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Album Review: Pridelands - 'Natives'

2 March 2015 | 2:39 pm | Alex Sievers

Think Dream On, Dreamer just minus all of the synth.

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Just as the glorious weekend that was Soundwave and the always wallet destroying week of Sidewaves that follows proved that it was better to be out at shows than sitting behind a keyboard flinging proverbial shit at AJ Maddah, it’s now time to get back into the swing of every day life.


Oh well, at least the new Pridelands EP can help scratch the itch that many might be feeling. In what continues an insanely good track record for Australian music this year, the trio’s debut EP ‘Natives’ is a solid effort if there ever was one. It has the sound and feel of your typical metalcore/post-hardcore bands, yet it has that extra bit of bite and aggression that makes the group step forward from the ever-growing line of lacklustre bands, all queuing up to sign up with UNFD, Rise, Sumerian or whoever the fuck will take them.

This five-track release has been a long time coming for the now Melbourne based group and it’s definitely a cut above their previous work. The band’s music is fast, dark and heavy, specifically shown on opening song, ‘The Inkwell’ and closer 'Coffinbound'. Yet laced throughout the EP are elements of angsty feels and melody as is the case with the commercial sounding ‘Contingency’ and ‘Destitute’. If you’ve ever listened to other local acts like Dream On, Dreamer, Void Of Vision or Elegist then you should feel disturbingly right at home with Pridelands' debut.

However, while ‘The Inkwell’, ‘Contingency’, ‘Destitute’ and 'Coffinbound' (not a real word) are all good songs, they almost fall flat when compared to the EP’s standout track, which is also its rocking lead single - ‘Devil’s Snare’.

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Every band has that one song, the one they open or end with, the one that fans get the lyrics of tattooed on them, the one that makes you go ape-shit like you're being attacked by bees and for Pridelands it's the vehement and socially aware anthem, ‘Devil’s Snare’. This song has been floating around for a while but to have it on an actual release is great, and it’s one of those rare tracks that never ever gets old. With a vicious vocal delivery from frontman Mason Bunt, mosh-heavy breakdowns that encourage you to move around and not just bob your head, impactful instrumentation and writing, arguably the biggest and best chorus of the EP, and lyrics that actually have some meaning and truth all help to make this the best song the band has written in their three-year lifespan.

'Natives' is like a good cup of tea - tastes great the whole way down yet it's over so quickly that you have to go back for another hit. Sure it's a cup of tea you've probably had an ridiculous and equally numerous amount of times before, but good tea simply means good tea and you can't really go wrong with that. Unless of course you make it, go away, and come back to find a cold bit of milk and water waiting for you.

1. The Inkwell

2. Contingency

3. Devil’s Snare

4. Destitute

5. Conffinbound