29 April 2013
by Ollie Connors
Tracing the career path of Louisville, Kentucky trio over their decade-long career has been fascinating. From their beginnings as a ferocious metallic hardcore band, to the more darkened punk ‘n roll vibes of 2010’s House With A Curse, new full-length Sister Faith brings a new spectrum of influence into play, with a record that would sit at home in the collections of all and sundry; fans of post-punk/new wave, clangorous post-hardcore and even Torche/Baroness-worshipping stoner rock fans will all find something to love on Coliseum’s latest offering.
The record bursts into life with an almighty riff on curtain-opener ‘Disappear From Sight’, and at first seems as if it might not relent from there on in. The opening gambit of this record is juggernaut-esque, with frontman/guitarist Ryan Patterson’s half-bark, half-croon constantly at the fore. However, this album’s strength does not lie in its bulldozing presence, but in its subtleties and labyrinthine twists and turns – ‘Love Under Will’ allows a more atmospheric feel to seep in, and is reminiscent at points of the progressive post-hardcore of Planes Mistaken For Stars – this experimental side-step paves the way for an excellent mid-passage of the record, of which ‘Under The Blood Of The Moon’ is an undoubted highlight, a fiery and dissonant rebirth of the post-punk of the 1980s.
Unfortunately, things start to falter a little in the latter half of the record – tracks like the meandering ‘Everything In Glass’, the spartan ‘Save Everything’ and the inconsquential title-track see this record lose some of the irrepressible momentum Coliseum had built in earlier proceedings. The tumultuous ‘Bad Will’ and the relentless ‘Fuzzbang’ prevent Sister Faith from being a completely top-heavy record, but much like their peers in Ceremony, who also turned their back on hardcore punk for pastures new, Coliseum suffer from “samey-itis” akin to the Californians’ recent effort Zoo.
Watch the video to ‘Fuzzbang’ by Coliseum:
It’s heartening to see a band try and change things up, but Coliseum’s fourth full-length ultimately feels like a half-baked mis-step rather than a cohesive change in tack. House With A Curse really brought out the best possible side of the band, but their attempt to change a winning formula for their first release on Holy Roar has not proved successful.
Sounds Like: Ceremony, Burning Love, Planes Mistaken For Stars, Single Mothers
Standout Tracks: Under The Blood Of The Moon, Doing Time, Fuzzbang