You talking to me, punk?
Harm’s Way is a hardcore outfit hailing from Chicago, Illinois. With their 2011 release ‘Isolation’ on Closed Casket Activities, Harm’s Way gained some attention, and found their sound on that record after walking the line between a power violence and hardcore in their previous releases. After the success of the "Isolation," Harm’s Way signed to the “popular” and oftentimes hit or miss successful label Deathwish Inc. In 2013 they released a 5 song EP "Blinded" that continued to show Harm’s Way’s ability to create, for lack of a better word, crushing, heavy music.
It’s mean, it chugs, it’s soul crushing, no it’s not my ex-girlfriend, it’s the new Harm’s Way record. The hype for the new record was palpable within the realm of heavy music and when 2015 rolled around, Harm’s Way dropped "Rust."
"Rust" blends genres of hardcore, industrial, nü-metal, and metalcore. What makes this release different than the previous releases of "Isolation" and "Blinded" is the usage of industrial - synthesized sounds - which the listener is immediately met with at the opening of the record with the song Infestation. A drum track that sounds like something out of a Godflesh or Rammstein record, is repeated and slowly gets louder until severely dropped tuned guitars pick up the beat and then you are welcomed into "Rust."
"Rust" is angry, raw, ferocious, unforgiving, and most of all, heavy. The second track Law of the Land perfectly shows how a band doesn’t have to be fast sporadic to be brutal. Vocalist Judge Hammers embodies the sound of the music. Aside from the fact that he looks like Larry the Lobster from Spongebob, his infuriated vocal delivery takes the listener deeper into the world of "Rust," a world you don’t want to stay in for too long. Guest vocals appear twice on the record and give it some much needed variance. Clean vocals by Colin Young of Twitching Tongues in the song Amongst the Rust and a female guest vocal in the song Turn to Stone provide another aspect of atmosphere.
Lyrically topics of anger, sickness, corruption, and violence are all covered, and even though this is not the strong-suit of this record, there are some solid lines here and there. Track 7, Disintegrate holds a personal favorite line “Disintegrate, is not my fate.”
If you are a fan of heavy music, if you like to move heavy weights in a room full of weights, if you like to walk around with a stiff upper lip and chin in the air calling people punks and asking them if they are talking to you, check out "Rust."
by Andy Wilcox