Centiment are an electronica/metalcore crossover band that are infamous for being the band Greg McPherson formed prior to him joining British rockers InMe. Their current incarnation now features Dave McPherson (vocals) and Gaz Marlow (guitar) from InMe who are joined by Neil Howard on bass and Mark Shurety on drums. The band draw influences from similar crossover acts like Crossfaith and Enter Shikari and their début album ‘Streets of Rage’ marks their first release with their current line-up.
Now let’s address the elephant in the room; Centiment are definitely riding the wave of popularity that three of the five members share with InMe. InMe even cross-promoted the release on their respective pages meaning that an enormous amount of appeal the band are going to have is shared equally with InMe. This is by no means an attack on the way this release was promoted and it certainly isn’t meant to disrespect Howard and Shurety’s talents, but it certainly can’t be ignored.
It also says a lot about ‘Streets of Rage’ that the album succeeds when it channels the melody and massive choruses that InMe are so well known for. Highlights include the incredible opening three tracks of ‘S.O.S.’ with its brilliant chorus, ‘Defenders of Oasis’ which showcases Dave McPherson’s soaring vocals and the daft, Essex gang chant on ‘The Kraken’. More has to be said about ‘The Kraken’ and equally ‘Bloodshot’ which both employ Dave McPherson’s Brentwood accent. The silliness of hearing the man scream “get up pussy, it’s just a flesh wound” and “just take my money you wanker” might sound a bit immature on paper but it infuses the songs with something you wouldn’t be familiar with if you’ve been following InMe all these years. Centiment deal with humour as much as they deal with riffs and beatdowns.
Speaking of Dave McPherson, we can’t ignore his entire vocal performance on ‘Streets of Rage’ because it’s the most diverse he’s put forward on any record he has appeared on to date. Dave’s vocal range is one of the widest in British rock and metal and his soaring croon on ‘Victor Frankl’ is married with a varied display of screaming techniques which are delivered masterfully. Fans of the man’s vocals are in for a real treat here.
Centiment’s ‘Streets of Rage’ stands out among metalcore albums because despite not being anything particularly ground-breaking, the songs have been written in a way that means you won’t be forgetting them any time soon. Riffs are plentiful, the choruses are huge and the electronic elements add some impressive texture to the songs. This really is an accomplished record.
The only time things go a bit astray is when guitarists Greg McPherson and Gaz Marlow get a bit obsessed with chugging a single chord. I’m sure it sounds great when you marry these palm-muted chords with a bit of double-bass drumming to maximise your beatdown quota, but it’s a tiresome and overused technique that’s simply a bit dull to listen to. Centiment really are a much better band when they deal with melody instead of breakdowns.
Luckily, the majority of Centiment’s ‘Streets of Rage’ is a wonderful slab of massively enjoyable metalcore. It’s not going to win an Ivor Novello but if you’re a fan of modern metal and jumping in mosh pits then this is an album that will satisfy that craving. Centiment’s ‘Streets of Rage’ is a great start to a new chapter in the band’s career and hopefully it will lead to even better things.
Centiment’s ‘Streets of Rage’ is available to purchase direct from the band now.