Review Summary: A solid debut, these guys have potential.
In a current metalcore scene plagued by fashionistas with weaves "singing" like robots via the wonders of auto-tune, Woking, UK quintet Palm Reader is quite the breath of fresh air . Don't get me wrong, auto-tuned fashioncore can be absolutely fabulous music to spin-kick to, let us not forget the glories of The Devil Wears Prada. While metalcore in the past few years has either gotten somehow more glittery and scenesterred out, or impeccably slamming (a-la Emmure), Palm Reader has gone a step back to girl's jeans and technical as math (pardon my language) southern tinged metallic hardcore.
Their debut EP, released this past summer, brings things back to days not too long ago, that seemed hopelessly lost, when Architects was a hardcore band, and Johnny Truant actually existed. Where most contemporaries' chugs are overcompressed and choppy, Palm Reader's guitars come in abrasive and loudly alongside the raw, frustrated vocals of Josh McKeown. There's no mechanical hogwash going on in the mix, just well composed rhythmic assault on the listeners ears, and oh, is it a tasty assault.
What Palm Reader lacks, or maybe the difference that sets them apart from their predecessors is the focused tempo. While previous technical hardcore acts from the UK were quite reliant on chaotic tempo changes, and absurd blast beats, these dudes just love to kick it back and let the Southern groove take you into the mosh. It is undeniable, you're moshing.