I want to take this opportunity to pledge my undying love to the Deathwish Inc camp. Those cats consistently put out the best hardcore releases of every given year, and it just so happens that this year’s menu includes a fucking new Integrity LP, a new full-length from Bitter End—one of the best new-ish hardcore bands going—and, on top of those and scores of other top-notch titles, a fresh offering from one of the greatest hardcore (sorta) bands to ever grace the planet: Starkweather. The influence of Starkweather’s debut LP Crossbearer is inestimable. Converge, Overcast, Coalesce, etc… hell, nearly all of the hardcore “greats” of the last two decades have expressed debt to Starkweather’s unique brand of progressive metal/hardcore. After a lengthy lack of recorded output (ending with 1995’s Into the Wire) Starkweather returned in 2006 with Croatoan, an absolutely amazing double LP showcasing a new lineup and a complexity and proficiency only hinted at on earlier releases. This Sheltering Night continues in a similar vein, yet expanding on every element: intricacy, melody, production, everything. Rennie Resmini has never sounded so venomous (which, for those familiar, is quite an impressive feat) and the playing on this record is completely astounding. I could go on at (even longer) length about this band and this record, but put simply, if you are a fan of heavy hardcore and/or progressive metal, I implore you to check out this record and everything Starkweather has done before it. Essential.
–Dave William (Deathwish, deathwishinc.com)