FEATURE: Who to look out for in 2014!

Now that 2013 is all over and done with and 2014 is now in full motion, we have ourselves another 12 months of brand new bands, releases, music, tours, festivals and everything else to look forward to. Of course, there’s bands out there that deserve your attention more than others, so we’ve compiled here over 30 bands that we think are going to on everyone’s lips this year. Take a look and see who are going to be the big names and bring out the big releases this year:


ABOVE THE UNDERGROUND

FOR FANS OF:
Blink-182 / Hit The Lights / Cartel

Flying the flag for Chester’s music scene, the pop-punk boys of Above The Underground have so far only released one EP since signing to Lazy Bear Records. That being said, the plans they have for 2014 could see them take off and establish themselves in the dangerously overpopulated pop-punk scene.

February 17th will see the release of their debut full-length record, ‘Sonder’, and with new track ‘Return To Point Pleasant’ already being a hit with the fans, it’s already shaping up well. Touring Europe in support of Me Vs. Hero at the end of January will only give them more chance to showcase their talents, win over more fans and hopefully make 2014 a successful year for a very hard working band. [JBa]

LISTEN TO:
Anchors [stream]
Close Your Eyes And Drive [stream]
Return To Point Pleasant [stream]


ARCHITECTS

FOR FANS OF:
Stray From The Path / Misery Signals / Bring Me The Horizon

With a new label deal in Epitaph and sixth album ‘Lost Forever // Lost Together’ (out March 11th) in the pipeline, 2014 is set to be a huge year for Architects. Eight years on since their debut LP, ‘Nightmares’, the band have gone onto develop a hard-hitting, melodic and abrasive metalcore sound.

From their first outings as a band, Architects have provided support to bands such as The Dillinger Escape Plan and Rise Against. Now, the band will embark on a huge UK/European headline tour, hitting 15 different countries along the way. 2014 will be sure to go down as a milestone in Architects‘ history. [JRK]

LISTEN TO:
Early Grave [stream]
Black Blood [stream]
Follow The Water [stream]


BABY GODZILLA

FOR FANS OF:
Gallows / Rolo Tomassi / The Ghost Of A Thousand

For a band with only two EPs to their name, Baby Godzilla have already built up an enviable reputation as one of the most intense live acts around. To be at a Baby Godzilla gig in 2013 was to witness barely-contained madness, total disregard for personal safety and outright tenacity towards their instruments, the venue and any surrounding furniture.

If their latest EP, ‘Knockout Machine’, released back in August is anything to go by, Baby Godzilla‘s 2014 output is going to be a gnarly ride through awkward time signatures, lacerated throats and nuggets of irrepressible melody. Let’s just hope these Nottingham lads can stop from hard-drinking, spazzing out and bludgeoning themselves long enough to get a UK tour together. [GB]

LISTEN TO:
Trogloraptor [stream]
Don’t Touch That Dial [stream]
Powerboat Disaster [stream]


BRAND NEW

FOR FANS OF:
Taking Back Sunday / Manchester Orchestra / Thrice

These emo legends have always been a hot topic amongst their dedicated fans, but having recently started to play shows again (with a huge UK tour with Saves The Day announced for later this year) and reassuring us all that they aren’t dead, the speculation is growing as to when we’ll see their long-awaited fifth album.

The band themselves have said that they’ve been working on new stuff though, so it looks quite likely that 2014 will finally be the year. Expect the internet to explode with feelings if/when they decide to announce it. [RdF]

LISTEN TO:
Sic Transit Gloria… Glory Fades [stream]
Jesus Christ [stream]
The Quiet Things That No One Ever Knows [stream]


BREATHE CAROLINA

FOR FANS OF:
I See Stars / Pierce The Veil / Sleeping With Sirens

Album four, ‘Savages’, will mark the first release from the band since 2011’s ‘Hell Is What You Make It’, the first release since the departure of founding member and co-vocalist Kyle Even in October and the first for Breathe Carolina where they consider themselves an actual band. There’s a lot of new turns for the Colorado outfit.

