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Hollow Earth - Dead Planet album review

Former Shai Hulud members lay down the lore once more

Cover art for Hollow Earth DEAD PLANET

If you’re a fan of early metalcore then you’ll know how important Hollow Earth vocalist Steve Muczynski and guitarist Mike Moynihan’s previous outfit Shai Hulud were to this music. Add in guest appearances from former Himsa frontman John Pettibone and The Black Dahlia Murder’s Trevor Strnad plus a production job from former Tad frontman Tad Doyle and you’ll not be shocked to learn that Dead Planet absolutely crushes.

This is challenging, emotionally charged post-metallic hardcore made without any nods to mainstream acceptance. So whilst there is an almost Deftones-like spacious quality to Revolutions In Refracted Light, it feels gruffer and dirtier than the arena-ready sheen of the modern metalcore bands indirectly inspired by the musicians here. If there was any justice Dead Planet would commercially overtake them all, although, considering this is less Asking Alexandria and more Botch fighting Baroness, they’ll surely have to make do with the underground and critical acclaim these songs richly deserve.

Since blagging his way onto the Hammer team a decade ago, Stephen has written countless features and reviews for the magazine, usually specialising in punk, hardcore and 90s metal, and still holds out the faint hope of one day getting his beloved U2 into the pages of the mag. He also regularly spouts his opinions on the Metal Hammer Podcast.