ARTIST: FRAME OF MIND
LABEL: QUALITY CONTROL HQ RECORDS
WORDS: AMY ALBINSON
British Hardcore is alive and thriving in the form of London four-piece Frame of Mind. Their debut record, released through UK hardcore label Quality Control HQ records, is an erratic and energetic throwback to the late-80s New York hardcore scene. Reminiscent of bands such as Undergod, Absolution and Crumbsuckers their aggressive opener, ‘…till it fades’, is a short, staccato introduction to a record that demonstrates something of a chaotic nature with its drum-driven instrumental that gives way to a cry of hope. The name ‘Irieshun’ stems from Patois meaning ‘appreciation’, as it expresses praise towards something or someone which the band describe as a rare feeling in an increasingly chaotic world.
Third song, ‘Fall Onto Those’, leans more towards the type of punk-rock you would picture in a DIY basement show in east-london, fitting of a band that live in relative internet obscurity, lacking their own social media presence.
Photo: Matt Gabell
“a confident first step for a band poised to make real waves in the UK’s thriving DIY scene“
Fourth track, Reflections, is the kind of archetypal headbanger, with the kind of quasi-metal guitar work that could set a mosh pit alight. The spoken word elements show an introspective lilt to their songwriting which coupled with an incendiary guitar and drum crescendo lead to an abrupt end, showing an adept songwriting touch for a band in a formative stage of their career. There is a noticeable progression from their previous EP, ‘Weight of Two’ that was released in 2016, that follows a more introspective lyrical approach. Here, frontman Oli McVean presents a more aggressively diverse message of hope than their previous release.
The vocals on the EP were mixed down, plunging Oli McVean’s lyrics into obscurity amidst a wall of screaming guitars and feedback. ‘Irieshun’ sees a significant leap forward in production values. It maintains the abrasive charm of the EP whilst lending a new found clarity to the band’s sonic power and coaxing McVean’s lyrics to the forefront.
It’s a confident first step for a band poised to make real waves in the UK’s thriving DIY scene, throwing a refreshingly soulful and personal perspective on hardcore whilst remaining true to the genre’s rich and varied lineage.