Hurtlocker - _Fear in a Handful of Dust_
(Napalm Records, 2005)
by: Jackie Smit (
It's interesting to note how many labels are actively cottoning on to the trend of signing up practically every hard- or metalcore band with a demo; almost as though they're afraid to miss out on a piece of the money pie in the same way that many did when nu metal was peaking. Probably the biggest indication of this is Napalm Records' decision to bring Hurtlocker aboard a roster that includes Abigor, Falkenbach and a glut of other acts who would rather have their genitals gnawed off by a rabid guinea pig than play anything even remotely like the brand of thrash-infused hardcore that this quintet produce.Indeed, the more cynical may be quick to dismiss the Chicago natives as just another throwaway example in a genre that's already reaching overpopulation of Ethiopian proportions. However, it's when the rollicking old school riffage of "Absolution" kicks proceedings into high gear that it becomes brutally clear that _Fear in a Handful of Dust_ has far more to offer than initially suggested. Sonically straddling the divide between Lamb of God and Dying Fetus, Hurtlocker keep their collective foot glued to the gas pedal for the duration, which means that those seeking variety had best look elsewhere. If, on the other hand, the mood strikes you to indulge in half an hour's worth of aural "kumite", then look no further; Hurtlocker epitomise the word relentless like few others.
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