It was August 17th, 1997. My girlfriend and I at the time, jumped on the 190 bus and hit the NYC trains downtown to CBGB’s. I was lucky enough to catch the show of a lifetime. It was 25 Ta Life, No Redeeming, Blood 4 Blood, Crown of Thornz and no other than ALL OUT FUCKIN’ WAR! I heard a lot about them at the time, but never saw them tear it up yet. Once they hit the stage, I was blown away. It was the hardcore version of SLAYER, and I was hooked. I asked singer, Mike Score if he had any demos. He said he didn’t have any, but to write my address down and he’d send me something. So, I jot down my old Clifton address and walk over to the bar, and the whole time I’m thinking, “This dude ain’t sending me shit!” Well, a week later I got a xeroxed cassette in the mail with four songs on it that wound up on the “Truth in the Age of Lies” LP. I seen them several times throughout the 90’s and until I moved down to Florida in 2005. I finally had the chance to see them again in Orlando two years ago and it was insane!
Which brings us to why we are here today. ALL OUT WAR is back! And in a way that I just can’t put into words. Over a year in the making, Crawl Amongst the Filth, is the seventh studio album from this Upstate, NY band who just never seem to “go the fuck away”, after more than twenty years! I was just coming off the new Sworn Enemy record when I heard this. So, how do you think they’re going to start this album out? Blast beats, nothing but blast beats. That’s how! Devine Isolation is the opening track off this monstrosity. AOW signature chugs, apocalyptic breakdowns, and demonic growls were all properly utilized within this opening track. It was excellent. Judas Always Crawls is the second track off this album. It debuted a few weeks ago, and it left me wanting more. The stomp part of this song is insane, and gets even crazier once vocalist, Mike Score, informs us that Judas, indeed, is a Liar! Another AOW classic.
Another heavy hitter, What Was Becomes Undone, keeps us right in the mix with blast beats, Slayer chugs, and double bass galore. The heaviness just doesn’t stop. It doesn’t. Now this next song, is quite possibly my favorite song on the record. Contempt Be Thy Faith is the fourth song on this new effort and it’s quite unbelievable. It starts with an intro that is very reminiscent of Redemption for the Innocent off their first two early releases. This song is pure slow-paced stomp! Throw in some eerie guitar playing courtesy of Andy Petroluengo and Taras Apuzo and this song is complete. The next track, Drink the Plague, resonates as heavily as the rest of the tracks.
Suffocate and Subjugate is another example of a great ALL OUT WAR song. Between Eric Carillo’s thunderous bass sound and Mike’s vocals reminding us of Carnivore, this song rips! Another track that was released just days ago, Gehenna Lights Eternal, is another apocalyptic beatdown from hell. One after another, each song engulfs you in flames before you can take a breath. Evil guitars and blast beats, once again, kick off the next track, Septic Infestation. Heaviness at it’s best. And it ends with a wicked scream at the end. “The Devil knows your kind!” Hanging on the Wire, the next song, seemed to give drummer, Jesse Sutherland, a bit of a break. The slow-paced tempo of the song changed things up a bit and was perfectly placed and Mike’s vocals only add more fuel the fire. The final track, Despised Regime, was an excellent closing to the album. A mixture of slow tempos, fast tempos, heavy build-ups, sick guitar riffs, and sinister vocals bring the album to a perfect close.
All in all, this was an excellent effort. Add them to the list of “old school” bands like Sworn Enemy and Sick of It All who put out some of their best work with their latest efforts. If you are into Metallic Hardcore, then you will love ALL OUT WAR!
All Out War’s upcoming album, Crawl Among the Filth, hits the stores and online July 26th on Unbeaten Records.
ALL OUT WAR live shows:
07/26 – Philadelphia PA @ This Is Hardcore Festival
08/02 – Poughkeepsie NY @ The Chance Theater (Release Show) w/ Internal Bleeding, Dehumanized, In Cold Blood, Outer Heaven, Heavens Die
08/03 – Montreal QC @ Katacombes w/ In Cold Blood, Heavens Die
08/04 – Quebec City, QC @ L’ante Bar and Spectacles w/ In Cold Blood, Heavens Die
09/06 – Jersey City, NJ @ White Eagle Hall w/ Eyehategod, Sheer Terror, Come To Grief
09/07 – Brooklyn, NY @ The Kingsland w/ Eyehategod, Merauder, Come To Grief
09/08 – New Bedford, MA @ The Vault Music Hall w/ Eyehategod, Come To Grief, Churchburn
10/03 – Frederick, MD @ Cafe 611 w/ Agnostic Front, Prong
11/08 – Poughkeepsie, NY @ The Chance Theater w/ Nile, Terrorizer