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poison the well

Album: Poison The Well – The Tropic Rot

July 12th, 2009

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Poison The Well
The Tropic Rot
Ferret Music
06 July 2009

by Mike Strata

‘Everything Changes’ – depending on your point of view that’s either simply the title of a throwaway 1994 single from everyone’s favourite evergreen boyband, Take That, or a noble attempt by Gary Barlow to introduce philosophy to 14-year-old girls. Whatever your stance, it’s a mantra that Poison The Well have certainly taken to heart.

Just as caterpillars become butterflies and mink become coats, PTW have continually evolved from release to release. Starting over a decade ago with the Distance… EP, the band has gone through more personnel changes than Real Madrid’s squad and yet end up here in 2009 sounding stronger and fresher than ever on The Tropic Rot.

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EP: The Comanche Cipher – Ludovico Technique

August 14th, 2008

the comanche cypher band thrash hits

The Comanche Cipher
Ludovico Technique EP
Basick Records

by Jack Pitt

With a market saturated with a wealth of similar sounding metallic hardcore bands, to really justify attention a band must possess a distinct sound that makes them stand out from the also-rans. On the evidence of this debut EP, do The Comanche Cipher have it? Not really.

That’s not to say this is a bad EP by any stretch of the imagination, and it’s not to say they are without potential either. The band clearly have an ear for an effective hook and chugging riffs, and are technically proficient and polished, but its all been done before, and it’s been done better.

Dillinger-esque time changes are utilised well, but these songs just draw heavily from acts like Architects and Poison the Well. That’s not a bad thing as such and if you are a fan of such bands, there will be enough to keep you occupied for sure, but it’s certainly not original and lacks the spark that will keep you going back to it.

The Comanche Cipher Ludovico technique packshot

Standout track ‘Fall Of The Beloved’ hints at an ability to do something more, but the tracks are too derivative at the moment to really make you sit up and take notice. It just sounds like there something lacking, and leaves you hoping for something extra.

With metal influenced hardcore bands such as Converge still putting on blistering live shows, and metalcore legends Shai Hulud, also releasing a new effort, there’s still evidence that metallic hardcore can be innovative, and can be fresh.

It is of course harsh to expect such stellar standards from complete newcomers, but if the Comanche Cipher are to do something of note, they need to create a more distinct sound, and be unafraid to experiment, and to innovate. It’s what this scene is crying out for.

3/6

Ludovico Technique by The Comanche Cipher is released on 18 August 2008 on Basick Records

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