Wolverhampton based Alternative / Hard rock- folk- metal UNDER A BANNER return with their new EP ‘Riot’, due for release in mid/late May 2018 on Bad Elephant Music. Having received considerable
airplay on both national and international radio stations UAB seem to be slowly climbing the ladder.
While their music hits me like a reincarnate of ‘80s style New Model Army with synths, heavy bass and those all too well pronounced lyrics from Adam Broadhurst, I can see why they appeal to their fans. ‘Riot’ is a strong opening track, though the intro feels a little off kilter with the drums and bass not entirely timing up correctly, at least not to this writers ears anyway. There are peaks and dips in the track; strong sections that are delivered with intensity and then less impactful parts that are over-layed with heavy synths. The contrast in sounds works well.
The poetically passionate lyrics and strong delivery that surrounds the political track ‘The Wrong Hands’, with its strong opening guitar riffs and controversial lyrics will no doubt incite the
people to rise up against the establishment. ‘We Want Hope’ delivers it’s lyrics in much the same vein. Politically astute, powerful lyrics edged with venom that are always pronounced so very
precisely with the fast paced tempo and the gang style chanting of “We want hope, hope, hope!” Leads me to conjure up images of protestors storming The House of Commons and demanding political
‘Last Orders’ is solid and full of braun. The muscular bass and drums driving the harsh vocals. The full stop of the heavy tones are a welcome change in the fast machine gun delivery of the vocals that seem to thunder through my ears so quickly that it’s difficult to fully grasp the meaning. ‘Lights Break Through’ alters the tempo and the mood, it’s mellower intro and less punchy lyrical delivery allows the vocals to shine through with more melody that is a nice change from the breakneck speed of the previous tracks. The folk side of UAB’s sound is more prominent here and it feels less rushed and hurried which in turn allows the riffs to casually flow throughout.
The intelligent compositions and diverse blend of folk, metal, alt and hard rock are unusual mix of sounds that UAB seem to deliver effortlessly on this EP. The bringing of the heavier side of their music to the fore has certainly opened up their music to much broader spectrums and it’s good to see them taking their music in this heavier direction. The urgency that seems to saturate the EP is almost palpable, the atmosphere that it causes within the listener can only serve them well and hopefully this new release will gain them more fans as they take this sound out on the road.
Under A Banner are:
Adam Broadhurst - acoustic guitar and lead vocals
Tim Wilson - drums, percussion and vocals
Jake Brooks - guitar and vocals
Rich Corry - bass
Kat Davis - keyboards and piano
The Wrong Hands
We Want Hope
Light Breaks Through
Riot (Radio Edit)