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Unsigned and Unholy: The Occvlt, The Ballad About, Hivetower

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At least The Occvlt have no illusions about what they’re doing: in an email to MetalSucks, the Russian outfit described themselves as “a mix of punk attitude covered with Boss HM2’s sound and death metal music in vein of Entombed [and] Napalm Death.” If you’re gonna name-check those greats you better be damned good at imitating them, and thankfully The Occvlt deliver with riff after punishing riff.

The Ballad About‘s new album Escapist feels like a mish-mash of late ’00s progressive metal / metalcore: imagine Protest the Hero, Fall of Troy and The Human Abstract formed a supergroup and it might sound something like this. They’ve even got those majestic, classical music-inspired AJ Minette-style guitar solos!

Hivetower‘s vocals might be a turn-off to some — it’s a rap-scream attack, kind of like SikTh — but the music is really damn cool, a mix of prog metal, djent and genuine death metal riffery with some hardcore chugs thrown in. There’s a surprising amount of variation and dynamic throughout their new EP Lunacy, which you can stream below.

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