Katahdin’s debut packs a serious punch. In just under 8 minutes, ‘No Longer Room For Us’ barrels through the eardrums of the listeners with about as much power of a speeding freight train. With no room for breath, Katahdin jumps right into the action with an intense hardcore introduction that sets the stage for the EP’s pure relentlessness. Each moment is full to the brim with the band’s love and affection for all things heavy, relying on chunky, chugged power chords, abrasive and aggressive drumming, intensely deep bass tone, and raw dual harsh vocals. Much in line with the modern tropes of hardcore, ‘No Longer Room For Us’ displays an immense amount of groove that swiftly moves the listener along the EP, anticipating the next tempo switch-up and crushing breakdown. For a newcomer’s debut, Katahdin stands among even the most proficient of hardcore artists, showcasing an impressive band chemistry within the compositions, incredible understanding of flow with the interplaying of instrumentation and dual-vocals, and crisp production that leaves no member left in the shadows.
The guitar work, although rather simple, brings forth an intense tone that deeply entices the listener with its heavy presence in the power chord chugging with the occasional dissonance or riff that adds a bit of flavor to the songwriting. The drumming is on full display here, driving each moment along with insane grooves and chops, utilizing everything from a simple two-step to blasting double bass to perfectly fit what feels necessary. Perhaps the most impressive moments lie within the basslines, crafting a deeper tonality to the already heavy moments and amplifying them even further. Moreover, the bass shines through in many moments, from deep-driving grooves where the guitar takes to the background to catching the listener off guard with subtle moments of slapping progression (refer to the intro of “from hell’s heart”). Lastly, the vocals are full of raw and pure aggression that match the hardcore energy of the project fluidly. Providing contrast between a grittier scream and a harsher shout, Katahdin effortlessly combine the two techniques together to compose an intense display of harsh vocal work.
Despite the far above average display of talent from these newcomers, ‘No Longer Room For Us’ suffers from an all too short runtime, leaving the project with little room to breathe as Katahdin attempts to fire on all cylinders. For what it is, the band manages to capture the raw aggression they were going for yet fail to let the music breathe as the short time frame forces the music to rush by in a rather compact manner. Nonetheless, Katahdin’s debut proves to be one of immense potential with plenty of talent and chemistry that points towards a bright future for the band’s career. If ‘No Longer Room For Us’ tells us anything, it’s that we need to be on the lookout for these guys in the hardcore scene and prepare ourselves for the next crushing endeavor.