Stream Mutually Assured Destruction’s Gloriously Heavy Debut Album Ascension

Stream Mutually Assured Destruction’s Gloriously Heavy Debut Album Ascension

Ace Stallings, lead bellower for the Richmond hardcore band Mutually Assured Destruction, doesn’t even live in Richmond anymore, but few people are doing more to advance Richmond hardcore out in the world. Earlier this week, Stallings announced that he was starting a new label, Raven Records, and he put out the debut EPs from Richmond bands Killing Pace and Blazing Tomb. This weekend, the Big Takeover, a heavy-music festival that Ace booked with Triple B Records founder Sam Yarmuth, is coming to town. And today, Mutually Assured Destruction release their debut album. It’s fucking awesome.

MAD’s whole sound is a distinct departure from Ace Stallings’ last band, the youth-crew straight-edge group Break Away. In MAD, Stallings wails in a Danzig-style baritone over ultra-heavy riffage that calls back to the days of arena-ready ’90s groove-metal. The songs on MAD’s album Ascension are long and slow and full of fantasy-novel imagery. Sometimes, they go for full-on Sabbath riff-crunch. Sometimes, the speed up into D-beat territory. One song is an acoustic swamp-blues lullaby that’s on some real Alice In Chains shit.

I listened to Ascension for the first time at the gym this morning, and I can assure you that it goes hard enough to make you burn a few extra calories. (It’s perfectly timed for a half-hour run, too. I’m guessing that wasn’t on purpose, but I’m not willing to eliminate the possibility.) We’ve already posted first single “Spirit Liberation,” which has guest vocals from Lamb Of God’s Randy Blythe. Right now, you can and should stream the full LP below.

Ascension is out now on Triple B Records.

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