Here at Revolver, we pride ourselves in living on the cutting edge of heavy music, from metal and hardcore to industrial and goth, and we try to keep you on the front line, too, by giving you a deep look at the innovative noisemakers poised to shape the sound and the scene. To that end, we've rounded up a handful of artists who, we think, are on the rise across several different genres. Spanning from Aussie post-punk (Death Bells) to grinding death from potato country (Infernal Coil), here are five groups you'll want to get on now before everyone else does.
With a post-punk swagger and a deep love for the Eighties New Romantic movement, Death Bells slithered onto our radar via their Standing at the Edge of the World LP last year. While that LP oozed promise, the latest two-song 7-inch from the Australian crew fulfills and expands upon those initial promise. "These songs are hallmarked by stark contrast — one is a pop song with a lot of restraint, and the other is a bit darker," says frontman Will Canning. "I think that interplay is something we've always put to use when writing music. I'm sure it'll be present on the second record, too."
New York and Florida are always looked at as havens for death metal, but why not Pennsylvania? Bands like Incantation, Gorephobia and Nunslaughter all came up in the Keystone, each blazing their own unique trail through the genre. Outer Heaven hails from Pennsylvania, as well, and their positively white-hot live presence is soon to be matched with a stellar new album on the also–Pennsylvania-based Relapse Records. "The writing process for our new record, Realms of Eternal Decay, was definitely our most ambitious of anything we've ever written," vocalist Austin Haines says. "Having been crafted over a period of two-plus years, we definitely feel like this record is the culmination of the bands entire existence up to this point. These songs are some of the fastest, meanest, heaviest and even most technical of anything we have in our catalog."
If the music of the Locust took an evil genius of schizoid mind to write it, then it's going to take a team of doctors to diagnose the members of SeeYouSpaceCowboy. On the heels of their manic split release with Second Grade Knife Fight — a spazzy hardcore release from earlier this year — the band is already plotting its next move towards total domination. "With [our] new record, we're going to make every hardcore kid admit they had a scene phase. The heavy parts will be heavier, and the weird parts will be weirder," declares guitarist Jesse Price. "2019 is the year we live on the road, touring relentlessly and [release] the LP that will define us as a band." Big words, but we have no doubt SeeYouSpaceCowboy will deliver.
It's been years since Atlanta extremists Dead in the Dirt released any new music, which is nothing to rejoice over, but the time away has given vocalist/guitarist Blake Connally plenty of emotion and creativity to thrust into his new project, grinding Idaho-based death-metal unit Infernal Coil. With a pair of EPs under their belt, Infernal Coil have joined forces with heavy-music taste-makers Profound Lore for their next surely remorseless collection of hate ballads, set for the fall. For Connally, it's all about pent-up aggression. "We have all taken time away from creating music in recent years," he says. "The posturing emptiness that unfortunately plagues the metal/punk community, took its toll on us. I tried to pursue something else that would allow me a catharsis, as well as displaying glaring issues that are often overlooked or taken lightly."
Based on a blind listening test, it would be easy to mistake Ecostrike as a band from upstate New York in the Nineties, with their metallic hardcore focus and lyrics focused on environmental issues. But the globally-minded collective is in fact a new Florida-based band with a very much old-school mentality of bringing activism to the scene, which has largely otherwise abandoned it. Vegan straight-edge is the name of the game here, and while Ecostrike's political lyrics point hard toward that way of life, the riffs are 100-percent bipartisan, white-knuckle rage.