3 Dec 2022

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STATES - Single/Video Review: Hostage

26 May 2022 // A review by Kev Rowland

It has been a year since States released their last single, Relentless, but they were caught up in the COVID lockdowns and even though they recorded drum tracks at the end of 2020 they were unable to complete the songs. However, they are in the studio right now with Zorran Mendonsa (Devilskin, Coridian, City of Souls, Blacklistt) and hopefully they will be releasing material throughout the rest of the year as if this is anything to go by then we are on for a treat. This is old school rap rock combined with some nu-metal sounds which is commercial, retro, modern and hard-hitting, all at once. While band such as Limp Bizkit, Rage Against The Machine and Linkin Park are obvious influences, one can also hear elements of fellow NZ acts (Coridian} and Written By Wolves in particular.

The song may be just less than five minutes long, but the quintet has packed in a great deal, with multiple sections so the ears never know what is going to happen next. For a twin-axe act the guitars are somewhat muted, as the rhythm section has been brought far more to the fore than one might expect. The reason for this is that while Reuben and Nick keep the riffs coming with intertwined guitars which often follow their own paths before combining, it is the bass of Rob and drums of Chris which provide most of the dramatic changes which are taking place. Chris never seems to settle in any particular pattern, switching styles throughout, while Rob provides a filthy bass which has a tone reminiscent of Chris Squire, again changing his approach throughout. Then at the front there is Scott who can sing clearly and cleanly when the time is right, while at others he is happiest providing a rock rap which fits in perfectly with the music. 

The video was recorded in their rehearsal space (wow, what a room!), with a really strong message at the beginning where it states how many people are in the world, how many mobile devices there are, and how humans have never been more alone. This artificial reality and removal from the physical is a recurring theme throughout the video which is highly polished with Scott shouting at guys wearing AR headsets, or trying to get them involved when they are looking at their phones instead of playing.

Polished, powerful, welcome back guys. They are playing Auckland’s Dead Witch on June 24th and that will be a gig not to miss.

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )


(Hailing from Auckland, New Zealand,) With a sound that is best described as an aural smackdown - STATES is a hard-hitting band that doesn’t pull its punches when it comes to getting crowds pumped. Comprised of members from Heathen Eyes, Rumour City and Anemoia, the band combines in-your-face vocals and huge musical energy with explosive live performances.

Reborn with the inclusion of frontman Scott ‘The Opposite’ Squire in 2019, this addition shaped a new line-up by joining Reuben Parlane (guitar/vocals), Rob Woodman (bass) Chris Birch (drums) and Nik Dobbin (guitar). With a wealth of varied expertise, STATES looks back upon the ‘nu’ sounds of rap rock from the early 2000’s and amalgamates this with the progressive metal tones of today.

STATES brings their music to the people in 2021 with the release of their debut single Relentless, recorded and mastered by renowned producer and sound engineer Zorran Mendonsa (Devilskin, Coridian, City of Souls, Blacklistt). Paired with the accompanying video produced and directed by Bahador Borhani (Written By Wolves), Relentless will forge itself firmly into your playlist with its authentic blend of razor-edged riffs, slick vocal throwdowns and infectious hooks.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for STATES


Lost + Found
Year: 2017
Type: EP

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