Stoke-on-Trent’s Black Coast appear to have been around for a few years now, and they’ve got another EP to offer us, ‘Ill Minds, Vol. II’, the follow-up counterpart to last year’s ‘…Vol. I’ and final installment in this series of sorts.
Their brand of metallic yet also melodic hardcore certainly packs a punch, and the immediate, hard-hitting energy is there for all to see from the opening track, ‘Act II’. Stylistically, it bears plenty of similarities to bands like Unearth and Darkest Hour (helped by the guitar licks on show), and a more obvious comparison being While She Sleeps. Their defiant lyrical narrative is likely to strike a chord as well.
Some of the more technical guitar licks that appear might get them sneered at by some hardcore purists, but this certainly adds more strings to their bow.
‘Solace’ is a nice way to provide some respite, in the form of a clean-guitar-driven interlude. While the placing of the track on the EP feels a little odd (we don’t exactly want to calm down just yet), it’s still great that they can show another side to themselves at an early stage in their career.
‘Diablo’ is a track that stands out in particular, propelled by the white hot, ferocious vocal delivery from Charlie Hewitt and a slight nu-metal bounce. Their subtle ear for melody shines through as well, which may not be so obvious on first listen.
‘Weird’ particularly helps to bring them closer to a more post-hardcore territory, with the closest thing to a chorus appearing in the song, and they go hell-for-leather for the feral ‘Lost My Limits’, with plenty of chant-able qualities on show.
Sometimes you’re left wanting a little more, but with time they could be a very strong force to be reckoned with in the future, and they could potentially move in more than one direction later on. Black Coast are indeed very promising on record, bringing metallic flourishes and an immediate release in equal measure. More often than not, there’s little to separate them from a lot of other hardcore bands, but they can definitely pack a punch.
Based on this showing, Black Coast are definitely ones to keep your eyes on.