Without Kyle Even, ‘Savages’ could be the first album completely scream-free, a direction that was almost complete with ‘Hell Is What You Make It’ and might be a much fuller and fulfilling album with the added crunch of a full band. This could go either way, but if it takes a positive turn, expect Breathe Carolina to be a name mentioned often throughout 2014. [ZR]

LISTEN TO:
Blackout [stream]
Hello Fascination [stream]
Edge Of Heaven [stream]


BURY TOMORROW

FOR FANS OF:
Killswitch Engage / Parkway Drive / Of Mice & Men

Bury Tomorrow released one of the best metalcore records in years with 2012’s ‘The Union Of Crowns’. It reminded us what metalcore should be; heavy ass verses with catchy and melodic choruses, and after a wicked UK tour this year they seem unstoppable.

Their much anticipated third full-length album, titled ‘Runes’, will soon be pummelling our ears from May 26th and, if first track ‘Watcher’ is anything to go by, expect Bury Tomorrow to be representing the UK metalcore scene very brightly over the coming 12 months. [JRK]

LISTEN TO:
Royal Blood [stream]
An Honourable Reign [stream]
Knight Life [stream]


CHELSEA GRIN

FOR FANS OF:
Born Of Osiris / Suicide Silence / The Devil Wears Prada

With their latest EP ‘Evolve’ taking on a slightly different flavour to their deathly, breakdown ridden roots, Chelsea Grin look set to build on their recent progression in the coming months. The release of new track, ‘Letters’, fresh in our ears, the band will drop a new full-length record in mid 2014 which is sure to catapult them to the forefront of attentions once again.

With a headlining UK jaunt with The Browning, Silent Screams and More Than A Thousand this coming March, there will be little escaping Chelsea Grin on these shores. [TB]

LISTEN TO:
Letters [stream]
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell [stream]
My Damnation [stream]


CHIODOS

FOR FANS OF:
Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows / Emarosa / Hands Like Houses

Chiodos have had a fairly tumultuous time of late between the departure of vocalist Brandon Bolmer and drummer Tanner Wayne and the return of former vocalist and Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows frontman Craig Owens in 2013. In spite of all this, the band have signed to Razor & Tie, have made a few festival appearances and have a new record due for release in March. All of this bodes very well for their return.

Already teasing fans on their Vans Warped Tour UK visit in November with new track ‘Behvis Bullock’, it’s a sound that the band claim echo back to the days of their most successful albums, ‘All’s Well The Ends Well’ and ‘Bone Palace Ballet’. It’s a return that is much anticipated and, by the sounds of their preparations, we may see a record that will storm them back into success. [JBa]

LISTEN TO:
Baby, You Wouldn’t Last A Minute On The Creek [stream]
Caves [stream]
Lexington (Joey Pea-Pot With A Monkey Face) [stream]


DECADE

FOR FANS OF:
Basement / Don Broco / You Me At Six

Kicking off 2014 with their debut album ‘Good Luck’, it’d be fair to say that the album’s title, though meant ironically with luck during the band’s career to date, simply sums up exactly what the next 12 months have in store for them. Already the album is receiving rave reviews, and its promo singles ‘Brainfreeze’, ‘Callous’ and ‘British Weather’ are bothering rock radio and TV stations across the UK.

Though 2013 saw the band hitting the road with the likes of Tonight Alive and a set at the Vans Warped Tour UK, a tour with Mayday Parade is already on the cards this year, along with a return appearance at Radstock this Spring. This time around, however, expect far more sing-alongs for a band who could well be one of the strongest up-and-comers from Britain this year. [ZR]

LISTEN TO:
Never Enough [stream]
Brainfreeze [stream]
British Weather [stream]


DON BROCO

FOR FANS OF:
Lower Than Atlantis / Reuben / Deaf Havana

What a year 2013 was for Don Broco. First, they started it with a headline UK tour, which sold out at nearly every date. Then, they headlined not one but two hefty festivals, Radstock and Hit The Deck. If that wasn’t enough, they then were promoted to the main stage of the UK’s mammoth Reading/Leeds Festival.

