Sometimes it’s best to get exactly what you expect from a hardcore album; heavy guitar tones, the ever so occasionally cheesy shout-a-long lyrics and hard hitting drum work. Despite a lot of the same stuff, you once in a while you come across something that’s not necessarily different, but raw. Right now, newcomers Turncoat are proving to be just that with their self-titled EP and it’s a lot of what you would expect and also what you wouldn’t.
It’s immediately notable that Turncoat know what they want and know how to do it. Despite being their debut, it sounds like they’ve been around the block a few times. The Michigan quartet have got it down to a tee, from the entwinement of heaviness in the instrumentation and vocals right down to the well projected pissed off themes of hard work, honesty and the negative connotations surrounding the craze of the “American Dream”.
Even on a solid EP, there are a few standouts; ‘Own Up’ throws you into the brash honesty of the album and highlights the importance of taking responsibility for your own actions and stating, “you’ve got to work hard if you want to succeed,” which they have clearly done. Elsewhere, the drum work in ‘American Dream’ is not overbearing but has an angry but fun bounciness that carries the whole song and has moments of warped guitar fills which really show the frustration in its lyrics. ‘Blindfolded’ finishes off the record and if you were expecting the anger to die down, it definitely doesn’t and the abrupt finish shows there is much more to come.
There’s nothing incredibly technical about this debut, it’s just good old fashioned hardcore with no fancy overproduced elements and sometimes that’s the best way to be. Give it a listen if you want to get riled up.
’Turncoat’ by Turncoat is out now via Eulogy Records.
Words by Phoebe Messenger