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With Spring fast approaching and festival season starting soon, March sees a whole load of noteworthy releases. We take a look at five of the must hear releases this month.
Having only just formed last summer, Leeds punks Brawlers have quickly made a name for themselves for their insane live show. Now the quartet have unleashed their utterly brilliant debut EP 'I Am A Worthless Piece of Shit', an infectious collection of fun punk rock numbers. We talked to vocalist Harry George Johns to find out why the longtime friends formed
Brawlers and what 'I Am Worthless...' is all about.
After delivering one of the early contenders for album of the year, we catch up Modern Baseball to discuss ‘You’re Gonna Miss It All’, their forthcoming debut UK tour and miming
at the World Series.
In the second part of our "Studio Report" feature with Colt 45, the Cumbria punks finish their debut LP producer Romesh Dodangoda by recording vocals and more guitars. Take a look.
In the first of our new fortnightly feature where we highlight some of the most promising
bands in the pop-punk world, we talk to New York's Firestarter.
In the latest instalment of our "Tour Tales" feature, we join Wakefield quartet Morain on their recent tour supporting Durham four-piece Alexander.
With lead vocalist Matt Pryor having recently completed a solo UK tour, we highlight two albums from The Get Up Kids for the latest edition of "Versus". Already Heard writer Tom
Knott explains why 'Something To Write Home About' is "pure gold". Whilst Senior Editor
Sean Reid shows us why 'Guilt Show' shouldn't be dismissed.
I never got the hype around The Acacia Strain, as I result I never bothered with them up until I was sent their new album 'Death is the Only Mortal'. Now I am going to pre-warn anyone who is a fan of this band, I am definitely not a fan and if you can imagine what I am going to say, don’t bother reading the rest of this review.
As a genre I thought death-core was dead, I realise that fans of the genre, cannot admit to it being defined as this, but it is the formation of death metal and hardcore. Anyway I never got the whole guttural pig squeal vocal style (listen to the end of 'Brain Death' for a perfect example of this), the monotonous and frankly boring chugging guitar which is followed by a breakdown and then, you guessed it, a chugging guitar slotted in to round off this formulaic style of writing. It bores me, call me a prude but I like my music to be interesting and with some substance.
The Acacia Strain just don’t seem to have that substance I look for in a band; as a result I find them lifeless. Honestly, I approached this review with a clear perspective but trying to find good in this album is something I am finding impossible to do. They obviously have a fan base and with a career spanning 11 years they are doing something right but this band are just not for me.
Maybe it was just this album and their previous releases were different; after listening to their previous efforts I came to the conclusion that in fact no this is their definitive sound. Tracks like 'Victim of the Cave' apply simple rhyming couplets (“There is no end, there is only pretend”) sounds too simplistic and thrown together just because it will fit, it is seemingly a very sloppy and lazy approach to lyric writing.
The only track worth mentioning is the aforementioned 'Brain Death'; with a superb chorus and guitar solo which personally makes it the stand out track on ‘Death is the Only Mortal’. Unfortunately the ending however is disappointing, as previously mentioned it digresses back to the formula this band seems to base it’s song writing around.
I tried with this release but there is nothing interesting about this band, album or genre for me.
'Death is the Only Mortal' by The Acacia Strain is available now on Rise Records.
Words by Robert Maddison (@BertMaddison)