Revenger are a relatively new band, from the town of Vancouver in British Columbia. They originally started in 2012 where they came to the scene with their debut album “To The Wolves”. After a four year break, the quintet return with their latest 5 track EP called “The New Mythology, Vol. 1”. Something that’s a strange move, as the usual process is releasing a debut EP, and then an album. One can only assumed that due to a four year gap and other life commitments, could be perceived as getting themselves warmed up for something that’s much bigger in the immediate future.
To the uninitiated, Revenger could be described as groove metal with distinct metalcore underpinnings – the latter of which could cause an older audience to baulk, while a more liberal mindset would akin their sound to thrash metal. From an open minded perspective, if one was to draw a venn diagram with regards to their particular style of metal it would neatly cross over incorporating groove, thrash, and metalcore equally. There are heavy slams, as heard in the track ‘The Watcher’ that remind listeners of a certain age of when Forbidden’s much maligned ‘Distortion’ was released, along with a distinct early Machine Head flavour. However, the opening track ‘Hex’ is a strong opener due to Andrew Bailey’s vocals that manage to be familiar and influenced by their scene elders that nevertheless adds a unique flavour of their own making.
There are technical death metal flourishes that spring up from tracks, that add distinct variety. Notably, this is felt while listening to ‘Anti Life’ that has a Steve DiGiorgio bass flourish and searing lead guitar work that would have otherwise made the track sound too bland for some listeners. ‘We Want Blood’ dips back into metalcore territory, with pummelling drums and aims for a more bass orientated down tuned style of attack with Killswitch Engage style flourishes, but reminds the listener of the sadly defunct Shadows Fall and God Forbid. ‘The Man Who Shot God’ takes on a more thrash orientated slant, with a rumbling bass intro underpinned with solid guitar riffs and pummelling drums that demonstrates the talents of Julia Geaman perfectly. This track, along with ‘The Watcher’ are by far the best stand out tracks.
To conclude, Revenger have made a sterling effort and have certainly came on in leaps and bounds since their previous work. While “The New Mythology Vol. 1” showcases talent and promise, the listener may feel they need to settle on a particular style and refine it. Should they take a metalcore approach? Should they take a more groove thrash influence? Either way, Revenger are demonstrating their musical chops very well and what they can do. The whole exercise comes across as a musical crossroads can lead to one style, or the other. One can only hope that Revenger choose the best decision, to further cement and build on the foundations of what they have started.