New Years Day: Malevolence

Gothic five-piece score a ferocious new sound

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Given their coiffeur, eyeliner and matching outfits, you might be forgiven for thinking New Years Day are all style over substance.

It’s true that neither their pop-punk debut My Dear or 2013’s more aggressive Victim To Villain quite lived up to the hype, but their third album is here to challenge any misconceptions. From the opening bars of lead track *Kill Or *Be Killed, it’s clear that NYD have sharpened their kohl pencils, touched up their roots and revamped themselves in every way.

Darker and heavier than their previous releases, Malevolence swoops like a vampire bat on an unsuspecting mortal, and finally puts paid to all those Paramore comparisons. Fans of their previous recordings will be pleased to learn that tracks such as Alone and the poppy Scream still retain echoes of their earlier work, but echoes are all they are.

The snarling Anthem Of The Unwanted and Left Inside are gothic anthems that wouldn’t have sounded amiss on Evanescence’s chart-topping breakthrough Fallen and singer Ash Costello’s voice is stronger and tougher than ever, complementing their heavier sound. This is what Hauntedmansioncore is all about, and New Years Day aren’t afraid to scream it out.

Natasha Scharf
Deputy Editor, Prog

Contributing to Prog since the very first issue, writer and broadcaster Natasha Scharf was the magazine’s News Editor before she took up her current role of Deputy Editor, and has interviewed some of the best-known acts in the progressive music world from ELP, Yes and Marillion to Nightwish, Dream Theater and TesseracT. Starting young, she set up her first music fanzine in the late 80s and became a regular contributor to local newspapers and magazines over the next decade. The 00s would see her running the dark music magazine, Meltdown, as well as contributing to Metal Hammer, Classic Rock, Terrorizer and Artrocker. Author of music subculture books The Art Of Gothic and Worldwide Gothic, she’s since written album sleeve notes for Cherry Red, and also co-wrote Tarja Turunen’s memoirs, Singing In My Blood. Beyond the written word, Natasha has spent several decades as a club DJ, spinning tunes at aftershow parties for Metallica, Motörhead and Nine Inch Nails. She’s currently the only member of the Prog team to have appeared on the magazine’s cover.