For just about as long as there has been a human need to stuff music into genre labelled boxes, there have been bands who have sought to break down the barriers between these, often entirely arbitrary, distinctions. Punk, metal, hardcore, rock, rap …. take any two of those and someone, somewhere will have tried to mix them with varying degrees of success.
Long before Nu-Metal came along and polluted the ears of an entire generation (not mine, thank fuck) Thrash pioneers Anthrax were one of the first to try to mix Rap and Metal, and the first to really feel the full “THAT’S NOT MEHTULZ” backlash. Say what you want about us metalheads, we’re not always keen on anything new 🙂
The latest “crossover” offering to come the way of CackBlabbath is, to be fair, something that I would probably dismiss pretty much straight away based purely on the description….
Yep, rap and tech metal, two of my favourite things. Anyway, remembering how much I hate people who judge music and bands without actually listening I decided to give it a go. The PR companies who we deal with pretty much know the sort of thing that’ll go down well with me so if something arrives with an email saying “I think you’ll hate this”, it’s GOT to be worth a listen.
And you know what, I don’t hate it at all… but don’t tell anyone.
Hacktivist take the more extreme ends of Djent and Rap and fuse them together, taking the 5 band member’s various backgrounds and combining to produce something that is genuinely fresh. Now when metal bands try to do rap the results can often be a bit, well, embarrassing but Hacktivist aren’t a metal band doing rap. They’re something different, a genuine fusion of styles with fire, passion and and a sheer fucking honesty, an adrenaline rush devoid of any traces of scene bullshit.
Rap with savage grime vocals, a distinctive Djent guitar sound and well written, well delivered and socially relevant lyrics, this is something that will definitely divide opinion….. and I kind of get the impression that’s the idea.
As I may have mentioned before, this isn’t really my “thing” (I’m not sure I even have a “thing”, musically speaking) but it’s obvious that Hacktivist are going to very quickly acquire themselves a massive following, especially if they can follow up this release with some brutal live shows (I’ll let you know next Friday).
You may love this, you may hate it, but what you can’t do deny that it’s that rarest of things… something genuinely original. I’m not going to pretend it’s going to be my album of the year, but I will certainly understand if it’s yours.
The band are touring from today, go check ’em out before they get huge.
Thu 01 Nov,Cardiff, Bogiez
Fri 02 Nov, Southampton, Joiners
Sat 03 Nov, Rugby, The Vaults
Sun 04 Nov, London, Islington Academy 2
Mon 05 Nov, Manchester, Sound Control
Tue 06 Nov. Leeds, The Well
Wed 07 Nov, Glasgow, Ivory Blacks
Thu 08 Nov, Sheffield, Corporation
Fri 09 Nov, Peterborough, Club Revolution
Sat 10 Nov, Leicester, Soundhouse