Finnish band Unkind is a hardcore punk band with a ferocity that cannot be escaped as shown with their previous releases such as Yhteiskunnan Pikkuvikoja and Harhakuvat have shown. With their new album Pelon Juuret though the band has discovered an insidiously deceptive side to their anger fuelled creativity which seduces and undermines the defences all the while the fury is raging with primal intensity. Released via Relapse Records, the new album is a magnetic tempest which is not always easy to listen to but ensures that only hunger for its coarse declaration is prevalent with its enterprising secret imagination.
From the Helsinki/Tampere area, Unkind forge a brawling confrontation which is hardcore and d-beat antagonism merged with an atmospheric coaxing and sonically sculpted grooves with more than a melodic air to their persuasion. It is torrential in spite and animosity but equally a potent temptation with an evocative imagination that is quite irresistible. As soon as the title track opens up the release and its storm of vehemence you know what you are in for from the quintet, or do you? Firstly the bone splintering rhythms crack down on the senses with barbarous intent whilst riffs scar the surface of the ear and beyond with venomous vitriol matched by the exhausting vocals. It is arguably expected hardcore yet something distinctly honed into that Unkind feel, but when a devious groove permeates its shadows things take on another vital perspective. It is decidedly sneaky and deeply appetising.
The following Vihan Lapset continues in similar vein but with a web of melodically tinged sonic beckoning to make its entrance and a somersault come avalanche of thumping rhythms. Once the vocal squalls with venom dripping from every syllable and the wonderfully throaty snarl of the throaty bass take hold the track becomes a wholly carnivorous assailant. Buckling under its charge you feel its full weight squeeze the throat of the senses but then it offers mesmerising grooves with a warm temptation which distracts from its full violent attack. It is a devious twist and thoroughly thrilling here and across every track in its many flavoured disguises.
Third track Valtakunta is the biggest highlight of the album from its very first seconds, a sinister ambience and imposing atmosphere crafted by bass and guitars emerging before the ear. It is not long before the ravenous jaws of the song steal flesh and savage the sense though, but again simultaneously there is a melodic caress and sonic smouldering which captivates and draws thoughts and emotions from the viciousness, the sound reminiscent of the glorious calls Killing Joke have conjured over the years. Vocally the attack is a constant blistering of air and listener, never veerng from that welcome singular intent here or over the album, leaving the guitars to create a sonically honed inviting alchemy within the bruising sadistic ravishing. The song is a scintillating brutality with the purest contagiousness to its ingenious underlying inventiveness.
The toxic lumbering doom breathing Viallinen and the grievously snarling Olemisen Pelko continue the impressive conflict at work though both pale up against their predecessor, whilst Laki swarms over the senses with a sludge consumption and truculent malevolence to further numb and invigorate every pore and synapse. Again like the other pair despite offering impressive blazes of metal and melodic adventure the song lies in the shadow of earlier tracks but still only thrills with its burdensome demands.
Kehtoon Tapetut is pure hardcore nastiness which smells pleasingly of Kvelertak at times and gives one final corrosive malignant slice of spitefulness before the excellent closing Saattokoti steps forward to take the listener on an intensive flight of folk infused evocation. The instrumental is wholly unexpected though a natural evolution of all that has been at sublime work behind the hostility in previous songs. Hypnotic and also intrusive on thoughts it is a masterful piece with essences which hopefully the band will continue to employ ahead.
Pelon Juuret suggests Unkind is quite possibly the future of hardcore and certainly a band set to shape its horizons in the very least. It is an outstanding album which leaves you wasted but blissfully satisfied.
Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright
Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from