Clearly all of that hard work they’d put in over the last few years has finally paid off and Don Broco have made it to the big leagues. Given how big 2013 was, it’s hard to imagine what new heights 2014 will take Don Broco to, but considering that they have some material already stored up for album number two we can only picture big things for this Bedford quartet. [AR]

LISTEN TO:
You Wanna Know [stream]
Whole Truth [stream]
Priorities [stream]


EMAROSA

FOR FANS OF:
Hands Like Houses / Tides Of Man / Chiodos

It goes without saying that within the post-hardcore community, a follow-up to Emarosa‘s 2010 self-titled effort and first record since the departure of vocalist Jonny Craig back in 2011 is easily one of the most anticipated releases in the genre for the past few years. Despite a few try-out replacements, most notably Tilian Pearson (Dance Gavin Dance, ex-Tides Of Man), the band have now enlisted Bradley Walden, formerly of Squid The Whale.

Now, with another vocalist finally in the ranks, the band have confirmed they are hard at work to create that long-awaited follow-up album. Though a few recent leaks of Tilian Pearson try-out era demos have surfaced over the past few months, we still haven’t had a good look at what we can expect with Walden involved. However, with the vibe of said demo leaks, Emarosa might be entering darker territory. [ZR]

LISTEN TO:
A Toast To The Future Kids! [stream]
The Past Should Stay Dead [stream]
Live It. Love It. Lust It. [stream]


EMPIRES FADE

FOR FANS OF:
The Ghost Inside / Northlane / The Eyes Of A Traitor

Also featuring on our ‘Who to look our for…’ article from last year, the Manchester bunch Empires Fade really showed what they’re capable of when they released their EP ‘Reflections’ back in 2012. We already know that this band has played alongside the likes of Buried In Verona, Martyr Defiled and even Parkway Drive, but what’s truly in store for these guys in 2014?

The band are putting the finishing touches to their debut full-length album, the first official release with new addition Jack Delany (ex-The Eyes Of A Traitor) as vocalist. With a string of shows soon to come supporting Our Last Night, and no doubt many more tours and festival appearances soon to be announced, all this makes Empires Fade a prospect that’s worth getting excited for this year. [LP]

LISTEN TO:
Virtue [stream]
The Highest Highs [stream]
Reflection [stream]


GNARWOLVES

FOR FANS OF:
Weezer / Nai Harvest / Title Fight

Gnarwolves are the real deal. This is authentic and intelligent punk rock upchucking its emo-tinged guts in your face, smoking up a bifter and ollie-ing off down the street. 2013 saw the band releasing another EP, the heavier ‘Funemployed’ which follows-up 2012’s slice of good-time skate punk, ‘CRU’.

Between playing their hearts out, inspiring endless flesh-waves of crowdsurfers at their shows, kipping on strangers’ floors and generally living it up around Europe, Gnarwolves have managed to get a few new tracks together which will feature on their first album, due for release later this year. If you’re craving some real music in 2014, something to stir up the blood and bile in your system, then Gnarwolves might just be the band for you. [GB]

LISTEN TO:
Melody Has Big Plans [stream]
Tongue Su [stream]
Limerance [stream]


THE HYPE THEORY

FOR FANS OF:
Versa / Evarose / Tonight Alive

Female fronted five-piece The Hype Theory had a successful 2013. We saw the release of their sophomore follow-up to ‘Glory Days’, entitled ‘Captives’, which showed a darker side to the Essex quintet and was ultimately a great album.

With a small UK tour planned for the end of January with Crooks, and a few shows already prepared for the end of March, it looks like it’s going to be a busy year for these up-and-coming pop-rockers. What’s more, with the band also planning to get hard at work with album number three, we could see another release from these guys before the year is up. [JBa]

LISTEN TO:
Reverie [stream]
If You’re Going Down (I’m Going With You) [stream]
You’re Going Home Alone [stream]


I KILLED THE PROM QUEEN

FOR FANS OF:
Parkway Drive / Miss May I / Killswitch Engage

After reforming in 2011, Australian metalcore heavyweights I Killed The Prom Queen have spent much of 2013 putting together their first new full-length for six years. The album, which is to be entitled ‘Beloved’ drops on February 14th via Epitaph, and is sure to be met with a lot of touring here, there and everywhere.

