’Lost Souls’ signals the blistering, long awaited return of Leicester hardcore 4 piece Surrender the Coast. It comes flying out the traps with ‘Aurora Skies’ setting the bar high for the rest of album. It is a 3 and a half minute onslaught of visceral guitars and gut wrenching drums, in some parts very reminiscent of a heavier, early Gallows.
The title track continues in much the same vein as the opener, vocalist Andy Connolly snarls and growls his way through another riff packed 3 and a half minutes. A slight criticism would be the lack of variation between these two tracks. They really are similar, both in structure and musical ideas. Although one possible saving grace is the fantastic gang chant, breakdown section towards the end. I defy you not to bang your head to this. Hardcore breakdown at its frightening best.
’Thrones’ opens with a much slower guitar intro and provides a welcome break from the relentlessness of the previous tracks. It build slowly into another heavy section. This time at a slower tempo which makes gives this section an almost beatdown type feel, a refreshing change to the usual frenetic breakdowns in other songs. The song then creeps back into a haunting guitar riff, bringing the tempo right down before the inevitable barrage of riffs continues.
The second half of this mini album finds us back in known territory, the familiar metal-tinged hardcore riffs that legends Every Time I Die would be proud of, coupled with the ever brutal vocal pairing of vocalist Andy Connelly and Dave Griffiths. ‘Dreamcatcher’ is another solid track, but unfortunately the formula is beginning to sound slightly tired. There is no denying that Surrender the Coast know how to write good riff-laden hardcore music, but after the fantastic opening 2 tracks, the rest of the album doesn’t quite reach the same heights.
’Lost Souls’ is a solid release, full of promise and huge breakdowns, but the latter half falls into the all too common problem in hardcore of sounding a bit repetitive. Having seen the band live a few times myself, I am more than aware that these songs will undoubtedly whip crowds into a frenzy across the country. It has the riffs, the vocals, and the huge breakdowns that a good hardcore record needs. It just lacks a new edge to make you really stand up and pay close attention.
’Lost Souls’ by Surrender the Coast is released on 23rd February on Redfield Recordings
Words by Andy McGonigle (@Andyjmcg87