Donnie Brasco

Drag The Blues EP

Written by: PP on 22/11/2012 22:03:41

Remember when I mentioned two years ago that the British hardcore scene felt somehow refreshed and re-vitalized after Gallows and The Ghost Of A Thousand lifted the scene out of its early 2000s misery? How a number of solid releases were starting to pour in from all corners of the country one after the other, working the national scene towards an inevitable climaxing point of a near-perfect release? Well, we haven't reached that point yet, but the records just keep improving. We saw Landscapes release a landmark release earlier this year with "Life Gone Wrong", but two months earlier a little known outfit Donnie Brasco released arguably an even better record in the form of "Drag The Blues" EP.

It features the trademark intensity of a UK hardcore release, but with more spacy instrumentation and a knack for ambient melodies and coarsely screamed vocals that recall Defeater's desperate howling. The Ghost Inside, For The Fallen Dreams, and Stick To Your Guns are all references you'll notice throughout the record, as the band goes for ambitious soundscapes where subtle piano melodies back roughened, echoing screams of their excellent vocalist at one point, and a punk ethos drives a high-speed hardcore onslaught on the next song. Common to both styles is the excess melody that brands this release 'melodic hardcore' by definition, where bright lead guitar melodies encompass the soundscape into an uplifting, positive mood, one where the heartfelt, honest screams feel right at home. It's all at least as well executed as their American counterparts, yet they stay true to the British sound purveyed by so many of the heavier hardcore bands at Hevy Fest at the same time.

"Drag The Blues" EP might not be the release that comes to define the entire British scene, but if this is the standard we're to expect from here onwards, it won't be long before a benchmark album is released. Who knows, it might even be these guys, if they continue writing catchy, yet intricate melodic hardcore like this in the future.

8

Download: Coastal Grey
For the fans of: The Ghost Inside, Landscapes, Defeater, For The Fallen Dreams
Listen: Facebook

Release date 15.04.2012
Lockjaw Records

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