Sydney five piece Justice For The Damned have revealed what they’ve been up to behind the scenes, releasing new single “Guidance From The Pain”. Where their first album Dragged Through The Dirt saw them work locally with the expertise of Sam Bassal (Ocean Grove), the next chapter for the band comes at the hand of New Jersey-based producer Will Putney (responsible for albums from acts like Knocked Loose, Stray From The Path, and Thy Art Is Murder). Pain Is Power will release on 8th May via Greyscale Records (pre-order here).
Through guitarist Nick Adams, the band have shared their pride in the upcoming album, and talk about how Pain Is Power serves as an exploration of a brand new side of themselves. Adams says that the quintet “can’t wait for people to dive in and feel the energy we put into it.” And we’re definitely up for that, JFTD!
As first taste of the album, “Guidance From The Pain” lands like punches – solid and severe – yet with a driving pace and infectious and flaring riffage that keeps the energy from ever flat-lining. The scene is quickly set which inspires movement and a steady outpouring of withheld frustrations. With authoritative tone, the stormy vocals of Bobak Rafiee rise up, stating “Karma has arrived to rip out your fucking heart”.
The ‘you’ll get what you deserve’ sentiment comes wrapped in strength, as experience has revealed a traitor in their midst. Instead of stepping in with aggressive action, Justice For The Damned are taking a high road of patience. Explaining the inspiration behind “Guidance From The Pain”, Adams says “It speaks from a perspective of empathy and elevation. Understanding that no matter what you do, there will always be negative people around you and in the world. Sometimes all you can do is watch and learn and try to never be anything like them. It’s better to let karma sort someone out instead of acting out of spite.”
The line “The truth will bind you in chains / I’ll watch it drive you insane” captures the internal wrestling that happens as a natural consequence for the metaphorical snake’s actions. The “watch and learn” approach includes seeing their scramble to hide who they are, and inevitably experiencing a downward spiral when the house of lies they live in crumbles. Kublai Khan‘s vocalist Matt Honeycutt hits it all home with his signature roar heralding a tumbling breakdown; slow and disintegrating as the antagonist’s life may be, at their own hand.
“This is karma, and payback’s a fuckin’ bitch”
Accompanying the single’s release is a music video courtesy of Colin Jeffs, which captures the energy of Justice For The Damned, and the palpable satisfaction of seeing consequences snare the intended snake. Watch below via YouTube: