Here at Revolver, we pride ourselves in living on the cutting edge of heavy music, from metal and hardcore to industrial and hip-hop, 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 musicians who, we think, are on the rise across several different genres. From genre-mashing screamo to spiraling doom metal, here are five artists you'll want to get on now.
RIYL Poison the Well, Dying Wish, From Autumn to Ashes
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE Foreign Hands play a style of metalcore that throws it back to the early 2000s. Their superbly crafted new EP, Bleed the Dream, out on the crucial label Daze, evokes the Trustkill Records sound that bands like Poison the Well, Bleeding Through and Eighteen Visions codified at the turn of the millennium. But Foreign Hands' crisp production style, tight leads, killer breakdowns, frenzied screams and sparsely used cleans make for a winning formula in the hands of a band as energized as they are.
QUOTE "We thought a lot about how different elements would go over in a live setting, as well as putting more emphasis on song structure and flow," the band say of Bleed the Dream. "We'd never done any sort of choruses or hooks in our music before, and we wanted to find a way to incorporate those kinds of pop elements without compromising anything about our sound. Lyrically, the EP is about the complexity of nostalgia, and the different ways we all experience it."
RIYL Pentagram, Candlemass, Mercyful Fate
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE Friends of Hell named themselves after a Witchfinder General album, and that pretty much tells you all you need to know about the new gruesome foursome. Featuring former Electric Wizard member Tas Danazoglou and Opium Warlords singer Albert Witchfinder, the band's 2022 debut douses the classic English doom sound in a film of blackened scuzz, while still relishing in low-and-slow blues riffage and Witchfinder's King Diamond-esque warble.
QUOTE "Musically, we wanted to blend all our favorite bands," says Danazoglou, tapping Pentagram, Venom, Mercyful Fate and Hellhammer as their idols. "We didn't want to play a specific style ... but obviously there's a lot of doom in there. Lyrically, obviously we wanted the classic dark stuff. Seventies horror films, Satanism etc. It fits the music." Here's what they want people to know: "That we are truly Friends of Hell — and they should be, too!"
RIYL La Dispute, Touché Amoré, Pianos Become the Teeth
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE With influences ranging from Orchid and Glassjaw to AFI and the Body, Dreamwell aren't your average screamo band. The Providence, Rhode Island, group's excellent 2021 LP, Modern Grotesque, frequently recalls the talk-sing poeticism of La Dispute, but Dreamwell's songs explode into crushing breakdowns when they're not gliding through buttery clean licks doused in slick reverb. If you yearn for the emotional catharsis of Touché Amoré but prefer whipping heaviness to driving force, then Dreamwell are a must-listen.
QUOTE Vocalist Keziah Staska says that their collective goal is "to give us something to invest time and energy into that exists outside of the toiling, paycheck-to-paycheck capitalist hellscape of our daily lives by making miserable music by and for hot queer people." They nurture their scattered influences, but Staska hints that their next LP is going to lean into their heavier, most chaotic inclinations. "I'm also trying to get the rest of the band on board with calling our fourth album BOTCH WORSHIP, so take that how you will."
RIYL Deftones, Title Fight, Mudhoney
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE While you'll often find Soul Blind playing and touring with hardcore bands, you won't find their music easy to mosh to. The Hudson Valley, New York, group cite the grungy alt-metal of Failure, Helmet and Deftones as their primary texts, and all of those influences are apparent on a song like "Third Chain." However, having grown up in the 2010s, there's no escaping the hefty amount of Title Fight-ish vocal inflections and slightly more emo-tinged melodies that seep in between their chunky grooves and shoegazy washes of Jazzmaster magic.
QUOTE "We love the energy of hardcore shows, and it's where we came from," the band explain of their connection to that scene. While they had been around for a few years prior to the pandemic, it was 2021's three-song Third Chain EP that propelled them into the limelight and really started turning heads their way. "We hadn't released music since 2019 and we wanted to refresh people to us with some new tracks. Musically, we wanted to showcase a couple different avenues of sound we're going to continue exploring on our upcoming full-length."
RIYL Deafheaven, Neurosis, Pelican
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE Austin's Glassing have been chugging away for several years now, but they truly came into their own on 2021's Twin Dream LP. Black-metal screams and blasty gallops collide with skyscraping post-metal leads. Earth-rumbling sludge dirges detonate like land mines while dazzling metalcore guitar work twirls through the ruckus, sometimes splintering off into spazzy post-hardcore freakouts. This is a band who refuse to deal in dull moments, replacing every boring sludge-metal trope (especially the predictable pregnant pauses) with mind-melting gusto.
QUOTE "Twin Dream was supposed to encapsulate the indifferences of humanity," says bassist-vocalist Dustin Coffman. "How we can be unthinkably cruel towards each other and how that reciprocation diminishes us at our core." As for their overarching creative ambitions, Glassing just want to move people. "There's nothing more spectacular than seeing an amazing underground band for the first time and being shook by their performance. Words can't describe the feeling. We're doing our best to pass the torch."