Hospitals EP

Written by: AP on 07/10/2011 22:41:34

Rinoa's life was short but sweet; upon splitting up the band became immortal and left in its wake a legacy that none have yet been able to continue. Its members have since moved on to new projects, with Jozef Norocky joining Devil Sold His Soul; Matthew Holden and David Gumbleton participating in the supergroup Ancients; and James May trying his hand at more hardcore oriented drumming for Hospitals. But although May is the only member in the band with a background in Rinoa, his influence on the band's self-titled debut EP is undeniable.

Seldom has melodic hardcore sounded as cinematic as "Winter Nine", its uplifting drone intro, noodling high-end legato riffs and dreary screams coming together like a marriage of Touché Amoré and Devil Sold His Soul. It is a refreshing touch on a genre which tends to thrive on set principles and leave little room for improvisation, effectively joining the despair and urgency of early screamo with the confrontational sensibilities of modern hardcore and the exploratory soundscapes of progressive and post-metal. It, and the equally mesmerizing "Control", with its perfect harmony of whispering clean parts and furious d-beat drives, are clear indicators of the presence of a Rinoa man and the reason why Hospitals are able to distinguish themselves from the grey mass of Carrier, Defeater and Hundredth mimes and establish themselves as equals to those genre-defining bands.

But while the two songs certainly accentuate the progressive tendencies of Hospitals, this is by no means the only gun in the band's arsenal. "Cemetery" and "Old Smoke" take a much more direct approach reminiscent "Symptoms + Cures" and "Wake the Dead" era Comeback Kid, respectively. The latter has an eerie, forlorn melody lingering in the background which, when combined with the punishing rhythm section, lets loose a deluge of chaotic emotions that fans of the genre will instantly adore, while the former is a simple yet effective hardcore banger in the vein of "Crooked Floors" and "Pull Back the Reins" from the mentioned Comeback Kid album. "Winter Ten" also concludes the album in similar fashion, though here Defeater is the most appropriate reference, given the storytelling style and emphasis on vocals.

As such, Hospitals provide further evidence of the potency of the resurgent British hardcore scene. Despite its short running time, the EP hits with devastating impact, unleashing the emotion of screamo, the pressure of hardcore, and the adventure of prog all at once through five intricate songs that never resort to exaggeration or flamboyance. "Hospitals" is a highly recommended EP for anyone with even the slightest interest in revivalist screamo, melodic hardcore and progressive metal.


Download: Winter Nine, Control, Winter Ten
For the fans of: Comeback Kid, Defeater, Rinoa
Listen: Facebook

Release date 23.05.2011
Eyes of Sound

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