The Mark of Excellence

Cancer Bats

Dead Set on Living

> > Apr 17 2012

Cancer Bats - Dead Set on Living
By Sam SutherlandSomewhere on the road between Red Deer and Chicoutimi, Cancer Bats became one of Canada's best heavy bands. Straddling the worlds of Warped Tour-friendly riffs (they tour with Bring Me the Horizon) and classic Northern thrash (Rob Urbinati of Sacrifice guests on "R.A.T.S."), the band have carved out their own niche by avoiding the hyper-specific genre-baiting that's spreading through punk and hardcore — while they may have kick-started their career eight years ago under the influence of a shelf full of Entombed records, they're a borderless wrecking ball today. Drawing from Southern Ontario greats like Sacrifice and Razor, along with sludge, doom and black metal to create their hardened sound, Cancer Bats continue what was started with 2010's Bears, Mayors, Scraps & Bones, the band's previous high-water mark for cohesive originality. There's little about Dead Set on Living that isn't an improvement on the band's past efforts, from the thunderous guitar tones to the frenetic energy pouring out of every song, courtesy of live-off-the-floor recording. Here, "heavy" doesn't just mean a thousand guitar tracks; it's a headspace and a performance style that elevate Cancer Bats to the next level of Canadian metal.
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