‘Diagnosed’ is the newest EP by Lincoln based metalcore outfit, Borders. With a tracklist on the EP that only spans four songs with an approximate run time of only eighteen minutes, this a relatively short release.
The short tracklist and running time of this EP is one of the major positives that can be found throughout this release, as even on initial listen as there are moments when the songs can blend together, creating this monotonous incoherent mess which can be incredibly fatiguing to listen to. The moments of salvation for this are the melodic moments that offer a bit of respite, which are sadly few and far between.
A lot of this may be down to the production. The vocals from JJ Olifent sound offish, and, not necessarily muddy, but they aren’t as clear as other metalcore releases. This may be a case of the listener’s ears adjusting over time if they aren’t used to the type of vocals, which aren’t necessarily associated with metalcore.
The fatiguing quality of the derivative sounds touched upon earlier is a definite downer. This being a definitely heavy release is one that gives the impression that it’s heavy for the sake of being heavy, instead of being what could be considered tastefully heavy, if such a thing arguably exists.
It’s just that the tracks blend and bleed into one another far too much, sounding just about identical to one another and lacking any character; a massive issue not just for bands such as Borders, but anyone entering a genre with a rapidly growing sea of contenders. Many start out trying to write the heaviest music that they can without including much substance, or just sticking to one formula as a whole without really daring to even consider straying from it.
From songs sounding practically the same, and blending to create what is essentially one eighteen minute metalcore song. ‘Diagnosed’ is an EP that may take several listens to become truly invested in, but when there’s so many more bands out there that deliver the goods on the off… well, is there any reason to bother?
Written by Jack Bellamy (@jackbellamy17)