Hatebreed – Weight Of The False Self (Album Review)

East Coast Metalcore pioneers, the mighty Hatebreed, are back with their eighth studio album, Weight Of The False Self, slated for release on Friday, November 27, 2020 on Nuclear Blast Records.

Serving as one of the most highly regarded acts in Metalcore for more than 20 years, Hatebreed hold the power to create aggressive music which, at heart, always tries to help people better themselves. When you listen to Hatebreed play you can sense this is a band possessed by iron strength and unity. Following up 2013’s The Divinity of Purpose and 2016’s The Concrete Confessional, legendary Vocalist Jamey Jasta, Guitarists Wayne Lozinak and Frank Novinec, Bassist Chris Beattie, and Drummer Matt Byrne surprised fans in February 2020 by releasing the stand alone single “When The Blade Drops.” Though this new single is not included on the Weight Of The False Self, Hatebreed’s intention was to show fans what the band has been up to as well as to offer a taste of things to come.

In such a volatile time period, Hatebreed has written Weight Of The False Self  to describe the burdens every human on Earth, no matter who you are, carry in our lives on a daily basis. In his own words, Jasta explains: Seen or unseen, everyone is carrying a burden. The music we love helps us bear the weight.” Powerful words from a powerful artist, Jasta and company once again collaborated with long-time Producer Zeuss (Agnostic Front, Rob Zombie) and put what the band believes is Hatebreed’s best effort to date into creating the music and lyrics that make up Weight Of The False Self.

Setting the bar high, Hatebreed kicks off Weight Of The False Self  by setting their anger free on the opening number, “Instinctive (Slaughterlust).” Starting off in a most aggressive way, “Let Them All Rot” really says it all before “Set It Right (Start With Yourself)” tells you to take a good look in the mirror before expecting others to create the changes you seek. After the title track, “Weight Of The False Self,” the brutally honest “Cling To Life” kicks in a ripping guitar solo to set us up for the second half of the album.

One of the standouts here, “A Stroke Of Red” hits home for many as it addresses the dark struggle between taking an unforgiving path and seeing a positive light as the song stays steady and gets more aggressive later on. With old school Metalcore speed and grit, “Dig Your Way Out” is a pounder with constant changes in pace. As the power of Hatebreed continues to show with “This I Earned,” “Wings Of The Vulture” is a metaphor for the negativity that can creep in and take over in our most dire times. As we wish to hear these songs at a live show, both “The Herd Will Scatter” and “From Gold To Gray” are in your face, surely to leave a mark. Lastly, “Invoking Dominance” goes from a very classic Thrash Metal opening to an atmosphere of highly aggressive guitar, drums, and vocals.

Returning after a four year absence, Hatebreed is back when Metalcore fans need their relentless,  anger releasing aggression the most. Pulling no punches, Weight Of The False Self can feed the need for new Metal via standout tracks “A Stroke Of Red,” “This I Earned,” “Wings Of The Vulture,” and “The Herd Will Scatter.” For these reasons, Cryptic Rock awards Weight Of The False Self  4 out of 5 stars.

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