Modern emo melodic thrashcore from Kent. Yes the Garden of England is not just a green and pleasant part of the country but also home to these youngsters peddling their modern emo thrash metal. I was actually quite surprised with this album. These youngsters are not too bad at all. Of course it's not an album I will probably get the urge to ever play again but for the duration of the record it wasn't horrible at all and in fact acceptable.
They are primarily influenced by bands such as Killswitch Engage and I also hear many similarities with Funeral for a Friend in the guitar riffs and vocal melodies along with the obligatory hints of Megadeth/Metallica. The songs are mostly sung melodiously with the odd barked line here and there but not in a grating way thankfully. The singing is just a little flat to be honest and although they are clean they just sound fairly weak to my ears. The band's guitarists are definitely no slouches at all when it comes to riffs and solos though. I hear some Iced Earth styled galloping riffing mixed with the typical Maidenish sparkle and plenty of thrashy Megadeth styled riffing to spice things up.
I like those particular riffs and forays into the old school metal style and yet of course they are a fully modern band when it comes to vocals and song writing in general. See No Evil is blessed with a great mid to fast tempo riff with a sweet headbanging melody. The chorus is also acceptable however towards the end of the song the usual modern cliches rear their ugly head with the use of screaming vocals and the dreaded slow breakdown riff. When they return to the old school riffing they soon win me over again and I give them the benefit of the doubt.
This is the major problem with young modern bands for me. There are aspects of their music which I really like but they include sections which turn me off completely and render my enjoyment of their music null and void. This occurs on almost every song on Callous' debut effort. Take the start of Into The End which has a riff that Dave Mustaine would be proud to write, it's that thrashy and good, and yet the song never stays in that mode. The emo vocals soon kick in and pretty much ruin things and the song whilst musically top notch ends up not really going anywhere.
However I must say Callous are one of the best young bands I've heard of late, musically speaking at least. They have listened to their classic metal albums enough to know a riff or two and are not afraid of guitar solos either. This 7 tracker is a decent effort from the guys with a good solid production. I only wish they would go full on thrash and abandon the emo and modern leanings altogether. This would no doubt result in an album that would be much more to my liking and to metalheads in general. As things stand, a solid effort.
© Pirage Forsi
Rating *** (3.0/5.0) Buy at Amazon