Dead Retinas are a small hardcore punk outfit from Manchester who exude plentiful amounts of energy and chaotic rhythms to produce something with the swagger of Cancer Bats and the bat shit eccentricity of Every Time I Die.
‘Divine’ marks the band’s fifth EP release since their inception back in 2011, following-up from last year’s ‘Coup De Grâce’, and brings more of that familiar punk rock attitude with some hardcore-tinged ferocity.
‘Gold In Monochrome’ starts things superbly with vocals from Chris “CJ” Smith (who is also one of three Chris‘ in the band) that are harsh but without ever sounding too extreme. On top of this, the numerous melodic refrains, buzz saw riffing, and intricate guitar bends courtesy of Jack Thompson towards the end of the track add an extra dimension to the foot stomping nature of the overall sound.
Next up is ‘You Go Glen Coco’ (yes, that’s a Mean Girls reference), which continues that frenetic riffing but adds a level of groove that will be sure to get heads banging at their shows. The repeated gang vocal towards the track’s close only enhances its consistency, and will certainly leave a few sore necks in its wake.
Finishing off this short EP is ‘An Exercise In Bad Taste’, which takes some of the best qualities of Cancer Bats, Gallows, and Feed The Rhino, and combines them to produce a bubbling cauldron of infectious hardcore goodness.
While there’s nothing here that really sparks much originality (and at only three tracks and roughly ten minutes in length), it’s difficult to justify this above anything else in the scene right now. However, what is found on ‘Divine’ is a decent start, so let’s hope that Dead Retinas show us their potential and deliver a full-length debut some time before their tenth anniversary.
After getting into alternative music during the mid 90s with the rise of nu-metal and pop-punk, I’ve gradually spread my interests far and wide and have a real love for metalcore, prog metal and tech metal. Amongst other things, I am a husband, father of two amazing kids, heavy metal DJ, and video game/book/nerd enthusiast!