Central to Redemptus' new album Blackhearted is the concept of catharsis through opening up: making ourselves vulnerable in order to heal, and in the process lighting the path for others to do so as well. The Portuguese band's brand of aggressive and insightful post-metal, encompassing everything from caustic sludge to hardcore punk, is strategically positioned to help with this process—the crucible of raging melodic riffs and carefully calibrated dynamics found within takes hold of the heart and squeezes tighter with every passing moment. Emphatic and punctuated, the loudest moments break through via crushing repetition, while softer (relatively speaking) sections venture into luminescent melodies and post-punk stylings. As a whole, it's a narrative journey through some of the tougher emotions and situations humans can find themselves in, but the darkness never fully takes hold. Listen now with our exclusive full-album premiere:

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The first few songs on the record immediately showcase the slamming, powerful riffs that give Blackhearted its heft. Crammed with throat-tearing screams and poignant melody, they also demonstrate the band's aptitude for contrasting this with optimistic, quieter passages and how blunt riffs and agonized screams can render the chasms of human emotion in high definition. Later on in the album, the hardcore punk roots and experimental sides of the band come to light—I particularly liked the uptempo sludge riffs of "Purged by Light, Engulfed by Darkness" and the 'spaghetti-western-full-of-sadness' atmosphere of "Forgive and Forget," where cleaner vocals and extra reverb make the song notably different from the rest of the album. The closing track "Doomed to Crumble" is also masterfully odd, iterating on a single chord and using it to completely level its surroundings before wrapping up the album.

Interestingly, last week we ran an article about the music scene in Porto, which Redemptus also calls home. That feature discussed saudade, a distinctly Portuguese term referring to deep longing and loss. Blackhearted, and its idea of exposing our wounds for the world to see, is surprisingly relevant here: Redemptus doesn't deny anyone the right to feel anything, instead they propose a way through. In these halls of aggrieved tones and dismal revelations, there's no shame in being blackhearted.

From the band:

Blackhearted speaks to and for all of us, who’s been struggling with anxiety, stress, difficulty. That’s the thing everybody feels, that’s the thing everybody can identify with — loss, sorrow, suffering — that is the glue; everybody knows what it is like to be through it.

We wanted to put it out there, to speak about it, to open up ourselves, to share our true emotions, our true fears, and inner demons, to put the stigmas to rest, to show that there is no problem in being sad or feel down, but that is always better to speak to seek help from one another, knowing that we are in this together.

An album made by people, for people, without any barriers or concerns regarding music genres.

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Blackhearted releases September 7th via Gruesome Records, Raging Planet Records, Regulator Records, and Ring Leader Records.