Don’t be fooled by the flowery album art, Woking’s own Palm Reader’s new album is one of their most hectic, destructive and lairy that the band have ever created. Bringing flavours of The Chariot and Converge into one makes for a pleasant listen to and channels a lot more than just anger into its structure.
As you can tell from the first 30 seconds of the opening track ‘I Watched The Fire Chase My Tongue’ it is going to be a roller coaster of many emotions. The whole musical score sweeps from one to another and it works with what they are doing. The vocals are both full of raw emotion as well as the brutal growls in sections giving that chaotic chaos its forefront as the instruments swoop in and out. The hardcore metal strengths are kept alive with tracks such as ‘Pedant’ which has that strong southern style you would get in an Every Time I Die track if you turned the intensity up a few notches.
The album keeps throwing its beautiful, yet bruised punches, its showing that this band is becoming one of Woking’s biggest and funnest exports. It’s main highlight is how the bands instrumentation works together overall on the heavier front but can also manage to tug some hearts in its less destructive moments, like in ‘Sing Out, Survivor’ feeling the more as the track gets louder and distorted the more you get pulled into its world. The same can go for ‘Travelled Paths’ which only has to use the clean reverbed guitar track and the sheer brutality of the clean/unclean vocals to strike emotion from the record.
As it reaches its end sadly, we’re greeted with more of the same Palm Reader-esque love that has been spread across the entire album. ‘Black Hands’ inserts more of that southern love in parts of its riffs but including more heavier chugging sections and incorporates a somewhat minimal jazz flavouring in its drums. It all comes to a head when the final track lays itself down for the listeners and in those 8 minutes you are taken to a new dimension. ‘Unabridged’ is the finale you have been waiting for and it goes without saying closes the record with how it should be.
Anthemic, pleasing and a touch of insanity, the new Palm Reader record is something that even the non-heavy lover should give a listen to, as you will be able to appreciate it not just for its experimentalism, but for its guts and determination in a genre that is just waiting for the right band to help break it out. This is that band.
Released: 6th April 2015
For Fans Of: The Chariot / Converge / Every Time I Die