Boasting a sound that breaks straight off from the same catalogue as Bring Me The Horizon and Bury Tomorrow, Huddersfield five-piece Raised As Wolves thump their amplified alternative-rock, post-hardcore timbre into their latest EP.
Sculpted by muscular guitar riffs and off-beat rhythms, Raised As Wolves thicken out an interesting and modern feel on the hardcore genre. Profoundly, producer Phil Gornell’s artistic license and influence has helped shape the vocal input of the EP. Vocalist Jezza Bruce’s voice is cut from the same prickly cloth as Oli Sykes and Asking Alexandria’s Worsnop, and delivers all the notable functions and embodiments from the post-hardcore classification. On tracks like ‘Conversations’ and ‘Aggressive Gentlemen, Not Reckless’, for example, the vocals deliver the perfect counterbalance between the heavy hitting guitar riffs and the softer, more harmonious backing vocals. In turn, tying the tracks together nicely.
Lyrically, patterns of and woe and anger as well as unity are merged in with the grizzly vocals. “The ship wont sail ‘til there’s dirt in your nails” captures the raw and bleak expressionism of the post-hardcore genre. Firmly, the alternative rock flag flies high with the variety of vocal structures and formulas that the band experiment with. The closing track ‘Reflections’ encompasses a slower, edgier sound that resonates softer influences, such as bands like Deftones and Team Sleep.
On the whole, Raised As Wolves have a produced a very accomplished effort with An Ocean On Fire, and have the potential required to build a respectable rapport within their particular genre and field of musical innovation. They slide easily into the trademark pastures of hardcore, nu-metal, and alternative rock with a display of heavy guitars, bone-curdling percussion and sucker punch vocals.
However, that’s sort of the problem with EP. It almost ticks too many boxes and applies to too many conventions. The bands potential is there to see and there to be explored, adapted and fused into their own unique sound and vision. Although the band fit into a very broad category of music, they don’t have to be restricted to being compared and contrasted by a handful of bands. There is no doubt that the band are moving in positive directions, from which An Ocean On Fire emphasises. But a more refined, unique sound is left to be desired from an otherwise enjoyable extended play.
The need for bands to establish their own niche and distinction amongst other artists within their own genres, as well as other genres, still remains to be a key factor to address within the world of music. Despite the quality of their music, character and unquestionable potential, Raised As Wolves are yet to fully discover their own unique, individual sound.