Jul 222015

In Dread Response-Heavenshore


(We premiere a full stream of the new album by New Zealand’s In Dread Response, with the following introduction by TheMadIsraeli.)

Melodic death metal and metalcore have been intersecting with each other for quite a while now. I’ve been a proponent of the idea that this has mostly produced mediocre music that should be of little interest, often resulting in little more than watered-down melodic death metal with clean pop vocals, riffing that lacks any technical edge, and a boring breakdown here and there. But In Dread Response have always consistently done it right, taking exactly the best aspects of both styles. The technical edge, ferocity, and speed of melodic death metal are in play, combined with metalcore’s emotive sense of melody, energy, and a vocal style that comes off as more emotionally charged. Think of early Killswitch Engage with Jesse Leech, except IDR are definitely about the more ferocious aspects of heavy music. And there are no breakdowns or clean vocals to be found here.   Zero.

Heavenshore is the band’s third album, and their best. I’ve not heard metal of the melodic sort this emotionally charged or this vicious in a long time. It’s also one of the few instances in which I truly feel an album is “perfect”, in the sense that there is no filler on it. Every song is distinct and equally great, and I never have an urge to skip to the next track at any point. This is as repeat-listenable as Alive Or Just Breathing or Slaughter Of The Soul, and I’ve been treating it as an album of like prestige since the IDR guys sent me the promo of it. Continue reading »

Feb 162015

(TheMadIsraeli revives a feature designed to put the spotlight on recommended groups, and today the focus is on New Zealand’s In Dread Response.)

In Dread Response have been mentioned a couple times here on the site, but I figured a full feature on them was relevant and due, considering the band’s next album Heavenshore is coming soon.  These “Bands you should be listening to” segments will be exactly as the title says, but I kind of aim to use them as indirect awareness and hype for a band’s upcoming output as well, especially when it’s a band I really believe in and love to death.  In Dread Response are definitely such a band, and this little feature is for those who may not even know who these guys are, as well as for those who do but maybe haven’t followed them lately.

In Dread Response play blazingly fast-as-fuck technical and emotive melodic death metal.  Make no mistake, this is a band who not only perfectly conform to what NCS is all about, they are also completely unrelenting, in a genuinely militant way that melodic death metal doesn’t often display.

A lot of the best melodic death metal nowadays really borrows from the Daylight Dies and In Mourning school of ambience, melancholy, and dragging tempos, but In Dread Response capture the ferocity the style was born with.  If you want band references or comparisons, think of a combination of Dark Tranquility and Darkest HourIn Dread Response have the savagery and melodic tendencies of early Dark Tranquility, and the speed and recklessness of Darkest Hour on Hidden Hands Of a Sadist Nation.  They lack the commercialized elements both bands later tried to incorporate, and have instead retained only the best and most intense aspects of those sorts of influences. Continue reading »

Feb 112015


I would actually like to review an entire album. Or even an entire EP. And I harbor hopes of finishing the rollout of our Most Infectious Songs list for 2014. But on a daily basis I continue to find new songs that I feel compelled to say something about, and so here we have another round-up of such discoveries.


I first came across Voice of the Soul four and a half years ago via a MISCELLANY excursion. The band’s vocalist/guitarist Kareem Chehayeb was then based in Kuwait, with other band members spread around other locations in the Middle East. When I reviewed their 2011 EP, Into Oblivion, I found that it represented a large leap forward, or more like a stretching of wings — by a rapidly maturing raptor with big claws that could do some damage, and an even more impressive ability to take flight on the wings of some very memorable melodies. Since then, Kareem Chehayeb and guitarist Monish Shringi relocated to Dubai in the UAE, and recorded the band’s debut album, Catacombs.

Guest writer Gorger reviewed the album for us last October and gave it high marks. But despite his praise and my own history with the band, I stupidly didn’t dive into it. Too many other distractions, I suppose. And then yesterday I watched and listened to the band’s new lyric video for a song from the album named “Defiled”, and holy shit. Continue reading »

Sep 102014

I’ve fallen behind in completing some reviews (one in particular) that I had planned to post on Monday of this week. Partly, this is the result of how many new music premieres and press releases of interest I’ve found this week. The last 24 hours have been no different. What follows is a sextet of such things.


One of this site’s favorite bands made this statement yesterday:

“We have some exciting news! To bridge the gap between TETRAGRAMMATON and our forthcoming album we decided to record some tunes from our first album The Apotheosis. This because The Apotheosis is sold out and we simply aren’t in for an ordinary repressing. We will release it as an EP+ some cool rare recordings we collected through the years. The title of the EP will be BLOODCVLTS & DEATHCVLTS.

At the moment we have no idea how and who will release this EP. Maybe it will be on vinyl, maybe on CD or maybe only on Itunes and Spotify. Stay tuned!” Continue reading »

May 192013

In Dread Response are an excellent New Zealand metal band that we’ve mentioned a couple times in the past, but not recently — and it’s past time that we checked in with them again. TheMadIsraeli reviewed their debut album From the Oceanic Graves in August 2011 (here). We miserably failed to review their second full-length, Embers In the Spiritless Void, but our NZ blog sister Steph Metal did name that release as one of the 10 best 2011 metal albums from Down Under in a guest feature we published in January 2012. Here’s what Steph had to say about it:

Aggressive death metal with overarching melody and faultless musicianship, In Dread Response have been building a steady following in New Zealand since the release of their debut album in 2008. Songs like “Through Chasms” demonstrate their attention to details – lyrics that weave graven images in your mind, relentless double kick and layers of riffs that create drama and tension, and almost classical solos that deliver exactly what they promise.

Thanks to a tip from NCS supporter Booker, I’m pleased to tell you that as of yesterday In Dread Response made Embers available as a free download in a .zip file that also includes hi-res images of the entire CD album booklet (and it’s a feast for the eyes that includes paintings by the stupendous John Martin). But that’s not all . . . Continue reading »

Aug 302011

(NCS writer TheMadIsraeli serves up Part 2 of his week-long series on modern melodic death metal.)

One of the complaints I’ve always heard about melodeath is that it isn’t aggressive enough. Well, to those complainers, In Dread Response is here to tell you to fuck yourself.

The debut of this New Zealand band, released in 2008, is really something to behold. I mean, just listen to the two singles (one here and one after the jump):

Continue reading »