With Age Of Emergence, a hard rock band from Newcastle, gearing up to record new material we today look retrospectively at their debut effort ‘Plea For A Dying World’. A 5 track EP demonstrating the band has potential in their songwriting and a need for their music to be heard with better production value.
The opening track Shadow Days is a solid welcoming platform into the album. It begins with a jarring count-in which sounds like it’s on a china cymbal and then launches into a tasty riff that propels you forward off guard with it’s tempo which confusingly enough is a completely different tempo. It definitely does the job of providing a springboard for the rest of the album. Guitarist Matt Neilson’s riff eventually gives way to the verse in which bassist and vocalist Dean Holmes begins singing. It’s a moment that lays to rest any doubt about this bands classic metal and hard rock influences.
Corruptor of Vision is Alan Hofer’s moment to shine on drums. The beats and fills he has chosen for each section of this song fir perfectly. The vocal moment “Smash it down, down to the ground.” Is an especially catchy and memorable hook. On the other hand, it’s here that it becomes clear the EP has some production problems. This is expected however for a band’s first studio effort and by does not take away from the songwriting or musicianship in any way. It does make me intrigued to hear what the band’s music would sound like through the lens of a high production value.
Some things that especially stand out are the muted and muffled tones of the instruments compared to the clearer and crisper tone of the vocals. I could be wrong but it sounds like the instruments were all tracked together and then the vocals layered on top. This of course begs the question; was the band playing a click with their tempo maps programmed in? I’m inclined to think probably not as there are some moments throughout the album that have tempo changes that feel very unstable. These tempo changes however, when present are such great ideas and show’s the band are thinking about ways to inject more and more interest into their compositions.
The third track Eden is the high point of the EP. With an atmospheric intro that has Dean and Alan locked in with each other’s bass and drums respectively. Matt’s tasty guitar work layers on top of itself as the section progresses, with the whole thing building into another headbanger of a tune which also has some of the greatest lyrics of the EP.
The titular track of the EP Plea For A Dying World promises to be a blitzing metal tune from the very moment it starts. The opening riff has the distinction of being one of those riffs that guitarists hear and will immediately hash out so that they can play it themselves. Obviously having riffs like this is ideal as it gives the audience another means of interacting with the band. Impressively, the first guitar solo here has the same effect.
Goddess is a solid closing track that winds down the themes of the album all while providing a final rocker of a track for listeners to remember the band by. The harmonics in the guitar part and the hi-hat work in the drum part stand out as the highlights of this final track. The vocals ring with a powerful tone of finality on the line “Now we’re seeing stars” sure to leave listeners searching for deeper meaning.
Age Of Emergence’s EP ‘Plea For A Dying World’ is a strong debut effort with clear potential, especially in metal composition.
‘Plea For A Dying World’ available HERE.