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 bludgeoning metallic hardcore to provocative occult metal.
RIYL Knocked Loose, Hatebreed, the Acacia Strain
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE Just reading the title of No Cure's latest single, "No Cure Straight Edge Die Slow Fuck You," already makes us want to start windmill moshing. The music? Even more so. Big-upped by the Acacia Strain and rising fast in the metallic hardcore underground, Alabama's No Cure are primed for big things, and they've already delivered the goods with a gnarsty album and two even hotter 2023 singles.
Vocalist Blaythe Steuer sometimes shrieks like Knocked Loose's Bryan Garris and the breakdowns are succulent, but the band offset any easy comparisons with death-metal guitar sweeps and discombobulating drumming. And best of all, Steuer says No Cure are "just gonna keep on getting scarier."
QUOTE "Culturally, ethically and for all intents and purposes, we are a hardcore band," says Steuer. "We are from that world, and that is the lens we use. We do ride the line musically as the band has a ton of extreme-metal and death-metal influences in the music. We didn't set out to make one thing or another, the only goal was to create the most evil straight-edge record ever."
RIYL Ghost, Mercyful Fate, In This Moment
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE "A band? A religion? A cult? We are what you want us to be." That's the motto Dogma recite to people who stumble upon their curiously artful Instagram page, and all three choices are tempting.
As a band, the cryptic quartet's four songs (each paired with an elaborately blasphemous music video) are a deliriously fun blend of Ghost-y occult rock and shreddy NWOBHM, outfitted with heaping piles of glammy swagger and twinges of sinfully heavy chugs. Cult or not, you'll be under their spell before you even know it.
QUOTE "Dogma is for those who dare to be their authentic selves, who are determined to break free from the chains of conformity, and who refuse to adhere to the fragile and meaningless norms imposed by society," the band tell us. "Our mission is to celebrate champions, empower fighters and, most importantly, awaken those whose eyes may be blinded by societal expectations."
RIYL TOOL, Rush, Kraftwerk
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE The name Media might seem innocuous, but their sound is anything but. The Phoenix three-piece stroll along the margins of alt-metal, synth-pop and psychedelia, without ever committing to any one lane. TOOL are an obvious influence on some of their sounds, but their use of squelchy synths and freakish vocal processing flirts heavier with industrial than anything MJK has ever touched. Media are their own thing, and these days, that's special.
QUOTE "The word 'media' has a charge to it these days and for obvious reasons, but its roots in Latin — medi, medium — mean the middle, the space between," the band say. "We think somewhere along the way, our culture has lost equilibrium.
"There are forces that use media to manipulate, divide and distract, and those forces have the loudest amplification. Others use media to illuminate, unite and open the mind to curiosity and questioning. We hope Media's frequencies add some volume to the latter."
RIYL Electric Wizard, Life of Agony, Superheaven
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE No two songs on The Virgos' monstrously awesome debut, Pennsylvania Death Trip, sound the same. Sabbathian doom sojourns, haunted-basement death-metal gnashes, fuzz-blasted power-pop and metallic hardcore mosh jaunts all exist in the same 10-song tracklist, and amazingly, they all feel a part of the same, cohesively downtrodden statement. Bang your head, sing along, punch your friend and rip a bong — all in less than 30 minutes.
QUOTE "Pennsylvania Death Trip represents the journey from brutal winter through the uncertainty of spring and the rebirth and resurrection in summer," the band explains. "We're singing about what we know: god, angels, demons, the devil, life, death, drugs and Planet Earth."
RIYL Judge, Inside Out, Fury
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE Wreckage picked up some buzz at the top of 2023 with their great Our Time EP, and their name hasn't gone away since. The Connecticut band's refreshingly back-to-basics sound cuts in between the thriving metallic hardcore (see: Drain) and old-school punk (see: GEL) lanes and harkens back to early Nineties milieu typified by labels like Revelation and New Age. Bouncy, earnest, a little fun, but still ripe for dancing to.
QUOTE "Nowadays there's not too many active bands doing this style of hardcore, it seems to have phased out a little bit," says vocalist Noah. "But if we can spark some sort of fire to revive it a little bit, that's more than I could ask for."