Counterparts announce UK/EU tour with Polar and Napoleon

Canadian melodic-hardcore band Counterparts are excited to announce, they will be returning to the UK and Europe this winter for a headline tour. Supports come from Polar and Napoleon. You can view the dates and listen to the headliner below!

11th November Patterns, Brighton, UK

12th November Clwb Ifor Bach, Cardiff, UK

13th November Vintage Bar, Doncaster, UK

14th November Rescue Rooms, Nottingham, UK

15th November G2, Glasgow, UK

16th November Rebellion, Manchester, UK

17th November Think Tank, Newcastle, UK

18th November The Dome, London, UK

19th November Joiners, Southampton, UK

21st November Patronaat, Harlem, Holland

22nd November Lux, Hanover, Germany

23rd November Poglos, Warsaw, Poland

24th November Firlej, Wroclaw, Poland

25th Durer Kert, Budapest, Hungary

Impericon Never Say Die 2016 – Live @ The Marble Factory, Bristol (9/11/16)

The time has come for Impericon to bring their year round Never Say Die tour to its final UK showing this year. Closing off with what could be considered one of the heaviest EU/UK tours this year, its time to show what culminated in the send off show before they go back into Europe once more.

Opening the night screeching onto the scene is UK homegrown lads Polar (7) who plant their feet firmly down and get their fingers in the door. Bringing that sound that could be reminiscent to bands like While She Sleeps, the band didn’t let the slow emergence of the crowd bother them as tracks like ‘Blood For Blood’ careened through the speakers. Whilst it took a while for the crowd to pick up bit by bit, their set closer brought the room together for that for that final push of crowd interaction. With the room starting to pick up a bit more, Make Them Suffer (8) burst right onto the stage with an early number to get the old school deathcore heads moving. ‘Widower’ kicking out with the piano coming straight through, the rest of the band followed suit with something hard hitting and violent in its wake. The more melodic track, as well as their latest one, ‘Ether’ got a great reception and cements their new path in the movement. Unfortunately, the drums didn’t have as much oomph as it should have took away from a very great set.

It’s surprising to think that a band with the musical style of Fallujah (6) would feel like the most stand out band on this tour, but with their focus towards the technical death metal side of things when the rest of the bands go more in your face they had a lot more style to show off and boy did they do that. With a sense of beauty hitting with their more technical lead prowess, it was a bit of a bummer that the guitars didn’t have as much noticeability as the bass pedal did throughout the set. The highlight of the set was the newer material such as ‘Amber Gaze’ pushed through and the heavier sections had a lot of ferocity to them. Then things started to really heat up with the crowd as Obey The Brave (9) just tore the room apart. Bringing out the big guns with ‘Get Real’ to a thunderous pit opening and the breakdown. One of their guitarists had a few technical difficulties for a few tracks, but it didn’t take away from the sheer force their sound had for songs old and new, especially the newer track they threw out there.

The last three bands were all rounded with one genre in mind; Deathcore. Completely obliterating their sound was Carnifex (10) who were definitely the fan favourite for the night. Starting off with their newer material, the more death metal influence comes to life and tracks like ‘Slow Death’ come through with such a gripping take on their newer and more mature material. Closing their set with the older tracks like ‘Lie To My Face’ make the more casual fan of the band power through and make the 2007 track sound that much more vibrant and special. Up next were for the main support were Australian powerhouses Thy Art Is Murder (9) and from the moment the fill in vocalist Nick Arthur (Molotov Solution) laid his first scream down, you knew that this guy was a great replacement to pick for the tour. Powering through tracks off of ‘Holy War’ to a thunderous ovation, the band knew how to hit key points with fans and bring a crushing sound throughout. The audience weren’t able to catch a breath as they smashed into songs from ‘Hate’ to a thunderous pit and headbangers galore.

After a mini speech from Hope For The Day before the main event reaches, it was time to face the what everyone was here for and it was clear that Whitechapel (9) were not here to play any games. Opening right out of the gate with ‘Mark Of The Blade’, the newer material definitely goes down really well with the crowd and the roars of the audience blast through at the end of every song. The older era of the bands discography came through with tracks like ‘Vicer Exciser’ bringing that old school deathcore vibe alongside ‘Prostatic Fluid Asphyxiation’ which no doubt made the death metal heads scream with joy. A very nice touch was hearing his cleans, albeit a bit quiet, during ‘Bring Me Home’ which showed the softer and more groove side of the band which not many people are used to. The guitars rang through proudly, the drums were on point and closing their set with the encore of ‘The Saw Is The Law’ was a great cap-off for a near-perfect set and very enjoyable evening!

Polar – No Cure No Saviour

With the British hardcore scene seemingly shitting out brilliant bands on a regular basis, it’s becoming increasingly harder to stand out amongst the pack. Polar have been in the scene since While She Sleeps were still in their infancy, so it’s a shame that they’re not more well known when they release material like No Cure, No Saviour.

Heavy and unforgiving, No Cure, No Saviour is the follow on from their previous works Shadowed by Vultures, which showed a band that certainly had the angst and the riffs, but just didn’t seem to have the platform big enough for everyone to notice them. With No Cure, No Saviour the band take on a very tender and often over looked subject in homelessness. The band themselves actually do charity work for the homeless, so the message is something personal and deeply connected within the very fabric of the band.

Blood For Blood reigns down a barrage of crushing sound as it kicks the album off in tremendous fashion. The passion this band feel is clear from the off and it oozes out of every note and every seething lyric spat. The message is something that is subtly delivered, with no sign of preaching or condescending spoken word at all, which is refreshing in itself. It allows for the message of the album to be naturally digested, instead of rejected.

The constant high energy through the following tracks highlights the intensity in each track, culminating in the vicious Beatdown ending of Tidal Waves And Hurricanes. It is baffling that the trend of slow filler tracks has wormed its way into the alternative scene, and Polar are dreadful culprits with two tracks to break up the flow of the album. Admittedly, it does do well to highlight the turbulence and unpredictability of sleeping rough, but it is jarring for the listener and ultimate sees spots on the album wasted with these minute long interludes, when the strength of the other songs would indicate that more massive riffs could quite easily replace those tracks. It’s certainly annoying and drags the album down.

When the final notes of closer No Saviour ends the album, it becomes increasingly apparent that Polar are stating to truly find their feet. No Cure, No Saviour is a mature and aggressive work of art that highlights an important issue without shoving it down the listener’s throat. Coupled with excellent song writing and some huge and heavy riffs, you’ve got the recipe for a truly memorable hardcore record.

7/10