There are already rumours of them joing a UK leg of the Progression Tour with Caliban, The Ghost Inside and The Devil Wears Prada, whih is perhaps pending. It would be unwise to bet against the band making a huge splash this year. [TB]

LISTEN TO:
To The Wolves [stream]
Say Goodbye [stream]
Your Shirt Would Look Better With A Colombian Neck Tie [stream]


ISSUES

FOR FANS OF:
Crown The Empire / Memphis May Fire / We Came As Romans

Since forming from ex-members of the now defunct Woe, Is Me, Issues have quickly made a name for themselves on the post-hardcore circuit with their debut EP, ‘Black Diamonds’. Dual vocalists Tyler Carter and Michael Bohn team up once again for another attempt at world dominance, and 2013’s one-off single ‘Hooligans’ kept anticipation high for a debut full-length.

Into 2014, the band’s self-titled debut is set for release on February 18th, giving fans time to familiarise themselves with the lyrics before they hit the road with Of Mice & Men and Beartooth in the UK this April. If you want heavy breakdowns and singalong choruses with funky R&B influences, then look out for Issues in 2014. [MH]

LISTEN TO:
King Of Amarillo [stream]
Hooligans [stream]
Princeton Ave. [stream]


LA DISPUTE

FOR FANS OF:
MeWithoutYou / Touché Amoré / Pianos Become The Teeth

‘Rooms Of The House’, the recently announced follow-up to 2011’s critically acclaimed ‘Wildlife’ has a hell of a lot to live up to. ‘Wildlife’ provided some of the most hard hitting, emotive lyricism of the last five years and, if they can go even half way to matching the effort shown on that record, you can expect to see their name on many end of year lists in 2014.

They’ve improved with every album so far, though, so it’s probably safe to get excited. What’s more, with a string of headline UK dates this May, there’s no doubt that La Dispute might have the best album of their careers ready for us come March 18th. [RdF]

LISTEN TO:
Such Small Hands [stream]
St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church Blues [stream]
King Park [stream]


LONELY THE BRAVE

FOR FANS OF:
Alter Bridge / Blackstone Cherry / Shinedown

Lonely the Brave are the most exciting new bands to come out of Britain in a long time. Possessing a bold, nay, epic rock sound, and with only a 4-track EP under their belt, they’re bowling over critics left, right and centre. They’ve made it as Rock Sound‘s ‘Top 50 Albums of 2013’ list with their ‘Backroads’ EP, and they’e in my personal top 10 list too.

Keep an eye out for these guys, as they’re heading out on their first UK headline tour in early January. They’re just starting to get noticed and they’ll surely explode throughout 2014, so the next few months might be your last chance to catch them in an intimate setting. [AR]

LISTEN TO:
Black Saucers [stream]


MARMOZETS

FOR FANS OF:
Rolo Tomassi / Feed The Rhino / Polar.

New female-fronted kids on the block Marmozets will be brushing arms with the who’s who of heavy metal as they announced their signing to monster record label, Roadrunner Records, in 2013 by letting loose huge single, ‘Move, Shake, Hide’. Showcasing their energetic live shows on tour with Funeral For A Friend and Senses Fail this year, Becca Macintyre proved that she’s a vocalist to be reckoned with and why Marmozets are creating so much hype; the’’re eccentric, loud, powerful, and unpredictable.

With their debut full-length album looming, it’s sure to be a highlight of the music calendar and a turning point in the career of the band. Marmozets are ready to bring their chaos into 2014 and you better be there to witness it. [MH]

LISTEN TO:
Onemanwolfpack [stream]
Move, Shake, Hide [stream]
Born Young & Free [stream]


MARTYR DEFILED

FOR FANS OF:
Thy Art Is Murder / The Acacia Strain / Despised Icon

With numerous tours and festival appearances in 2013 under their belt, Lincolnshireb deathcore unit Martyr Defiled seem to go from strength to strength every year. With the release of their single ‘Infidels’ last September, the promise of an upcoming sophomore full-length in 2014 looks to yield exciting results.

