SECT - SECT - No Cure For Death - (8.5/10)
Published on April 14, 2018
Metal and hardcore bands can often be incestuous. There are plenty of examples of bands sharing members, side projects, supergroups, etc where a single musician can be a member of multiple active bands. Such is the case with hardcore outfit Sect, featuring members of Earth Crisis, Catharsis, Cursed and even Fall Out Boy. The band had formed in 2015, and released their debut, self-titled full-length in 2016. The tail end of 2017 though saw the band release their second album, and first for Southern Lord, entitled No Cure For Death. The album runs through a quick ten tracks and never lets up any of the hardcore fury you would expect, and leaves one hell of a lasting impression.
There is no time to waste on this sophomore release, with a run time barely under 17 minutes, but there is so much being packed into these tracks that they beg repeated listens. The guitar tone is deep and dirty, with the bass adding a nice layer of heaviness to the record. The drumming is on point with other hardcore or even fast paced heavy music. Plenty of groove but tons of fills and impressive blasting throughout give No Cure For Death a well-rounded sound that pummels as well as gets stuck in your head. Vocally, the album features a very impressive bark that is full of vitriol and drives home the idea of someone pissed off at the world around them. There is a clear love for the 90’s hardcore scene, which makes plenty of sense given the pedigree of the band members.
Each track does not have any time to screw around with atmosphere, or “build” per se, but that does not mean in any way that these songs are without variety or their own merits. Each song does manage to stand on its own, and showcases various facets of what each member can bring to the table. While there is a clear cohesiveness to the record, making sure each song is distinguishable from another was definitely something the band put a lot of time in to.
The overall sound of the release is great, being produced by Kurt Ballou, whose track record speaks of course for itself. Each riff or blast from the drums is heard with wonderful clarity, but the pissed-off demeanor of these men is not lost, and there is a palpable sense of disdain dripping out over the course of these 17 minutes. One of the best things about the album is the short run-time. There is simply no time to get stale or grow tired of anything before the next riff comes along. It’s an album that begs for multiple spins, and you can headbang along time and time again with each listen feeling fresh and exciting.
No Cure For Death was perhaps not the biggest release from Southern Lord in 2017, but it is one that deserves quite a bit of attention. There’s a true hardcore spirit within these 10 tracks, and the energy level is undeniable. It is hard to listen to this and not feel pumped up and ready to take down the system. Sect is not just a one-off or some secondary project, but one that has a clear intent, and goes about showcasing that in a memorable and fantastic way. Don’t let 2018 stop you from going back and enjoying one of the awesome releases from late 2017.