Best of 2016 Playlist

April 25, 2016

Beartooth - "Aggressive" Single Review

Almost 2 years have passed since the band's debut album, "Disgusting" graced our ears. A stark contrast to frontman Caleb Shomo's previous band Attack! Attack!, Beartooth have brought their own brand of hardcore punk to the masses. Now they're back with a new song from their sophomore record, "Aggressive". With the title track released as the album's lead single, we know we're in for one helluva great song. 

Click this (link) to pre-order the album and get this song and "Always Dead" on iTunes. 

Caleb Shomo recently sat down with Alternative Press and talked about the new album. To read the interview click this (link). 

One of the most unexpected things from the song are the "menacing vocals" layered under Shomo's. Like they borrowed that ever present creepy voice from Motionless in White's albums. It's a little detail that adds something extra to the song. But aside from that, the band don't really offer anything new. 

Our main problem with the song is the standard "core" formula. "Aggressive" starts like 80% of Beartooth's other songs. A palm muted guitar layered beneath Shomo doing some spoken word (or screamed word) vocals. And that then gives way for the rest of the band to kick in and blow your ear drums out. 

Don't believe us? Well listen to Beartooth's songs "The Lines", "In Between", Ignorance is Bliss", or "Keep Your American Dream". They all have the same "palm muted under vocals" intro. The "core" song structure typically goes: "palm muted intro", "heavy verse", "mainstream chorus", "palm muted bridge", "breakdown", "repeat chorus". 

In fact the chorus is the strongest aspect of the song, despite it being fairly standard for Beartooth. Almost anthemic, it also holds the bulk of the song's melody. And the chorus is what makes the song more accessible for newcomers to the hardcore genre. But again, most of the band's songs have choruses like that.

While this is all fun and nice, we can't help but wish the band tried to do something different. Because this formula can only work work for so long before it gets stale. We have to say, maybe there's some stock in the whole "if it ain't broke don't fix it" saying. 


Faults aside, this song is near perfect. Beartooth are at peak form, and doing what they do best. Writing songs that blend metalcore with hardcore punk and raw energy. Seeing how well the band have done since the release of their debut, maybe we're just being nit-picky. "Aggressive" is catchy, fun, and the band have stated multiple times their goal is to write "fun, punk rock, hardcore, wild music, play crazy shows, and have a good time without pressure from anything." That being said, we have to give them that. Beartooth are definitely doing what they set out to do.  

Rating - 8/10