After the warm reception received on their debut album, ‘Blood And Chemistry’, the post-hardcore/mathcore/progressive rock trio have dropped the follow-up EP, ‘Heaven & Earth’. On their debut, the Kingston-upon-Thames group took some of the elements from their mini-album ‘Left Fire’ and combined it with the bravado and grand choruses that could be similar to genre contemporaries Biffy Clyro. This proved to be a winning combination, seeing them embark on a headline tour, and support the likes of The Used and Muse.
This EP uses this same formula, but with more influence of the progressive side of the trio’s sound. The songs are longer and the face melting riffs are in no short supply. ‘If Nothing Breaks, Nothing Moves’ and ‘Slow Dance’ are prime examples of the band’s ability to shred the frets off of their instruments. The former switches between a glorious verse and chorus and an apocalyptic breakdown with singer/guitarist Andrew Groves giving it his all on the vocals as well.
‘Slow Dance’ emerges from a subdued introduction to form into an unstoppable beast of utter power. The breakdown in this track drops hard after a short build-up, and just blows everything out the water.
With the extended lengths of the tracks, some would argue that interest may not last the full-time. However, how someone could dispute that Groves‘ vocals are captivating beats me. As well as the vocals, the guitar lines and general instrumentation are so amazing on all levels. Offering ridiculous sounds and technical abilities, the guitar and bass sound massive.
The final track, ‘Vows & Ceremony’, acts as the bands grand opus for this EP. The eight minute long track is a journey through a whirlwind of sonic mastery. From sweet lullaby-like verses to the choruses that could devour suns, the band truly reach a peak of undeniable excellence. Arcane Roots deliver a unique piece of rock that will be hard to compete with by anyone else on the scene right now.
Written by Ewan MacDonald