By James Petterfar
Downloading PDF. Please wait... Issue 2847

HIRS Collective’s punk-metal mix defies categorisation

Issue 2847
A hand covered in thick, dripping light green paint, with long red fingernails, in front of a bright pink background

Album artwork for We’re Still Here by HIRS Collective

HIRS Collective is an aggressive deathcore/power violence band. It’s pronounced “heers”—a gender neutral third person pronoun in the possessive form.

This DIY punk collective incorporates members from across the musical spectrum, with collaborations and guest appearances alongside regular touring members. The Collective’s ethos has been defined by a strong leftist punk, pro‑trans stance since it was founded.

HIRS’ latest offering We’re Still Here doesn’t shy away from musical exploration. This record is what early hardcore punk mixed with 90s and early 00s death metal might have sounded like with 2023 production techniques.

Many of the contributors might be better known as members of other bands such as My Chemical Romance and Garbage. But their contributions here often mark a departure from their usual musical styles.

You could brand it Deathcore, Grindcore or Power Violence. But that barely begins to describe the range on display.

Take the first song ‘We’re Still Here’ for example. It smashes the album into life like a bullet train on amphetamines. But then, the song morphs into a hypnotic shoe‑gazing outro. We then have some catchy-as-hell rap jumping seemingly out of nowhere on Judgement Night.

XOXOXOXOXOX sounds like a wall of guitars crashing into a broken transistor radio. But it’s followed by some sweet clean vocals on A Different Kind Of Bed Death.

Bringing Light And Replenishments wraps up the album with the funkiest bassline you’ll hear in a hardcore song this year.

There is something for everyone, but make no mistake, this is a brutal album, politically and creatively driven.


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