TOP 10 METALCORE BANDS YOU WISH THEY HAD NEVER CALLED IT QUITS – PART 1.
2. The Afterimage
3. Breakdown Of Sanity
4. I, The Breather
5. Buried In Verona
Shields were a metalcore band out of the United Kingdom, hailing from London. They started their journey in 2011 with Joe Edwards on vocals, Sam Kubrick on vocals and guitar, George Christie on guitar, Lawrence Welling on bass and drummer Alex Rayner.
Incredibly able to deliver both punishment and catchiness at the same time, they brought out their debut album Life In Exile via Long Branch Records on April 20th, 2018. This was forerun by Guilt EP in 2015, and self-titled Shields EP dating back to 2013.
In January 2018 guitarist George Christie took his own life. With admirable commitment and dedication, Shields announced and released their debut full-length soldiering through the inevitable pain.
Two official videos off the record were released between January and March: It’s Killing Me and Black Dog. Part of their fan base approached Shields for the first time for the guest appearance of vocalist Sam Kubrick in a song by Ice Nine Kills titled Enjoy Your Slay. In Life In Exile Shields would feature Spencer Charnas of Nine Ice Kills for track White Embers and Joel Heywood of British metalcore act Silent Scream for track Mother.
Despite the drive to gain a well-deserved success in the metalcore scenario, Shields found no motivation and happiness from being in the band any more since the loss of George, as any happening and decision was recalling the loss of their guitarist. They decided to go for a last farewell tour in the UK and Europe supporting Oceans Ate Alaska and Kingdom Of Giants in June and July 2018. Fans were beyond sad to see them live for a last time, but nonetheless Shields have accomplished the value of a hidden gem in the metalcore soundscape. After the last run of their tour they broke up.
To explore Shields and check their amazing musicianship I highly suggest newest tracks It’s Killing Me and Black Dog together with White Embers, Jordan, I’ve Dealt With Worse, Oppression.
2. THE AFTERIMAGE
The Afterimage was a progressive metalcore band from Barrie, Ontario formed in 2011 who announced the breakup on September 23rd, 2018. They posted a personal statement on social media where they declared the decision was made together and after seven years together as a band, the project was drawing to a close as passion was no longer fuelling creativity and musicianship as before.
Made up of Kyle Anderson, Dallas Bricker, Michael Leo Valeri, Liam Beeson and Robert Zalischi, the band debuted their aggressive potential and talent in a small collection of tracks both showcasing melody and brutality called Fearless EP in 2012. This was followed three years after by Lumière EP and final full-length Eve released via Tragic Hero Records on May 18th, 2018. The band has now moved to a new outfit called Brand Of Sacrifice in the hardcore/brutal death metal scenario.
The Afterimage used to be a very talented outfit spanning from melodic to heaviness and back with such an ease especially between the vocals. Kyle Anderson was a furious screamer transitioning fluidly from growls to soaring high-pitched clean vocals. Their sound relied on super intricate and technical guitar performances, heavy breakdowns, catchy choruses, melodramatic atmospheres with some synthesizer work and the unique vocal style of their frontman.
Such a shame such a powerhouse quintet as such called it quits after showing resilience and determination through the challenges of lineup changes and obstacles overcome in the past. One thing is sure though, they made a long lasting impression with the intensity of their sound and the formula between heaviness and melodic they had finely crafted.
Go and check out yourself with suggested tracks Cerulean, Violator, Sapphire, Wrath, Pursue, Onyx, Follow, The Seeking, Unseen.
3. BREAKDOWN OF SANITY
Breakdown Of Sanity. A bashing metalcore act based out of Bern, Switzerland and active since 2007. With four albums under their belt: The Last Sunset dating back to 2009, Mirrors 2011, Perception 2013, Coexistence 2016, they broke up with their Say Goodbye Tour held in late 2017 also celebrating 10 Years of Breakdown Of Sanity. Lining up Carlo Knöpfel, Oliver Stingel, Christoph Gygax, César Gonin, Thomas Rindlisbacher, the band has always been unsigned and going for a self-made character and a strict DIY approach that unexpectedly shoot them to the starts for a decade. Bold breakdowns, onslaughts of impressive vocals and razor-sharp riffs were merged with melodic. Their signature sound was plunging into heaviness and still finding a way to hold on catchiness. Along with personal lyrics, the band revolved around the concept of music expressed via aggression (“Breakdown” Of Sanity comes from their typical breakdowns) and the German idea of “Zeitgeist”, or “Spirit of The Age” we are experiencing today. They had simply reached that level of perfection of metalcore many current bands are striving to. Vicious and lethal.
