By Dr. Abner Mality

I keep trying to find a Chicago area metal band that sucks but it's no go. At this rate, people are gonna think I do a lot of "home cooking" because Chi is in my backyard, but I swear to God, I am objective. It's just that the area keeps producing fantastic heavy bands of all kinds...I list Cianide, Nachtmystium, Cardiac Arrest, Lair of the Minotaur and so many more as proof. And now you can add Harm's Way as well.

One thing almost all Chicago bands have in common is a thickness and heaviness to them. There's nothing soft or shiny about them. That goes double for Harm's Way, whom I had never heard of prior to picking up "Isolation". These dudes are H-A-R-D to the C-O-R-E and deliver a punishing wall of cement-crushing rifferama that's sure to make you feel like punching a cop. It's not a million miles away from Hatebreed, but something about these guys seems a little smarter, a little tighter than the Big H. There's some industrial-type noise and a bit of depressing minor key mellowness during "Pretender" and "New Beginnings", but other than that, it's all about the beatdown. Listen to the raw simplicity of "Becoming" basic, so primal, so damn HEAVY! Lots of mid-paced stomp and raw-throated rage, with the pace occasionally picking up to Slayer speed.

Not the most blazingly unique example of riff-based thuggery you'll hear, but a very satisfying one nonetheless. These guys would pair up well with Weekend Nachos!