New York natives, Stray From The Path have been on the scene since 2001 blasting out albums every couple of years since their formation. 2017 is no different as the band are set to release their newest record “Only Death Is Real” come September 8th, and I was lucky enough to be handed an early copy of this album for review… so here we go!
The album starts off angry and intense from the get go with “The Opening Move”, this intro track sets the pace for the entire album and you’ll definitely see that as you make your way through.
“Loudest In The Room” features some incredibly hard hitting riffs and aggressive vocals, you can especially hear the anger in these lyrics. This track also has a really cool Korn-like breakdown, definitely a song you’ll want to mosh to.
Up next is the controversial single “Goodnight Alt-right”, the band had this to say about the single…
“When Richard Spencer, a white supremacist, was punched on-camera a few months back, it was great to see that he and his hatred were not being tolerated,” guitarist/vocalist Tom Williams explains. “We were shocked to see that people were actually defending him though. They said he should have freedom of speech. They’re not wrong. People should be able to exercise free speech. Sometimes, the things you say come with consequences. There is enough hate, misery, and division in this country that we don’t need a televised white supremacist saying, ‘This country belongs to white people.’ Bottom line: if you preach hate, expect hate.”
Controversial lyrics aside; this is an incredibly angry yet funky track. I absolutely love the groovy riff work and the Rage Against The Machine-like vibe with the vocals, as is present throughout the entire album, it is hard to not want to just hit stuff while hearing this song.
Unfortunately not much can be said about “Let’s Make A Deal” up until the last minute or so where an incredibly groovy breakdown hits.
“They Always Take The Guru” is once again extremely aggressive and has a nice groove in some riffs but very easily blends in. I had to listen to this one twice as I didn’t realize it was a different song at first.
Up next is “Plead The Fifth“, this one got my attention immediately with a riff that sounds very different from the rest while still keeping that funky tone.
Songs such as “Strange Fiction”, “All Day & A Night” & “Only Death Is Real” don’t really bring much to the table in regards to uniqueness, although the instrumentals in these songs are still impressive and keep up the aggressive groove there’s nothing that makes me want to go back and listen again.
However “The House Always Wins” I believe is probably the heaviest song on the album and definitely the angriest by far. The involvement of Vinnie Paz definitely benefited the song. Despite the controversial and somewhat “immature” lyrics, the vocals and instrumentals on this mesh incredibly well together and make for a decent hardcore album.