You probably wouldn’t expect Full of Hell and Nothing, two vastly different energies, would collaborate as beautifully as this record proves they do, but alas, here we are.

Release date: December 1st, 2023 | Closed Casket Activities | Facebook | Instagram | Bandcamp

Coming out of unofficial Review Hiatus (and I’ve been doing just fine) to talk about something that, by all accounts, I felt compelled to write on. I speak, of course, about the newly released Full of Hell Nothing LP, When No Birds Sang. Out now on Closed Casket Activities, everything down to the design of the vinyl copies you may be lucky enough to still snag a copy of (last I checked almost all variants are sold out, but the initial, clear-with-white-gold-and-royal-splatter variant seems to still be in stock, for a very limited time I’m certain) encases this album as the angelic work of art it is. Defined within its details, a factor both names are unarguably masterful in their attentiveness to, this record starts and ends on a note so emotionally devastating that one can’t help but hope for the two to do it again someday in the future. Or, at the very least, tour this record together, please!

It’s been exhibited in a few different instances that metal, noise, and shoegaze can evidently blend quite seamlessly together. But the way Domenic Palermo weaves what I consider some of his signature atmospheric constellations of reverb, chorusy, clean guitar chords, along with his haunting vocalizations, paired with Doyle Martin’s guitar work (which is some of my personal most favorite sounds, as Doyle also has a unique way of conveying more than just a ‘song’, but rather something that soaks right into the nervous system upon pressing ‘play’), and the soul-crushing, colossal, full-force of literally all personnel involved with Full of Hell – it was impossible not to smile listening to this record, even with as somber and emotionally devastating much of the aura of it seems to be. “Rose Tinted World” sets a bitter, gritty tone that still doesn’t feel like it’s ‘not’ something Nothing would have written. The album closer, “Spend The Grace” (which may possibly be my favorite track, but that remains to be seen, I’m only on my 25th listen so far, so…) really puts us back in the days of Guilty of Everything, in terms of having this incredibly decadent, grungy sound that honestly isn’t at all lost on latter Nothing releases, but still particularly resonates that same passionate place I picked up on when I first heard it nearly 10 years ago. In fact, I’d venture to say that this energy is carried from start to finish on When No Birds Sang, where it is both a pleasant call-back to roots of the band, but with all the flash and progress of a modern and matured honing of their craft that shows, all the more, they have grown so, so well. For both names involved in this record’s conception, this is a pinnacle point; Full of Hell expand upon the eerie, heavy, hard-hitting atmosphere, make this record just as much of a mosh-worthy headbanger’s delight as it is an ode to those yearning and hurting.

Even if it could be said that both bands are on totally opposite sides of the musical spectrum, or not even within the same universe, some things I’ve identified about both, in all my years of being a fan of both, include the following: Passion. Chemistry. Veracity. So what does this all mean? We’ll start with passion. Full of Hell and Nothing are two bands that write only from a place of sincere expression, which is to say they always have and always will only write what they believe truly reflects anything that is a genuine extension of themselves. As such, the music brought about by either-or doesn’t ever feel like anything forced or even just someone trying to ‘say something’, but a direct portal into the minds of people who have really been through it. The way they conduct this on “Like Stars In The Firmament”, “Forever Well”, and the title track, “When No Birds Sang” give at least an audible example of this passion. The emotion put forth in every note played, sung, or otherwise transmitted is beyond palpable.

The chemistry is in how they work as people. A record like this, and every record produced by each band respectfully prior to it, does not come from people who are unable to work in tandem the way the personnel for each does. In fact, one of my most favorite parts of Full of Hell, in particular, is the chemistry you can see between them especially in their live performances. I recall a show a years back that they played and Dylan Walker (vocals) and Dave Bland (drums) were just looking at each other as feedback and noise samples were ringing out, and before any of us knew it, they just launched right into the next song in perfect unison, no count-in or anything, and picked right back up with the chaos like it was nothing. To be that in-tune with one another where it’s almost like a telepathic connection, is something I believe all bands strive for, but here they are doing it naturally. I’ve seen similar in Nothing‘s work, and that is only part of why I believe “Spend The Grace” is my favorite track (so far), because it takes two entities that are bonded stronger than concrete with their craft, and bonds them all the more. Basically, we saw the birth of Full of Nothing here, and rather than calling it a ‘supergroup’, I just want to go ahead and say it’s exactly what the world (or at least the music world) needed.

Using the term ‘veracity’ may seem redundant, as I started that last paragraph already speaking about each band’s sincerity. However, I circle back to this and give it its own space because sometimes you’ll see a large collection of passion with bands, high energy and all, from the start of their career, only to wither over time for one reason or another. The veracity within each band’s message, music, and just who they are has yet to be lost in even the slightest. Similarly, this album makes a metaphor that I see both as synonymously exhibiting to their legacies; It starts on a powerful note, and ends on an even more powerful one. All the best qualities of Full of Hell and Nothing shine brilliantly on When No Birds Sang, and prove that they will likely forever stand strong in the test of time.

So don’t take these bands on surface value of being grindy metal or grungy shoegaze, as both have indicated via a premiere done with Metal Injection they intend to defy genres completely and simply focus on ‘making soul crushers‘. But rather, allow your ears to pick up on the essence both carry, which recognizes one another’s mantra of ‘There aren’t any rules, but there’s clearly an identity‘. That essence is that expression, deep emotions, and the pursuit of finding the best way out of the darkest places we find our minds in at any point in our lives, comes in various forms, but always seem to mesh beautifully together especially in the interest of art.

Even if you don’t exactly find yourself connecting to this record on lyrical subject matter in specific, it’s hard not to get caught in a daze of how ethereal and cathartic the nature of it is. Sure, I may be mostly speaking for myself, but anyone who knows anything about either act will at least understand this album is more than worth it to give a few spins. Full of Hell and Nothing‘s musical catalogues both feel personal to me, with a visceral and all too relatable nature embedded in either’s work, and this addition makes no exception to that. So, do yourself a favor; Pick up a copy and listen via Closed Casket ActivitiesBandcamp, and be sure to immerse yourself in this new realm crafted by two of the greatest names in their respective genres (in my maybe-not-so-humble opinon) immediately!

Long live Full of Nothing



Easygoing weirdo with a love for life, music, art, culture, outdoors, meeting new people, seeing new places, and trying new things. Oh yeah, and I guess I never shut up about the things I love, too. That’s a quality!

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