter regarding members and appearance, “Unsainted” marks yet another exciting era in what I consider the most groundbreaking band in metal music history.
Throne Magazine Rating: 9.5/10
Famous Last Words – Arizona
Famous Last Words finally released new music after a hiatus since 2016. The five track EP, Arizona, is a massive release for the band that continues to grasp their post-hardcore roots. A somewhat dying subgenre gets revived with the release of Arizona, putting Famous Last Words back in contention for tour talks and getting back in the scene.
The only single from the EP, “No Walls”, is a compact three minutes of the raw sound we expect out of Famous Last Words. “Runaways” kicks off the EP as the first track, with one of the catchiest choruses of 2019. “The Game” and “Broken Glass” are true testaments to the post-hardcore sound of Famous Last Words, with stellar unclean vocals and even better clean vocals. Finally, “Scream” hits like a hurricane and carries the swagger of a potential anthem for the Michigan-based band.
Throne Magazine Rating: 8/10
Oh, Sleeper – “Fissure”
The testament of Texas metalcore is back with “Fissure”, a hint at the greatness to come with their 2019 full length Bloodied/Unbowed. Fans are raving about the return of Oh, Sleeper and it isn’t just because these guys are preloved rockstars. “Fissure” is the assertion that some things never change, including true Texas metalcore that hits you in the mouth. “Fissure” is as heavy and pure as anything we could expect from Oh, Sleeper, making the hype all that more real. Some of the scene’s most beloved musicians have returned and in phenomenal fashion, and I can’t wait to see what they do next.
Throne Magazine Rating: 9/10