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Kill Or Cure

Self-released (2014)
Rating: 8/10

I don’t know too much about England’s Kill Or Cure except to say they’ve been around for half a decade or so and whose current members are based at opposite ends of the country in Manchester and Southend.

However, a few spins of this self-titled debut opus reveals an experimental groove-based metal band who one minute are more than happy to bludgeon the listener senseless with blinding, metallic riffs, and then the next providing extremely accessible, almost, dare I say it, pop-tinged hard rock melody. These guys would most certainly have fitted in alongside the nu-metal brigade, but there’s certainly a traditional weight on offer here which adds a real sincerity to the overall sound and also gives the trio an unpredictable flair.

Kill Or Cure are fronted by Chris Brookes who also mixes the record, and it’s safe to say that here’s a frontman displaying incredible versatility which enables him to slip in alongside those changeable musical structures. Such are the layers of this record that it takes a few listens to really get your claws in, because not only do these guys have an eye for big melody but they know how to rock too, nonchalantly displaying subtlety adjacent to thrashier moments which are interwoven with theatrical metal, power metal and goth-tinged harmony.

There is a strong European feel about most of the tracks, whether in the form of opener ‘Season’s End’ or to the bizarre cover of Infernal’s ‘From Paris To Berlin’ with its disco metal groove; if such a label exists?! This sort of record should appeal to a wide range of people. Those into more extreme dabbling will no doubt lap up the sinister shakes of ‘Bullet To The Brain’ with its earthquake growls and devastating riffing, but if you prefer more of an accessible harmony then ‘Paradox’ will be right up your ill-lit street.

The world really is at the feet of these guys such is the refreshing appeal of this slab. This is powerhouse metal that still maintains enough weight which smothers the melody. There’s nothing old or creaky about proceedings, but where the likes of Iced Earth or maybe Nevermore were able to provide fresh sounding energetic metal with hints of the past, Kill Or Cure have opted for the same tricky route and have really pulled it off. If you can forgive the use of drum programming then you’ll no doubt succumb to the guitar sound of Dan Hepner and the bass of Elena de Jesus as this terrific trio take you on an intriguing ride that takes in the versatile and the volatile combined.

Neil Arnold

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