With a new singer and revived brutal attitude, deathcore vets Chelsea Grin have released their album Eternal Nightmare via Rise Records. After the departure of longtime vocalist, Alex Koehler, many of the band’s fans wondered how the new release will stand-up with the rest of the band’s work. I can wholeheartedly say now that any fears or worries can be put to rest. This album can not only stand with the rest of Chelsea Grin’s releases, but can stand with some of the best deathcore releases in recent memory. Tom Barber (the band’s new vocalist and former Lorna Shore vocalist) brings over his amazing vocal style, along with a new revamped sense of heavy that we haven’t seen from Chelsea Grin before.
The ambience of the album is what really sold me. Yes, the band has always had a slightly dark and creepy edge to them. This new album though takes that side of them and cranks it to eleven. Every song on the album truly encapsulates what a “nightmare” is. The heavy and beautifully crafted riff work backed with the ery effects makes this album stand out amongst all the other band’s releases. If you’re looking for something unforgivably honest that just put you in that state of mind where you get your anger out, this is the album for you. Tom’s influence is very present, and this is just going to set the tone for the band going forward. If this is the direction that Chelsea Grin is heading, I think they’re going to make a lot of people happy.
Another impressive aspect of the album is its’ diversity. With each song being more brutal than the last (and yes, I can’t use the word “brutal” enough) they each somehow sound different than the others. If you’ve heard the band’s single “Dead Rose” you’ve touched the top of the iceberg. If you’re a fan of any kind of metal music there’s something on the LP for you. It touches on influences from hardcore, thrash, and even technical metal. To be honest this is probably the most diverse and interesting deathcore album I have ever heard.
So as fans, I say to everyone to welcome Tom Barber with open arms. He and the rest of the band have given us this gem of an album, and we should be grateful for it. I for one am loving where the band seems to be heading, and I think a lot of you are going to feel the same way.