THECITYISOURS - Low | Album Review

In a genre that’s uncontrollably overflowing with fresh meat, it’s easy to blend in with the crowd. From palm-muting bass to solo riffs, all the generics of metalcore are constantly covered in the UK’s heavily populated scene. However, London-based quintet THECITYISOURS are on course to catapult into the limelight with new release, Low, proving that it’s still possible to produce a fresh offering in this overly saturated genre that pushes past the generics.

Ominous opener 'Ashes' seemingly holds deeper connotations than what floats on the surface, expressing a melancholic tone whilst unleashing a vicious riff that all metalcore fans could get behind. This brutality certainly sets the tone for the proceeding singles and reminds us as to why these guys are a force to be reckoned with.

'Bare Bones' however is high-octane, sporting a Beartooth-esque chant that will unquestionably go down a treat when performed live. And of course, that oh so familiar palm-muting is in full swing. Even from this early stage on the release, vocalists Sam Stolliday and Mikey Page’s ability to seamlessly weave in and out of vocal tones is incredibly impressive, from soft whispers to vicious growls.

It's 'Casket' that stands as the clear powerhouse of this release though, projecting self-loathing in the form of huge djent style breakdowns and a malicious vocal style to make for a huge single. This aggressively melancholic theme runs throughout the record, but it's truly mastered here. 'If You Know, You Know' and 'Sacred' bring an extra element of emotion to the record too - with both perfectly embodying sadness with a side of ferocity. Stolliday’s harsh and gritty sound is the highlight; the improvement in vocal strength from previous release Wildfire is totally apparent, and really takes this release up a notch.

Of course, there is a softer side to this release. 'Veins' and 'Here At All' portray a beautifully constructed vocal from Page, offering a much more vulnerable side to their sound. The lyricism seemingly delves into suppressed thoughts to offer a more personal outpour for listeners.

As a collective piece of art, this release projects fierceness, which is clearly this band’s forte. Angsty yet beautifully clean and boundary pushing vocals, paired with guitarist Stuart Mercer’s intense riffs makes for a familiar yet fresh sound that will almost certainly go down a treat upon release.

Score: 8/10

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