After being away for the best part of two years, the return of Starve To Survive sees the Geordie quintet become part of a pack of bands who embrace the dissonant hardcore sound. Their second EP, ‘Have Me To Waste‘, ticks all the right boxes as it puts STS alongside the likes of God Complex, Lotus Eater and Loathe, who coincidentally they have a connection with as guitarist Connor Sweeney serves as the EP’s producer. Although it puts them in the same bracket, ‘Have Me To Waste’ doesn’t quite capture the same excitement. Nevertheless, the Newcastle collective do serve up six concise slabs of blackened hardcore.
From the offset, ‘Resolute’ shows there is a thumping intensity to their sound with the occasional hint of ambience. This is expanded on ‘Dismal’, as it charges in with a throbbing bass groove and chugging guitars as guttural vocals and haunting synth keys gives the track a claustrophobic vibe. However, it doesn’t deliver a big pay off, opting for an outro of scrappy guitars. Thankfully, ‘Back & Forth’ soon makes up for it, kicking in with monstrous guitars and roaring vocals. While the mid-point tech metal chug is welcomed hint of variation.
Admittedly, they stylistically don’t stray too far away. Notwithstanding, ‘Twinge’ is a stomping, chaotic highlight that shows Starve To Survive‘s ability to execute dirty metallic hardcore at its best, even if the glitching electronics are reminiscent of Code Orange. ‘Dread’ carries on the momentum, providing a turbulent cocktail of everything that has come before it. It’s all rounded off by the title track. Pulsating with a smattering wiry guitars and blaring screams, it momentarily dissipates into eerie ambience before returning to its down-trodden best.
Even though ‘Have Me To Waste’ hits all the right points, you can’t help but feel Starve To Survive will get lost in the shuffle amongst the ever-growing swell of nu-metal-infused hardcore bands. Despite this, they’re not ones to be completely written off.
‘Have Me To Waste’ EP by Starve To Survive is released on 15th February.
Words by Sêan Reid (@SeanReid86)