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Knocked Loose – You Won’t Go Before You’re Supposed To

There is a whole another thing going in North America when it comes to hardcore/metalcore. The scene is just enormous and when combined with the power of marketing, talented new bands can become instant powerhouses. To be honest, I don’t care about it much. It may or may not because my roots are deep within European extreme metal, or maybe just because I’m just old, but many of them does not click with me. However, I strongly believe that Knocked Loose is worthy of attention. They’re definitely one of the heaviest, nastiest metallic hardcore bands out there these days.

The first two records were more straightforward efforts but even then, Knocked Loose managed to made a mark on the scene with famous “Arf arf!” one-liner and effective break-downs. They don’t use emotional clean vocals, alternative metal songwriting or melodic death metal guitars -probably the main reason I’m enjoying them more over any other similar bands. Bryan Garris is a true beast on microphone, Isaac Hale uses 7-strings to create chaotic tunes (also helps with deep growls) and since 2021’s A Tear in the Fabric of Life, they even start showing some creativity and courage to venture forth. Many band would easily comprimise to make its sound more friendly after appearing on Coachella, or being acknowledged by pop-stars like Demi Lovato and Poppy. However, even with the vocal cameos from the likes of Poppy and Chris Motionless of MOTIONLESS IN WHITE, You Won’t Go Before You’re Supposed To is really, and I mean really, heavy.

Its just 27 minutes long and it may seem too short but its for its own good. Knocked Loose knows well about its material. If this was only a tad too long, it would be too much. Tense, chaotic songwriting makes each song a challenge and there are no gimmicks, mainstream hooks or earworms here. An emphasis to the low-end on production, this is brutally punishing. Bryan Garris’ high-octave scratchy vocals carve to the bone and songs like Piece By Piece or Thirst uses the good old break-down or bring back that nasty riff but, like, slower formula brilliantly. Its not just filled with -seemingly- no brainers though. Suffocate introduces reggaeton rhythms, Take Me Home has some atmospheric clean guitars with eerie percussion, feedback noises and even a sample from 50’s (Rex AllenOver Three Hills). You can even hear some PANTERA on The Calm That Keeps You Awake. Don’t Reach For Me teases with pultiple silent moments before all hell breaks loose. This is smart songwriting.

Conceptually, the title draws its inspiration from a turbulent flight Bryan Garris endured, evoking the sudden awareness of mortality. A woman on the plane said to him in reassurance: “You won’t go before you’re supposed to.” Yeah yeah, God might have plans for all of us, but it won’t prevent me from having a panic attack. Fittingly, the album feels like an extensive panic attack too. There is a near constant sonic onslaught, and each lyric is delivered with high levels of anguish. Its not literary satisfactory or anything, but its way better than what we got from those nu-metal bands back then. Gen Z wins agai… Just kidding.

Downsides are related to causing fatigue after a couple spin and Slaughterhouse 2 (original one is way better) but overall, Knocked Loose have refined the basic metallic hardcore aesthetics into something so powerful that even I’m pulled in by its force. If popular metal will sound like this, I’m totally okay with it. They gained my respect with doing the complete opposite for what a band with this much hype is supposed to do. Although I won’t be joining to the sweaty young dudes in the pit anytime soon, I’ll probably dream about disrespecting my surroundings within the next days.

85/100


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Korhan Tok

Üniversiteden sonra metali bırakmadım.

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