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  SOLDIERFIELD
'Catharsis'
(Metalbox Recordings)
Out Now


Johnny Main

johnny main



soldierfield

British Metal band Soldierfield have been around since late 2011 and the individual band members have a history of creating great music as they have previously been involved with the Blaze Bayley Band, Rise To Addiction, Paradise Lost and Sinnergod amongst others.

'Catharsis' is the band's debut album and has been out since late last year and my only regret is that I didn't manage to get hold of the album sooner!

Coming in at around the fifty one minute mark, there's a lot to like here. To my mind, the most consistent section is the middle trilogy of songs. 'The Only War' is a softer sounding track with the lyrical twin guitars from Andy Trott and Steve Wray leading the way. It definitely one of the stand out tracks with a simmering, almost hauntingly beautiful, feel about it before the lyrics and drums kick in changing the scope of the song completely.

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Going from lovely melodic tones and straight into a heavier section it sees vocalist Leigh Oates giving a great (almost) venomous performance as he talks of betrayal and hate. It's definitely a truly standout performance from Oates with the guitars again keeping very much in the background making his performance the focal point of the song.

'Burn Bright' has a heavier edge to it during the intro before giving way to a much softer sounding verse, but this doesn't last long though as the chorus finds the band firing on all cylinders once again. Drummer, Jeff Singer, does particularly well here with his inventive drum fills.

The final track in the mid-section is 'Monochrome' which has an intro with an industrial feel to it before the full force of the guitar riff is unleashed. A favourite of mine from the very first listen, Oates gives another solid vocal performance whilst the guitar solo flows well and can be counted amongst the best of the album.

soldierfield

There are more straight forward, almost classic rock, songs here too, most notably in the shape of 'Beautiful Lie', which is a solid piece of music from the guitar riff to the pummelling drums, above all, though, it's a real master class in song writing. The band shows that you don't need to be fast to be heavy while Oates gives his voice another good work out. It's Singer who is in control here as he establishes the pace of the song early on with his drum beat. The guitar solo towards the end is pushed a bit too far back in the mix for me, but it's still clearly audible and it's very good too.

There's nothing at all wrong with faster numbers, of course, and 'Nothing Left' is a full on rocker with Singer relentlessly pounding out the solid beat whilst the razor sharp guitar riff cuts through the song. Oates is back to his aggressive sounding vocal style and this song definitely benefits from this style of singing.

Of course, to balance out the heavier numbers, the band have included a couple of lighter sounding ones. 'New Religion' with its acoustic guitar during the intro makes a nice change before the electric guitar and drums launch the number properly. Oates attacks the vocals with aggression once again whilst Singer works away solidly at the back with what sounds like a complicated drum pattern.

Title track 'Catharsis' is another stand out song for me, and it's well deserved as the title track. With a simple acoustic guitar joining the vocals from Oates which blend together seamlessly, this track is a real treat – sure, it may not be the happiest of subject matter I guess (it deals with purification as the title suggests), but it's dealt with sensitively in this relatively short and simple number.

With no tour dates currently planned, I'm hoping the band are planning dates for the latter half of this year as I'm interested to hear how these songs go over live. For now, however, I'm going to pour another drink and give the album another listen.

You can watch the official video for 'The Only War' here:



'Catharsis' Tracklist:
The Light
Beautiful Lie
The Only War
Burn Bright
Monochrome
Ghosts
New Religion
Catharsis
Nothing Left
Cut The Ties

Soldierfield are:
Leigh Oates – Vocals
Andy Trott – Guitars
Steve Wray – Guitars
Mark Hampson – Bass Guitar
Jeff Singer – Drums


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27.5.2015












 


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