Born out of the NYHC scene that brought many bands to international and major label recognition, Vision Of Disorder somehow managed to stay quite underground and massively underrated despite a string of fine albums on Roadrunner Records. Fans and certain press raved about them, but they somehow missed out on making the next step up. Likewise, their reunion back in 2008 brought a fair bit of acclaim, but once again they seemed to be bubbling under when it came to coverage. The resultant album ‘’The Curse Remain Cursed’’ in 2012 proved that they were serious, this was unfinished business.
‘’Razed To The Ground,’’ released through Candlelight Records, follows on from where that one left off, with opener ‘Heart Of Darkness’ attacking from the off and being as uncompromising as anything they have released. More than just straight up hardcore, Vision Of Disorder always looked further afield for influences, and this is evident again here. ‘Electric Sky’ has a certain Alice In Chains vibe at in its quieter moments. Vocalist Tim Williams is equally comfortable doing both clean and more extreme vocal styles, and it is this open minded approach and the addition of different elements give the band a depth than a lot of the hardcore scene lacks.
There is still plenty of good old-fashioned noise on here too. ‘Hours In Chaos’ has riffs that will cause mayhem when played live, and is a prime example of the more violent side of this album. Closing track ‘Amurdica: A Culture Of Violence’ is probably the most brutal track on the album. Bludgeoning riffs rule over cutting lyrics concerning the state of the world and America’s dominance over world affairs. The overall feel of the album doesn’t change even if subject matter and style does, giving the album a great flow and even though it seems quite basic at times, it seems to reveal more and more on each listen, which is always good.
VOD have made an album that could have been recorded back in the 90’s, but at the same time made it fresh and relevant. They have stuck to their trademark style that stands out now as much as it did then, when other bands from a similar time began to sound dated quite quickly. They deserved to be bigger then, and they possibly deserve it more now, for sticking to their guns and continuing to release great albums and not jus clinging to nostalgic memories. Could be a contender for album of the year for me, but I wouldn’t expect anything less from these.
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