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Album Review

As was the case with their first two albums, Harlots' third opus, Betrayer, stands at the crossroads where savagery and civilization collide, producing a grand cacophony of post-math-metal intricacy as impenetrable for its instrumental complexity as for its sheer, unhinged brutality. In other words, it's hard to decide whether listeners should be encouraged to bring a musical theory textbook or a battle axe when approaching Betrayer, but they better be ready for a challenge, that's for sure. For you see, as punishing as they are on the ears and body (just in case anyone is reading this in the mosh pit), exemplary poundings like "Building an Empire Towards Destruction," "The Weight Unweighable" (did we mention the lyrics are tricky too?), and the grinding "Concept of Existence," provide multiple levels of intellectual study for those who are able to withstand the beating. Those who cannot will simply have to make do with brief snatches of harmonic resolution sprinkled amidst the sonic discord reigning memorable fare like "Avada Kedavra," "Full Boy Contortion," and "This Is a Test, No Flesh Should be Spared." Finally, we have a few unusual detours into relative bliss with the eight-minute "Dried Up Goliathan" and the atmospheric, 12-minute epic, "Suicide Medley" — both of which set aside all that extra room for some clean vocals and weave buckets of melodic lines (albeit twisted ones) around one another, instead of the typical crushing riffs, ragged croaks, and bloodied body parts. For the most part though, Harlots most certainly like it rough, so approach with caution unless you're already a fan of the Red Chord and Job for a Cowboy.


Formed: Dayton, OH

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s

Not to be confused with the similarly named glammy power pop outfit from Winnipeg, Manitoba, the Harlots are a heavy grindcore act with some progressive post-hardcore and death metal touches, based in Dayton, OH. Formed by guitarist Eric Dunn and drummer Jeff Lohrber (who also play in Kenoma and Today Is the Day, respectively) in December 2002, the Harlots eventually settled into a stable lineup including singer Christian Fillippo and bassist Joshua Dillon. Prior to that, however, the Harlots released...
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Betrayer, Harlots
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