‘Hollowed Heart’ is Make Them Suffer at their heaviest, both musically & lyrically speaking.
[CW: this article contains discussions of sexual abuse.]
Make Them Suffer’s bone-crushing new single, ‘Hollowed Heart‘, is confrontational sonic attack towards any and all sexual abusers. It’s an instrumentally vile sounding track, reserved for the worst kind of people out there; those who steal the innocence and kill the trust of little girls and young women (and men, as well) with their heinous actions. As the songs title suggests, this is directed right at those with cruel, hollowed-out hearts who use their cowardly bodies to abuse and rape; whether it’s in a park, an alley, a random bathroom, or in their own house. It’s a filthy, hectic deathcore-metalcore track for a very dark, very serious topic of discussion.
More than that, and perhaps most importantly, ‘Hollowed Heart‘ is a stance of solidarity with the survivors who have had to endure such ugliness. It’s a love letter for those out there who have been so wronged, to tell them that they’re still strong, still brave, still alive, and that they shouldn’t blame themselves for the horrible transgressions of others. Given what unfortunately happened to keyboardist/singer Booka Nile at one of the bands recent shows, with her being groped by a punter (that person can fuck right off into the sun), this songs’ lyrics surely hit close to home for the band.
Musically, ‘Hollowed Heart‘ is Make Them Suffer existing at their heaviest and most aggressive in years, giving off some ‘Old Souls‘ vibes in the process and shifting between energetic tempo changes. Absent of their more melodic moments of recent material like ‘Ether‘ and 2017’s ‘Worlds Apart‘ LP, this is one fuckin’ brutal tune. Guitarist Nick McLernon is going all out with his guitar work, firing off plenty of jagged riffs and sharp pinches as if they’re all nuclear warheads. Vocalist Sean Harmanis also sounds like a ravenous animal, like a man fully possessed, and it’s never not an impressive vocal performance. And good god, that deranged cry of “Fucking coward, that’s somebody’s daughter“, followed up by “Another milestone, you’ve found a new low buried under their clothes” is just downright chilling.
Oddly enough, Booka doesn’t have a huge role, with only some keys heard in the chaotic background; the keys just not being all that prominent in the overall mix. Yet she doesn’t sing at all here either. She had a strong hand to play in the band’s last single, ‘27‘, as with much of the material off their last record, so I don’t doubt that we’ll see more of her vocals on whatever release MTS drop next.
‘Hollowed Heart‘ is a violent track that’s lyrically meant to make you feel sick and uneasy, and that’s exactly it’s palpable effect; it accomplished it’s intent, also making for one of the most arresting Make Them Suffer songs to date. It’s also scary just how consistent and effective Make Them Suffer are with their music, and how they can continually send it with each new release. This is undeniable prof that they’re one of the best heavy bands going these days. And it all comes in time for their upcoming Australian run with After The Burial, Saviour and Gravemind.