Empire of the Rats
Self Titled
A389 Records
★★★★

It’s a delicacy when a band pops up on the radar sounding like a hyperactive kid with bad breath, yelling in your face. All this set to the tune of raucous punk splooge. Not to say anyone in the band is a hyperactive musician with bad breath. Or, maybe they are. But overall hyperactive is the key here.

This Columbus, Ohio, band is filled with early ‘90s sludge punk that lies somewhere between the chaos of Brutal Juice and the extremism of Abscess. Dump the body in a vat of toxic waste and employ a glutinous hardcore that will melt your face.

“Leeches” is like beating your head on a steel pipe. Each riff, each thunderous kick drum and each cymbal crash is like a blow to the head. It would make any societal elite snub up their nose with disgust. But between you and I, it’s a powerhouse of a song as is the album.

EMPIRE OF RATS at A389 Recordings X Anniversary Bash (FULL SET)

There is no sympathy here. There is nowhere to hide. “Another Minute In Hell” is a steamtrain. “Society’s Zero” is pure hardcore combustion. “Little From The World” blends a metal basis with mosh pit ethics.

What the album ends up being is good old-fashioned hardcore punk that is everything talented as it is reckless. So shove your stanky combat boots in your buddy’s face and put on this rip-roaring of a good time because it’s going to get sweaty.

Categories: Reviews

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