Waimeashory / Own Worst Enemy / Element
Nottingham Old Angel
December 17 1999
Thereís a review of all these elsewhere, but those were first impressions. Seen them again since, so at the risk of repetition, hereís a review after Iíve heard them all a bit more.
Another of those 3 Nottingham bands for a couple of quid nights. There's a surprisingly large number of bands doing the rounds here at this moment in time. Even if it does appear that most of them share band members. Waimeashorey are first. As with the last time that I saw them, they play a short but sweet set of tuneful hardcore, with a touch of emo throw in as well. Additionally one of the "new" tracks has a distinctly metal flavour in the chug style riff.
For some reason, I had it in my mind that Own Worst Enemy were actually Out For The Count. Even reading it on the poster failed to sway my mind. And that was without even having a drink. Don't ask me, I don't know. I figured I was wrong though as soon as the band took the stage based on the fact that none of OFTC were present. It wasn't until about three songs in when Im Not A Killer as played that I realised it was the band that I'd only caught the last song by a few weeks ago. The band they'd been playing with? OFTC. Maybe there was logic to my madnes after all. Whichever, OWE were a revelation. Solid hardcore which struck me as very modern, which I guess means it's "new skool". The vocals struck me as a harsher Lou Koller, maybe even a touch of the Karl Earth Crisis in there. As with many bands of this ilk, they've got plenty of good riffs, but they've also managed to package them into some good songs. Some very good songs. Things once more are kept short and sweet and it would be interessting to see how it works with a crowd that's actually participating.
One thing I was thinking, for what its worth which is nothing as my opinion means nothing anyway, is that the vocals are too predictable. But in this instance it works it fits the music and something different may actually diminish the overall quality of the presentation of the music. Why say that? Well cos each time I've seen element I've whinged that there's a song where the vocals are tooo predictable. Toooo NYHC. It's a statement I stand by, but maybe some don't, as the track in question is introduced as "our New York" song. But my point here is that in a way Element are not as tightly constricted musically as OWE and they have the ability to be more expansive. And it's something I think they should explore, and in my opinion would be detrimental to themselves if they don't. But hey it's my opinion and my opinion doesn't mean anything.
I think the opening track was called Tsunami, and I finally put my finger on what the riff reminds me of. Early Therapy? circa Punishment Kiss. I may be the only person that thinks this, but hey, that's just how it is. To me it's a good thing, and when combined with less predictable vocals it's a very good song. they've got their sound together something I think I've said everytime I've seen them. New drummer Paul and his paradiddles add an extra dimension as well on KY. There's very little more that I can say at the moment. They've got the ability, to my mind it's how they choose to use it. And I'm afraid that whether people like it or not, that's what I think.
One-Last-Sin ...When Guilt Reigns
This one arrives from New York via Belgium label Released Power Productions. Kind of your typical metallic hardcore, the guitars chug and the drums pound away at a frentic pace, the kick drum speed and patterns making you wonder if itís not a double bass drum assault. The vocals adopt the standard regulation, and although itís not bad, thereís just so many bands doing this nowadays. With Our Demands throws in that Slayer take on Sabbath with a bit of acousticy guitars thing, you know from Seasons ... Kind of not sure how I feel about it. Glad itís there cos thereís a track on here called Classical Song, which is simply acoustic guitars. Itís nice. Itís pleasant. It makes a change from the monotony of everything thatís gone on before. and itís completely pointless and redundant. I mean, in amongst the constant onslaught of the rest of the CD, why do bands bother with a track like this? To show they can? To show their different dimensions? Their diversity? Well if the remainder of the album showed more of that, then fair enough. But when itís just stuck there in the middle, it seems pointless. Unless it has some personal meaning to the band that isnít made clear. So having With Our Demands on here, with at least itís concessions to one other vocal style and something different, then Classical Song isnít so out of place, and neither is With Our Demands. But why donít these bands follow through with something like this? I reckon cos itíll cos them "respect" within the scene. So Scorn regains the credibility, and returns to the anonymity of the rest of the album and Fall Of Darkness finishes things on a suitably crunchy punchy manner with very barky vocals. A better riff and more memorable song structure. A bit more like this and it wouldíve been better. But ultimately for me this was not bad, but just not inspiring. I canít figure why I should listen to it instead of any number of other hardcore bands.
One then for the hardcore afficianado to have a listen to first before deciding.
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