Polaris has “it” and gleefully flaunts it throughout their exceptional debut. With metalcore bands popping up faster than pimples on an adolescent, it takes something different and/or special to stand out from the crowd. It’s even harder to do so when you play in a fairly familiar sound. That’s where we come in with the Australian-based group’s debut. The Mortal Coil plays a nice hybrid game between melodic metalcore and progressive metalcore – think Architects and August Burns Red by way of Underoath and Bring Me The Horizon. Riffs are big, meaty, and often mathy, except when they’re not. Songs like “Dusk To Day” emphasize restraint and melody until a massive climax.
So what is “it” that Polaris has? Despite the fact that little on The Mortal Coil is particularly novel, the band are masters at songwriting and injecting every song with a narcotic dose of energy and fun. Breakdowns aren’t overused – and are mighty when they come. Vocal hooks actually add to the songs and really stick in your head. Plus, dual guitarists Rick Schneider and Ryan Siew do a great job of building momentum throughout songs. Riffs and leads do repeat, but there’s always a sense of urgency rather than complacency.
Again, a lot of The Mortal Coil sounds like how I imagine Architects would sound if they signed with Rise Records a few records ago – slick and heavy – but there’s a confidence on the record that elevates these songs to great heights. This feels like the start of something special, and as Polaris grow further away from their influences, we could have the next great metalcore act here.