As a mutual decision, the band called it quits as considering the time right to move on. The band reached the point to put Breakdown of Sanity to rest as seemed to have exhausted the originality of their sound and did not want to deliver repetitive music. They felt it was time for the whole band as individuals to experience something different in life, new projects, achievements and decisions.
I highly suggest a listen if you’re not familiar with the band, as this is an awesome engaging kind of metalcore, a relentless fury colliding with the senses. Give a spin to their records Coexistence and Perception highlighting tracks: Crumble, Hero, The Writer, Bulletproof, Blind, Restless, Exordium, Perception, The Gift. Breakdown Of Sanity, you will be much missed.
4. I, THE BREATHER
I, The Breather was a metalcore band signed to Sumerian Records from 2009 to 2015 out of Baltimore, Maryland. After the release of a first self-titled EP in 2009, I, The Breather brought out three more studio albums: These Are My Sins in 2010, Truth and Purpose in 2012, Life Reaper in 2014. With a final appearance together with My Enemies & I and Forevermore they waved goodbye with their Farewell To Breather tour from November 2015 to March 2016. The band called it quits with final lineup: Shawn Spann on vocals, Mack Goth on guitar, Aaron Ovecka on drums, Connor Hesse on bass.
As soon as they debuted, I The Breather stood out as a pure metalcore band focusing on crunchy breakdowns and majestic guitar work taking inspiration from acts such as August Burns Red. Technique as for the guitar sections was a simple certainty for the band leaning towards a modern progressive version of metalcore. A very central element with this outfit was the lyrical content composed by vocalist Shawn Spann around his personal experience with religion and Jesus Christ. He carried his spiritual wars and talked about personal victories related to his Christian faith. They revolve around being lost and found by God, asking Jesus to be the way, the truth and the light as well as denouncing fallacy and false prophets within this religion.
From the very first two releases the band progressed towards a wider inclusion of clean vocals in the last album. While keeping safe their assets and aggression, they wisely combined heaviness with catchiness, together with synth and subtle elements from ambience and electronicore. I suggest a listen to Life Reaper album to remember what a breakdown truly is and how fluid it can transition from and to a catchy chorus. Moreover, this somehow reminded me of current monster German metalcore act Caliban. I, The Breather used to deliver plenty of entertainment on their mosh-inducing combination of thundering blast beats, exact riffing and pummeling bass lines.
Some memorable tracks of I, the Breather include Forgiven, False Profit, Soul:Seek, Setting:Sun, Life:Reaper, Dear:Devil, Self:Restore, Swine:Cult, Bruised & Broken.
5. BURIED IN VERONA
Hailing from Sydney, New South Wales, Australian metalcore merchants Buried in Verona managed to craft their emotional and intense sound in the metalcore soundscape with multiple influences drawn from all –core scenarios. They have pulled many elements from deathcore, post-hardcore and electronicore. Heavy and loud, they are remembered for being the ambassadors of aggression, powerful driving riffing, rocky breakdowns, darting drums and pulverizing bass. Active from 2007 to 2016, Buried in Verona has been signed to Artery Recordings, Rise Records and UNFD. The band included: Brett Anderson on vocals, Mick Taylor on lead guitar, Andrew Gill on rhythm guitar and most recent (and last) members Cole Wilkins on bass and drummer Ben Bailey.
They have released five full-length albums along their career, debuting with their first record Circle The Dead in 2008. This was followed up by: Saturday Night Sever in 2010, Notorious in 2012, Faceless in 2014, Vultures Above, Lions Below in 2015.
Buried In Verona excelled in songwriting. On top of the game, the Aussie outfit used to fit uplifting melodies, harmonious efforts and anthemic choruses in brute-force heaviness and disastrous breakdowns. Recalling somehow The Amity Affliction, it’s such a shame Buried In Verona disbanded as they had brought something strong to the metalcore table with some incredible bangers and loads of hype.
Standout tracks to listen to are: I Am Hate, Four Years, Can’t Be Unsaid, Extraction, LionHeart, Forget What You Know, Splintered, Hurricane, Illuminate, Eclipse, Temptress, Hanging Hoes By Their Toes.
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