Underground Spotlight: Set Before Us
Written by Brett Kihlmire
There is something to be said about Sweden; whatever its people touch is either improved or made great from the get-go. This is the case with metalcore. While a largely American dominated subgenre of our beloved heavy metal, Stockholm’s Set Before Us threw their hats in the ring and split the ground.
I came across Set Before Us when the band’s bassist, Hampus Andersson, reached out to us to check out their single ‘Peripheral Vision’ from their upcoming extended play. Intrigued, I started up the track and I was blown away. Chugging rhythms, pounding beats, meaningful lyrics, screaming leads, and supremely shreddy solos were like a high five to my ears. I loved everything I heard for the next four and a half minutes. Now I didn’t mention the vocals in my earlier praise and for good reason – I have a lot to say.
Vocally, Set Before Us reminds me of a cross between As I Lay Dying and Clayman-era In Flames. It’s snarly and harsh, but with a little effort and repetition I can understand the lyrics and I love the message. Then there’s the half-snarl, half-clean backing vocals. These make for an awesome combination, but why stop at just one track? Digging deeper into the band’s available music I came across ‘Highborn,’ and I was quickly taken, especially with the inclusion of clean, and well-trained I must say, female vocals. Least to say, these guys are the real deal. They’re not the run of the mill metalcore band you’ll find at your local metal bar blasting out static. Set Before Us is a band with a ton of versatility and talent (and I didn’t even touch on the piano in ‘Highborn’). All in all, I’m looking forward to hearing more from this band.