Wither is the debut EP from Plymouth-based hardcore quartet Carrier, officially founded in early 2017, with each member having had experience in bands local to the area. Agreeing on the direction they wished to take their music they began developing their sound, mixing influences of various genres to create something unique, and referring to their sound as “bittersweet metalcore”.

 The EP opens with Flowers & Thorns. The track opens with a full sound of distorted guitars with a melodic motif in the lead the guitar. The tone of the distorted vocals compliments the tone of the instruments. The breakdown of the chorus is very atmospheric and effectively contrasts the faster pace of the verse. The tone of the vocals in the track’s bridge adds an extra dimension with the heavier, darker tone. The second track on the EP, Ghosts, metaphorically hits the listener in the face with the immediate volume of distorted vocals and heavy instrumentation. The piano melody, and cleaner guitar tone of the second verse contrasts the distorted vocals displaying the band’s experimentation with genre mixing. It is an excellent example of their bittersweet sound. The heavy breakdown outro shows the infusion of metalcore, yet does not feel out of place from the rest of the track.

 Grieve, released as a single, has a haunting atmosphere through the guitar tones and background synth effects. The heavy minor chord progression is a brilliant breakdown with its slow tempo. The track is very short at just over two minutes in length, it would be nice to see it double or even tripled in length which would allow for further development of melodies and chord progressions. August, the shortest track at over one minute in length opens with a serene clean guitar melody, and the introduction of the echoing, distorted vocals once again reinforces the bittersweet theme that runs through the EP.

 This is a great debut EP from Carrier that demonstrates the sound they are striving for however, the short length of some tracks does leave the listener wanting more. The merging of genres works effectively and it will be interesting to see where they go next.

7/10

For fans of: Counterparts, Stick To Your Guns, August Burns Red
Words by Holly Royle 

‘Wither’ by Carrier is out now on 790540 Records.

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