"some music was meant to stay underground..."

70000 Tons of Metal - The World's Biggest Heavy Metal Cruise

Coliseum - "Parasites" (CD/EP)

Coliseum - "Parasites" CD/EP cover image

"Parasites" track listing:

1. One Last Night
2. Waiting (Too Late)
3. The Fiery Eye
4. Ghost of God
5. The Big Baby
6. Gone with the Pope
7. Blood of the Beast
8. Give Up and Drive

Reviewed by on December 19, 2011

"Fans of hardcore without the modern, obligatory 'insert here' breakdowns should check out 'Parasites.'"

Coliseum blends elements of punk, hardcore, post-hardcore and indie rock in the creation of an energetic and modern heavy rock sound. For a band that thrives on high-octane tunes, the group’s opening track, “One Last Night,” begins in an opposing, calm fashion. Simple drum beats open the track and a funky bass line soon joins in. Ringing guitar chords provide a clue that the action is starting to heat up. Around the 45-second mark, the group lowers its horns and charges into the airwaves with a Motorhead-type, punky groove. While the Kentucky-based group merely revs its engine as a means to kick start the album, this part also shows the band has a keen eye for building forceful passages, rather shifting into overdrive at the drop of a hat.

“The Fiery Eye” unfolds in a similar manner to the first track. Grainy, tube amp guitar licks follow an infectious drum beat that outlines an even catchier chorus line, “I took a chance with a girl with a fiery eye.” Echoing guitar effects create a psychedelic effect to a song featuring rhythms not far removed from The White Stripes. “Ghost of God” continues the spacey vibe by initiating the song with intergalactic phaser sounds. A deep bass line serves as a spinal structure to buzzing guitar chords during an instrumental break on “Gone with the Pope.”

While the group maintains a sense of the dynamic through bass, drum and guitar solos, they still subside on bruising, straightforward hardcore and punk rhythms. “Blood of the Beast” includes constant drum bashing that creates a massive din. When paired with guitar licks that seemed reserved for Halloween, this track brings the hardcore days of Misfits, the “Earth A.D.” era, into light. “The Big Baby” takes a while to wind up, but there is a mean guitar riff that follows throughout the track. It’s the type of riff that accompanies the local bad ass as he enters his favorite watering hole.

After touring with the likes of Rise Against, pairing up with Super Chunk and later with Burning Love for splits, it’s clear that Coliseum is on a meteoric rise. “Parasites” doesn’t bring in anything from left field, but continues the style the group has developed. Fans of hardcore without the modern, obligatory “insert here” breakdowns should check out “Parasites.”

Highs: Catchy beats and chorus lines, bruising aggression and high energy.

Lows: The album could do without some of the alternative passages.

Bottom line: "Parasites" is punk rock for the new generation.

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)