Chicago’s heavy hardcore band HARM’S WAY has unleashed a ferocious new single, “Silent Wolf,” setting the stage for their highly anticipated album, “Common Suffering.” Injected with Gojira-inspired guitar work, the single signifies the band’s unyielding commitment to exploring the depths of hardcore’s heavy spectrum. Coupled with an intense music video, “Silent Wolf” is a tantalizing taste of what’s to come in the forthcoming record.
“Common Suffering” carries a potent tracklist that promises an immersive journey into the hardcore genre, showcasing the band’s evolution and their persistent embrace of metallic and industrial influences. The tracks “Denial,” “Hollow Cry,” “Devour,” “Undertow,” “Heaven’s Call,” “Cyanide,” “Terrorizer,” “Sadist Guilt,” and “Wanderer” join “Silent Wolf” to complete the 10-track album.
Known for their electrifying performances across the globe, HARM’S WAY has solidified their position in the hardcore punk landscape with a distinctive blend of searing intensity and insightful lyricism.
Their narratives of struggle, personal growth, and self-awareness resonate profoundly with listeners, leaving a lingering impact that transcends beyond their heavy hitting riffs.
Their fourth full-length album, “Posthuman,” marked a milestone in their musical journey as it debuted on Metal Blade Records, and it stands as a devastating testament to their expanding discography. According to drummer Chris Mills, “We’ve always stayed true to who we are and allowed the songwriting process to take shape organically from record to record. As the band has progressed, our sound has become more refined with metal and industrial influences.”
With its invigorating heaviness, “Silent Wolf” exemplifies the sonic intensity that HARM’S WAY fans have come to cherish. As the countdown to “Common Suffering” continues, there’s no doubt that the new album will make a significant impact on the hardcore scene in 2023. Check out the band’s story below to understand why.
Since their inception in 2006, Harm’s Way has traversed a fascinating journey, morphing from hidden gems in the underground scene to esteemed torchbearers, their songbook becoming a pivotal force in the heavy music realm. Their unique sound has not only shaped the direction of the genre but also provided a blueprint for countless aspiring acts. But there can only be one Harm’s Way, a band unafraid to innovate, persistently adopting and infusing new influences into their music in imaginative ways.
Their latest venture, “Common Suffering,” is arguably their most musically diverse yet, exhibiting a level of brilliance unseen in their previous offerings. It is a groundbreaking work that redefines the boundaries of heavy music and is poised to be a modern classic.
While their previous album, “Posthuman,” drew from the relentless aggression of Deathreat’s d-beat brutality, thrash, groove, and the cold nihilism of bands like Godflesh and Fear Factory’s “Demanufacture” era, “Common Suffering” takes a leap further. It blends the chilling ambience of Lustmord, slow-paced doom reminiscent of early Melvins and Khanate, and even the complex polyrhythms of Meshuggah. Despite the diverse mix of influences, Harm’s Way skillfully weaves these elements into a cohesive, formidable, and stylish sonic assault.
However, “Common Suffering” isn’t all about relentless brutality. It surprises listeners with well-crafted quieter moments, showcasing the band’s adept use of dynamics that add depth and contrast to their heavy sound. This understanding of light and shade in their music elevates the album’s impact, presenting Harm’s Way at their best.
Key to this achievement is their collaboration with producer Will Yip at Studio 4 in Pennsylvania, known for his work with bands like Turnstile and Code Orange. The band set out to refine their recording processes, explore different vocal cadences, and experiment during production to extract the best from each song.
The album’s title, “Common Suffering,” alludes to shared experiences of chaos, misanthropy, paranoia, disorder, confusion, and anxiety over the past three years. The band delves into diverse themes, including personal mental health struggles, relationships, political turmoil, corruption, and power dynamics.
Vocalist James Pligge, hailed by Decibel as “maybe the best vocalist in hardcore right now,” delves deep into these themes in tracks like “Cyanide,” which tackles the rise of media outlets, disinformation, and their impact on society and power structures. Other standout tracks include “Devour,” addressing the effects of toxic relationships, and the highly personal “Hollow Cry,” where Pligge explores his own humanity.
The album’s singularity extends to its live performances, where the energy and intensity of “Common Suffering” come alive, reinforcing why Harm’s Way is revered for delivering one of the most formidable live shows worldwide. Amid the euphoria, the band’s latest album stands as an exceptional addition to their catalogue, proving how unique and remarkable their new effort truly is.
Catch Harm’s Way at the Hold Your Ground Festival in Mississauga, ON, Canada. The date is set – September 22nd. See you in the pit!