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Saturday, 9 December 2017

Reviews: Silent Descent, Scream Serenity, Kiss The Gun, Reece

Silent Descent: Turn To Grey (Self Released)

Described as "Enter Shikari for sweaty Goths" Dartmouth metal band tag themselves as trance metal and the rich layers of buzzing synths on Voices, Vortex, Rob Rodda all subscribe to this description. Without the electronics Silent Descent are an impressive modern groove metal band with excellent clean/harsh vocals, Gravesend is probably the best to show this having limited electronics meaning this melodic death metal track with a massive chorus and some cinematics of bands such as Xerath, although in the breakdown there are some lyrics that are rapped. No such frivolity on the dark Paths Winding which is a slow burning ballad that highlights another side of the band. However with the synths in place Silent Descent become a more intriguing act as the metallic aspects are in total synth with the EDM beats almost like Soilwork releasing an album with Pendulum.

Having been on the scene for over a decade now the band have managed to survive the Rising records debacle and come back stronger with their best album to date firmly out of their formative nu-metal influenced sound the Silent Descent of 2017 still retain their influence but throw in a bit of forward thinking to keep them releasing quality material. I know a few of you might turn your nose up at this record and musical style but I think if it's got the ability to make you nod your head or tap your feet it's worth a few spins, Turn To Grey is worth way more than that. 8/10

Scream Serenity: Eye Of The Storm (3Ms Music)

Before now the only band I’d heard of from Lowestoft are The Darkness, now however I can add Scream Serenity to that list. Those expecting glammy, campy metal will however have to continue with Mr Hawkins and co, Scream Serenity are a thoroughly modern hard rock act taking their sound from the metallic American radio style of Alter Bridge, Shinedown and (former tour mates) Black Stone Cherry. Jordan Fennell and Ian Messenger are the riff masters with Jack Hardy bringing the groove and Jon Lindow the percussive power. Messenger and Fennell’s guitars are dirty and distorted, the perfect foil for Fennell’s sneering vocals, listen to Good Business and you’ll get why Scream Serenity have supported BSC etc. 

Their music is immediate, swaggering hard rock with big hooks and heaviness that will satisfy the heaviest of metal fan, especially due to the incendiary solos on tracks such as Save Yourself which arrive, raise hell and leave. You can hear on this debut that these songs have been mastered in the live arena; there is a confidence to this record that has come from hours of performing and writing. Scream Serenity have been called the UK’s answer to BSC and with this record you can see why, they’ve got a bit more guts than say Stone Broken but for all their bluster and heavy rocking they also have a post-grunge edge to their music and can write angry Chad Kroger ballad on with ease Run Away and the title track. Eye Of The Storm is a great beginning for this band, it lays down a foundation of heavy concrete on which to build the rest of their career. 7/10

Kiss The Gun: Nightmares (3Ms Music)

Sailsbury band Kiss The Gun are a mishmash of session musicians brought together to play melodic hard rock. Fronted by the Nadin Zakharian who was a semi-finalist on The Voice Of Georgia the remaining members of the band have served time with Jessie J and Pixie Lott (guitarist Gerry Hearn), on cruise ships (drummer/trombone player Rob Taylor) and in the NWOBHM/ 90’s dance music scene (bassist Dave South). Nightmares is their debut record and it’s at the lighter end of melodic rock moving into AOR at points, it has got some NWOBHM riffs running through it (Writing On The Wall) but the backing synths, vocals, lyrical content and general feel of the record all puts it in the realms of FM, Heart and the lighter side of Halestorm. 

They actually share a lot of musical similarities with American band Hydrogyn, Nadin’s vocals are deeper than the usual soaring soprano’s but it adds character to the slower pieces such as title track and drips with attitude on Run Run Run. There are a few problems with this record, the production is little muddied and they go one too many times to the ballad well with Drowning creeping in on the Alanis Morrisette style of self loathing. A perfectly adequate piece of work but it’s a little too safe at times and there are more slow parts than I’d like. 6/10

Reece: Ignited (Self Released)

Caerphilly three piece Reece are named after frontman Rob Reece, it’s his vocals and basslines that are the backbone of this band. Ignited is their debut release and comes after the band have been touring the live scene relentlessly, the music is powerful, melodic rock with progressive touches and pop mentality, throw a dash of Kings X into a pot with It Bites, Dan Reed Network and late 80’s Rush and Reece is the concoction you would get. 

Reece’s funky technical basslines take control syncing with Russ Rogers’ expressive drumming for the band’s main rhythms, fleshing out the sound are Jon Davies’ multi-tracked guitars. The band's progressive leanings mean that they can really give their music a work out, they tackle breezy pop rock on Hold On (which has some The Police sounds to it), get a bit ominous with the modern rock of Painless, a bit of Floyd on the title track and Wasteland is an anthem. Ignited stands out as seriously impressive debut record from this trio, great hard rock from the Welsh yet again. 8/10

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