2016 has been a good musical year for me, so many great bands have released albums, EPS and singles. I also had the thrill of discovering Backwards Youth last Friday with the release of their five song EP, Reality Check. All I can say is thank god for Bandcamp!
The EP is everything you think it will be after hearing the heavy Intro. It’s your typical hardcore formula. The same formula that never seems to fail. When I say typical I don’t mean it in a bad light, it’s the whole if ain’t broke don’t fix it mentality. 100% of chuggy riffs, pounding drumming, aggressive vocals and of course the piece de resistance. The magnum opus, those big breakdowns we all love to lose are shit to. It’s a raw, DIY sound from Breaking Point to the titular track that closes the EP. The vocals are sharp and shouted with scorn over well rounded guitars and concise drum fills. There is a good tempo to the EP with Flock Following bigging up a mosh ready beat whilst Excuse offers a fantastic two step rhythm to throw down to.
However what I do love about Reality Check is the driving force of the bass that seems to have a prominent sound. It is allowed to riff without the guitars and delivers such a punch when it feels in the gaps. Life Sentence just hammers home the bass line as the guitars stir up some feedback the bass and drums are left to smash out some deep grooves. This is one of the reasons I feel in love with hardcore and punk, the bass lines (Sorry breakdowns I didn’t mean it). They never settle for being a background filler, instead the bass ramps up the volume to compete with the guitars instead of shadowing them. Backwards Youth have not failed me here!
All in all Reality Check is a pretty decent EP. Nothing to rant and rave about but it offers up some heavy arse hardcore, worthy of a good mosh or two. It earns a 7/10. A solid effort in my eyes. Backwards Youth deserve a listen if you’re open to a less clean and more DIY sound but hey, if you love hardcore you know exactly what you are getting into.