We’ve talked a lot about the army of new bands emerging from the UK metal scene, but one of the most exciting we’ve discovered yet is Kent metalcore quintet Cove. They’ve honed a special combination of truly terrifyingly heavy riffs and vocals with moments of melody and delicious harmonies.
Initially formed as a project between guitarists Pete Woolven and Ben Brazier a couple of years ago, Cove released debut EP We Were Once Lost in late 2016. The duo were joined by bassist Charlie Smith, drummer Jack Bowdery and, most recently, new vocalist Ben Shorten.
Part of the reason we’re excited about Cove is their intent to mix things up and stand out from the current trend of UK bands. In their words: “We got bored of being compared to sounding like other bands – we write to sound like Cove.”
And on that sound, Pete tells us: “If I had to describe the current Cove sound I would describe it as something different to the current trend in UK music. We have kept elements from our past music and drawn from our influences to create something that is heavy but melodic and fresh. Some parts will feel eerie or beautiful, others may make you want to punch your friends in the face.
“Lyrically, it’s always been about personal situations. Ben has always written in a way to get across what he means but leave it open to interpretation. Everyone can take from the song what they want.”
Cove release new EP A Conscious Motion – on which they worked with Oz Craggs of Feed The Rhino, Mallory Knox and Neck Deep fame – next month, on which Pete says: “I think people can expect diversity. Something we pride ourselves on is not writing an EP full of exactly the same song, there are elements which we have never explored before, which is really exciting for us as we feel it has opened new doors. We’ve taken our previous sound and tried to look at ways we can make it translate better live, and sound bigger on a record.”
Sounds like a great thing to us. The latest offering of that intention is Coincide: Collide, which opens up with a somewhat menacing intro that sounds intriguingly like Slipknot track Scissors – to the extent that you’re almost expecting to hear the creepy opening Corey Taylor vocals “I play doctor for five minutes flat.” As it is, slow lingering guitars soon join in alongside a slow but dominant drumbeat, then a distant ascending guitar gives way to a huge wall of low-tuned guitars.
High-pitched vocals float over drawn-out guitars as it builds towards a huge chorus of screamed vocals that open up “I can’t take this let’s burn it to the ground,” then ends on a big scream and smash of booming guitars and drums. The second chorus flows into big melodic vocals and floaty high-pitched guitars that hang over the backdrop of low-tuned guitars and pounding drums.
This is a massive track that, in addition to the release of the brilliant, bone-crushingly heavy riff-fuelled single Solis, which you can check out in the video below, promises great things for the upcoming EP.
It also builds on the momentum from their hard-hitting debut record, which I highly recommend giving a listen even if it’s just for the insanely good riff on Buried. Seriously, check it out below.
Cove decided to be more hands-on for their second EP by interweaving the lyrical content into their artwork and ensuring nothing is lost in translation, by creating it themselves. Woolven explained: “We’ve always been fairly hands-on and are happier with a DIY approach to artwork. It’s something we feel puts more of a personal stamp on what we have created.”
Having already supported the likes of Dream State and SiKth, Cove head out on a UK-wide tour with Feed The Rhino and Bad Sign later this month. Pete told us: “We’re incredibly grateful to have the opportunity to play to good-sized audiences and show them what we’re made of. The line up is killer and we can’t wait to share the stage with bands we love and respect.
“I think going to shows was always the trigger for wanting to be in bands for (all of us). There is something extremely humbling about the connection and the vibe in a room at a great show. Even if it’s a dead show but one person comes up after and is totally stoked, I think for me that’s something I’ve always felt truly rewarding and wanted to be a part of.”
A Conscious Motion is out on 23 March, and Cove’s tour supporting Feed The Rhino kicks off on 20 February at The Exchange in Bristol, followed by eight more dates all across the UK. They’ll also be playing Pile Up Fest at Fibbers in York on 23 June. More details on all their gigs is here.
There’s plenty more to come from the band too, as Pete tells us: “We’re always writing new music so the follow up to ACM is already well underway. People can expect to see us at as many shows as possible throughout the year, we’re hungry to get out there and play to as many people as possible!”