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Hey, do you know what fucking sucks? When a supposedly quick and easy NBN upgrade installation instead takes over two weeks and your internet provider bullshits you every time you call in, saying, “Aw, we’re so sorry, we’ll fix it all up for you today”. But then, low and behold, they don’t and nothing ever seems to bloody happen about it. All resulting in the music site you’re the editor and admin for running right up against one giant stagnating plateau that looks down upon you; cruelly laughing in your face as your emails and work load piles up around you like near-unconquerable mountains.
But hey… you know what doesn’t fucking suck? ‘Kingdom‘, the debut EP from Queensland metal outfit, Initiate Jericho.
If you’re unfamiliar with these local dudes, then go and quickly skim read my previous article on the band from a few weeks back when they unveiled the first song from ‘Kingdom‘, the monstrously mosh-worthy sonic barrage of ‘Vile‘. Getting back to the now, however, with a newly rounded out lineup of brutal yet perfectly suitable vocalist Jared Bray and tight new time-keeper and skin-hitter, Gage Cattermole, the Brisbane quintet recently pushed their heavy-as-fuck ‘Kingdom‘ EP out through the riff-laden gates. And as far as debut EP’s go, it’s a solid one!
Starting off with the back-to-back heavy swinging hits of ‘A A‘ and the aforementioned standout of ‘Vile‘, Initiate Jericho don’t waste any time getting right to their beatdown-metalcore-meets-deathcore goods early on. Also, while we’re on ‘Vile‘ (and because I love it dearly), that track is just an utter fucking banger. I mean, that’s just scientific fact. Hell, even when it backs off the crowd-killing pace for quieter, more spacious dynamic sections, it still works. It’s easily the best song that this band have to their name thus far, and I think that the band themselves are well aware of that fact. Hence probably why they released said song as the very first taste of this new EP; a track that informs any and all who enter exactly what they’ll be getting from ‘Kingdom‘ as a whole.
Now, in being a five-track EP that barely goes for 17-minutes, there isn’t a huge amount to unpack from ‘Kingdom‘. However, when writing all of this up I found the best way to get across my remaining thoughts on this mostly consistent, heavy-as-balls new EP from the Initiate Jericho boys is to ask myself a few questions for your reading pleasures.
So, starting off, do I think that Initiate Jericho are an original band by the cluttered realms of their preferred metal sub-genres? God no, and I’d seriously question the mental state of anyone who genuinely thought that. Do I think that if you also follow the band’s many peers – bands such as Gravemind, Advocates, Daybreak, Iconoclast, Semper Fi, As Paradise Falls and many others – you’d feel right at home here, for better or for worse? Oh, no doubt. Even so, do I think that the IJ crew more than made up for this rather generic sound by having written immensely groovy, intensely heavy and tightly written songs that flow well? Abso-fucking-lutely!
However, do I think that using a low-pass EQ-filter swell for the intro’s of both ‘Perjurer‘ and ‘Blossom‘ (two songs that follow one another no less) is as cliche as metalcore bands using glass breaking sound effects to mark the start of a breakdown or to add “impact” to one? I sure do, which is funny, as this band also use a glass breaking sample on ‘Blossom‘ just after the 50-second mark and at a later point. Yet on the flip side, regarding that latter track, do I think that the guest feature from former Road To Ransome member and current Joy In Motion guitarist Dylan Cottee really adds to ‘Blossom‘ and compliments that of Bray’s voice? Holy shit, yes!
Finally, do I think that much like Daybreak’s forthcoming ‘Death Dreams‘ EP, this band concludes their release with a short, unnecessary track that’s basically a glorified breakdown song and does nothing to add to the release other than adding more time to the clock? Oh boy, do I ever! Which is a shame, as the EP starts off so strongly and the middle two tracks maintain that consistency too. Ending my rhetorical self-questioning now, I can’t help but feel that this EP would’ve been better-suited ending with the softer, piano outro of ‘Blossom‘ left as the final notes that the listener receives before the curtains draw and have the titular track excluded outright.
Be that as it may, four out of five songs is still more than passable. Plus, none of my gripes could fully stop ‘Kingdom‘ as a full body of work from going harder than South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill on Josh Frydenberg’s ass mid-press conference.
Yeah, look, you’re not getting a proper conclusion here because I think we should all appreciate the fact that this review has, by a country mile, been one of the shorter reviews I’ve penned for KYS in God knows how fucking long. Oh, and speaking of shorter reviews, just where did I put my advance stream of that new Cursed Earth EP?
1. A A
‘Kingdom’ is out now and it’s quite good. Stream it below and pick it up on iTunes (or on Bandcamp like a sane person). Also, don’t ask me why I made that odd political joke earlier – I myself don’t even know.