Over the past few years bands in the local NJ underground have branched largely into two different directions: pop-punk, and rehashes of already dead and famous bands.
This has produced what could only be described as one of the most stagnant phases in music history. When you walk into a club and you're hit with the same Taylor Swift cover 3 times in a row, mostly "inspired" covers of pop songs, and music that sounds pretty much like someone has a case of the "trying-too-hard"s or the "we-want-to-be-them"s, you're not likely to find anything new or interesting.
Now, granted, in the words of Carl Sagan: "If you want to make an apple pie from scratch you must first invent the universe."
In other words, nothing is truly unique, and this is especially true for music. Interesting, seldom heard, experimental- all of those are better adjectives to describe a good or, dare I say, great band.
If you were looking for a double-shot dose of refreshing hard rock and face melting tunes, then look no further.
Villains kicks off with two songs that complement each other beautifully without sounding like parallels of each other, nor so different that they don't blend into each other at an even pace required to give the opening a strong kick in the door.
"Casting Quarters," and "When The Devil Speaks" are definitely two of my top favorites in such a short release, but being that it's only four-tracks long, it's hard to say that.
"Crimson Mask" bleeds into the finisher with a great introduction of dueling guitars that is right out of a book of the classics, with a little bit of themselves melted in.
Without a doubt, this is where the vocalist hits his high note, but it doesn't stop there.
Upon the conclusion, the namesake track brings us out with the amount of awesome that's just right to leave you wanting more and get you stoked to see these guys live.
Dark, strong, deep, and overall just one of those terrifyingly beautiful tracks that just gives you a great idea of what these guys are capable of.
The screams are well-executed, everything from the lead guitars, and rhythm section is amazingly well arranged, giving Villains one of the coolest sounds available in the underground today.
One thing is for certain, Autobiography Of Man has presented the local music scene with a brass knuckle punch in the jaw, and their new EP wants to be heard, so click here to check it out, and support the artist.
We'll have an interview with the guys to check out what's going on for the future, and what the greater NJ area is in store for.
I give Villains a cool 4/5 for great use of all the right elements to sound dark and enjoyable across multiple genres, and I'm excited, as you should be, for more.