Picks: Milk Teeth, Less Art, Temple Of Void

We figured it would be a quiet week. We looked through the list of new releases and barely raised an eyebrow. We knew about a new EP from a band we love, and about an album we’d heard good things about. But bumping them to next week seemed likely, given the apparent scarcity of great new music elsewhere. Temple Of Void had other plans.

Milk Teeth
Be Nice
Roadrunner Records
[Spotify]

We had the enormous pleasure of watching Milk Teeth at The Flapper last Thursday, the night before their new EP, Be Nice, hit the shelves or wherever the kids get their music from these days. This is a wonderful band, so much so that the prospect of even four new songs is thrilling. Seeing them performed from a few feet away was quite something, from towering, anthemic opener ‘Owning Your Okayness’, to breathtaking closer ‘Hibernate’ – they also open and close the EP. In between, ‘Prism’ reinforces the inevitability of Milk Teeth’s future in rather bigger venues, while ‘Fight Skirt’ – and we can confirm this – is capable of tearing the ceilings out of them. Make no mistake, Milk Teeth is happening.

Less Art
Strangled Light
Gilead Media
[Spotify]

Sharing a rhythm section with Thrice is bound to put a post-hardcore band on a sure footing, and it’s from that base that the first record from the Breckenridge brothers and Less Art builds and expands into an impressive exploration of the melodic and pensive side of punk rock. Everything about Strangled Light is measured but there’s no lack of teeth. ‘Diana The Huntress’ isn’t exactly frantic but it is moody as hell. There’s an obvious ear for a hook in evidence here too, with ‘Mood 7 Mind Destroyer: Guilt’ and ‘Pessimism As Denial’ perhaps the pointiest prongs of proof. At the other end of the spectrum there are songs that are a little more challenging, and the common characteristic is a vocal delivery as close to maniacal speech as it is to singing.

Temple Of Void
Lords Of Death
Shadow Kingdom Records
[Spotify]

If you’re after a new metal record to check out this week, look no further than Temple Of Void’s second album, Lords Of Death. This is metal to the max, death-doom forced through a filter of salt and nails. It’s got quick parts and slow parts. It’s got gratuitous aggression and the vocal style to match. It’s got riffs to die for. But most of all, the Detroit quintet have delivered a no-nonsense, beautifully crafted and deeply satisfying group of songs. ‘Wretched Banquet’ is nothing short of sensational, and ‘A Watery Internment’ and ‘The Hidden Fiend’ follow it up with grinding fury. ‘Graven Desires’ shows a few flashes of straight-up heavy metal, an old-fashioned influence that somehow slots in perfectly. Banging album.

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You can buy Jurassic Parkour, the second EP by WAVE, on Bandcamp.

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