Antagonist – These Cities, Our Graves


Artist

Album

These Cities, Our Graves

Label

Trial & Error Records/Stomp

Year

2008

Genre

For Fans Of

Martyr AD – Darkest Hour - Arkangel

Summary

The Kiwis are showing us how it’s done…

Rating

87 / 100

Antagonist have been tearing
their native New Zealand a new asshole since 2004, and the last couple
of years have seen the five piece slay Australian audiences on a regular
basis, so it makes sense that local powerhouse Trial & Error
Records
has opted to re-release These Cities, Our Graves.
Although it’s not an album in the traditional sense the eleven tracks
on offer showcase a band that has grown into their sound, their amalgamation
of metal and hardcore finding a happy meeting point between the two
genres. 

The mosh friendly opening of the
record’s title track is fairly indicative of the Antagonist’s
approach… no bullshit, no frills, just heavy and uncompromising music
that’ll kick your arse from here to Auckland if you give it a chance. 
“The Walking Dead” continues in the same vein, its chugging riffs
and driving drums culminating in one of the heaviest breakdowns I’ve
heard in a long time, while “Hollywood” sees a more pronounced Euro-metal
influence in the guitar work.  

“Show Some Heart” sees Antagonist lock back into the grooves that they use to such great
effect, which makes for a interesting contrast when you compare it to
the more metallic leanings of “R.E.S.P.E.C.T”, an obvious nod to
the band’s key influences but one that escapes plagiarism thanks to Sam’s passionate vocal delivery, which brings to my next point.
Antagonist is one band that thrives on making a point lyrically. Whether
it be advocating the vegan lifestyle or rallying against promiscuity
they have something of value to say… which is a refreshing change
when you consider the amount of lifeless shit is released these days. 

The guitars in “The Birth Of
Tragedy” are as aggressive as they come, the squealing breakdown recalling
the same menacing vibe that Martyr AD successfully pulled off
in their heyday, while “(Not Even) Silver Bullets” and “Suicide
Girls” see a more technical approach being taken with the guitar work.
“… A Fucking Lie” is a three-minute kick to the head that is further
aggravated by “Distance” and “Stranger”.

Conclusion

After the reception these guys
got on their recent tour with Parkway Drive we can expect to
see a lot more of them on our shores. Don’t say you weren’t warned.  

Tracklisting

  1. These Cities, Our Graves
  2. The Walking Dead
  3. Hollywood
  4. Show Some Heart (Go
    vegan)
  5. R.E.S.P.E.C.T
  6. The Birth Of Tragedy
  7. (Not Even) Silver Bullets
  8. Suic

2 Responses to “Antagonist – These Cities, Our Graves”

  1. KYS-Cam

    tell me the more euro riffs aren’t reminiscent of DH!? ha ha (plus for fans of doesn’t always mean sounds like, just a reference point son)!

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