South Wales has a thriving metal scene, and heavyweight metalcore outfit Continents are the latest off the production line. These lads pin together the musicianship and creativity of Every Time I Die with the tear-your-head-off attitude of Hatebreed. Pulling punches isn’t in their lexis.
‘Reprisal’ is their second full length and instrumentally, it’s an absolute joy. Despite the heft of their sound, the talent of the band’s axemen make it sound like the instruments are dancing with each other as they enjoy creating some sumptuously brutal grooves. Lead vocalist Phil Cross has a thunderous voice which is perfect for their sound, although lyrically his themes are maybe more simple than their style demands.
Continents are at their best when performing steamroller riff-fests like ‘The Defeatist’ where a couplet of, “It feels like there’s a voice around my neck, put there by the voices in my head” holds the mood perfectly. They’re less convincing when they attempt to craft a more atmospheric track like ‘Reprisal’, which feels like a stretch for them (and demonstrates what a difficult skill Modern Life Is War have mastered).
But I’d rather see a band pushing themselves than operating within their ability, and there’s plenty on this album that kicks arse to make it well worth your time.
‘Reprisal’ by Continents is out now on Victory Records.
Words by Alex Phelan.