Friday, April 23, 2010

Nails - Unsilent Death (2010)

Plenty of folks have informed me that I should be listening to Nails, a furious three piece outfit from southern California with notable hardcore pedigree.  Featuring members of Terror, Carry On, Internal Affairs, and Snake Eyes, I wasn't too sold on the idea at first.  While I still find time to listen to Hatebreed and attend the odd Gilman Street show, hardcore and I have mostly parted ways.  The cosmos conspired to keep bringing Nails to my attention, and I finally decided to give Unsilent Death a listen.

I was flooded with regret the moment Unsilent Death started up.  Why had I not been listening to this band sooner?  Here at last was something to fill the hole in my blackened heart that Cursed had left with their passing!  A righteously pissed off and dirty mix of sludgy hardcore, grind, and d-beat that I actually skipped out on seeing at the React! Records showcase just days ago.  I am such an idiot.

Fast, pissed, and nearly perfect, this record is completely lacking in compromise.  The production is built on a mountain of low-end and distortion, and is a clear step above 2009's Obscene Humanity.  The style remains as straightforward as a train wreck, a constant assault on the listener in all respects.  Very few bands can pull off this kind of d-beat driven offensive and pair it with the kind of sludgy, murderous breakdowns that inspire genuine fear in the audience. 

Bow to no man, no pig, no book of myths. 
Tolerate no deception, no ignorance. 
I'm not your fucking servant.

Unsilent Death is fourteen minutes of pure disgust spread across ten tracks.  Standouts here include the quoted "No Servant", the title track, and the thirty second terror "Your God".  "Depths" closes things off with a wickedly simple blackened drum beat mated to wailing, distorted guitar feedback.  I have listened to this record at least ten times, and each time I have to either start all over from the beginning to hear more or take a break and decompress. 

Nails is constantly being compared to the likes of Entombed, Napalm Death, Discharge, and Drop Dead.  Each is an apt comparison in their own way, but I think a visit to the Chris Colohan back catalogue would be a bit more accurate.  Cursed, Left For Dead, and The Swarm have all tread this ground before, but Nails keeps the dream alive and kicking while putting their own brand of hatred at the forefront.  Unsilent Death is not to be missed by fans of heavy music.

Verdict:  9/10 [Epic Win]

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