Hull band The Escape Artist have honed an intense and immersive yet extremely diverse melodic hardcore sound , which they describe as “aggressive, atmospheric and emotional.”
The band tell us to expect “snippets of things you’ve heard before, but never together” in an intoxicating metal sound that deliciously juggles moments of ambience and melody with powerful vocals and booming guitars.
The Escape Artist started out in 2016 when Luke and Simon finished up a previous band and began looking for new members. It took them a little while to find the right combination, but they completed the lineup in January 2020 and spent plenty of time practicing before getting some songs together. The result is a series of singles building up to the upcoming release of their debut EP Pursuing Love At Its Darkest, which is out on Friday (29 October).
On the EP, frontman Rob told us: “Since we solidified the new lineup in January of 2020, we knew we wanted to work on creating and eventually releasing a longer studio project. Everything we put out previous to this EP was just singles or a collection of homemade demos. Now that it’s finally on the horizon, we couldn’t be more excited for it to belong to everyone else.
“One thing we wanted to make sure of when writing this EP is that we didn’t ‘pigeonhole’ ourselves, keeping as many doors open as possible. Expect variety, as every song on this project sounds different from the next.”
Our first taste of the EP is its superb lead single Paint The Room, which opens up with intense guitars that play call and respond with laid-back vocals. A piercing guitar sound comes in over driving guitars and more intense vocals before dropping into light, dreamy instrumentals and vocals.
That explodes into vicious vocals supported by driving drums, heavy guitar chords and another atmospheric piercing guitar lick. The heavy vocals continue and develop into engaging cries that drop into a light melodic section. The drums and guitars pick up speed and explode into a huge scream and booming stabs of guitar that continue under intense screamed vocals that bring the track to a close. Check it out in the video here:
The band has plenty of singles to whet your appetite for the EP, including the excellent All Good Things, Words and Eclipse. But a personal favourite is their debut single Daydreaming, which starts with light instrumentals then building drums that burst into delicious guitar chords and a piercing lick. Engaging vocals take over and develop into a big singalong chorus “Feeling so alive, Wishing we were dead, Daydreaming through our lives, Asleep inside our heads” supported by a cool riff.
A mellow instrumental section and light repeat of the chorus vocals explodes into big guitars and a piercing lick then a more intense version of the chorus supported by huge screamed vocals. And the huge screams bring the track to a powerful conclusion, which you can check out in the video:
A more recent release is this year’s Misery Made Its Home In Me, which opens up with light guitars that continue under screamed vocals supported by driving drums. The instrumentals very gradually build up as the intense screams continue and develop into a huge barrage of vocals supported by powerful drums and guitars. Check it out here:
It may not surprise you to learn that Deftones have been the most significant influence on The Escape Artist and will continue to be going forward. They also draw influence from the likes of Superheaven, Basement, Casey, Citizen, Defeater and Trade Wind, which they tell us shine through on the EP.
And on what inspires their music, Rob tells us: “Collectively for the most part we all listen to the same bands. Our music usually develops from a small guitar part that Simon or Ethan may have written, to then bringing that to the practice room and putting a full band behind it.
“Lyrically, my inspirations for writing come from my own self-inflicted grief. This EP in particular was conceptualised during the worst year of my life, with each song representing a different stage in that tale. Any music past this EP I can’t definitively say will continue down that same lyrical path, but being able to verbalise that pain during that time undoubtedly saved my life.”
There’s plenty more to come from The Escape Artist, beginning with the release of their debut EP Pursuing Love At Its Darkest on Friday (29 October), which is available for pre-order here. As Rob explains: “We are always writing in some capacity, we’d love to get some recording done at some point next year. But for now we want to focus on playing shows wherever possible and get this EP with the new lineup to as many people as possible.
“We hope that you are able to connect to this EP, and that listening to these songs brings you as much as joy as we had while creating it. It’s taken so long for us to get to this stage but now we’re here to stay. I’m not sure what’s next for The Escape Artist but I would love to do a full length at some point in time.”