Area: Newcastle, NSW
Date of release: 16th of February 2018
For Fans Of: Killswitch Engage, Avenged Sevenfold
Next Gig: An album launch show on the 16th of February at the Beachcomber Hotel in Toukley NSW with special guests
"Though long ago we sought comfort and shelter
Now I find it hard to breathe restricted by your protection
I still need my lungs to breathe
I still need my blood to bleed" -Wings
Lycanthrope are a six piece, yeah you read right, SIX piece metalcore outfit formed in 2011 from a bunch of other local bands and hailing from Newcastle, New South Wales. With a career spanning almost 7 years, releasing two E.Ps and the debut album "Chapters" is set to be released today, and for fans of the band it sounds like it’s been a wait. With an E.P written in June 2016 but complications with the studio, it lead the boys to rethink what was going on and go for broke, buckle down, re-write and create new tracks to flesh out a full blown album. We managed to get our hands on a copy to give you the sense of what you’re in for!!
Chapters explodes open with the first track 'Wings' showcasing just what is possible when you have three stellar guitarists (Aiden Lee, Brett Scott and Scotty Wright) unleash on an opening track, and it doesn’t take long for Vocalist Daniel Greig to kick in and make his presence felt before throwing the listener headfirst into a power driven track that only seems to let up in the chorus, if only briefly before grabbing you around the neck and dragging you into a solid breakdown and back into some fast paced riffage. Finishing off with a nice solid break down and ringing out leaving you wondering what just happened as the second track sets you in its sights.
'Skin and Bones' picks up just where wings left off, with some classic metalcore riff work, screams and solid rhythm section work from Jason Salvini on drums and Mathew Stoja on bass who can be heard ripping some solid work out of the chorus while the rest of the band chugs along with the count. The lyrics in this track are quite uplifting, preaching a message of embracing who you are and staying true to yourself, don’t change just to match what people think you should be or to conform to what you think other people want. And I think that is a great message to get across, it’s just hard to do without sounding a bit cheesy, but the boys have towed the fine line with this one and I think it works perfectly.
The album seems to progressively get more and more clean vocals the further it goes along but at track six 'Follow My Name' it all gathers together in an almost ballad like track starting off with some soft acoustic guitar accompanied by some haunting soft strings and prolonged piano chords, as Daniel Greig showcases his clean almost Americanized vocal style, building and building until the release in a over flow effect of sound with drums combining with louder, faster guitars and more aggressive vocalization before dying of into what in my opinion would have been a perfect closer to the album, but we still have another 4 fast paced tracks to go.
Personally I love it when an album is well thought out, it’s not always about having banger after banger but creating a journey from start to finish and you definitely get the feeling the boys have put a bit of thought into not only the track construction, but the construction of the album as a whole. The first half of the album grabs your attention that is for sure, up tempo on point drums, with well complimented bass work and strong screaming vocals with splattering of soaring clean vocals, not to mention the three ripping guitars weaving in and out of each other throughout, for anyone who is a fan of metalcore I’m sure this will rank high on the list for releases of the year.
I will say I wish there was something that set them apart from the pack a bit more, as I mentioned there are some real stand out track. It's just that this genre has so many contenders in it at the moment and I think bands these days really need to put something forward that stamps their name on their own sound within the genre before they get lost in the crowd, but that’s another story all together that I won’t get into here.
So in conclusion "Chapters" is a very solid debut release for Lycanthrope, covering all the bases in the metalcore game and creating a journey for the listener from start to finish. You can listen to any song from this release as a singular piece of music and it sounds great or you can strap yourself in from begging to end for the entire musical trip, and I think that’s a great accomplishment.
My editor Byron interviewed Scotty a few weeks back, If you want to find out more about the band and this record. Suss it below!
Support your local artists, support your local scene. Without you it wouldn’t exist.
Scream 4/5 Cleans 3/5
Would You Go And See Them (WYGAST) 3.5/5
Personal Enjoyment: 5/10