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Final Prayer: I Am Not Afraid

The tirade remains the same for Teutonic hardcore crew

In some corners of the hardcore world, progression is the true enemy of the pit, and this appears to be the shadow German mob Final Prayer lurk in. This is pure, 80s-style hardcore as old, tough and lived-in as Henry Rollins’ favourite tour socks and as meaty as their country’s cuisine.

Hulk-smashing together sledgehammer riffs with nosebleed rhythms, they dig deep into the road carved by the likes of Hatebreed and Sick Of It All and reverently walked by fist-swinging generations ever since, frontman Stefan bellowing from his boots about scene unity (I Am Not Afraid, All Of Us) and revolution (um, Reinventing Revolution) as if reading from the hardcore hymn book.

So far, so clichéd, so they’re actually at their best on Heimathafen Kreuzberg, when they let their native tongue run wild and, for the first time, display a spark of a personality of their own. But one thing they do have is a clear love for the genre, which is sure to see them pinging across Europe’s fleapits at a pinball rate. And you get the feeling that’s enough for them.

Emma has been writing about music for 25 years, and is a regular contributor to Classic Rock, Metal Hammer, Prog and Louder. During that time her words have also appeared in publications including Kerrang!, Melody Maker, Select, The Blues Magazine and many more. She is also a professional pedant and grammar nerd and has worked as a copy editor on everything from film titles through to high-end property magazines. In her spare time, when not at gigs, you’ll find her at her local stables hanging out with a bunch of extremely characterful horses.