Album Review: Circa 94 - 生 Conform 死

Artist: 生 Conform 死

Album: Circa 94

Genre: Nu-Metal/Hardcore

Label: Independent

Released: 18 May 2018

Going into this review I didn't really know anything about this band nor what they sounded like, though I have seen their name appear on social media from time to time. Well, let me tell you that I'm glad I did choose to review this album, because I think I've just stumbled across one of the most exciting and dynamic bands on the rise in Australia right now. I present to you, 生 Conform 死 from Perth and their debut album, Circa 94.

The album opens with the track "Roman Holiday" and you are instantly shown the kind of power and aggression that 生 Conform 死 are capable of. This is the Perth boys at their most visceral and heavy. What you'll hear is well written riffs with bass interlinking brilliantly with the beats of the drummer to create the kind of groove that wouldn’t be out of place on a ‘90s era Pantera album all while keeping it fresh and modern.

Tracks like “Roman Holiday”, “Blood Eagle” and “Yellow Jacket” have immediately won me over with the intensity and some innovative song-crafting. There is no strict attachment to melody or clean-singing, but the softer spoken word and nu-metal style rap choruses make the guitar-hooks stand out. Parts of Circa 94 take me back to when I first discovered Slipknot, the rawness and the hungry passion that pours through each song can be heard here. This is not your typical balls-to-the-wall, denim jacket with patches and camo pants style of metal; this is a multi-layered, dissonant, metallic banger of an album.

Although I've hit the nu-metal references hard here it’s important to point out that this is where the band excel, it is not their only weapon. 生 Conform 死 have taken their time to collect their thoughts and craft their ideas on Circa 94. Rather than your average, recycled lyrics and songwriting, they've replaced that with dark imagery and emotive delivery throughout whilst sounding viscous and devastating. These songs actually go places, and there’s a real sense of musical resurgence and adventure, like 生 Conform 死 weren’t content just to color within the lines or 'conform' to what everyone else doing in heavy music these days.

生 Conform 死 are a promising outfit and given their rather small status which is sure to grow with this release, deserves all the attention and hype they can muster. If Circa 94 is anything to go by, then they're sure to build an impressive resume in the years to come considering how many different styles and sounds that this young group can offer. A strong and diverse album like this is super refreshing goddamn it's fucking heavy!

8.5 out of 10

Catch 生 Conform 死 at the following dates:

Saturday May 19 - Perth, WA - Amplifier Bar - Perth Album Launch w/ The Gloom in the Corner, Worlds Apart and Bitter Taste

Friday May 25 - Melbourne, VIC - Wrangler (AA)w/ She Cries Wolf, The Gloom in the Corner, The Colour Clear (Debut Show)

Saturday May 26 - Melbourne, VIC - Bang 18+w/ I, Valiance, She Cries Wolf, The Gloom in the Corner

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