A February UK jaunt with other rising favourites Black Tongue and Heritage is sure to receive a fanatical response. Perhaps in 2014 we will see the band deservedly content with the swelling British metal elite. Watch this space. [TB]

LISTEN TO:
Goldstein [stream]
Infidels [stream]
Isolate [stream]


MISS MAY I

FOR FANS OF:
Killswitch Engage / As I Lay Dying / Bury Tomorrow

Ohio metalcore mob Miss May I are looking unstoppable in 2014. Not only are the band poised to drop their fourth full-length record during the first half of the year, but a confirmed slot at next year’s legendary Download Festival and a prestigious support role on the upcoming co-headlining Killswitch Engage/Trivium run means that these rising hopefuls will be a big presence over here imminently.

Exciting things in the pipelines for these guys, for sure. Don’t be surprised if you see them selling out large academies before we see ourselves into 2015. [TB]

LISTEN TO:
Hey Mister [stream]
Day By Day [stream]
Relentless Chaos [stream]


MOOSE BLOOD

FOR FANS OF:
Brand New / Jimmy Eat World / Death Cab For Cutie

2013 was already one hell of a year for these Canterbury emos; they toured with Funeral For A Friend, released an excellent split with Departures (which was put out in part by No Sleep Records in the US) and built a following worthy of bands who’ve been around ten times longer than they have (these guys formed around a year and a half ago). So, to say that 2014 will be even bigger for them is no small statement.

There is, however, the small matter of their first full-length record to contend with, which is due to drop within the next 12 months. There’s no word on any details on it just yet, but if they can keep up their near-unstoppable form, these dudes will be hitting some crazy heights when it finally arrives. [RdF]

LISTEN TO:
Boston [stream]
Bukowski [stream]
Stay Here [stream]


NECK DEEP

FOR FANS OF:
The Story So Far / This Time Next Year / The Wonder Years

Growing from strength to strength over 2013, Neck Deep have cemented themselves as ones to watch by becoming the first British band to sign with Hopeless Records. February’s short but sweet ‘A History Of Bad Decisions’ EP seems like forever ago, with the releases of singles ‘Growing Pains’ and ‘Crushing Grief (No Remedy)’ whetting appetites for their debut album next year.

‘Wishful Thinking’ drops early on January 13th and with headline tours in the UK and North America, combined with a long stint supporting We Are The In Crowd already lined up, 2014 is already looking like it belongs to Neck Deep. Their fresh take on pop-punk is ready to rival the big boys from across the pond and they’re sure to deliver on all expectations. [MH]

LISTEN TO:
Growing Pains [stream]
A Part Of Me (feat. Laura Whitmore) [stream]
Right Now (as Not Advised) [stream]


OF MICE & MEN

FOR FANS OF:
The Devil Wears Prada / Rise To Remain / Asking Alexandria

Of Mice & Men have always released albums with a couple of certified metalcore bangers, like ‘Second And Sebring’ off their self-titled debut, but their best work was released on the deluxe edition of their second record, ‘The Flood’. It featured an extra 4 tracks, clocking in at 13 minutes together, and were arguably their best songs to date.

Hopefully, the band will continue onward this new level of heavier and more crushing songwriting on their upcoming 2014 album, ‘Restoring Force’. New single ‘You’re Not Alone’ suggests that it’s going to be a strong release. [JK]

LISTEN TO:
Second And Sebring [stream]
The Depths [stream]
You’re Not Alone [stream]


THE ONE HUNDRED

FOR FANS OF:
TRC / Enter Shikari / Hacktivist

Having formed in 2013, things got quite busy for The One Hundred towards the end of the year. Their debut track, ‘Breed’ was picked up by the BBC Radio 1 Rock Show and the XFM Rock Show. Both Kerrang! Radio and Team Rock Radio weren’t far behind either. Not bad for a new band and their debut track.

