PROTESTANT: Stalemate: 10″

Great follow-up to their Judgments LP. In fact, I’m of the opinion the material on here surpasses the previous. They definitely fall into the realm of bands like Tragedy and Artimus Pyle (more towards the latter end of the spectrum with the heavy and crushing, rawer style). It’s a sound that has been done to death, but when a band is good, it doesn’t matter. They breathe much-needed life into the genre and pretty much make it their own. Not to mention it seems like they really believe in what they’re singing, instead of hiding behind opaque lyrics and playing to the masses. There are the crushers, like the opener “Nothing Left,” which stays close to form, but it’s when they start to break out and add melody and more texture is when they stand strongest, especially on the last two songs, “Regrets” and “Swindle.” Pairing the two contrasting styles—the harsh and melodic—really brings the power of the music out, highlighting the heaviness, darkness, and sheer drive of the music. The changeup in “Misplaced” is a good example. The song whips you around for the majority of the time, then they switch up into a catchier riff that gets more melodic as the seconds tick by. Then you have a song like “Corners” that has guitar work that reminds me a bit of Iron Maiden, and it’s an awesome song. This record has you stopping whatever it is your doing and makes you just listen. Fuggin’ great!

 –M.Avrg (Halo Of Flies, halooffliesrecords.com)