Primal Rite have been on an upward trajectory since their initial formation in 2016. Since touring to support three well-received EPs in the company of Trapped Under Ice and Power Trip, the six-piece Bay Area crossover troupe are out for blood once more with their Revelation Records debut full-length, Dirge of Escapism.
Vocalist Lucy Xavier's lyrics are free of the clichés that often mar the genre. Touching on identity politics and mental health, "Interference" and "Antivenom" demonstrate a wrath that cuts much deeper than the typical hardcore status quo.
The music rolls with her punches, marrying the ferocious bite of Integrity to the melodies of California thrash metal fathers Exodus. There are moments where Primal Rite's warm enthusiasm is delivered a bit flimsily ("Bu Zhi Chun," "Demon") but more often than not, the group have their bark and bite balanced appropriately.
The San Francisco ensemble go out with a bang via "Ecstatic Agony," the album's most concentrated track, and the musical line drawn in the sand that is "Immutable Law." Dirge of Escapism cements Primal Rite's vigorous presence in the recent wave of thrash-influenced hardcore. (Revelation)