Many metalcore bands are severely lacking the metallicness to actually be worthy of the classification and often have too much -core to be called anything remotely metal, but the thing is, the band isn't metalcore in the newfangled sense with poppy modernity and other hallmarks characteristic of the recent style of the subgenre. These Danes retain a huge chunk of old world hardcore in their sound, incorporating groove metal and very small amounts of death and thrash metal, though for the most part, they lean toward the hardcore/groove side of the spectrum and progress with their ideas from there. Because there isn't much advancement to be made in either hardcore or groove metal, the majority of the tracks sound alike, chugged and heavily palm-muted riffs and groovy skin bashing dominating nearly all of Existence Expires' 32 minute run time. However, it isn't exactly a downfall because most of the songs are relatively well-composed and offer a nice respite from the normal wave of music that makes its way through my playlists. In a sense, I view Blood Label's EP as fairly fresh because I don't associate myself with the style on a regular basis.
Though a portion of the tracks sound similar, there are some highlights to be had like the mosh-worthy and music video material "Traitors Beware" as well as the almost thrashy "Mutiny," which ushers a jammin' feelin' like the guys were rocking out just for the hell of it. You'll be chanting "THERE WILL BE BLOOD!!" right along with "Traitors Beware" with your fist pumping in the air. Guaranteed. Particularly entertaining is the title track, which is nothing more than a creepy, organ-composed intro to "Into Perpetual Fire," but it really sets the mood and shows the band has composed side, instead of the frenzied, destructive one normally associated with metal and hardcore. The rest of the songs, while good, remain borderline pedestrian and don't stick in quite the same way the previously mentioned four do.
Blood Label sets out to defy the commonplace metalcore trends and largely succeed, while still being recognizable as part of the subgenre. Existence Expires is a revitalizing take on the stale brand of music, but it isn't without weaknesses, namely the lack of distinction between tracks; nonetheless, as a general rule of thumb, the band has a start to something interesting here, especially if they can flesh out a little bit more of their death and thrash metal influences. When Blood Label hits their stride, they rock hard. I'd just like to see an album full of that moshy goodness.
Give this one a try,
The Metal Advisor