Greetings valued Dan's Movie Report readers, as many of you know I love heavy music and from time to time I review CDs. Just over a year ago a brand new hardcore/crossover band was formed with James Monteith (Tesseract) Guitars, Rachel Aspe (Ex Eths) Vocals, Jon Reid, Bass MC, and rounding out this awesome line-up is the amazingly talented Nick Plews on Drums. The new CD was released 5-13-2022, yes a Friday the 13th!
What really stands out on this CD is the visceral aggression reminding me of the early 90s hardcore scene. I have read other reviewers compare them to Madball or Agnostic Front, while I do hear tinges of this the galloping crunching guitars and vocals remind me of a faster and heavier version of Pro-Pain. That said Rachel's guttural, primal growls sear like a death metal blast beat. Actually I can see fans of this band coming from the death metal and hardcore genres, and mixing together at their shows.
The CD contains 13 songs and all are under 4 minutes, I am stating this, as many hardcore bands in the late 80s and early 90s kept their songs short and to the point. James Monteith has some very crunch licks and is a total and welcome departure from Tesseract. Rachel, who was the lead vocalist for Eths for a few years is right at home behind the mic, and it makes sense she wanted to sing again after Eths. This music is far different from Eths, yet her voice seems to fit right into a hardcore sound.
A kick ass solo from Monteith on the tune 'Make My Decision' reminds the listener how talented he is, and adds a level up to the run of the mill hardcore. Monteith's guitar picking is fast, yet never muddy, always at a rapid galloping pace, yet slowing down at times to allow the listener to catch their breath.
It is hard to pick out a favorite tune on the Cage Fight debut CD, I really like 'Respect Ends' which they also have a new video for featuring Rachel calm in one part and screaming stay the f*ck away, she is angry and do not call her cute! Of course the final track is a massive cover of Body Count's 'Bitch in the Pit'. That song hits like a hammer to the face and I just imagine Rachel crushing some heads in the mosh pit! 'Shine Don't Fade' puts hardcore through a speed metal lens. Nick Plews pushes out some creative cymbal work here, mixing various tones, and accents.
I cannot stress enough how important the drumming is in hardcore in general, especially in Cage Fight. Nick Plews lays the foundation that forms the backing wall to the layered sound. His snare work is lighting fast, yet never uses or needs to use blast beats, just rapid fire hits pacing the music. Cage Fight has a sense of anger, urgency and aggression throughout each track. I have been jamming it in my car for a few days and must say, this is one amazing debut CD~ I rate Cage Fight – 'Cage Fight' a solid 9 out of 10! A must own! Support indie music buy from the band! They have various shirts and the CD available. A pre-order of an 12 inch album is also available. Watch for the band to be on tour this summer even doing some shows with Sepultura!
The CD contains a gate-fold sleeve and all of the lyrics and thank-yous printed out as well, a nice touch,
Connect with the band on Facebook @ https://www.facebook.com/cagefighthc
Rachel Aspe has an official Facebook Page @ https://www.facebook.com/officialRachelaspe
Candlelight Records has a special pre-order Longsleeve shirt and CD for $40.99 https://candlelightrecords.tmstor.es/product/92356
I got my CDs on Amazon @ https://www.amazon.com/Cage-Fight/dp/B09SP691CV/ref=sr_1_1?
Merch Now has some items as well: https://merchnow.com/products/v2/338111/cage-fight