Giants – Break the Cycle (Album Review)

Giants are a band midway through a meteoric rise at the moment. They have gone from grafting hard and playing seemingly endless small shows to headlining shows and signing for Holy Roar; the label of choice for UK hardcore.

With new album Break the Cycle they have really outlined everything they are about. With a deadly combination of vintage hardcore and clever melodies you are just as likely to emote as you are to head bang. The fine line between brute force and fragility is cleverly walked with nods towards melodic hardcore, noughties screamo and 80s hardcore. It’s clear Giants has developed a niche sound which works perfectly.

The musicianship within the album is solid, guitars build deep riffs with a real consideration of melody, leading lyrics in and out of softer moments. There are chugging bass lines leading into breakdowns full of heavy, driven and often aggressive feeling. Tight drumming pieces everything together, dictating the tone and pace of each and every moment.

With musicianship of such a high and varied quality the vocal and lyrical side of this album is pushed into the forefront and is able to really catch the ear. Shades of every hardcore and punk record are identifiable, with a vocal range which moves comfortably between Rollins and Havoc without foregoing any individuality. There is clearly something special within the song writing here.

From start to finish this LP is packed full of heavy breakdowns, musical intricacy and tight drumming, combined perfectly with sing-a-long choruses. Vocally this record shows an incredible range — howls and building death growls transition into melodies and fly back out again in a heartbeat.

This is a record for fans of 80s hardcore, Swedish melodic hardcore and a solid chorus/breakdown combo. Think AFI, Black Flag, Satanic Surfers and Pianos Become Teeth rolled into one.