Robert Orr was once a guitarist for Integrity, the long-running Cleveland cult heroes who helped establish the metallic hardcore subgenre back in the ’90s. For more than a decade, Orr has been smashing out his own version of the Integrity sound with Unreal City, a band that also features members of groups like Eternal Sleep and Steel Nation. Up until now, Unreal City have only released one album, 2007’s Ephemeral Subsistence. But now, 12 years later, Unreal City are about to come ripping back with a new full-length called Cruelty Of Heaven.
Cruelty Of Heaven follows “Satyr” and “Sheol,” the absolutely nasty two-song 7″ that Unreal City released last year. (“Satyr” and “Sheol” aren’t on the new album. In hardcore, you can come up with an absolute ass-kicker of a song, and there’s no pressure to make sure that song goes on your next proper album. Shit is wild.) But Unreal City have shared the first taste of Cruelty Of Heaven, and it will fuck you the fuck up.
The new song “War Behind Bars” is a fast, hard-chugging riff-monster driven by the throat-destroying bellow of Eternal Sleep’s Joseph Sanderson. Robert Orr does a whole lot of shredding all through the song. It’s tough to find room for a guitar solo in a hardcore song without immediately turning that song into retro thrash, but he pulls it off. “War Behind Bars” sounds titanic, and you can hear it below.
Cruelty Of Heaven is out 8/21 on Closed Casket Activities.