Band: Reign Supreme
Album: Sky Burial
Genre: Metallic Hardcore
Label: Deathwish, Inc.
Philadelphia’s Reign Supreme have always had a reputation for being heavy. The guitarist of my band loves them, and he listens to only super heavy music for the most part. So when I was assigned Reign Supreme’s new EP Sky Burial, I knew I was in for a heavy hitter. I was not disappointed.
“All we are is all we ever were,” is one of the first lyrics you here on Sky Burial, and these words exemplify what this record is: a Reign Supreme record. I went back and listened to their older material before I listened to Sky Burial purely because I wanted to see if they had any growth with their new release. While Sky Burial certainly has the definitive Reign Supreme sound, there is a definite progression. The guitars are crushing while staying melodic, the drums are fast, and it’s the cohesion of these two elements that pushes Reign Supreme to be not just some derivative metalcore band. Reign Supreme establishes themselves as a band that constructs songs where the instrumentation complements each other while staying interesting. That being said, they still are a metallic hardcore band, so the occasional breakdown will pop up around the record, so if you’re not into that you have been forewarned. But listen with an open mind, because nobody likes a close-minded asshole. Sky Burial is a record that can be enjoyed by both fans of hardcore and metalcore, and it’s that bridge that I find to be promising about this release. This album is heavy and begs to be turned up all the way.
Lyrically, Reign Supreme’s Jay Pepito reminds listeners that just because you’re in a metallic hardcore band, your lyrics can still have actual emotional weight. Reign Supreme keeps hardcore ethos strong within their songs, singing straight from the heart and presenting ideas that are both honest and highly personal. Pepito’s voice lends extremely well to Reign Supreme’s overall sound. “We close are eyes to hide the lies, buried in guilt,” makes you think while also preparing you for the imminent stage dive/sing along/mosh part that follows it during the song “In Tongues.” This is the kind of album that begs you to sing along while head walking on your closest friends.
Reign Supreme’s Sky Burial is a release I was not expecting, and I am genuinely impressed by how much I like the record. While at heart this is still a metallic hardcore album, Sky Burial has a lot to offer that will definitely bridge the gap between fans of metalcore and hardcore. I’m going to keep this record on rotation for a while, and it’s one that will probably induce me to mosh at work on a regular basis.
Written By: Tyler Osborne (Follow him on Twitter)