By: Kat Hilton
Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 02/10/2015
Label: Century Media Records
Each song is thoughtfully arranged and on repeat you unpeel the layers finding increasing love instead of faults. There is no doubt that they have put in the work, knuckled down and let their sparks of potential ignite into a full blown raging inferno; a no nonsense, straight down the line slice of high quality modern metal.
“Deliverance” CD//DD track listing:
01. Hollow (04:16)
02. Miscreation (04:35)
03. Turmoil I – Wolves (04:15)
04. Turmoil II – The Weak Inherit The Earth (05:48)
05. Anti-Life (03:43)
06. Grain Of Sand (04:00)
07. Mouth Of Madness (04:50)
08. Deliverance (05:01)
09. Skeletal I – Mourning (05:37)
10. Skeletal II – Arise (04:40)
Heart of a Coward is:
Jamie Graham | Vocals
Carl Ayers | Guitars
Steve Haycock | Guitars
Vishal "V" Khetia | Bass
Christopher "Noddy" Mansbridge | Drums
Originally, bundled together with the likes of Monuments and TesseracT perhaps unfairly so, Heart Of A Coward seem to have hit the proverbial nail on the head with their third offering ‘Deliverance’; proving once and for all that the third time is invariably the charm. Their new record comes smashing through, unapologetic in its presentation to encourage neck thrashing to the extreme…whiplash anyone?
So what’s the magic formula, you may ask? Well, rather than pump out mid paced tech metal with breakdowns littering their path, ‘Deliverance’ ups the ante in every aspect. There is an impending sense of urgency throughout each track; rather than sacrifice their inherent tech credentials they embrace them and move forward. With a sound that recalls Slipknot, Demon Hunter and Northlane it is a never ending tussle between brain and brawn, but Heart Of A Coward never forget their underlying need for punishing the listener.
‘Hollow’ is the first indication that HOC have embraced the feral and ferocious, opening ‘Deliverance’ and setting the scene for a thrash worthy little ditty. This track is a legend in the making; pile driving riffs come faster than a middle aged housewife watching 50 shades of Grey. Making you want to snap your neck thrashing away. It is unforgiving and brutal, the musical equivalent of an earthquake. This song sets the entire album off on a high. After the initial spin, this may seem like a bad thing as the following songs could be a bit anti-climatic but I urge you to spin it again- just like I did, because it soon becomes apparent that this is a massive step up from their previous offerings; retaining their muscular riffage and beefy grooves that are their trademark, but further demonstrating their maturity
‘Turmoil’ and ‘Skeletal’ both share the same ideologies yet seem miles apart in interpretation and that is definitely a trick up their sleeves; helping to lift them clear of the mundane. “Skeletal II- Arise” features a rather unexpected piece of piano work whilst “Turmoil 1- Wolves” is a sweaty, messy, adrenalin filled circle pit waiting to happen. The words stamped through the core of the song like
Blackpool through a stick of rock.
Throughout the rest of the album the tracks flit between the pure steel of metal core and softer prog metal with djent style crunch punctuating the adept technical riffs and sneering grooves.
The vocals, ably provided by Jamie, are much cleaner on this album than in the past with an increased range that adorns several tracks and imbues them with towering, hook filled choruses. And whilst some of the lyrics are a tad cringe worthy heard through the speakers, this is one album that has been written for a pit, make no mistake on that, thus they will make a lot more sense when hollered back to the stage by a seething mass of sweat drenched, beer smelling bodies as the rage pours forth.
Each song is thoughtfully arranged; on repeat you unpeel the layers finding increasing love instead of faults. There is no doubt that they have put in the work, knuckled down and let their sparks of potential ignite into a full blown raging inferno; a no nonsense, straight down the line slice of high quality modern metal.
This is not just a remarkable display of previously untapped potential with a flash of the bright future for these guys but also a reminder of how good metal core can be when honed to damn near perfection.