With their explosive Every Time I Die-isms making an almost immediate splash internationally, the somewhat overnight emergence of hardcore upstarts Beartooth could equally be attributed to both a predisposed curiosity in following the pedigree of former Attack Attack! frontman Caleb Shomo, or a simple captivation of audiences with their upbeat metallic clamour. On the evidence of debut full-length, ‘Disgusting’, it’s difficult to ascertain against the latter.
Although nothing stylistically radical, this is a record which lunges for the throat with an urgency that is as infectious as it is savage. The likes of an almost thrash inflected ‘Beaten In Lips’ and the lurching impact of opener ‘The Lines’ are scathing examples of potent bloodthirst. Yet, despite this abrasive approach, Beartooth‘s audacious energy rarely sees a dip in what is a buoyantly upbeat and grin inducingly fun violence.
Brimming with all the hammer blow breakdowns and chorus refrains de rigueur of the modern blueprint, the instrumentation veers with stellar deftness between southern swagger and metal stomp (‘Body Bag’), whereas the hooks themselves are lessons in ear-worm contagion (‘In Between’). Yet, in defiance of obliging genre norms, Beartooth prove to inject a spiky, riff fueled freneticism a la The Chariot (‘I Have A Problem’), not to mention a smattering of punk rock influences and, most bleak and affecting of all, the poignant, heart wrenching catharsis that is desperate full stop ‘Sick And Disgusting’, all forlorn pleas and edge of tears grief, keeping us enamored not only by the band’s dynamic enterprise, but chest baring honesty.
Perhaps what has seen the popularity of Beartooth swell so rapidly is simply the sheer aplomb with which they execute their craft. Spittle flecked gusto and white hot intensity abound, boding well for a debut which sets in stone the prospect of this Ohio five-piece standing alone in a scene choked with banality. Emphatic, creative and consummately thrilling, ‘Disgusting’ is a raucously turbulent delight.
Written by Tony Bliss (@TBliss88)