FOREST WARS - Worship And Slaughter
November 30, 2016, a year ago
I quite enjoyed Forest Wars' 2015 EP Light Leaks, which we reviewed here and gave a solid 7.0 to, the Ohio band's weird prog-grind-violence a nice throwback to Relapse Records' most creative era as far as the crossing of hardcore and metal goes. And this new one is even better: opener “Bitter Love” spends about 2:20 being all quiet and almost '90s-emocore (the good stuff, the good stuff) before going Neurosian for its final 30 seconds. The title track is next, and it's like they know what I love, counting off with a four count on the snare (hey, I'm easily pleased) before going into some noise rock/sludge metal; great guitar work here, very unique and expressive while also discordant and jarring. This is one heavy song, but it also manages to be moving and also just progressive enough to be interesting (it even features noisy grind parts, which I approve of).
Killer stuff, and next song “Hive” is again bringing me back to the days of those incredible Relapse compilations, all hyper beats and discordant hardcore meeting brainy metal, the sounds clashing and clanging in a concise 2:01 that actually, literally, falls apart at the 0:40 mark, only to come back together at 1:00, the band, amazingly, utilizing those 20 seconds of noise to much impact, something rarely done. “Carry On” brings a slightly southern feel to the sludge, but not in a sports-bar way, in a smart, Soilent Green-ish way; closer “Float Away” ends things off with manic, power-violence-inflected grindcore done right. Excellent, brainy, forward-thinking EP; a solid 8.0. Someone sign these guys (Relapse, you listening?), and bring on a full-length; this band is officially ready.