Just the news alone after a nine year wait of new material from US band From Ashes Rise was sure to have the juices of all hardcore punks flowing with unbridled anticipation. Once they finally hear the unmistakably impressive and powerful duo of songs making up their new single, fans will be in a fully satisfied meltdown. Following on from the Nightmares album of 2003, if nine years can be called a follow-up, the release shows the band just as mighty and destructive as ever. The often acclaimed pioneers of modern crust punk have quite simply returned to show they still are one of the bands to inspire and help lead forward the genre and extreme punk of all aspects.
Formed in Nashville during the mid nineties before relocating to Portland, Oregon, the band has through a trio of albums and numerous EPs and split releases not to mention their rushing live shows, helped shape the hulk and presence of hardcore punk alongside bands like Tragedy and His Hero Is Gone. Their absence in past years has been felt certainly by punk fans and their return with what is undeniably one of the best releases of the genre in a long time an impatient wait for a great many.
Released July 16th via Southern Lord the twin track single shows the decision to pack it in as From Ashes Rise in 2005 and try new ventures has ultimately energised and inspired their work as individuals and a band. Evidence was given towards that by their acclaimed bullying of stages with their aggressive compulsive sounds when returning in2009, the single proves it. Sometimes these things have to happen for a band and artists to inspire or re-energise their hearts and power, certainly for guitarists/vocalists John Wilkerson and Brad Boatright, bassist Derek Willman, and drummer Dave Atchison, it has lit sparks going by the two tracks here to ignite even greater fires within.
Rejoice The End broods with menace and brewing intensity from its start, the guitars stirring up the air around the ear with deliberate aggressive intent whilst the rhythms of Atchison thump across the senses with a predatory energy. As the track spreads into every pore with its corruptive and challenging breath it bristles with a caustic and rasping energy whilst the vocals send the senses safety reeling into provocative thought and the fullest satisfaction. The song takes a mid way break or respite on the coarse assault to intrigue at first, its presence a preparation for the returning tempered storm of riffs and bludgeoning rhythms. The track is openly infectious and arguably more melodic and definitely if one dare use the word lighter than expected from the band but no less impressive and powerful.
Other track Rage Of Sanity unleashes its punk heart from the very first note, a riotous explosion of pissed off riffs, barracking vocals, and beats to take knees to the floor. Far more greedy than its partner though no less hungry, the song goes for the jugular throughout. Punk at its best it brews up a storm of sounds across the spectrum reminding of the likes of Discharge, Exploited, Minor Threat and Motorhead but all very much From The Ashes. With a surer intent than Rejoice The End to annihilate the safety net within and leave one grasping for support from its mere two and a half minute assault, the track is a violation of glorious punk rock, deceptively simple and skilfully crafted.
The return of From Ashes Rise may be over due but they have made the wait worth ever second with their Rejoice The End/Rage Of Sanity 7”. All that is left to say is bring on an album.
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