: Just when you think Georgia is all peach tea, classic rap and fine ladies, you find some truly hardcore deathrockers to throw off your perception. Here come Nightmares. You can tell that a band is aiming for scary rock and roll when they've dubbed their first release, Suspiria -- a tip of the hat to classic gore. And if they have a single named after a Steven King film, in this case Cujo, yes, gore infused post hardcore it is! Even their press photos make the band look like they've been slightly mauled, but are non-plussed by that fact. Classic heavy riffs combine with screamed vocals and death growling make a pretty frightening -- or awesome -- listening experience. It's heavy music for fans of Rise Records (Nightmares'label!) stable of metal core and post hardcore bands, with a slightly cinematic twist. They're doing something really right because as a new band, they already have ravenous fans frothing at the mouth to get a taste of Nightmares. Powerfully abrasive, darkly vicious, horror inspired, and above all, well produced and played, the new Nightmares album, which will drop in June, promises something for every type of new metal fan. Fans of horror films will enjoy the track titles, each named after kitschy or classic genre movies. The Atlanta boys bring their horror show on the road with a heavy assault of growls, pounding drums, and ear shattering guitar. Don't say they didn't warn you with their horror themed album!
: You probably don't exactly know how to pronounce the name of Boston's PVRIS, but I'm guessing it's an ode to Paris, the city of love. Not exactly what you'd expect from a black-clad group of metal/hardcore kids -- but then again, a sweet songbird female lead with an amazingly emotional voice is not the first thing you'd expect either. But PVRIS has that. Singer Lynn has several stripped down acoustic versions to prove how strong her songwriting and singing ability is. Perhaps a few of those acoustic songs will be delivered to slow things down during the PVRIS live set. Normally, the band delivers high energy alternative in the vein of old Paramore (in a good way, I swear) -- arena rock guitars, acrobatic vocals, emotional lyrics, and tight playing from every member. It's even a little harsh for the sweet songbird, brutal enough for the boys in the crowd to thoroughly enjoy, but sharp enough for the ladies too. Brooding is nothing new to music, but PVRIS makes it sound good. This young band is going to bring the intelligence, the energy, the alternative sound to the stage, and the audience is going to be all the better for it.
Alive Like Me
: Alive Like Me hails from the Rise Records motherland of Oregon. The five piece is ready to make alternative post hardcore a thing -- and they're doing it with falsettos, electronics, breakdowns, and life's frustrations laid bare in lyrics. The singing is raw, earnest, and filled to the brim with emotion. The music is technical perfection of the modern post-hardcore sound, drawing from emo and alt.rock with abandon. Think Sleeping With Sirens meets Memphis May Fire -- but with a younger feeling. Afterall, Alive Like Me is pretty darn new, with a debut album dropping this summer and precious little in the way of actual releases. But after this stint with their Rise Records label mates and friends, and this summer's star-making training ground of Warped Tour, you can bet Alive Like Me is going to prove their worth. You can bet there will be some energetic warbling, growling, and playing all in the effort to make the audience feel the Alive Like Me vibe and depart a little piece of themselves onto the listeners.