Review Summary: Brutality Will in fact Prevail
Have you ever tried swimming in the midst of a hurricane? How about, put more simply, swam against the force of a swift current? Both show good ol’ Mother Nature’s grace with a pinch of fury, ostensibly ready to erupt at any given moment yet poised with serenity keeping the wrath in a contained passion of sorts. How relatable this is to Grader’s debut EP 2011
, a release so confided in rage that it propagates anguish and despair with each spin the needle traces. Set your ear to this for a second, here’s a band that has the cathartic bite of Black Breath
with the solidarity of Defeater
then somehow mixed with Have Heart
; all executed in the most brutal of fashions.
Opener “Keep Love” stumbles in with the heavy feet of Gaza
and keeps its poise in the same manner. Things are heavy but tempo and mood are set for the event absolutely nothing feels superficial. Collective hooks are screamed in unison but sound disenchanted from the typical hardcore group boastings; there’s a seeping dynamism involved here that sets the notions of what’s being created on a higher level – everyone involved needs purging. And that’s the blood of the release, which is boiled thicker with “The Hound” sneaking in melodic passages that swoon the listener into a trance of empathy. “Unforgivers” resounds the same possibilities but through different traits; relying on each verse’s back breaking riffs to crunch the smooth choruses between thus the tug-o-war between relief and disdain brews a more formidable monster - agony.
This is a relative talent Grader displays with passion and grit in each palm. Though their love for hardcore is more than apparent, their ability to create a sorrow drenched track like “Northern Heart” proves more than the bands heart. Their transitions are near flawless and accompany the preceding build up necessarily. While they tread the familiar lines of hardcore every now and again their precision in amplifying the mood of each song makes the slip welcomed. The masochistic natures of Grader are completely self-inflicted with regard in the end. “The Hound” makes note of this during its furious groove stating, “if I was lonely this would be the only way I know, if I screwed up somehow but this is not a sing along”. Remembering the power of Mother Nature where in the moment of panic all you can do is watch; Graders ask that you just listen.