Song of the Day: The Final Agony, “The Altar of Dead” (2022)

A reader from Indonesia sent me a link to this mysterious project—mostly credited to a single individual operating as "Shadow"—over the weekend and blew my mind. The Final Agony's logo appears to have been lifted right off of the Zouo 7" of the same name, but while I can hear a certain degree of Japanese hardcore influence, this essentially sounds like a crustier, stripped down version of the almighty Integrity. The vocals are more of a gruff yelling, however—granted there are definitely some Dwid-esque whispers from time to time. It even seems as though Aaron Melnick is credited with guest leads on the first two tracks!? Despite being tagged "Cleveland," though, I think the project is actually from the east coast—perhaps the D.C. area?

In any case, The Final Agony's self-titled three-song EP looks to have been out digitally for a little over a month now (hit Bandcamp or Spotify), with cassettes (limited to 100) available in a few more weeks. $15 shipped feels steep for less than seven minutes of music, but... damnit, if Aaron Melnick's involved—even as a mere visitor—I just can't sleep on that!

This outing comes across like somewhat of an homage, so who knows if it'll become an obscure one-off. I'd certainly like to hear more, though. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, you know!?