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 Heart Of A Coward - Severance US 2CD Edition (2013) Review

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Reign In Metal
Reign In Metal

Zodiac : Aries Metal Reputation : 88
Join date : 2012-01-05
Location : Vacationing in Hell

PostHeart Of A Coward - Severance US 2CD Edition (2013) Review

Heart Of A Coward - Severance US 2CD Edition (2013)
Century Media Records
Running Time CD1 36:15 -- Running Time CD2 28:18 -- Total Running Time 64:33

It's only about a year since Heart Of A Coward's debut album 'Hope And Hindrance' but they are already back with sophomore release 'Severance' and what a difference a year has made! I got the debut free as a covermount CD on Metal Hammer (UK) Magazine and duly gave it a few spins. Whilst it is not a bad album by any means it covers all of the modern metal traits that I'm not particularly a fan of. Metalcore, Djent (oh I hate that word) guitar work and I also wasn't keen on the vocals (harsh or clean) of 'Jamie Graham', which was surprising as I actually quite liked him when he was with his previous band Sylosis, perhaps because musically that band ticks a lot more 'like' boxes for me! Whilst I'm not about to claim new album 'Severance' has converted me or jumped into my top releases of the year list (it hasn't and it doesn't) it is a far more mature and accomplished recording than the debut and on the whole much more palatable to me personally!

TesseracT are another band that have impressed me greatly with the recent 'Altered State' album, and their guitarist 'Acle Kahney' is the man responsible for helping to record all the music on 'Severance' at his own 4D Studios. Whether his influence has rubbed off on Heart Of A Coward I cannot say for definite but it certainly sounds like it has! They seemed to have toned back a little on certain aspects and introduced new ideas to their sound. There is a huge amount of groove present and Jamie's vocals, especially his cleans, have improved a great deal. Everything just seems more listenable. There are also two guest vocalists appearing. 'Justin Hill (SikTh) who provides a great performance on 'Distance' (my favourite track on the album) and 'Scott Kennedy' (Bleed From Within) on 'Psychophant'. Guitarists 'Carl Ayers' & 'Steve Haycock' work as a team very well and the rhythm partnership of bassist 'Vishal 'V' Khetia' and drummer 'Christopher 'Noddy' Mansbridge' do the same, although as is the norm for music in this genre it comes across as 'processed'!

On this US version of the album you also get a bonus seven track audio CD of Heart Of A Coward's live set from the UK's Download Festival 2013 (European versions get a DVD of the same gig). This band get some great live reviews and they do indeed sound good, although once again, it all sounds a little triggered and processed though (please correct me if I'm mistaken). Regardless of that the crowd seem to lap up the performance and fair play to the band for obviously getting a big crowd to watch them, bearing in mind this was recorded during the summer and they only had the one album out then!

This genre of metal is never going to come high on my 'most wanted' list but, credit where it's due, Heart Of A Coward have released a very substantial second album and if they continue to develop and refine their sound at this rate then who knows what I'll be saying about them in another couple of years!

Review written exclusively for Brutiful Entertaiment by Rick Tilley

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