Their fledgling live career is starting to blossom now too, after two shows supporting Outpatients (Mikee from SiKth‘s band) and another show opening for Skindred at a sold out Bucks Uni show. Three shows in and with no less than five booking agents showing interest, it looks like 2014 could be a pretty significant year for these Surrey upstarts. Stay tuned, The One Hundred have a LOT more to come. [GL]

LISTEN TO:
Breed [stream]


PULLED APART BY HORSES

FOR FANS OF:
Turbowolf / Future Of The Left / Marmozets

Their erratic blend of post-hardcore, gritty punk rock and, at times, melodic alternative rock, combined with an energetic and sweaty live show is what has made Yorkshire outfit Pulled Apart By Horses such a promising British act, and one that deserves your strict attention. With quirky song titles like ‘Back To The Fuck Yeah’, ‘I Punched A Lion In The Throat’, ‘Bromance Ain’t Dead’ and ‘Meat Balloon’, the Leeds quartet are as fun and silly as they are entertaining.

Their third album and follow-up to 2011’s ‘Tough Love’ could well be the one that sees them as worthy contenders beside their far more serious peers. The Chinese zodiac states that 2014 is the year of the Horse, and with their third album shortly on the way in the New Year, those guys could be bang on here. [ZR]

LISTEN TO:
V.E.N.O.M. [stream]
Back To The Fuck Yeah [stream]
Epic Myth [stream]


SKINDRED

FOR FANS OF:
Korn / Slipknot / Cypress Hill

The size of Skindred‘s tunes just keep getting bigger and bigger. In 2011, the rasta-metal group released ‘Union Black’, an album which featured huge hits like ‘Warning’ and ‘Doom Riff’. In 2013, they released two singles off their upcoming album; the mighty ‘Ninja’, featuring one of the best riffs of their career, and the Kanye West sampling, heavy bouncing and simply killer, ‘Kill The Power’.

Skindred don’t want to just be know as the best live band, they want to conquer on the album front too, and ‘Kill The Power’ might just do that for them. Prepare yourselves. [JK]

LISTEN TO:
Warning [stream]
Doom Riff [stream]
Ninja [stream]


SUICIDE SILENCE

FOR FANS OF:
Whitechapel / Job For A Cowboy / All Shall Perish

After the untimely passing of beloved frontman Mitch Lucker in late 2012, it’s certainly true to say that the future for these deathcore future legends was speculative. And so, with the announcement that former All Shall Perish vocalist Eddie Hermida will be stepping into the fold, the band were quick to begin work on album number four.

The Californian quintet are in the studio, at the time of writing, putting the finishing touches to perhaps the most anticipated record of next year. With a slot also confirmed for this year’s Download Festival, Suicide Silence look set to stage a mammoth return in the coming months. [TB]

LISTEN TO:
You Only Live Once [stream]
Wake Up [stream]
Fuck Everything [stream]


THY ART IS MURDER

FOR FANS OF:
Carnifex / Whitechapel / Oceano

Breaking out of their native Australia and stunning the international metal community with debut album, ‘Hate’, deathly quintet Thy Art Is Murder have had a hugely fruitful 2013. Triumphant sets at Ghostfest and a rabid response for their Hate Across Europe Tour has seen them garner a vast fanbase.

Next year looks to see the band capitalize on their success, with a January UK tour with Heart Of A Coward upcoming and a debut appearance at Download Festival in June fixed. Expect to hear the name Thy Art Is Murder high and low in 2014. [TB]

LISTEN TO:
Reign Of Darkness [stream]
Purest Strain Of Hate [stream]
Shadow Of Eternal Sin [stream]


TWIN ATLANTIC

FOR FANS OF:
Young Guns / Deaf Havana / Biffy Clyro

It feels like Twin Atlantic have been away for forever. They’ave finally started discussing their second full-length album, due for release in early 2014. Since 2011’s ‘Free’, the Scottish band have been very busy. They have been building up on their fan base and, one thing is sure; the anticipation for the next album is huge. With all these new experiences, the band will surely be bigger and better than ever.

In a statement posted on their official site, the band show their excitement for the new album, saying that “It’s already feeling like ‘Free’ was just a prelude to what we’re creating this time around”. Bassist Ross McNae said that they “needed some time to find out what kind of music [they] wanted to make next and to explore things in the studio that [they’ve] never had the chance to explore before”. No doubt it will be worth the wait. [OC]

LISTEN TO:
Free [stream]
Make A Beast Of Myself [stream]
What Is Light, Where Is Laughter [stream]


WE ARE THE IN CROWD

FOR FANS OF:
Tonight Alive / Jimmy Eat World / Mayday Parade

Pop-rock quintet We Are The In Crowd have already earned themselves a solid fan base with their infectiously upbeat, sugary sweet tunes, and 2014 looks set to establish them further as their own band and shrug of that overused and unavoidable Paramore comparison.

