We Were Once Lost EP
Apparently every review of a metalcore album has to start with a short soliloquy about how the genre is dead/dying/long past its expiration date. Sure, the crop of crap you hear making the biggest splashes in the scene doesn’t spark much in the way of hope for the future, but that talk just seems lazy.There is a rather fertile underground metalcore scene, especially across the pond. UK metalcore upstarts COVE sound like another in an impressive line of talented newcomers. Their debut EP, We Were Once Lost, certainly features some familiar influences, but the young group excel at execution with passion. COVE highlight why metalcore still exists: when done well, the style is a fantastic vessel for aggression and introspection. Thankfully, this young band has those attributes in spades, and it makes them a group metalcore fans have to watch.
COVE’s sound takes influence from Hollow Crown-era Architects, Defeater, and While She Sleeps, which is to say this is a groovetastic, melodic beast with enough atmosphere and chaotic technicality to keep things interesting. We Were Once Lost never gets lost in its own ass for technicality’s sake, as dual guitarists Pete Woolven and Ben Brazier utilize the melodic hardcore playbook’s emphasis of melody and groove over flair. The album can certainly get heavy, but COVE never feel like they’ve overextended themselves. The EP’s most melodic moments, especially “Sonder” offer a wonderful respite from the violence. Vocalist Sam King has a familiar tone and timbre (especially Sam Carter from Architects), but he’s adept at conveying emotion through his voice. The album touches on some raw emotions, and King’s vocals do a great job at morphing ever so slightly to relay the messages.
Overall, this is a masterful introduction from a new voice in metalcore. COVE aren’t exactly reinventing the wheel, but their version of the style is punchy, powerful, and really fun. Here’s hoping they can further find their niche and fulfill their massive potential soon.