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Starving Millions - EP Review: VII

07 Nov 2023 // A review by Kris Raven

Wellington's Starving Millions have recently released their new EP VII, their first new recorded music since 2018's VI. While I have heard and seen their name throughout Aotearoa's venues, posters and word of mouth, I have never properly listened to their music. Starving Millions are a band rooted in the DIY ethic, from production to bookings since their inception in 2013. They have released an incredible amount of music, from EP's, albums and live albums. I was stoked to see the live album format available and alive. A band in the genre of hardcore punk, I feel like this EP certainly offers this but so much more. There are elements of metal, math core and post metal. VII is a solid punch to the head of intensity, aggression, emotion and passion.

Opening track Burnt To The End features so many twists and turns rhythmically, extreme drumming and scouring guitar riffs. 90's hardcore riffs blend into half time break downs. I love the half time riff transition into the rolling bass and four on the floor punk drums. The song then steps down to an atmospheric post metal slumber. Lora Thompson from Empress supplies contrasting and ethereal vocals before double kicks and frantic riffs emerge again and pummel the senses. The Dwell Is To Lose follows suit, reminding me of Converge, the intro snare roll like a death March with discordant guitar. There are some hooky melodic elements within the riffs and guitar leads that elevate the song as it travels at hyper speed. The double vocal attack and guitar lead are a standout. The song battles between 220bpm beats and broken blasts.

The Devils Dance is a slower number, there is a post hardcore esque style, Misery Signals vibe to the music initially, then it moves into hardcore with solid savage guest vocals from Cold War. The vocal styles work well together with the harsh screams and mid-low range, within a musical backdrop of excellent drum fills and guitar work. The song ends with a dissonant guitar melody and haunting spoken word. Common Ground, smashes out the gate, offering some really cool rhythmic timings while Aggression Unchecked has a double vocal section where the screamed and harsh vocals go full savage, reminding me of early Sepultura death metal era, so primal with the crushing high screams sitting on top, all the while the drums are an ever evolving machine, moving the song around like controlled chaos.

False Negativity has a Dillinger escape plan type intro, broken blast beats with rolling drum fills that soon turn full speed with a stand out menacing thrash guitar solo with a good amount of shred. The finale with the acoustic guitar was a great touch, such contradiction to the 17 minutes before it. The production suits the style, it’s raw and real. There were a few moments it felt like some of the instruments were not fully synced together and it sounds like the train will leave the rails, but that also adds to the chaotic structure and character of the songs. At first listen I wasn’t sold on the vocals as they felt a little jarring but then I kept going back and the whole mix and musicianship makes sense and works really well together.

Would recommend VII

 

About Starving Millions

Starving Millions are a hardcore Punk band from Wellington City.
Never ones to let idle hands take over, the band has released a string of albums and EPs since their formation in 2013, as well as touring locally and abroad.

In true DIY fashion Starving Millions take care of all areas of the band in house or through local friends; from recording, production and distribution of the music, through to design, photography and production of merch.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Starving Millions

Releases

VII
Year: 2023
Type: EP
Live At Paisley Stage
Year: 2018
Type: Album
VI
Year: 2018
Type: EP
V
Year: 2017
Type: EP
Live At Valhalla
Year: 2017
Type: EP
IV
Year: 2016
Type: EP
III
Year: 2015
Type: Album
II
Year: 2014
Type: EP
I
Year: 2013
Type: EP

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