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She Screams Murder - Self Titled EP

Thanks to guitarist Tom for the copy of this EP.

The three tracks follow a similar formula and are pitched somewhere between melodic death metal, metalcore, and progressive metal -  by way of comparison with local bands they sound like a cross between Adust and Musta Talvi.

Musically it's solid enough although they need a clearer sense of identity. There's many a band playing this type of metal at the moment, and SSM have few features to distinguish them from the herd. All three songs start promisingly enough, have good verses, but then the choruses are weak and let them down. The guitar work is solid, both individually and during the harmony sections, and the soloing grabs your attention too. Star billing has to go to the drummer, Jake. I was staggered when I found out he's fourteen! A bright future lies ahead without any doubt...

nd now for the down side. The vocals are unconvincing if I'm being generous. It doesn't help that they follow the aggressive verse, clean chorus formula that has been overdone completely. The extreme vocals are nowhere near vicious enough and therefore unconvincing, whilst the clean vocals are not good at all. The production could be way punchier and bigger.

I respect entirely that this has been put together on a shoestring but the bass - both guitar and drums - are near as damn it lost. Predictability is the real killer though as you know near enough where the songs are going very early on.

For a self recorded EP it's more than passable. It could do with a tweak, but there are clear restraints. Moving forwards it's a case of getting more material onboard and gigging as regularly as possible alongside the usual rehearsal routine. For live appearances the selection of a suitable cover might be an idea - but make sure you nail it! Song development and the vocals are the two main areas for immediate attention. This EP has its moments and it will be interesting to hear how it sounds live. I'm sure I'll find out in due course...


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