Cancer Bats: Dead Set on Living

This is the newest release from Canadian hardcore band, Cancer Bats.

I’ve always been a fan of this band ever since I found out about them although their first two albums always felt like the band were bridesmaids and not the bride, if that makes sense. Then Bears, Mayors, Scraps, and Bones came out and that changed everything. That album was one of the best records of 2010 and finally established Cancer Bats for what they are as a band. This new album isn’t as good in my opinion, but its still a close second.

Liam of Cancer Bats stated that this album is more “upbeat’ than Bears, Mayors, Scraps, and Bones and I can totally agree with that. For a band that’s more inspired by bands like Fleet Foxes rather than contemporary hardcore bands, there’s a lot going on this record. I’ve always thought the hardest thing about most hardcore bands is getting the gnarly-ness and ferocity of their live shows on record. Cancer Bats did it before with Bears… and I’d say they did it again with Dead Set on Living.

The two singles on this album, “Road Sick” and “Old Blood” are some of the best songs this band had written even though I’d say “Road Sick” is one of the weaker songs on this record. But, as always, there are so many more great songs to go crazy over. The opening track “RATS”, which features Rob Urbinati of Sacrfice on it, is a real fist-pumper of a tune. “Bastards” and “Breathe Armageddon” are also huge tunes!!

About a week ago, Cancer Bats did one of the most metal things you could ever do. They played six shows in london in one day, but here’s the catch! If you googlemaps London, the venues they played make the shape of a pentagram!! You can’t get much more metal than that?!?!

Overall, it’s heavy, it’s brilliant, it’s catchy, and I seriously doubt you’ll hear anything else quite like this in 2012. If you’re a fan of hardcore music at all, you HAVE to check it out (although I’m sure every fan of hardcore is already well aware of what Cancer Bats are all about). It’s a fucking great record from one of Canada’s heaviest bands.

Luke Helker


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