Album review by Josh Foster, photos provided by Violent Life Violent Death
Come, Heavy Breath is the sophomore effort by Violent Life Violent Death and will give hardcore fans plenty of what they love about the genre. Solid straightforward thrashing grooves drive the EP throughout with sparse moments of clean or gang vocals to make the heavy bits stand out even more.
The title track “Come, Heavy Breath” opens dark and somber before kicking into high gear. The chorus is very open with clean vocals placed at the end, which does a great job of setting up the higher tempo verses. Make no mistake, this album is heavy and driving from top to bottom. However, both the arrangement of the album and each track is varied enough to give each breakdown and riff some space to stand on its own. The use of tempo changes on each song is a great mechanic to avoid monotony while maintaining the heaviness. “Lovers-Deceivers” is the shortest song on the EP at a mere 2:10, but takes you through an almost classic rock riff to open through a dark bass groove and exiting on a super thrashy note.
The strength of the EP are the head bang inducing grooves. Violent Life Violent Death doesn’t spend a lot of time with extended solo’s or trying to straddle a more commercial melodic approach. They display a sense of self awareness that is admirable. The vocals grab you by the collar, the drums kick you in the teeth and the songs don’t let go until you start moving. Don’t expect a weak moment. One thing many bands try to do is capture the energy from their live shows. These songs do a remarkable job of transferring that energy to the listener, which is a significant accomplishment.
Violent Life Violent Death deliver a very well produced effort. The sound is big, and despite the gritty and crunchy style, the EP doesn’t become muddy or undiscernible, a problem that so many hardcore and metal recordings suffer from. Come, Heavy Breath is something the band should be proud of making and something you should be happy to add to your collection. It is available now on their bandcamp!