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April 18, 2024

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New World Disorder (Mercury/Def Jam 2000/King Records)

By: Jeb Branin

BIOHAZARD are one of those bands that played a key role in the formation and popularity of a genre but in the subsequent years got left in the dust by newer bands that took their lead and ran with it. In fact when it comes to metal and hip-hop flavored "tough guy" moshcore BIOHAZARD barely register as a force anymore. There are countless bands plying their trade with this style of music and many are leaner, meaner, and simply better than BIOHAZARD. I'll give BIOHAZARD credit in so far that "New Word Disorder", their major label debut, is a streamlined project with a lot of grit and pomp. They've gotten down and dirty on this record, rediscovering in some way their roots. It just isn't enough, however. With increased mid-paced riffing they are sounding more metal than ever but don't have the huge wall of sound that metal bands in the same vein possess. They aren't massive enough to hold their own with the likes of SEPULTURA or even ANTHRAX for that mater. On the hardcore side of the coin it is even worse. The Victory Records roster alone has a dozen bands that outpace BIOHAZARD in sheer intensity, political awareness, and violence of sound... and Victory doesn't have a monopoly by any means (PRO-PAIN, TURMOIL, LUNGBRUSH, etc.) . BIOHAZARD are a band that will eternally appeal to their established audience and with major label backing will even make headway in recruiting new fans but that in no way should be misconstrued to mean that they are anything more than average.
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