Review: “Body Of Integrity” EP from Betrayer

Recorded, Mixed & Mastered by Adam Cox at ACO Studios and featuring artwork from Ross Rickers, Bournemouth Hardcore six-piece Betrayer have dropped their debut EP “Body Of Integrity” via Chugcore Promotions. One issue they will face is that their chosen moniker is one that is common place, which is why they have been fairly quickly prompted to add “UK” to it.

Opening with the dark, dingy and atmospheric self-titled track “Betrayer” the band introduce a sludgy tone and vibe. An eerie guitar solo and a play on silence with regular riffbreaks plays out nicely. Starting fast out the gate before slowing down to bring the crushing riffs, “Embodiment” adds a spoken word element into the bludgeoning uncleans. A gang chant across the bridge before a tidy breakdown is another solid addition to the sound and will go down well live. Just when you think it’s safe, a bass tone and 35 second-ish piece expressing the importance of loyalty cuts through. Like a knuckle duster punch after you’ve already been knocked down. Yes, there is a clear Hatebreed influence, but it’s a decent cut with enough of it’s own vibe. “Disconnection” brings some bouncy riffage to the table and a surprisingly lengthy piece of lead work. It’s a dark affair that demonstrates some crossover leanings into some Thrasher tones, think Get The Shot and you get the idea. A mid song pause before a Beatdown inspired and paced segment is an absolute pleasure.

“Control” brings back the gang chant element while throwning in some impressive footwork on the kit. The surprise addition of blast beats during the pre chorus is a nice touch and not usually associated with this style of groove oriented hardcore, though it works really well. The empassioned and at times raw vocal demonstrates the depth of feeling in the lyrical content about rising from the darkness into to light via self discipline and other hardcore ethics. “Forever” again shows an early Hatebreed influence and you can see the band throwing in a cover of something like “Before Dishonor” from 1997’s “Satisfaction is the Death of Desire” and it would be a perfect fit. Its slow bass heavy intro lifts into gang chants and riffage that will have fans shouting along at the live shows. The lyrical content bleeds hardcore eithics and it seems clear that Betrayer live hardcore. Closer “Integrity” packs a gritty punch while calling out those who need to right their wrongs. Keeping the guitars restrained to allow the vocals to have a bigger impact, while adding in a backing vocal of higher tone to undercut the usual uncleans. A surprise “Blegh!” replaces the call of “Betrayer” that is heard in a number of tracks and kicks off the closing fading breakdown. Betrayer have done themselves proud with a solid debut Hardcore EP that requires your listening attention. [7.5/10]

Track list

  1. Betrayer
  2. Embodiment
  3. Disconnection
  4. Control
  5. Forever
  6. Integrity

“Body Of Integrity” by Betrayer is available over at bandcamp.

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