Wage War
Deadweight
(Fearless Records)

Wage War’s new album Deadweight is a release to get excited about. The Florida metalcore rising stars have left fans eagerly awaiting new material since 2015, when their debut album Blueprints was released. Now, with Deadweight, Wage War has carved out a niche that isn’t going to become null and void or irrelevant any time soon. If you weren’t paying attention to them before Deadweight, now is the time to.

The album isn’t as experimental or innovative as much as it is powerful. The sheer emotional force of the music is enough to make anyone with even the slightest familiarity with this kind of music stop and listen. Sure, they incorporate plenty of clean vocals from guitarist Cody Quistad, but these more straight-up alternative metal elements don’t overshadow the emotionally brutal metalcore found on the rest of the album.

Deadweight is, quite literally, the song of someone determined to make their stand in the world; it opens with a serious, beautifully put together track, “Two Years,” that explores vocalist Briton Bond’s feelings during the time between the band’s two albums and his determination to come back strong, personally and musically, after Blueprints. Bond lets out a guttural “Forgive me!” before the track ends with a heavy breakdown.

The album goes on to jump right into the emotionally heavy “Southbound,” on which Bond screams, “I don’t know what I believe!” while again directly addressing the two years of his feelings since Blueprints was released. Bond and Quistad are both at the top of their game with their vocals on this release, and the instrumentals are as technical and heavy as ever.

The title track on Deadweight is definitely a stand out song, in similar fashion to “Stitch,” which was released as a single. It’s atmospheric and features lyrics that are sure to haunt you when you really pay attention to what Bond is saying. Everything that Wage War is known for comes together beautifully on “Deadweight” — as it does on the rest of the album.

Welcome to the future, Wage War – you made it.

Purchase the album here.

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