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Greyhaven - 'Breathe' EP Review


1. Truth

2. When We Divide

3. Crows

4. Breathe

As the world draws closer to the nefarious black hole centred in our galaxy, we should expect things to mutate and transform into new concoctions. Brand new monstrosities hatch out of crushed shells and reveal themselves to the public. They are identifiable, to some degree, by their limbs and faces, but only on surface. New monsters often carry traits of their previous incarnations, but often motives differ. 'Breathe' by Greyhaven is a record representative of a generation free to experiment with fruits of online digital media. On the surface, the five piece dress in usual Hardcore attire, however, the content is somewhat more pliable. Like Don Bronco, Enter Shikari and Bring Me The Horizon before them, Greyhaven have post-modernism on their side. Nowadays days, everyone breaks the rules and regulations of Hardcore. And if they don't break em, they twist ‘em.

The first track,‘Truth, sounds like Linkin Park covering Meshuggah. The song takes aspects of the Swedish five-piece’s down-tuned guitars and blast-beats and leaves out the gruff vocals. It is the kind of song that requires a complimentary ‘bullet-time’ music video, one thats features guitars being swung around torsos and close up shots of ‘wobbly mouths’ screaming into the camera. At first, Sam Paterson’s voice feels strange draped over of the mountainous rhythm section, but after a few ‘listen’s, that Hopeless Records vocal style circulates in your brain. Only after a few spins do you realise that you are actually listening to the heaviest Pop song ever recorded and that there is an even small element of Lady Gaga to it. ‘When We Divide’ follows and it is somewhat more dynamic, both rhythmically and vocally. This tune feels closer to Deftones, Funeral For A Friend and Armor For Sleep, transitional bands focussed on dramatic build ups in verses and big drops in choruses. Paterson croons, ’She doesn't understand, why her mother cries, alone at night’, to the backdrop of palm muted chugging. I am particularly fond of the juxtaposition of his vocal inflection and accentual position. His switch between the ‘West Coast of USA’ and the ‘Southern region of the UK’ works. It reminds me of Biffy Clyro; a band aware of the origins of a particular ‘genre’ but very proud to own their brand of that type of music, incorporating regional speech patterns and phrasing.

‘Crows’ returns to Post-Nu-Metal, featuring sped up verses and chorus, covered with crazy arpeggios and NYC Hardcore backing vocals. This is probably the ‘thrashiest’ track on the record, in parts, the guitar and bass remind me of Megadeth and Pantera. Interestingly, the last song ‘Breathe’ is without a doubt the ‘poppiest’ track on the EP. This song has a, dare I say it, Simple Plan feel to it. This song drops the heavy guitars and double kick in favour of U2-style shimmering guitar picking and nice mid-tempo Pop-Punk drumming. And while it might seem a little lazy to compare this song to something produced by the aforementioned Canadian five-piece, it reminded of what I was listening to, the future of ‘Pop Metal’. Usually I finish with some sort of ‘recommendation’ for the artist, however, with these boys I am going to leave the door way open and see where they go with this type of music. While it might not necessarily be the best record I have ever listened to, it is certainly well crafted and well thought out.

Review - Lewis McWilliam

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