Get To Know:
It’s not often you get to say “Grammy-nominated, WWE performing” and “metalcore/hardcore band” in the same sentence, but you can when speaking about Pittsburgh’s Code Orange. After starting out as more of a punk band under the name Code Orange Kids, the band started moving more towards the heavy hardcore genre inspired by bands like Converge and Integrity. Armed with only a few demos and still attending high school, the band started opening for acts like The Bronx. Eventually catching the ears of Deathwish Inc. and hopped on a full North American tour with Touché Amoré and Defeater. After a few years, the band started morphing again into a slightly heavier “metalcore” direction from their previous hardcore/punk styles, complete with more melodic interludes, heavy guitar riffs, and commanding bass and drum rhythms. This also came with the band dropping Kids from their name and becoming their current Code Orange status. Now with four studio albums under their belt, multiple awards including two Grammy nominations for two separate albums, the band continues to push its boundaries and genre.
Watch: Official music video for “Swallowing The Rabbit Whole“
Sounds Like: Full of Hell, Converge, Coalesce
Get To Know:
If you go to Conor Oberst’s website, you see six different musical projects, all currently active. That’s essentially Oberst in a nutshell, a singer-songwriter who just wants to keep writing and playing music. Named “Best Songwriter of 2008” by Rolling Stone, Oberst has been writing and putting out music since he was 13 and living in Omaha, Nebraska. After essentially jump-starting his stage career in 1992 via an invitation by Ted Stevens to play something, Conor set some songs to a cassette which came out under the label which later became, Saddle Creek Records. After joining and enjoining various groups like The Faint, Commander Venus, The Magnetas, and Park Ave., Oberst founded Bright Eyes in 1995. It was this group that really gained attention with multiple radio singles. Later, Oberst also played in the indie rock band Desaparecidos, a semi-super group Monsters of Folk, the Mystic Valley Band, and Better Oblivion Community Center alongside Phoebe Bridgers. Multiple groups aside, Oberst has always stayed musically rooted in his indie rock/folk roots at various intensities while still having lyrical content that spans from political, to classic story-telling narratives. Inspired by the sounds of The Smiths, Fugazi, and The Cure, and the lyrical content of Neil Young and Leonard Cohen, Conor Oberst finds a home.
Watch: “Barbary Coast” official music video.
Sounds Like: M. Ward, Cursive, The Anniversary
Eyes Set To Kill
Get To Know:
Hailing from Arizona and formed by sisters Alexia and Anissa Rodriguez, Eyes Set To Kill have pushed themselves to stand out bringing their sound of driving emotion and technical hardcore to the screamo genre blueprint. The unique fusion of melodic-driven songs with heavy riffs morphs seamlessly, as Alexia’s voice stands out, as she plays guitar. The band went on to play select dates the Vans Warped Tour in 2006 in support of their self-released EP When The Silence Is Broken the Night is Torn. In 2008, ESTK dropped their debut full-length Reach and set out on a national tour in support of Otep. The band continued to release record after record from 2009 The World Outside, 2010 Broken Frames, 2013 which inked them their first outing with Century Media for their release of Mask. 2017 saw the departure of cofounder/bassist Anissa Rodriguez as well as their single “Break” and their self-titled album in 2018.
Watch: Official lyric video for “House of Glass“.
Sounds Like: Poison The Well, I Am Ghost, Walls of Jericho
**Header image of Code Orange c/o: Rolling Stone Magazine