Featuring Liturgy mainman (a band who describe their music as 'transcendent black metal') Hunter Hunt-Hendrix, and rising from the ashes of post-hardcore outfit Birthday Boyz, you know that anything by NYC trio Survival is going to be heavy. And indeed, their self-titled debut, is just that. The threesome is filled out by Greg Smith and Jeff Bobula, and together they weave a kind of math-rock with references to classic heavy metal and 90s grunge. It's a pummelling combination, and one that's ultimately successful for Survival.

Lead single 'Tragedy Of The Mind' opens the record, with boundless energy and complex interweaving rhythms. The vocals sound like the chanting of renaissance monks, low and dissonant against jagged axes and raucaus syncopated percussion. It evokes thoughts of leather and spikes and big sweaty bearded men. No, not an S&M orgy – a moshpit at a metal show. It's somehow both melodic and brutal, and there's the occasional hint of psych-rock tucked away beneath the swirling riffs, conjuring a hypnotic trance-like aura.

As you'd expect from a bunch of chaotic metal/hardcore-steeped soundsmiths, this is a real aural battering. It's not something to listen to after a mental night out. That said, there is the odd moment of tranquillity on offer: 'Since Sun Revised' is acoustic and considerably lighter than the rest of Survival. It still retains a dark streak, and the vocals will still remind you of Gregorian chanting, but the fretwork instils a folkier thread to the music. 'Tragedy (Reprise)' is also acoustic led, though far more menacing; you expect a torrent of distortion and bulldozer-grade kick drum at any second. It's unnerving.

Don't be fooled by the Mumford & Sons banjo twangery at the outset of 'Freedom 1', or even the 70s rock tinged interlude that follows, as the track is as proggy as they come. After the initial tomfoolery, it disintergrates, ever-so-slowly, into a cacophonous rage-hole. The second instalment in the 'Freedom' trilogy of tracks, 'Second Freedom', forgoes the gimmicky Americana instrumentation and instead leaps straight into weird time signatures and complicated riffery. It ends up stronger as a result. The final, concluding part of the three, 'Freedom 3' (they're named almost as logically as the Rambo series) is straight up post-hardcore, with wiry guitars and lolloping, quasi-swung drums.

Survival have made a solid record of modern-day metal sounds. They borrow from classic rock and post-hardcore, sometimes even from folk, to create something outside the realms of the ordinary. It's all very impressive. The downside comes about halfway through, when everything sort of blurs into one - it becomes homogenous, and perhaps a tad more timbre variation would make each effort more distinct. Regardless, it's still impressive for a debut. Give it a whirl and headbang to your heart's content.