Plague Mass / World Between Us – Split 7″ (Noise Appeal Records)

Plague Mass / World Between Us - Split 7" - Noise Appeal Records

Now, it’s time to take back in time and revisit a couple of releases by one of the best bands that ever walked the underground scene. It’s a subjective statement, but it’s a fact. If you somehow missed the times when Plague Mass played live shows and released outstanding releases, maybe you could pay attention to their discography now because it unquestionably stands the test of time. I would like to start with their split release with World Between Us, another superb Austrian melodic hardcore band consisting of Dominik Uhl and Michale Marlovics, among others, who operate Noise Appeal Records nowadays. It’s nearly mindblowing how both sides of the split still sound fresh after over fifteen years since the initial release.

Plague Mass opens up this fine piece of plastic with its longevous composition named Under His Sword. For those stumbling upon this band for the first time, Plague Mass nurtures a specific style that many scenesters would call crustcore back in the day. This classification wouldn’t be far from the truth since these guys blended some of the finest properties of neo crust, blackened crust, metalcore, and hardcore into this composition. Many things lurk around in the mix, but they mostly relied upon thoughtfully constructed segments where blackened melodies intervene with the heaviness of metalcore. Plague Mass always levitated somewhere between metal and hardcore, so that’s the case with Under His Sword. This track demonstrates the sheer power of the band through aggressive vocal parts, powerful riffs, catchy melodies, and dynamic drumming. Plague Mass thoroughly planned this composition, so you’ll notice how each segment is complex, but it doesn’t spoil the flow of the song.

World Between Us are on the other side with two numbers, Hooked Up With Machines and Something Called Paradise. These guys deserve your utmost attention if you’re into melodic hardcore music, decorated with many elements borrowed from genres like screamo, post-hardcore, hardcore, and metalcore. The band bursts with exceptional ideas and energetic musicianship throughout their entire side of the split release. It’s interesting how these songs sound like they were recorded yesterday, and they could easily pass on the contemporary underground music scene with just a couple of mastering tweaks. I adore how many themes, melodies, harmonies, progressive riffs, and technically demanding beats World Between Us invested into their songs, and the screamo vocals come like a cherry on top. There’s no slightest doubt in my mind this band would indulge even the pickiest fans of melodic hardcore sound, but keep in mind there are other genres involved, and World Between Us sounded more advanced than most of the contemporaries back then.

Therefore, if you’re a fan of crustcore and melodic hardcore or any other similar subgenre in between, you should give this record a listen. It’s probably one of the best split releases that emerged in 2006. It’s also still available at Noise Appeal Records web store, as part of the Plague Mass bundle. Don’t miss this one.

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