PICK OF THE WEEK: Foreseen HKI’s debut ‘Helsinki Savagery’ packed with fire, crossover brutality

ForeseenThere’s nothing better than ending the week on a loud, destructive note, especially if the four days that preceded your Friday have been busy, aggravating, and annoying. It’s time to blow off steam, get the negative energies out of your body, and indulge in something that offers a positive outlet for your chaos. Well, at least it’s more positive than burning down a house.

The whole crossover thrash thing somehow hasn’t been pulverized the death the last few years. At least not in the same way thrash and death have been beaten to a pulp. You have bands such as Iron Reagan, Power Trip, and Noisem (who hover a little closer to death, to be honest) picking up the trail first blazed by bands including D.R.I., Cryptic Slaughter, Cro-Mags, and many others. We haven’t been inundated with the sound, and therefore, it’s still a pretty fresh, fertile place in which to create. But now comes a band that will give the other new crossover maulers a real run for their money, and when all is said and done, might rule the entire place.

Foreseen coverArriving via Finland, where we usually get our fair share of death and black metal, come Foreseen HKI. Together since 2010, and with a few smaller releases under their belt, this Helsinki band of marauders has risen up with their smashing, awesome debut full-length record “Helsinki Savagery.” From the word go, this thing is like a bomb tearing a hole in the wall of even the most sound fortress, with these guys raging through like a bunch of barbarians. Frontman Mirko Nummelin definitely stands out for his scathing, raspy, in-your-face delivery and wicked charisma, and clearly he has a grasp of how the right singer can make a huge difference for a band, Making the hell fire along with him are guitarists Erkka Korpi and Lauri Martiskainen, bassist Tatu Kuisma, and drummer Marten Gustafsson, and they’re a killing machine that’ll overwhelm you and drag you off into the battle.

A lot of these songs seem to mash into each other and congeal, but that’s part of the fun. “Slam Savagery” kicks the record off hard following what sounds like engines revving up, which makes total sense for this assault. The band starts thrashing heavily, with killer lead lines blazing over top, and it’s a meaty, ideal stage setter. “Death Injection” is hammering and savage, with nasty vocals letting the attitude overflow, gang vocals making the track feel like a team effort of brutality, and a nice thrust toward hardcore to make this more violent. “The Prowler” has rapidly spat-out vocals, a tempo that races forward with reckless abandon, and the lead work just going off. The song is short and to the point, which is just as it should be. “Market Target” brings more fury into the picture, with some delayed vocals at the start that eventually turn into venomous howls. This song is heavy and fun and has the worst of intentions in mind. “Bonded By United Blood” is a spirited one, with a nice bit of crunch and some calculated playing initially before the track explodes and emits sparks. Gnarly yelling, more gang shouts, and another dose of speed also are packed into this one.

“Interlude” is what its title says it is, a short bridge built with noise, drums filling the room with dust, and guitars cutting through it all. “Structural Oppression” gets off to a raucous start, with punchy, catchy riffs, vocals delivered with attitude, spite, and creativity, as well as more hardcore-laced mashing. The last part of the song throws a changeup as the music gets more spacious and the guitar work gets damn near classic metal on us. “Delusion of No Consequence” is heavily mashing, with the lead growls mixing in with some gurgly backing vocals that sound like blood is being gargled. The song is a blistering one that leaves an indelible mark. “Both Sides Lose” is fast and furious, with energized riffs, raspy shouts, and guitars that go off the rails, squealing and shredding your senses. Closer “Paving the Way” is a great, clobbering finale, with the song bursting open and a massive pocket of thrashing pulling you in like a sarlac pit. The guys crush hard, as aggressively as they do anywhere else on this record, with the tempo growing more menacing and the song closing on a really catchy high, leaving your adrenaline surging as the album releases its hold. Seriously, what an awesome record.

Definitely, if you’re a fan of thrash or crossover, you must get up to speed with Foreseen HKI immediately. This is one of the best debut records of the year so far, which is a weighty statement to make in November, and “Helsinki Savagery” will keep you bloodied and battered for hours on end as they beat your daylights out. This is a killer record, bottom line. Nothing else needs to be said. So I’ll shut up.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/Foreseen

To buy the album, go here: http://www.20buckspinshop.com/

For more on the label, go here: https://www.facebook.com/20buckspin