Female fronted Czech Republic Hardcore band Stay Down have thrown a pair of singles at us since their debut self titled EP which depending on where you look appeared at the end of 2017 or the beginning of 2018. The quintet – vocalist Jane Taylor, drummer Jan Jambo Dudrava, bassist and backing vocalist Petr Hrncar, plus guitarist duo Ivan Daniel and Zandek Sosoka cross the line between Metalcore and Hardcore to create that Metallic Hardcore sound that is very much of now. So having heard the pair of new singles “No More Lies” and “Truth In Freedom“, we decided it was time to push the Delorean DMC-12 up to 88mph and go back to check out the EP!
Jane Taylor has the caustic vocals we’ve heard of late from Larissa Stupar of Venom Prison or Candace Kucsulain of Walls of Jericho, in other words a woman scorned who has the throat to be able to strip paint off the walls at 30 paces. From the opening bars of “F***ing Brave“, her accented vocals grab you by the throat and don’t let go until you’re lost consciousness. Groove laden riffs and a lead flourish shine as she calls out “We are the brave” and the solo is a an on point slow burn that doesn’t show off too much and in so doing avoids spoiling the atmospheric. Chugging in with so Caliban esq riffs and a gang chant of the title “My Way” is the second round of a middle weigh boxing match that leans on some more Hardcore orientated sounds while still ripping it up. Two step all the way it has a 2003 Metalcore aesthetic that that isn’t lost in the heavier guitar tones. Taking some Slayer inspired riffage and adding that gritty integrity “Free Like A Bird” speaks of the pain being held in the heart of those oppressed while tearing a new exit wound in the flesh. Melodic overtones in the chorus give bassist Petr Hrncar the chance to show off some clean backing vocals but there is none of that from Taylor who prefers to roar her way over everything like a Lioness protecting her domain. More technical lead flourishes are a must and end the track on a soaring high. “My Last Pain” proves that Stay Down are just at the start of their career and here to stay because they clearly have the talent that it takes. Breakdowns a plenty and a crushing weighty guitar tone are exactly what the Doctor ordered, while a melodic passage that breaks out for the final verse is as solidly crafted as an Oak table. We need more from Stay Down [8/10]