On paper, it’s all too easy to write off Parisian manga obsessives Rise Of The Northstar as yet another gimmick-driven throw away. Luckily, despite the rather strange brew of a French band drawing inspiration from Japanese culture, yet sounding as if they stalk the mean streets of New York, ‘Welcame’ manages to draw these disparate influences into a whole which stomps any pretense with a Godzilla sized amount of fun.
Built on a foundation of thunderous metallic hardcore a la’ Biohazard and Hatebreed, there isn’t much here to get the musos scratching their beards, yet this is a fact soon forgotten as the record tosses forth anthem after pit ready anthem. ‘Dressed All In Black’ is an uppercut to the jaw, all spittle flecked tough guy attitude and pulsating hardcore wallop, with the likes of ‘Samurai Spirit’ following suit with pile on inducing gang vocals and gargantuan two-step riff-outs, and the rollicking title-track even bringing an almost Limp Bizkit level of bounce, but with a welcome dose of modern bite.
Notwithstanding some brief forays into caustic thrash, ‘Welcame’ is content to stand by its brash blueprint. Some may balk at the rap-metal buffoonery of it all, yet between the heaving slabs of guitar violence and chest beating hooks, you’ll be hard pressed to come away from ‘Welcame’ without a mile-wide grin plastered across your face.
Written by Tony Bliss (@TBliss88)