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Novelists: Souvenirs

Progressive metalcore crew start to write their own script

If you haven’t already noticed, there’s a progressive metalcore scene bubbling under at the moment, and Novelists may have just crowbarred open the entrance hatch to the surface.

With their debut album the Parisian punishers have harnessed the power of a dual-guitar attack without making it sound wanky and the clean/harsh vocal balance without sounding corny – which is no easy feat.

With fingers running up and down fretboards, the widdling and the stabs simply back up Matt Gelsomino’s caustic barking. At times you can hear hints of Architects but on the whole it’s as if Bury Tomorrow grew up with more Meshuggah in their school lunchboxes. The clean vocals aren’t the typical glittery sparkles and the deathcore-esque breakdowns will leave your vertebrae in pieces.

There are glimmers of real innovation in this well-oiled and very noisy machine, but at times it feels like Novelists are too frightened to make the leap into the *seriously *violent territory they’ll no doubt thrive in for album two.

Luke Morton