Between The Balance

Written by: BL on 24/09/2013 00:54:28

LA based four piece Elitist latest attempt to crack the progressive metalcore scene comes in the form of "Between The Balance" - a jam packed EP which manages a cool twenty-two minutes in just five songs. The ingredients are potent enough though familiar: fast and aggressive metalcore interspersed with some quality melodies here and there and a song writing style which is as much technical as it is marketable. For those who enjoy bands like This Or The Apocalypse or Volumes, you should feel right at home here as "Between The Balances" is right up the same alley.

We start with "Domino Theory", an intense introduction with a fair amount of meaty flavour and a good indicator of what to expect. It's loaded with quasi-djent guitar rhythms, fast riffing, and ringing ambient leads, though also predictably throws in some singing for the chorus. Chris Balay's lead vocals display suitably competent technique across both his clean vocals and his screaming, though the latter of which is definitely the more enjoyable - a strained melodic hardcore style rarely heard outside of said genre. "Return To Sender" meanwhile, brings more expansion as well as adrenaline to the instrumentation and here that's where they reign. Elitist's knack of fashioning together well thought out riffing and powerful threading melodies is not to be underestimated.

Both "Vice Versa" and "Echo In The Room" by contrast rely on more cerebral type lead guitar which are very different, and an atmosphere menacingly macabre driven by slow, more dissonant rhythms instead to offset the faster pacing. This change in tone works particuarly nicely in terms of offering much needed variety and the additional tension seems remarkably genuine at times if not mildly unsettling. Finally we have "Lonely Giant", an ambient and emotive sounding closer utilising glisteningly pretty guitar melodies and a strong undercurrent of thick rhythm guitars particularly well alongside a simple yet effectively catchy chorus.

There is no doubt that Elitist mean business with "Between The Balance", but ultimately and somewhat regrettably, the presence of bands mentioned in the opening statement make it truly difficult for them to really stand out as they do sound incredibly similar from time to time, and sometimes play a little too safe perhaps to increase their broader appeal even if you can't fault their technical prowess. Nonetheless, evidence seems to suggest that there's enough positives and interesting ideas from "Between The Balance" to make this a very solid EP and a worthwhile spin for genre fans.


Download: Return To Sender, Echo In The Room, Lonely Giant
For the fans of: This Or The Apocalypse, Volumes, Erra, Heart In Hand

Release date 30.07.2013
Consumer Records

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