Band Spotlight: Black Mask

By Hutch

Arising from Punxsutawney, PA, to cast a stark shadow over your music scene with a crusty, grind-drenched, villainous hardcore sound, Black Mask is stunning the extreme music world. In a savage self-titled debut EP – released by Reflections Records in 2012 – short, venomous songs are spewed in under two and a half minutes amidst interludes of feedback and noise, totalling six songs in less than 10 minutes. Following up with an equally scathing six song EP, Lost Below, which was recorded in August 2013 at Very Tight Recordings, in Pittsburgh. Matt Very produced the release, and while the debut featured a simple cover, Lost Below boasts more involved artwork by Chelsea Owen from No Profit Design.

Black Mask’s lyrics offer no solace for the pessimistic. Cynical and penurious thoughts propel these words of ire and condemnation. “You drain the life out/Join the enslaved mass,” cries “Hollow Soul” over mid-paced, thick riffs that will spur many pits and much venue destruction.

The EP title is derived from the song “Judgment,” with scathing posits like, “I’m lost below, used up, let down/Purge of hope. Pathetic existence/I’m weakened and worthless/But you are nothing, it was all in vain.” Surpassing expectations of the grind-fueled, frenetic guitars over boulder-breaking drums, the lyrics are no sanctuary for the hopeless.

FFO: Converge, APMD, New Lows, Coke Bust, Haymaker, Magrudergrind, Nails, Phobia, Xibalba, Downpresser

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Black Mask

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