Harmed – From Day One

Ranging between metalcore, melodic hardcore, and mathcore. It’s like a little boy brother of Meshuggah who is still listening to some Slipknot and post-hardcore emo stuff. This album is acutally from 2017, I just came across this now because of a new single (Metacortex), which is way more all-out industrial infused metal, but both their earlier and new songs are fantastic. I wonder, which will be the future direction once a new record is out.

Korn – The Nothing

I haven’t been expecting a Korn album this good in this lifetime. Well, in full honesty I also haven’t been looking for it. From their debut up until the turn of the millennium I was all up for everything Korn, then probably life just moved on. Interestingly some same-era stuff, like Deftones for example, stick with me way more and longer, but I never really got into a Korn relistening frenzy. And this time this new album came, and it has some of the same sound that is Korn in a very original way but also I see how it’s new and relevant. It has its hooks to cater for different audiences but still it’s completely true to its own roots and sound. I like this a lot.

In a way I have this feeling lately that I’m reliving an era of my childhood. Looking at the news it’s new Tool album released, Diablo 4 announced, Rage Against the Machine reuniting, watching a Pet Sematary remake, etc. But at the same time, some of these things are truly good output, at least as for the music part (and even D3 haters are optimistic about D4). I hear so much whining about the music industry being shit, music review media going down, and all that, but I love how so much great new music is being released. Well, whiners gonna whine.

Tool – Fear Inoculum

I need to put this out here so that I can move on with my Play Later playlist. Probably I rather want to listen to it a hundred more times than say too much about it.

My short summary is that Tool’s journey can be heard on this one again, like through each one of their records. Again, it’s more refined, more nuanced, and more soft. This also means that it’s less raw, less surprising, and less revolting. Some Tool fans are not satisfied with this journey, and I’m not one of those fans. I like everything about it, I like what their music has become. My only concern is that with Maynard’s works in other areas of life I cannot help thinking whether his full soul is still in this project, or it’s just something that he gave in to and tried to accomplish to the best of his efforts. However, I have no doubt that they did everything as good as they humanly could to accomplish this record.

The music is not something I could describe with words like great, wonderful, or such. It works on a very different level and scale. I love that there are the most number of 10+ minute songs so far, and I love the path all those take from beginning to end. I’m meh for the short filler pieces, but the arcs of the epic ones blow me away, those are the ones why I have this album on constant replay for a week now.

On another note, I just realized that each Tool album represents a completely different stage in my life. This is also probably why I will always like their latest album the best. The music part is not something that’s up for debate, I know that their work will always resonate with me. It’s just what I add and how I connect to it.

Jambinai – A Hermitage

After listening to ONDA today I went straight on and listened to all releases by Jambinai, and it’s quite a trip. Their latest album is a sophisticated soul toching record and in contrast this first one is an experimental metal road roller beast. I see the journey they took from being this raw revolutionary composition through exploring their own realm that they created and arriving to the final destination where they can control their space with such a fine touch. But I love all stages of this journey. I kept starting to write a sentence about which version of their music I prefer but kept deleting, decided not to say. This may be my top new find this year so far: it is so new, so refreshing, so not like something else, so surprising. I still have some processing and re-listening to do.

Actually this specific record brings up feelings that I had for Karyn Crisis’ Salem’s Wounds in 2015.

Zeal & Ardor – Stranger Fruit

Zeal & Ardor hit extremely hard when it arrived with its blues rock meets death metal flavor. I couldn’t even imagine how they can follow this up with a second album. Maybe it is something that works like a concept record and should not be followed up. But then they announced a sophomore and I was cautious. They could have done something totally different and I might not like it. Or they might have become too famous with this too fast and have gone into some more compromising ways.

And now the album arrived and I am relived. This definitely isn’t the smasher the first one was simply because we have already seen the trick, but still it is completely okay and works just fine. Even at some points I feel like the guys were pushing the shrieking edge a bit too much to compensate for other parts or the feared expectations they felt people might have.

Anyhow, this is good. Works after several plays, too.