Pissed Regardless - Imperial Cult (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Pissed Regardless

Imperial Cult (2019)

Creator Destructor Records

Last year I stumbled across a promo for an EP called Feed the Birds by a band called Pissed Regardless on Creator-Destructor Records. I’m not sure why I decided to listen to it. I rarely have time to check out unsolicited promos. (The vast majority get deleted without even being opened.) Whatever the reason, I’m glad I did. It ended up being among my favorite releases of 2018. Now, after a demo and two 7”s, we finally get a proper full length. Imperial Cult absolutely rips, and is the most impressive Pissed Regardless recording to date.

San Diego’s Pissed Regardless combine elements of several heavy genres to produce their brutal sound. There’s hardcore and thrash, and some straight up drop tuned death metal guitar too. The drums relentlessly pummel. The vocals are delivered in a raw throated roar that stops just short of death metal extremity. It’s very intense. My biggest concern was that they wouldn’t be able to maintain that intensity across an entire LP. Imperial Cult definitively proves that my worries were unfounded.

Imperial Cult opens with four ragers. “Three Decades”, “Halls of Hate”, “Bleeder” and “Dark Discipline” are compact, two minute slabs of unhinged aggression. The last song on each half of the ten track record stretches out a bit. “Behold a Pale Horse” closes side A. It maintains the record’s intensity, while increasing the musical adventurousness and doubling the typical song length. While not a concept album in the strictest sense, the songs all work together to create a single mood. Pissed Regardless paints a pretty bleak picture.

Side B starts off with four more two minute beatdowns. “Dichotomy”, “All Bets Are Off”, “Castrated” and “Maniacal” will leave you trying to catch your breath. Once again, the songs have an undeniable cohesiveness. The best song on Imperial Cult is saved for last. “Hell’s Coming With Me” is an epic that leads the listener through several shifts in mood and tone. It’s always a bonus when a record has a satisfying ending. Imperial Cult feels more metal than Feed the Birds, but there’s enough going on musically to appeal to a wide swath of heavy music fans. Ultimately, Pissed Regardless is ugly music for ugly times. I like it.