Expect big grooves aplenty as Stoke-on-Trent’s Black Coast unleash their second bout of aggressive metal tomorrow. As the band explain: “A lot of people tell us that our music makes them want to bang and nod their head, so we’d say it’s definitely heavy groove with a lot of aggression and melody thrown in as well.”
The quintet of Charlie (vocals), Joe and Scott (guitar), Jack (bass) and Matt (drums) formed in January 2016 after their previous bands conveniently came to an end around the same time. They released a debut EP that earned them a support of Stray From The Path, a full tour of Japan, then supporting the likes of In Hearts Wake and Silent Screams.
As they explain: “The aim was, and still is, to make music we could be proud of and music that would be fun to play live. We all wanted to take a step-up to the next level with this band, whether that be our live shows, writing, recordings, touring etc… All of us have always been in bands for years and all share the same love for music and playing music and being in a band lets us write what we want to hear.”
The band release their second EP Ill Minds Vol. 1, the first in a two-part EP series, tomorrow, on which they tell us: “We were initially going to release Ill Minds as our debut album, but decided to split it into two EPs so we could save our first album for a later time. The two EP format works well with the songs we have, as half of them are quite different to the other half, so you can tell which song is from which EP.
“There’s definitely a noticeable progression and step-up from Crows of the North, which we used as a platform to build from to try and fine tune and hone in on the sound that we wanted. The songs are bigger, groovier and telling of how much the band have progressed over the last couple of years.”
And the early signs suggest the new EP is going to be pretty tasty. Most recent release S.L.Y opens up with a high pitched guitar noise and bursts of bass under screamed vocals “Twisted and bitter, broken and sold, My memories are lost, my weary eyes move slow,
Shades of ﬁgures l will never know, I won’t look back, those years are gone.” A blast of guitar chords and rolling drums enter as the screams continue, then a low guitar riff and drum hits take over then a huge barrage of guitars takes centre stage.
High-pitched guitars come in during an intense chorus of “I feel it closing in, Making no sense of it against your very existence, A memory I’ll erase then give way to more.” Another heavy verse follows, ending on the line “Left her, left me, left us all, Piece of shit you’re no father at all” that typifies the brutal intensity of the track.
And that followed on from the EP’s lead singe Break The Routine, check it out below:
The band’s musical influences are, as they put it, “all about the grove,” most closely inspired by the likes of Pantera, Stray From The Path and Rage Against The Machine. And when it comes to writing, they explain: “In terms of the instrumental side it can be from literally anything, whether it’s just something that we come up with on the spot or if we’ve heard a cool song and want to write something from that. We’ve written beats and riffs influenced from hip-hop tracks to scenes from movies before.
“Charlie writes all of the lyrics and they all come from where his head is at in that moment and personal subjects that he’s experienced or feels he needs to get off his chest.”
As part of an exciting growing metal scene, we asked the band for their thoughts. They said: “In general, and as a whole, the UK metal scene seems to be doing very well. There are a lot of great bands who are killing it and it’s nice to see a lot of up-and-coming bands get the recognition they deserve. But there seems to be a reoccurring theme with a lot of mid-level bands with lots of potential, splitting up because they simply can’t afford to do it anymore.
“There’s obviously many other factors and I think that the drop in average attendance at local shows is a big factor. Over the years of going to shows and playing them, there’s been a significant drop in numbers of people at shows, and when bands are driving a lot of hours and spending a lot of time, money and effort to play to no-one, it certainly takes its toll.
“As often as people say it, supporting local bands by going out to shows, buying / streaming their music, buying merch, sharing them about on social media and telling your friends about them really does make a difference.”
Black Coast are off out on tour with MSRY later this month, kicking off at Bunker in Swansea, then consecutive evenings at Subside in Birmingham, The Anvil in Bournemouth and The Apple And Parrot in Torquay. Then next month they’re playing alongside Last Hounds at Cobblestones in Bridgwater, The Cavern in Exeter, then 229 in London between 1-3 December, before two hometown gigs at The Sugarmill with King 810 and Puppy on 12 December then The Underground on 23 December.
And, as they tell us “Check us out if you like heavy and groovy metal and come speak to us at a show. Oh, and bring oatcakes and brews, duck.”