Review: “Prettiest Of Things” EP by Earth Groans

Forming in South Dakota in May 2015, vocalist Jeremy Schaeffer, drummer Brady Mueller, guitarist Zachariah Mayfield and bassist Kaden Burton take to their work in Earth Groans a similar mantra to August Burns Red. Their coined phrase being that they create “aggressive music for passionate people“. Now on their third five track EP in five years and each one two years apart, anyone who has seen or heard anything from them will know what they have their ducks in a row when it comes to Hardcore and Metalcore sounds. “Prettiest Of Things” is the first of a pair of EPs planned for 2020 so we’re thinking the second one might go by the name “Ugliest Of Things“…

…The guitar sound on “Gold” immediately evokes memories of bands like Vanna or a heavier version of Everytime I Die with Earth Groans having that same live wire energetic groove that is an instant call for stage divers of all shapes, sizes, colours and creeds. Full throttle, it wastes no time in getting straight to the point with Metallic Hardcore riffs, squeals in the turn around and of course some solid barked and intelligent lyrics from Schaeffer. “Springs” opened the gate for this one around a month before the EP dropped and it’s a sure fire winner when it comes to a choice of track that sums up the EP feel as a whole. Blisteringly energetic riffs a plenty while having that raw punk abrasive aggression, the surprise comes in the shape of having a couple of clean sung lines that formulate the chorus. But here’s the thing, they work. Earth Groans haven’t slowed things down or lost their edge in adding them, instead they’ve created a chant or sing-a-long moment that is going to break up their slabs of blunt force trauma vocals in the live arena and give them another dimension. “Peaks” changes up the gears with some off kilter riffs in slightly odd time signatures while offering hammer throwing powerhouse chugged breakdown moments a plenty at the back end before the abrasive “Falls” climbs out of the water. The opening chugged judder of it brings Meshuggah to mind but Mayfield has other things in mind, cutting into some more direct Hardcore riffs to balance out some of the menace in Schaeffer’s lyrics, though they do bring that sound back for a fine mid track breakdown moment of pure savagery. Bringing back the clean vocal lines for “Silk” gives it’s intelligent wordy lyrics a melancholic moment but what Earth Groans to well cross the styles. This means you get aggressive guitar tones with clean sung vocal lines and cleaner tones with throat shredding moments. Just enough schizophrenia to let loose live but keep them out of the hospital, Earth Groans have laid down the first part of this release in style [8/10]

Track listing

  1. Gold
  2. Springs
  3. Peaks
  4. Falls
  5. Silk

Prettiest Of Things” EP by Earth Groans is out now via Solid State Records

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