Spiritless

An Album By

Maranatha

Review by

If you look up “Maranatha” on Facebook, you’ll mostly find three things: my favorite brand of almond butter, about 50 different churches, a Christian college and one of the best new stoner-sludge metal bands. Out of the four, I’d personally go with the almond butter. That stuff is delicious. Next, I would pick the stoner-sludge band, Maranatha.

When I first heard about the band from my hometown of Columbus, I was surprised to see a sludge metal act named “Maranatha.” It is the expression St. Paul uses at the end of 1 Corinthians to say, effectively, “The Lord Cometh.” I guess it also makes a rad name for a sludgy hardcore band. Their new EP was recorded all in three days with Collin Simula playing all instruments. Being a one-man band might make live shows a bit less common, but it doesn’t change how impressive Spiritless is. The EP is only six songs long and clocks in at around 17 minutes, but odds are that you’ll end up listening to it multiple times.

While it isn’t an entirely unique EP, it is a great mix of slow, angsty-sludge metal, and quick, noisy hardcore. To top it off, the last track, “Spiritless,” adds a dose doom metal into the mix for a perfect closer. In comparative terms, the EP sounds like a mix between High on Fire and The Chariot’s debut album.

Perhaps equally notable are the lyrics. With lines such as “Where can I go from your spirit? Where flee from your presence? Am I missing something? Are my eyes closed? I’ve tried my damnedest, but my heart is hollow,” it’s unfortunate they might be ignored by many in the Christian music scene. They aren’t “Spirit-filled hardcore,” but instead are striving so much for God, even in the difficult times of life. It’s the raw honesty similar to Pedro the Lion that gets you thinking, instead of just enjoying another mindless sludge album.

Features

Imperial Triumphant - 2021

Alphaville’s Metal Renaissance

With influences that span Miles Davis and Stravinsky to Geddy Lee and Les Claypool, jazz metal force Imperial Triumphant is the epitome of genre-bending. HM contributing writer Andrew Voigt spoke with the band about their unique style, the massive bass presence in their music, and the rise and fall of civilization.

By

Photo by Alex Krauss

Full Feature
Atreyu- 2021

Atreyu's Baptism

At their core, Atreyu is a hard rock band with metal riffs and pop choruses. Now, after more than 20 years, the band has stepped boldly into their next chapter with a change in lineup and an album that proves the lifeblood of Atreyu is stronger than ever.

By

Photo by Ashley Osborn

Full Feature
Heaven's Metal: An Oral History of the Genesis of Christian Metal

Heaven's Metal

When rock emerged from blues and 'heavy metal' began to surface, faith-based metal acts also rose to start their own journeys. Initially shunned by both believers and non-believers, they were fighting for their spot at the table, ultimately building a legacy that would go on to change the genre forever. HM presents an oral history of the beginning of Christian metal music, featuring Guardian, Tourniquet, Holy Soldier, Whitecross, and, of course, Stryper.

By

Full Feature
All Features