With eagerly anticipated new album ‘Weird Kids’ set for release on February 18th, they’ve already teased fans with new single ‘The Best Thing (That Never Happened)’. Planning to promote this new material as much as possible, WATIC already have tours planned for the UK, Europe and the USA. Should all this go to plan, then 2014 could be a very successful year for the young group. [JBa]

LISTEN TO:
Both Sides Of The Story [stream]
Rumor Mill [stream]
The Best Thing (That Never Happened) [stream]


WHILE SHE SLEEPS

FOR FANS OF:
Architects / Parkway Drive / Heights

With a career defining opening slot at last year’s Reading/Leeds Festival weekend, While She Sleeps have taken vast leaps in 2013, also appearing at both Warped Tour in the US and Soundwave Festival in Australia. Although suffering a recent set back with frontman Lawrence Taylor requiring throat surgery during the middle of recording for their sophomore album, the band are still very much set to drop said release this year, with the promise of much touring to accompany it.

Topping their debut full-length ‘This Is The Six’ is without doubt a tall order, yet you can be sure that While She Sleeps will deliver something spectacular. [TB]

LISTEN TO:
Dead Behind The Eyes [stream]
This Is The Six [stream]
Death Toll [stream]


WICKED SNAKES

FOR FANS OF:
Down / Baroness / Mastodon

Wicked Snakes‘ recording sessions still resound in the ears of their producer, the ink on the deal they signed with A Wolf At Your Door Records is still wet and it’s barely been a calendar month since their tripped-out metal vision was unleashed on stage. Put simply, Wicked Snakes are as fresh as it gets.

The band’s debut EP, ‘Lead Me To The Sun’, launched on November 25th and, throughout the six tracks, frontman Luke Davis exposes a collection of well-balanced fables detailing accounts of isolation, rejection, love and religion. [LK]

LISTEN TO:
A Ceremony [stream]
Choirs [stream]
Lead Me To The Sun [stream]


THE WORD ALIVE

FOR FANS OF:
Of Mice & Men / Parkway Drive / The Devil Wears Prada

The Word Alive‘s 2012 album ‘Life Cycles’ proved that they’re a band to be reckoned with and one of the best from the American metalcore scene. They delivered their most developed album of their career and now that they’ve found their own sound, they can only evolve. What comes next could very well be the biggest album of their career.

In a studio update, guitarist Zack Hansen said “this is the record that defines The Word Alive and this is who we are”. The update featured a small teaser of new material at the end, quite frankly it sounds like it could be huge. [JK]

LISTEN TO:
Life Cycles [stream]
Entirety [stream]
2012 [stream]


THE XCERTS

FOR FANS OF:
Brand New / Biffy Clyro / Arcane Roots

It’s been a long wait since 2010’a critically acclaimed sophomore full-length ‘Scatterbrain’, but British “distorted pop” trio, The Xcerts, are finally hard at work with a follow-up. If the saying that “absence makes the heart grow fonder” is anything to go by, then album number three is going to see The Xcerts reach great heights.

Described by some as Britain’s answer to Brand New (who they also supported back in 2012), seeing the band shift into dark territories and interchanging heavy and soft alt rock almost seamlessly, The Xcerts have already laid the foundations for what could be great success. Who knows? Maybe this new album could be their ‘The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me’. [ZR]

LISTEN TO:
Hurt With Me [stream]
Slackerpop [stream]
Young (Belane) [stream]


Written by Ryan De Freitas [RdF], Zach Redrup [ZR], Andy Roberts [AR], Calv Robinson [CR], Mike Heath [MH], Tony Bliss [TB], Gary Lancaster [GL], Laurence Kellett [LK], MG Savage [MG], Jon Barlow [JBa], Grant Bailey [GB], Jack King [JK], Lauryn Paige [LP] and Orla Conway [OC].