Review: “Ripping Pulling Tearing” by Chamber

Nashville Tennessee is a place that most of the Globe calls the home of Country Music. But there is more to the place than line dancing and Stetsons as Metallic Hardcore act Chamber will tell you. They released “Ripping Pulling Tearing” though Hardcore label of the moment Pure Noise Records, the home of Terror, Knocked Loose and Stick To Your Guns to name but three of a glowing roster that afforded Chamber the opportunity to join the label backed tour this summer and play some bigger venues in the US.

Essentially the combination of their 2018 debut EP, “Hatred Softly Spoken, and recent 7″ vinyl, “Final Shape” but in a different order, “Ripping Pulling Tearing” is a sort of stop gap initial release in the same way that Eighteen Visions did with their “Best Of” EP compilation for Trust Kill Records back in the day. “Hatred Softly Spoken” was recorded and engineered by Tate Mercer in January 2018 at Schematic Studios in Nashville, Tennessee. It was mastered by Kris Crummett at Interlace Audio in Portland, Oregon with Conner Sullivan credited with Synth, percussion and noise on “Ripping / Pulling / Tearing“. It was released just two months later in March. The band comprising Sam Fleming (Vocals), Taylor Stephenson (Guitar), Christian Smith (Bass), Taylor Carpenter (Drums) and Gabe Manuel (Guitar & vocals) and they then went on to release “Final Shape” in November of the same year with Jacob Lilly replacing Sam Fleming at the helm.

Replacing Every Weakness” kicks in as a Juggernaut that takes some early Metalcore influences, a pinch of Everytime I Die and some Metallic Hardcore thunder to create a witches cauldron of boiling off kilter riffs and schizophrenic dynamics with some melodic hints crushed up and sprinkled on top. Jacob Lilly’s unclean savagery is broken by a couple of spoken word atmospheric breaks and the variety in his range alongside the numerous tempo changes with stuccato rythmic breaks gives everything that much more punch. The title track has a menacing synth and programmed drum sound with a riff that gives a sense of nausea and it seems a little bit odd to name the release after a largely intrumental horror film score esq piece. “Every Blade” has hints at Vein with a it’s opening before bursting into chaotic riffs with who can play faster? Go! Style. Quirky off kilter breakdowns and name checking the EP title in the lyrics brings it home and the track titles could easily be swapped over. “In Search Of Truth” is a cleaner Metallic Hardcore bludgeoning, keeping the number of guitar squeals that intertwine across the tracks and build the bands sound high. There might be a Converge influence in here and if Chamber were a Deathwish Inc band it wouldn’t surprise. They have that air about them.

The second half of the album opens with “Skin” which plays in little bursts of aggression within the overall brutal sound, stepping it up and down at will and pilling breakdown upon breakdown to create a tower of snakes. The slow down mid track is a pause for breath as much as anything else and seeing Chamber live, you’re going to need it as much as they will! “Final Shape” lyrically name checks the previous track “Grind me down to dust inside of your head, Find my final shape underneath your skin” and is as full throttle an attack as the rest, but doesn’t have a relentlessness to it, instead changing gear rapidly up and down with tempo changes at will that mess with your head but are as smooth as you like. “Vessel” is a bit more of a straight up skull crushing with arguably the best vocal performance with a brutal sense of menacing groove and tension you could cut with a knife. No “Severed” isn’t a Chimaira cover. It’s a dark horror film inspired ripper that wants to unleash its inner Psycho to to rip, pull and tear with knives for finger nails until there is nothing left. Lead flourishes illuminate the track keeping the noose painfully tight while the vocals are as sharp tongued as they come. Try listening to this in a haunted house on Halloween during a storm. It will properly s*** you up [7/10]

Track listing

  1. Replacing Every Weakness
  2. Ripping / Pulling / Tearing
  3. Every Blade
  4. In Search Of Truth
  5. Skin
  6. Final Shape
  7. Vessel
  8. Severed

Ripping Pulling Tearing” by Chamber is out now via Pure Noise Records

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