Last year, ‘Heart of a Coward’ vocalist Jamie Graham announced to the world that he was parting ways with the band. After three magnificent albums, fans were understandably upset and concerned about the bands future. Last month, ‘Heart of a Coward’ officially introduced their new singer Kaan Tasan with a brand new single ‘Collapse’ which polarised fans but gained a 4/5 review from Spirit Level. This week, Kaan Tasan performed his live debut with the band at a sold out show at The Boston Music Rooms.
The Boston Music Rooms - 30th May 2018:
It is a busy night for a Wednesday in Tufnell Park and the venue is already beginning to fill before opening band ‘Harbinger’ take the stage. Considering that ‘Harbinger’s merch stand includes grinders, king skins and shirts with the slogan “riffs and spliffs”, you would be forgiven for assuming that the evening would begin with some stoner rock. However, you would be gravely mistaken as ‘Harbinger’ dive straight into a ferocious set of technical hardcore, sounding like a blend of early ‘Parkway Drive’ and ‘Feed The Rhino’ mixed with ‘Palm Reader’. It is not long before the room is really starting to fill and the crowd has shuffled their way to the front of the stage as ‘Harbinger’ play a blistering set as if they were headlining the night. Bassist Kris Aarre is away tonight, which makes his replacements performance doubly impressive as his fingers glide across the 6-string bass with ease and he stalks the stage like Rob Trujillo. The entire band give off a strong feeling of enthusiasm which is channeled throughout their performance and the bar is set extremely high for the following acts.
With that in mind, we almost feel sorry for ‘Lotus Eater’ who have to follow. ‘Lotus Eater’ play gnarly as fuck, groove laden hardcore; not dissimilar from the likes of ‘Code Orange’ whilst the singer channels ‘Gallows’ era Frank Carter in his performance. Combining elements of urban hip hop, the Glaswegian quintet are pure rage, but the crowd doesn’t seem as energised. This isn’t helped by the presence of two crowd-killers who start a pit that causes the majority of people to back away. Nevertheless, ‘Lotus Eater’ put on a decent performance and their closing song ‘Gloom’ is an absolute rager that wins over anyone who may have been sitting on the fence.
Winning over the crowd is not a problem that ‘From Sorrow To Serenity’ have to concern themselves with. By now the room has reached maximum capacity and the Glaswegians have the attention of everyone present. The shift in stage presence is monumental as Gaz King has the audience wrapped around his fingers. It is clear that the experience the band have built on tours supporting the likes of ‘Jinjer’ and ‘Betraying The Martyrs’ has crafted them into a tight unit who are destined to be playing much larger venues in the near future. Their melodic take on deathcore is enough to entice the more extreme metalheads in the room without scaring away the fans of tamer metalcore. Not only do the band sound incredible, but they know how to put on a show and it isn’t long before the circle pits begin to form. Our only criticism however is that in the absence of a rhythm guitarist the band played to a backing track which was sometimes a bit too noticeable to the people at the front and seemed a bit unnecessary.
After ‘From Sorrow To Serenity’ have finished making mince-meat of the packed bar, there is only one act remaining and you can practically taste the excitement. Playing to a sold out Boston Music Rooms for his live debut, it is a baptism of fire for new vocalist Kaan Tasan, but you could never tell as the band are on top form. Any doubts as to whether Tasan would be able to pull off Jamie Grahams vocals are blown away within two notes of opening track ‘Hollow’. What follows is a flawless set that covers all three albums. It isn’t until near the end of the set that Tasan even acknowledges the elephant in the room that he is “the new guy”. Introducing their new single as the song that received “umm… mixed reviews” ‘Collapse absolutely decimates live and the crowd love every moment. The non-stop circle pit continues to grow as the band plow through their 70 minute set and by the end of encore classic “Around a Girl (in 80 days)” Tasan has been warmly been welcomed by long term fans and newcomers alike. With a new record in the works, we can’t wait to see what direction ‘Heart Of A Coward’ go in the future.
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