'True Motion' - Real Authority / Turned Up Louder
The two strands of 90s hardcore punk’s lineage are seemingly diverging into two camps that stand in almost binary opposition to one another: dark, grungy metalcore that batters your ears with a barrage of sound, and effervescent pop punk that relies on little substance- and at times, little style either. Therefore, attempting to break out of one of those two moulds is a brave step to embark upon, not least when the success of your debut EP hangs in the balance. However, it is a step that London-based punks Real Authority, had the guts to strive for on their debut EP, ‘True Motion’. Blending ballsy, metal-inspired guitar tones with unsullied clean vocal lines, ‘True Motion’ pulls in elements of the rapidly expanding metalcore scene, but with a somewhat less alienating edge to the accessibility of their rhythms. With five tracks, only one of which manages to break the 3-minute mark, these songs barely give you time to digest one before the next is upon you. However, while their pace may inspire you to set out on a power-walk up over the mountains, stopping to unpack the sheer volume of layers to these tracks yields some pleasant surprises.
Low, rumbling guitars pumped full of gritty distortion bring to live opener ‘The Energy’, as its metalcore-inspired riffs grind and scrape, sending sparks of palpable rage through the melody. Vocally cleaner and bouncier than the deeply entrenched grumble of classic metalcore vocals, the undulating guitar line pitches and falls like a fighter jet taking off, but the depth to the bassline results in the melody itself being truncated and brittle. Bringing a livelier tone to the melody is ‘Can’t Face It’, a guaranteed mosh-pit starter on which the fist-pumping gang vocals in the chorus are its definitive highlight. Perfectly fitted to small, sweaty rooms it may be, yet the sliding guitars echo something larger- reverberations of stadium metal peeking its way in to the mix, an influence confounded in the unbridled guitar solo that ripples and rollicks with seemingly eclectic abandon.
Though it may lack an adrenaline-inducing velocity, ‘Depression Issues’s big metallic opening riff, driven by the violently bubbling bassline, signposts it with the potential to be positively anarchic when performed live to the right crowd! The juxtaposition of full-bodied, screaming metal-esque riffs and a lively, raw vocal performance makes this track more accessible that many in its semantic field, while creativity blossoms in the sludgy closing refrain, with an eerie synthesised guitar overture that adds a semblance of grandeur that is wonderfully ambitious. By contrast, raw angst is palpable on ‘Back It Up’. Staccato guitar notes in the opening seconds build the tension like a tidal wave on the horizon, which then collapses into a swirl of growling basslines and impassioned vocals, at times strained almost to their limits.
The old notion of ‘saving the best for last’ is undeniably put into practice here, however. With a groove slung low in the melody that evokes the title perfectly, closer ‘Party Mansion’, carries more of an infectious rhythm than any other track on the record. Those same reverberating guitars may still chug away at the surface, yet the beat of silence leading into the chorus makes it the most rousing refrain on the record, as the taunting dual vocal lines interweave, toying with each other. The final few seconds ring with drums like echoing steel, giving it an almost industrial edge, and the lyrical refrain ‘are you where you want to be?’ ensures this EP is a challenge to the end.
'True Motion' is due for release on July 26th via Chapter One Records. Pre-order the record here:
Check out the video for the band's latest single, 'The Energy'. below: