Given that the first three tracks on Bound In Fear’s new album, Penance features guest appearances from Jamie Graham (Viscera), Nick Arthur (Molotov Solution) and Kevin Muller, (Merciless Concept), it’d be a fair assumption to make that subtlety isn’t the name of this particular band’s game. However, as you dig into the concepts behind the songs, the inspiration behind their building-levelling heaviness becomes clear.

Following on from their crushing Eternal EP, this ten-track monster continues to see vocalist Ben Mason exploring themes of pain and hopelessness. The end result is a harrowing listen but, as well as Bound By Fear’s straight-to-the-point approach to their music, there is also an unapologetic honesty in Mason’s words. Take tracks like “Cutthroat” and “Sadist,” the former leaving you feeling like you’ve been hit by a sledgehammer, the latter leaving you feeling utterly unclean.

From the outset, when the band slams into the opener “(De)scendence,” the combination of filthy guitars, hellish breakdowns and Mason’s terrifying vocals create a menacing soundtrack dragged up from the depths of your worst nightmares. Mix the whole lot together and the end result is truly disturbing. Setting the intentions of this record out as early as the opening minutes, by the time you reach the sanity-crushing onslaught of “Beyond The Mire” and “I Still Dream Of The End,” the true darkness that inspires Bound In Fear’s work truly starts to reveal itself.

A sonic assault from the moment you hit play, Penance pummels around your skull while simultaneously scaring the shit out of you. “Nu11” sees the UK bruisers pairing up with Left To Suffer vocalist Taylor Barber, the result of which being one that sees the group up the ante again. Tackling some bleak subjects, each of the ten tracks on Penance sees Bound In Fear channel every ounce of their being into this gut-wrenching, pain-exorcising display.

Penance Track Listing:

1. (De)scedence ft. Jamie Graham
2. Penance ft. Nick Arthur
3. Scar Of Man ft. Kevin Muller
4. Beyond The Mire
5. I Still Dream Of The End
6. Adreneline
7. Cutthroat
8. Sadist
9. Nu11 ft. Taylor Barber
10. Polarity

Run Time: 42:39
Release Date: October 15, 2021
Record Label: Unique Leader

I have an unhealthy obsession with bad horror movies, the song Wanted Dead Or Alive and crap British game shows. I do this not because of the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll lifestyle it affords me but more because it gives me an excuse to listen to bands that sound like hippos mating.