British metal music – in whatever guise you wish to label it, from metalcore and melodic hardcore to post-hardcore – is in a pretty good place right now. The likes of Bring Me The Horizon, Architects, Asking Alexandria, Enter Shikari to name just a few have put it on the map, and we’re now seeing a whole new generation of bands further extending their work.
This week’s New Band of the Week is something a little bit special, and absolutely a case in point of this. If you like your guitars big, loud and low-tuned, your vocals brutal yet melodic and you simply love metal at breakneck speed, then High Rise are going to be right up your street.
The south-west London-based rockers – consisting of Tom Thain (guitars), Jovic Staddon (vocals), Ryan Beckett (bass), Sam Christou (drums) and Ricky Gurung (guitars) – have been together for two years. The band describe themselves as “energetic, emotional and relentless,” which is a very apt self-assessment based upon new EP Left It For Everything.
The EP sounds reminiscent of old-school BMTH fused with the brutal brilliance of Architects. High Rise’s vicious verses are supported by moments of melancholy and smashing riffs and drum rolls that you can’t help but mosh along to, no matter when and where you’re listening.
It kicks off with Hands Untied, a blitz of booming, distorted guitars over screamed vocals with a melodic chorus thrown in for good measure. Piece by Piece picks up where the previous track left off, with a brutal intro that will delight mosh pits up and down the UK.
Next up, Reborn opens up with a Deftones-esque riff before launching into full-on screamed vocals before an enjoyable melodic chorus. There’s more than a little Architects sound here, with huge guitars epitomising everything that’s great about this pure, unadulterated metal band.
The EP ends with the brutal L.I.F.E and brilliant Vultures, featuring big riffs and epic vocals. Check it out for yourself in the video below.
High Rise’s debut EP The Tides Will Take You is also well worth of mention. Final track Brotherhood is metal at its veru finest, while standout track Memories is fast and furious, with screamed verses and a superb contrasting chorus – but the highlight for me is its brilliant Architects-esque breakdown. The video is below:
To find out more about what makes High Rise tick, we had a chat with guitarist Tom and vocalist Jovic, and asked them about how the band got together.
Tom said: “We used to all play in bands with each other back in 2010 when we were at Kingston College, in south-west London. We’ve all pretty much been massive music fans since we were young, so watching our idols play live is what probably made us want to get up and do it. Getting the opportunity to play our own music live is a great experience.”
“Since day one of being a band we’ve always tried to not follow too much of what everyone else is doing, but while still remaining true to the scene that we fit into. We’re all into different types of music so we kind of all throw our ideas into one pot and give it a good mix up.
“Writing music is what allows us to express ourselves, it’s great therapy. Generally we tend to write a lot about everyday issues and problems we all face day-to-day and how we overcome those issues. We like to try and remind people through our music to never give up and to keep going no matter the odds.”
Tom and Jovic list the band’s key musical influences as being Underoath, The Ghost Inside, Architects and A Day To Remember. So we asked them a bit more about what they listen to. Jovic said: “For me, my favourite album has to be A Day To Remember’s For Those Who Have Heart. Every song reminds of me of when I was younger and it’s just such a solid album.”
Having heard their music I’m pretty excited about seeing High Rise live, so we asked them about their best ever gig and about their experience of playing gigs.
Tom said: “I would have to say our best gig was Facedown at Scala in Kings Cross. We are playing again in November this year and we cannot wait. It’s awesome to play a show to people who are just really drunk and are out to have a banger of a good night.
Jovic added: “Talking of gigs reminds me of when we travelled all the way up to Scotland from London on a Friday at 9pm, arriving in Scotland at 11am on Saturday. We setup for the show and it didn’t seem like a lot of people would be there. We were backstage and when we went to watch the first band it was busy and it stayed like this for the whole night. They were amazing and really welcoming for sure. Cheap booze kept some of us going when we left at 9am the next day and we didn’t get back home until at least 3am on Monday – and yes some of us like myself had to be at work at 7am!”
High Rise are currently unsigned but working very hard autonomously with management company Down For Life Music. Tom said: “Right now we feel a label would be incredible, but we are very happy where we are and feel ready for the next adventure!”
Both of High Rise’s first two EPs are incredible, their sound is infectious and I haven’t stopped listening to them since I discovered them a couple of weeks ago. I firmly believe High Rise could be set for great things and can’t wait to see them play live.
High Rise are playing at Scala in Kings Cross, London, on Friday 4th November, followed by a gig with Imminence on December 16th in Carmarthen, Wales. They’re also hoping to play some festivals next year, and are still writing regularly so hopefully we’ll have new music to bring you from them very soon.