ALBUM REVIEW: “Runs On Hate” by Texas Taliban (El Paso)



Texas Taliban – “Runs On Hate” EP cover art by anonymous / courtesy: Texas Taliban

“Runs On Hate” 2021 EP release by Texas Taliban—a review

by Ryan Vasquez

What can express the drive behind this project? How can the audience visually perceive the underlying themes and sub-conflicts within the lyrics? In what way can an artist fully capture and express the rage, revolt and dilated pupils that defines this EP?

Then the cover art was made for Texas Taliban’s debut EP “Run’s On Hate” and it’s a bullseye how the anonymous visual artist effectively captured the “energy” track for track this EP brought.

Actually now that I think about it, I remember sweating during the first track and felt a little numb from my face down past my neck, so you know this sh*t is pure because I wanted to either start a raging pit or go have sex really really bad.

Texas Taliban – “Runs On Hate” EP back cover by Joe Nunez of Papa Joe Photography

TX T is the counter-project for vocalist Christo Cydwell, also the front-man to the sludge metal unit NOT MY MASTER. True, both projects share that unique vocal brand and style of execution, the musical composition, however, takes a different direction broadening the spectrum for different metal listeners.

TX T “takes a fat rail” (forgive the pun) to a more groove heavy hitting metal for audiences that jam to CAVALERA CONSPIRACY, DEVIL DRIVER and KILLSWITCH ENGAGE.

When you think you have them figured out during the first two tracks, just like me you’re in for a pleasant surprise.

The first two tracks have a much different vibe than tracks three and four, for those of you who crave a little more carnivore in your metal. In a fight, tracks one and two (“Runs On Hate” & “Expect No Mercy”) are the jabs that set-up for the haymakers of the EP: “Supremacy” & “Emerica.”

Texas Taliban logo 2021 / courtesy Texas Taliban

I kept going back and forth between the two, but the Editor’s Pick goes to “Supremacy.” This song defines the album in every way. Just the way the track begins matches the cover art alone. More importantly, the riffs and guitar work are taken to another level by combining crushing chaos with dynamics and transitions. The pounding snare work with lyrics such as: “I can feel my heart is pumping!!! You can feel my anger growing!!!…” I just want to be a danger to myself and society during that song, bro.

The last track, “Tu Rey Muerto” will have you lighting your Bic’s for this one. The acoustic guitar intro absolutely adds to the emotion of this track with a talented guitarist, I might add. The rest of this track pounds like KSE, very heartfelt but expressed through a melodic rage on both guitar and drums.

Texas Taliban is currently signed to Pavement Entertainment and is made up of Christo Cydwell – vocals, Erich King – lead guitar, Ramsey Speed – drums, Hexx Lee – guitar and Crystal Lopez – bass. For more on this El Paso metal machine, visit the TX T Facebook page here.

Author: Republic Of Mosh-Texas Underground Journal

I am a freelance writer with a passion for the underground metal music scene in Texas. I studied advertising and mass communication at Texas State University in San Marcos and Radio & TV at Del Mar College-Corpus Christi. I've been jumping in mosh pits all across Texas since I was a kid and now it is my goal to create the most informative and widely recognized publication for the Texas underground. I have a son (Vicente) and a daughter (Valentina) and currently live in Austin, Texas.

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