These A389 7"s would sound fab on here, no?

By Kevin Stewart-Panko

…in which Hellbound reviews seven 7”s recently released by Baltimore-based A389 Records. The only stipulation here was that as quickly as some of these recordings flashed past our ears, we required ourselves to formulate our review before the needle got to the center. Never say we don’t know how to throw a fucking party around here…

I’m stating to think that the sub-genre of hard/metalcore known as ‘holy terror’ actually only has one vocalist and he spreads his wares, singing for whoever will cover his airfare and accommodations. Though, whoever this mystery man is might find his brains scrambled by Blind to Faith’s tempo change tendencies. Expect a break-up and the possible hiring of Joey Belladonna in the aftermath. Or not. Gehenna break the holy terror mould with some of the craziest guitar overdubs I’ve ever heard; they sound like a fiery planeload of nuns screaming as their ride careens from out of the sky and toward the ocean.

GRAY GHOST – Succubus
Gray Ghost isn’t quite post-metal, but maybe if you give ‘em a few years to get old, “mature” and mellow out. Right now, they’re more like Neurosis and Isis before they discovered Mogwai, Tortoise and that their distortion pedals could be clicked off.

HATEWAVES – Taste the Beast
We’ve been informed that Taste the Beast is a collection of six songs all about Pulling Teeth’s drummer, Alex Henderson. From what’s on display here, we can tell you that Henderson likes old-school hardcore and Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures album. He may or may not be vegan and is a fatalist who complains about the American health care system on a regular basis. He also likes fit chicks and hates Facebook.

THE LOVE BELOW – Reproductive Rights
This band is all about balancing the groovy, crazy line between the Accused and Buzzov*en with cover art that sorta turns me on while making me wonder if there’s something wrong with me for sorta getting turned on by it.

MILLENIAL REIGN – Bones Dust Nothing
Despite this being recorded over three years ago, attention is bound to surround this three song number as it features the singer from Fucked Up and guest appearances by Chris Colohan (Cursed, Burning Love) and the screamer guy from Alexisonfire with the horn-rimmed glasses who’s slowly having his role diminished as they move further away from their comparatively chaotic roots. Hype aside, Bones Dust Nothing is a passable slab of epic-leaning hardcore in the vein of the Cro-Mags and Wasted Youth.

PALE CREATION – Pale Creation
When you see a band whose thanks list shout outs to “holy terror,” “Dwid,” “Stephen Kasner” and “Jack Abernathy,” you pretty much know what you’re going to be getting and you already got it on Integrity’s Seasons in the Size of Days and from watching some bullshit documentary about Charles Manson.

Shin to Shin is a decent band; powerful, but remarkable in their mediocrity, though the parts during and after the solo are awesome as the sequence reminds me of Ringworm meeting up with the Crumbsuckers. As for Pulling Teeth, well, all those rinky-dink thrash bands trying to revive the 80s dress code and sound like Slayer wish they were half this fucking cool.

Sean is the founder/publisher of; he has also written about metal for Exclaim!, Metal Maniacs, Roadburn, Unrestrained! and Vice.