People either absolutely love or absolutely hate hard rock/metal. There’s not many people out there on the fence with this genre. Like many types of red wine, hard rock can be an acquired taste; you need to learn how to appreciate it.
BRUTUS, a hard rock band from Belgium, release their debut album on February 24th via Hassle Records. The album, titled ‘Burst’, could be that glass of wine that finally makes you say “I do like reds.” ‘Burst’ is 11 songs of intense guitar and killer vocals that will get you incredibly pumped up.
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As soon as the guitar intro in ‘March’ begins, it’s clear that this album is full of energy. Every song has searing guitars and strangled lyrics that leave you wanting more. ‘All Along’ is a lyrically simple song, but it is saturated with emotions from singer-drummer, Stefanie Mannaerts. Her voice is always impressive, but hearing Mannaerts drum solo in the middle of ‘All Along’ proves that this chick is going places. It’s tough to understand her ability to bang out beats like that whilst belting out lyrics.
Each song is more dynamic and hardcore than the last, leaving listeners’ ears exhausted. Then we’re introduced to ‘Drive.’ The fifth song on the album. It begins with an eerie intro reminiscent of something on the soundtrack of a great thriller. Just as the tension builds to a seemingly unbreakable peak, the black metal guitars and drums come crashing in.
BRUTUS has a knack for creating hard rock and black metal jams with larynx-scorching vocals without making listeners feel like they’re being yelled at. Mannaerts tip-toes on that fine line of hard rock and metal. The lyrics are clear and the voice delivering them is powerful. This is especially true in ‘Justice De Julia II.’ This track highlights her vocals and proves them to be multidimensional. She can sing powerfully and gracefully all at the same time.
Falling somewhere between Evanescence and Slayer, BRUTUS developed a sound unique to them. ‘Burst’ will be an album fans will listen to back to back, numerous times. As for attracting new listeners, it’s a great way to delicately introduce people to the world of hard rock. It may just convert some people.
A debut album doesn’t usually sound so self-aware. A band’s first kick at the can often comes across as safe or curious. ‘Burst’ by BRUTUS has a definitive sound that exudes confidence and passion. It almost sounds more like a second or third album than a first.
‘Burst’ is out February 24th via Hassle Records.