Review: “Self Titled” EP by Watch Me Die

Mixed and Mastered by Adam Rodgers and sporting a log from former xServitudex guitarist Ben Brodie, the self titled debut EP from London Straight Edge Hardcore crew Watch Me Die appeared back in January and led to their appearance at this summer’s second incarnation of Upsurge Festival. So having witnessed their set, complete with a cover of “Forever” by Orange County Californian Hardcore homewreckers Throwdown, we figured it was time we went back and checked it out!

A Blackened Hardcore riff brings in the kit work at the start of “Departure From an Immortal Dream” with some riffs that wouldn’t have been out of place in the early 2000’s Metalcore scene from the like of Zao. Vocalist Josh Povey and guitarist Kurt Rogers are the song writing partnership with Barney Hall and Josh Oldfield rounding out the group and the pair are very much at the heart of the sonic attack. The drums are pummelling, the bass pounding and the guitars are evenly balanced in the mix. They’re layered suggesting a pair of tracks were recorded in the mix with a battering rhythm part highlighted by a glorious lead element. The clean vocal bridge that sadly didn’t work when we saw them live at Upsurge Festival works well here, even if it is unexpected. “Torment” has an opening riff that reminds of some of the work of PJ Harvey in Metal form before launching into a full on assault after a speech sample. There are hints at the influence of early Eighteen Visions in the guitars while Povey speaks of the injustice of the World, puppets in power and mental slavery. The socially and politically aware themes aren’t new for Straight Edge Hardcore but they are no less important. After a suitably poignant spoken word break back bridge, the feedback squeal breakdowns are raw but highly effective. Taking about the path of sobriety “Human Damnation” is the epitome of a straight edge Metallic Hardcore tune. Loaded with adrenalized breakdowns and rhythmic pounding with an eerie haunting off kilter lead guitar part Povey speaks his mind and screams “Straight Edge” over and over during a fist pumping sing-a-long. This is where the EP ends but we’re going to throw in a word or two on their version of “Legitimate”, the Michael Richards Theme song that has also appeared this year. An instrumental of high velocity Metallic Hardcore with some serious necksnappingly headbangable breakdowns piled up so high you think they’re going to topple like the tower of Pisa, it’s pretty damn cool. [7.5/10]

Track listing

  1. Departure From an Immortal Dream
  2. Torment
  3. Human Damnation
  4. Legitimate (Michael Richards Theme)

“Self Titled” by Watch Me Die is out now and available over at bandcamp

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