EP REVIEW: Empire (WINDWAKER)
EP: Empire // ARTIST: Windwaker
Bow down to some spectacular heavy wizardry - Melbourne rockers Windwaker stake a confident claim on the metalcore domain with their brand new EP 'Empire', due out next Friday 22nd March.
After revealing themselves to be behind the mysterious #TheSitch hashtag floating around social media in January, metalcore quintet Windwaker unleashed a peek at their upcoming EP 'Empire' with lead track 'The Sitch', setting tongues wagging with the dynamic tune marking the first new music since 2018's single 'New Infinite' and their 2017 EP 'Fade'.
Heading into 2019, we are poised to be gifted the 6-track EP from the Melbourne lads next week, written and produced by the band themselves, engineered, mixed and mastered by Windwaker drummer Chris Lalic, with additional engineering from Windwaker guitarist Liam Guinane and Declan White. The result? An intensely assertive adventure that balances beauty and brutality with the greatest of ease.
Opening track 'Reject' wastes no time getting stuck into the Windwaker status quo; fiery riffs sizzle over icy soundscapes, while the relentless vocals of Will King seamlessly trades off with fellow vocalist/guitarist Liam Guinane. Rounding out the fearless entry point are some prowling basslines, distorted breakdowns and a resounding sense of aggressive hope growling with the repeated war-cry to "face your fucking demons".
With barely a breath, we launch into lead single and all round slugger 'The Sitch' - living proof that metalcore can be fresh and fun as the Windwaker gents throw in a dash of tech, pop and some sparkling production that is seriously impossible to resist.
THE SITCH (WINDWAKER)
Midway tracks 'Grey World' and 'Colourless' flit between softer theatrics and heaving discord, showcasing the beguiling light and shade up the collective Windwaker sleeves, particularly on the latter where a touch of falsetto and Stranger Things synths lead into prog-esque terrain with sharp and snappy results.
Bouncing back into grittier waters, 'Arrested' plunges into a menacing void with beefed-up distortion and some dank howling bass tones that will be resonating in your bones long after the closing arpeggios have dissolved. But just how will Windwaker close out such a diverse sonic adventure? With soaring aplomb, of course, in the form of 'My Empire' which is perhaps the best representation of everything available on the Windwaker menu: down-tuned guitars, absolutely huge soundscapes and just the right amount of abrasion to get the blood pumping.
Overall, 'Empire' is an exquisite and unblemished serve of modern metalcore from a young band who have challenged and evolved their creativity into a significantly unique concoction. It's a ballsy call to make so early in the year, but this upcoming EP is already threatening to be one of the best of 2019, and unquestionably establishes Windwaker's authority in the heavy world.
BY TIANA SPETER