There really is no question as to how This Is Hell got to be one of the most popular bands in modern hardcore; since releasing their debut demo This Is Hell
in 2004, the band has toured relentlessly, easily performing up to and over 200 shows a year. Touring with bands both mainstream and of the underground nature, the exposure for the band has been at a maximum, which put on top of the fact they are known for the excellent, high energy live shows, has made the group absolutely unstoppable. Freshly signed to Rise Records (the band split from old label Trustkill earlier this year), the bands newest album Weight of the World
is just the next hard hitting album from one of the world’s most consistent bands.
Weight of the World
sees a stark maturation in the sound of This Is Hell; long ago are the days in which this band solely performed scrappy hardcore in the clubs of New York. Opening song “No One Leave Unscathed” is the perfect example of the band’s evolution; the beginning of the song is very much influenced by 80’s crossover, bringing the band to a sound much closer akin to that of Suicidal Tendencies than to Hatebreed. “Eagle Of Justice” surprisingly introduces atmospheric orchestration into the mix, which added with the soft, melodic clean picked guitar and split guitar harmonies seems for a better fit in symphonic metal then it would in a hardcore album; yet it this dynamism that keeps This Is Hell relevant in world flooded by mediocre hardcore bands.
Of course if you came looking for the brutal hardcore the band has become known for, then you won’t be disappointed; whether it be reckless d-beat drumming and quick, thrashing guitars (“Out Come The Bastards”) or the genres patented gang style vocals (“Forever Discontent”), there is still plenty of the old This Is Hell left to go around. Angry as ever, vocalist Travis Reilly’s high pitched hardcore bark could not be a better match for the raging chaos his band-mates surround him with throughout the record. Sole guitarist Rick Jimenez also does a standout job on Weight of the World
; whether it be blindingly fast power chord sections or even some well played shred guitar (“The Death Of World Class” in particular has an awesome solo!) the man obviously knows his way around the guitar.
Once again This Is Hell has produced another quality hardcore album. It’s obvious the years of constant touring have fine tuned this four piece machine to its most productive, with Weight of the World
standing as a glaring testament to the band’s progression, consistency and talent.