This is the Oxford band’s third EP, following on from 2018s Safety First and is another self-release – the band obviously taking the DIY approach seriously. They have a charmingly self-deprecating view, branding their music “Miserable Hardcore” and while it deals with more challenging aspects of human existence (loss, guilt, other people and so on), it’s wrapped up in a thoroughly enjoyable, bouncy and suitably metallic package.
The EP kicks off with ‘Gemini’, which gets straight to the point with some slick downtuned riffs, rasping vocals and stomping d-beats. Toronto’s finest, Cancer Bats immediately sprung to mind so it was a nice surprise that the next track ‘Still Breaks My Heart’ features Liam Cormier. Both he and Kial Chrucher have similar vocal styles but rather than being indistinguishable on the track, they actually complement each other pretty well.
‘Guilt’ has a razoring atonal quality underpinning the main riff, adding some additional aggression into an already near-boiling point cauldron of fury, while ‘Courage’ starts in lo-fi, ‘Hail Destroyer’-esque fashion before bursting through the speakers with wild abandon. Closer ‘Loss’ is an uptempo paean to the agony of the its title, with Churcher bearing his soul as the song fades, screaming, nay, wailing “Is this what loss feels like?”. It fairly takes your breath away.
One observation, if one had to be really picky, is that most of the tracks start in very similar fashion across the whole EP: staccato, groove laden riffs; pause; drums enter; vocals enter; carry on. However, it’s a minor criticism as overall, this is another confident release from MSRY and the sound of a band growing and developing their own style of misery-infused hardcore.
Loss is out 8th November and can be purchased here.
Words: Scott Crawford