REVIEW: Katabasis – Bastards Sing, Bastards Cry [EP/2021]

Artist: Katabasis

Album: Bastards Sing, Bastards Cry – EP

         Over the last year or so, we’ve come to see just about every aspect of human emotion and every kind of human come to prevalence in some form or another. There has been no shortage of violence, hatred, bitterness, loathing and aggression—from both inherently “good” and “bad” people, in the same way that there has been kindness, love and warmth from those who were once cold and stone-hearted. The only constant, it seems, when it comes to predicting the behavior of others is that one cannot reliably predict the behavior of others, and, in turn, can’t even predict their own behavior. This spectrum—the good acting ugly and the ugly acting good—shines through on the two-track EP release by metalcore outfit Katabasis. A group one might otherwise know as some polite southern lads, Katabasis’ brief 2021 offering is a smoldering, infernal slab of hefty, bleeding meat—to be blunt. Bastards Sing, Bastards Cry is a cruel and relentless barrage of malevolent metalcore, replete with scathing leads and explosive percussion defining a harshly metallic attack on the senses.

         From their relatively innocuous debut offering until now, Katabasis have been a regional favorite with (an unfairly low) extension into the nationwide heavy music circuit. With Bastards Sing, Bastards Cry, this ought to end. Boasting the sparsely nu-influenced elements a la Orthodox or Prison alongside a penchant for bloodthirsty, brazen metalcore a la Knocked Loose or Born a New, the band run an impressive gamut over a mere eight minutes of play time. “Grief Relief” is, truly, a haunting track—not only for how ruthlessly heavy it gets, but for the moments of eerie atmosphere that creep up on the listener, where subtle fretwork waxes and wanes in the listener’s ear, permeating the back of their mind. Meanwhile, the percussion is incessant, giving the track a sense of marked vitriol that pierces the listener to their core. Similarly, “No Life In You” offers a riff-heavy onslaught on the listener, leaning away from the breakdown-laden proclivities of “Grief Relief.” Together, the two are a remarkable metalcore one-two punch, with each track providing a different spin on the genre’s staple styles. Throughout Bastards Sing, Bastards Cry, there is a ferocious vocal dynamic to be observed as well—with everything from gut-busting roars to downright creepy singing and everything in between.

         While brief, Bastards Sing, Bastards Cry is comprehensive in its approach to metalcore, leaving little to be desired if the listener is in dire search of a quick, punishing fix while Katabasis prepare their next carnal offering.


For Fans Of: Orthodox, Born a New, Distinguisher, Prison, Varials

By: Connor Welsh