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3.5 out of 5 skulls

Meek is Murder Onward / Into the Sun

Onward / Into the Sun, the latest helping from Meek is Murder, is actually a double EP release. This offering is described as the band’s third full-length, but when half of the tracks were originally released digitally back in 2012, I’m not sure that label applies. But, really, does that even matter when it comes to the scathing metalcore that this Brooklyn trio spews forth in the eleven tracks presented here.

With more reverb than you can shake at hipsters crowding your favorite coffee joint, Onward / Into the Sun delivers a frenetic, scathing blast of mayhem in the form of discordant rhythms, blasting drums and vitriol-packed vocals in record time. It’s the sound that we’ve come to expect from these guys — a sound that we can almost find comforting in a sense.

“Foreword” is a viciously short opening track with varied screams and growls atop off-kilter riffage and cymbol crashs a plenty. “Inward” teeters within the grind realm for a few second before the band launches into a Converge-like series of riffs and screams in “Upward.” “Outward,” just like its predecessors is also all over the place, but still directed at your skull with vehemence.

The opening four songs will leave their mark on you before you even arrive at the final pair of songs on the Onward half of this release. “Downward” is a self-consuming track that eventually devolves into a miasma of reverb, growls and crashing drums, though there is a bit of melody to start withint the opening,big riffs. The breakdown just after the one minute mark is a nice change of pace. “Onward Toward a Red Horizon” brings fits the bill of this half of the release with more driving, manic guitar work and barked/screamed vocals that teeter on becoming unhinged.

I don’t recall having encountered the Into the Sun EP when it was released, so the last five songs of this offering are new to me and, having been recorded elsewhere, certainly sound a good deal different than the first half of this double EP. Swirling, off-kilter riffs fill the air with a raw overall feel as “Dead Meat” gets under way with vicious screams and growls. “Ripley” is a frantic and energetic song if ever the band has released one — it’s messy and it’s all over the place and I love it.

The combination of “Doc Brown” and “Marty” are about as evil as the trio has ever sounded. The first of the pair is actually a bit frightening as is churns and bunrs through your ear canals. The second half of this duo of tracks is a bit more calm and alternative leaning with some of the riffage, but is no less violent and scary as “Doc Brown.” The relationship between these two Back to the Future characters must have been intensely tumultuous. “Out of Gas” wraps up the “Into the Sun” EP with as much fervor as the previous ten sons, but with a much slower, deliberate pace.

At the start of this review, I didn’t plan on writing as much as I have, but damn it if this combination of EPs isn’t infectiously violent. The band always seems to deliver the goods with everything they put out and this set of songs is no different. Two EPs will have to tide me over until the next proper full-length from Meek is Murder.

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