Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Shores Of Attica - Transitions

Self Released 2012
 
1.Taken 2.Deal With The Repercussions 3.Amen 4.Lost 5.Transitions
6.Respect Cant Be Bought 7.See The Divide 8.Changes
 
Scottish metal outfit ‘Shores of Attica’ open up this 8 track e.p. with ‘Taken’, their intentions immediately obvious as the bass heavy and buzzy guitars open up in a real rage with a heavy dose of groove streaking through them. There are very heavy melodic leanings to the band’s sound, especially when the cleanly sung melodic passages are brought to the fore. Quite standard composition for this genre however, stop start guitars, breakdowns a plenty, add in the cleanly sung passages and all the genre clich√©s are there. Not that it’s badly played or composed, this style and genre became so over saturated that it all started to sound the same and is always going to be a favourite of the Hardcore fans rather than the extreme metal fans. ‘Deal With The Repercussions’ is more of the same, only with a lot more melody on display in amongst the breakdown heavy riffing. As with the opener, it’s all very well played, each member handling their instruments extremely well and vocally the screamed scathing vocals spit venom at every opportunity with the accompanying cleanly sung vocals doing their job very well, adding some emotion to the song. Again, the Hardcore kids will be lapping this up, but from an extreme metallers point of view, the songs have yet to “really get going”, seemingly stuck in first gear (pace wise) which I guess is another of the core elements to this genre. ‘Amen’ opens up in very ‘Caliban-esque’ fashion, the pace upped slightly before returning to the slower, melodically driven guitar work and more cleanly sung passages. Much the same can be said about ‘Lost’ beginning as it does by increasing the pace to open the song up before the ever so prevalent breakdown heavy riffing takes over the song, more cleanly sung melodic passages added and another song has passed that hasn’t really stood out or sounded wholly original. The same tried and tested ingredients being over-used time and time again, as many of the bands in this genre do. It's maybe why a lot of people walked away and stopped listening to this style of music, because it all became very uninspiring. The genre in general, that statement not specifically aimed at the band.
‘Transitions’ passes without any great effort, sounding the same as everything previously. You barely notice the change in track if being brutally honest. Not sure what the band were trying to achieve in ‘Respect Can’t Be Bought’ by adding in a really silly short musical break around two minutes into the track, because if they were trying to be ‘a bit different’ they failed massively – I fear they were trying to inject a bit of humour into proceedings which is very hard to do, unless you’re a grind band who don’t give a flying shit! ‘See The Divide’ begins as many of the tracks have, melodic harmonies flying around left, right and centre under breakdown based rhythm guitars, all ‘stoppy starty’. And then when the band re-introduce the melodic passages with the cleanly sung vocals the standard formula and composition so heavily relied on in general (in the genre) again fails to impress, all one dimensional and quite standard (albeit well played, these lads are obviously accomplished musicians in their own right). Eighth and final track ‘Changes’ is quite aptly named, as I would certainly have welcomed some, unfortunately I would be sadly disappointed. It’s just more of the same, with nothing new or exciting to report! It’s going to be unfair of me to score this and I nearly didn’t review it, because UKEM is all about extreme metal, which this release is not. It’s emotional Hardcore/metal which might appeal to some, but I think a lot of extreme metallers will not go anywhere near a release like this. Each member handles themselves well, but in a genre which became over saturated, tired and repetitive a very long time ago it takes a hell of a lot to truly stand out! The Hardcore and emo kids will no doubt lap this up and pour scorn on the review, but it’s about honesty, which this review is, honest. Sorry guys, not sure UKEM is the place to showcase your talents.

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