xRepentancex are a hardcore band with crosses in their name and this is usually a good indicator that a band is going to deal in beatdowns. xRepentancex definitely attract a beatdown crowd but their debut album The Sickness of Eden proves that this band write more than just mosh music.
It’s actually quite astounding how well xRepentancex avoid the simple overuse of one-chord breakdowns and double-bass drumming. The Sickness of Eden is absolutely loaded with massive riffs and pounding rhythms that keeps the music aggressive but doesn’t detract from the band’s song writing.
Being a band with a purely screamed vocal style, the melody is delivered by guitarists Patrick Hassan and Robb Edge who are a tag team to be reckoned with. These men tear a streak through the album and load every song with a series of riffs that will make any hardcore band jealous. Through Eyes Unclouded kicks things off with riffs by the bucket-load and the guitarists do not let up for the entirety of the album’s 22 minutes. What I really enjoy is the way both guitarists switch from hardcore beatdowns to thrash shredding like in Knowing. They also sprinkle the music with some seriously evil tremolo-picked riffs that give the album an almost black metal vibe.
Let’s not forget that the way these songs are structured is also surprisingly progressive. Riffs are rarely revisited meaning that the quantity of melodies per song is actually quite staggering. What’s even more impressive is that the band keep this level of intensity up for the entirety of the album and it’s a gloriously vicious experience.
Holding it all together is some of the meatiest production work I’ve heard on a hardcore record. The Sickness of Eden was recorded by none other than Ian Boult of Stuck on a Name Studios and the man works wonders on this album. The whole record is extremely bass-heavy to the point that you can almost feel it thumping against your chest.
xRepentancex have delivered a debut album that’s so furious it feels like it could tear apart at the seams. The Sickness of Eden is a hardcore record every fan of the genre should own and it’s almost beautiful in its sheer relentlessness. God knows how you follow an album this consistent. Good luck guys.
xRepentancex’s The Sickness of Eden is released on vinyl by Carry the Weight Records in February. Pre-order it here.