This coming Friday, June 29th, will bring the premiere of “Way Of Suffering” by Ohio based band NORTHERN WIDOWS, one of the most shattering and multi-dimensional metal/hardcore hybrid offerings in recent months, and we’re thrilled to give you an early stream of the whole thing below, along with the band’s first hand commentary for each and every track!
With a solid, heavy hardcore/metal backbone, “Way Of Suffering” varies its musical style throughout and changes from slowly crawling to furious and fast wall of sound that serves as a perfect soundtrack for the content behind the content embedded therein:
Lyrically the album relies heavily on themes of anxiety and depression, hopelessness, interpersonal relationships, humanity’s effect on the earth and war. I found inspiration in the current political climate, my own battle with mental illness, dystopian sci-fi and from some of my favorite novels.
For the most part, NORTHERN WIDOWS have delivered an extensive album that lives up to the promise of their previous EPs. With the ability they have to create mind rending and intelligent soundscapes, “Way Of Suffering” should be a rocketing point for a band that should continue to flourish.
Four chaotic and tumultuous years after the release of their debut EP, Northern Widows has returned an entirely new beast, with a groundbreaking and genre-bending LP in tow. They have spent the intervening years honing and curating a line-up and a sound that deliver on their vision in ways never before imagined. By combining their collective love for and deep understanding of hardcore, black metal, crust punk and more, they have created a crunchy, blackened masterpiece of brute force and progressive post-metal technical prowess. Oh, and it’s heavy. REALLY heavy…
Here’s what the band had to say about each and every track from the album:
Yellow Room – A song about a panic attack. Particularly the hole one’s mind can go down when you’re in that mental state and the way in which we see ourselves during those moments. I was re-reading Catch-22 at the time I wrote this and the lyrics during the breakdown are totally a reflection of that. In the book, the characters are constantly in a state of high anxiety and sordid fear due to being on death’s door constantly. Sometimes that’s how a panic attack feels – like you’re going to die any second.
Manipulator – It’s about a co-dependent relationship. That’s about all I’ll say on that one.
Planet Earth Beaten Into Submission – Relies heavily on themes of war and attrition, the wealthy elite who run the capitalist world around us and their reliance on constant chaos and conflict to control mankind.
Ensnared Soul – You ever feel like life is a trap? Like nothing you can do will set you free? You grow resentful of seeing others happy. You lose all sight of any type of future. This is the song for that. The beginning musically feels like some sort of flicker of hope to me and it all comes crashing down when the heavy part hits.
By the Limits of Endurance – Heavily influenced by Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller. Lyrically it’s about man’s search for a God throughout time and the ultimate realization that we are our own god and our reality is solely in our own minds. Our only option is to acquire what is necessary to live. When we die, nothing changes, we simply return to the universe.
In the Tides of Blood – Does man bring about his own death or was it decided before we were ever born? Is the Earth going to reject us as a cancer or will we destroy it? Only time will set free the truth. Death is a shadow we can’t escape!
Oath of the Mortal Born Twin – A contemplation of suicide and the ultimate choice to move forward and continue fighting. The only “up” song on the album. One of my favorites.
Dead in Dreams – Co-written with Wes. I was struggling with writer’s block and just feeling tapped creatively. I asked the guys to write a journal entry and send it my way. Wes gave me his and I instantly knew I could shape it into something awesome! Again, it’s about that hopeless feeling and seeing everyone around you seemingly getting along fine with life and it’s mishaps. The building of resentment one tend’s to fall into when you’re in that head space. You fall into these thought patterns where you loathe yourself and the rest of humanity, because if you’re miserable, shouldn’t they all be too? The line, “Constantly reminded mankind is a writhing primate, frothing and thrashing for meaning… killing my spirit.” sums up how it can feel.