Johnny Truant

No Tears For The Creatures

Written by: PP on 06/09/2008 14:12:39

Johnny Truant's third release "No Tears For The Creatures" has been lurking on my album review list for quite a while now due to its irreducably complex nature and devouring heaviness that crushes inferior listeners easily underneath itself. It is one of the heaviest metalcore/hardcore hybrid's I've heard since I began listening to this type of music, and simultaneously a huge departure from their screamo-oriented sound of past albums and EPs.

Lets start with the breakdowns, for they are fucking intense. Think The Chariot styled riff oscillations and crushing repetitive riffing, except only three times heavier. The term 'crushing' gains new meaning in songs like the opening "The Grotesque", a freight train of a track that flashes by the listener leaving nothing behind but an aching neck from intense headbanging. There are few hints of melody here and there, a hook perhaps, or a catchy riff, but for the majority of the time, the songs consist of unforgiving heaviness and mosh-core breakdowns. Vocalist Olly Mitchell growls intensely through the entire record. He's definitely an acquired taste, but anyone can admit that few vocalists are able to deliver as monstrously heavy, voluminous growl as he can. And let me tell you this: if your hatred of breakdowns is only matched by your hatred for a plane full of screaming kids on a night flight, well, meet the great Satan.

After dozens and dozens of listens, the listener can finally start making some sense out of their chaotic hardcore sound. "Death Rides", for instance, has a neat, complex metalcore hook pattern in the chorus, and album highlight "Crush And Devour" is made out of metalcore godhood instrumentally. Faster tracks like "Widower" seem at first to be only breakneck speed assaults on all things melodic, but repeat listens reveal a distinctly melodic base that's merely hidden underneath their unpolished sound. Before you know it, much of the album has become one big gray mass of breakdowns and mosh parts, with the occasional guitar fill to grab your attention. Many will undoubtedly have stopped the record before the final two tracks on the record because of this, which is a shame considering they are two seven minute mammoths that are half the speed of anything else on the album, relying much more on haunting atmospheres and extended scream-growls than breakdowns. Think Misery Signals here.

In the end, I find myself thinking that the band has gone slightly overboard with their 'crushing heaviness' on this release. Any references to screamo and Alexisonfire have been completely removed, and replaced by a furious, relentless sound that's difficult to become friends with. More importantly though, the album is lacking in points of reference, songs like "Crush And Devour" or "Widower", tracks unforgivingly heavy yet simultaneously memorable. Nonetheless, if you're looking for the heaviest hardcore / metalcore oriented release this year, look no further than Johnny Truant and "No Tears For The Creatures".


Download: Widower, Crush And Devour
For the fans of: The Chariot, Architects, Misery Signals
Listen: Myspace

Release date 02.06.2008
United By Fate / Ferret Music

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