Phoenix’s American Standards have spent the last seven years unleashing chaotic hardcore in the vein of early Converge, The Chariot and Norma Jean. Injecting hardcore with intense technicality, metal influence and emotive lyrics, their new single “Weep” is one of strongest things released in the realm of hardcore and metalcore this year.
Leading with feedback before launching into unhinged hardcore and screeching panic chords, all while vocalist Brandon Kellum shrieks and screams over it, American Standards prove they can write a neck-snapping fast section before jumping through breakdowns, spoken word and more fast parts. American Standards are a passionate band, and it shines through on “Weep”—Kellum’s voice sounds like it’s consistently on the verge of giving out, and his bandmates wrangle the chaos without neutering it.
“We all had a hell of a year,” Kellum opens up to Decibel. “From losing friends and family to other struggles in our lives, it wasn’t hard to get down about stuff. It also wasn’t uncommon to be out having a good time when that heavy feeling would hit you like a ton of bricks. ‘WEEP’ is about how your past week can taint your present. Its about trying to put your life together after tragedy. It’s easy to dwell on negative experiences but at some point you have to decide to pull yourself up and change your perspective because at the end of the day, sometimes that’s all that you have control over.”