wars - We Are All Islands, After All album review

UK melodic hardcrew crew prepare to tackle the big leagues

Cover art for wars WE ARE ISLANDS, AFTER ALL

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For their Spinefarm label debut, Rugby hardcore bruisers wars look to build upon on the brutal potency of their 2015 EP whilst matching power and passion across 10 enticing tracks.

Single That By Discord Things Increase doffs its cap to the alt-rock of Hundred Reasons et al (guest vocalist Colin Doran’s presence is unmistakable here), but there are sufficient shifts in texture and enough dynamic crunch to satisfy throughout the album. The Art Of Not Knowing and Snows And Skies seethe with punishing guitars and frenzied screams, though melody is omnipresent as a result of those anthemic choruses. Hailing Distance showcases wars’ riff-bludgeoning exuberance, while Still Waters Run Deep is a wonderfully hooky example of the dual vocal prowess of frontman Rob Vicars and guitarist/co-vocalist Sam Barnard. We Are Islands… keeps one foot planted in traditional hardcore territory, but when a record is delivered with such caustic aplomb, it makes for a tantalisingly discordant listen.