Edinburgh based States Of Panic are a band who embody the stylistics of the Black Veils Brides while their songwriting is described as 'Pop/Metal'; this is surely a disservice to a band who are quite clearly a Metal band first and foremost.
'New World Order' is the bands most recent release, although it's not their first album – they released an album called 'Brand New Breed' under their previous moniker of Peepshow in 2012 - but these two albums are entirely different showing how far the band have come since their previous incarnation, and what great songwriters they have become in the process.
'No Master Above' starts things off here and it's a great built up intro of sound effects, voices, drums and guitar slowly increasing in volume until it gives way to 'One Of Us' which powers full steam ahead in all its glory. Singer, Johnny Gunn, has a great voice especially in the middle section where he sounds deliciously evil. The first of many catchy choruses is here too and with some great backing vocals too, which give the track a slightly fuller sound. It's certainly a good solid start to the album and you can imagine the band using these two tracks as the opening salvo at their gigs to maximise the energy from both band and audience.
Article continues below...
The band's current single, 'Gun To My Head' keeps the tempo going and the addition of keyboards gives it a slightly different sound but that's only a good thing because it means that the songs don't just all sound like carbon copies of each other. Drummer Hammy shows his Metal as he holds down a steady ferocious beat whilst the twin guitar sound, courtesy of Rusty Gill and Dagan Wilkin, also works well making this track a firm favourite of mine after relatively few listens.
You get a couple of credibly fast numbers here including 'Violate' with its short instrumental intro giving way to a showcase performance from Gunn who manages to push his voice from thoughtfully sung to an (almost) death metal style within the same chorus and he should be justifiably period of his performance here.
Likewise, 'Scream' has a killer guitar riff placed over a bouncy keyboard track. The lyrics are punctuated by a solid drum beat and with bass player Hex helping out on backing vocals, you can just imagine the band having a lot of fun recording this one.
'Battle Cry' has a different feel altogether making it a somewhat darker sound than some of the other tracks, but Gunn's vocal phrases are well considered and he comes across really well once again. There's a nice guitar track here too that drives the song onwards and if you add in the oft repeated phrase of the songs title, you can imagine the audience getting involved with this one so I'm hoping it makes its way into the bands live set!
Of course it's not all fast and frantic numbers here, as is demonstrated by 'Digital Enemy' which has a slightly slower tempo once it settles down, with some subtle vocal effects overlaid on Gunns voice. Don't get me wrong, it's still a good heavy number with some great backing vocals which give it that extra something. It's Gunn who comes across well here again, though, giving what must be his best performance here though - top marks.
Likewise, 'Aviator' is another good mid-paced number and it is probably the most accessible track on the album for anyone who's wishing to dip their toe in the water. The song has it all, though, from the powerhouse guitar solo to a solid drum beat throughout with the addition of a jaunty keyboard track subtly added at the back gelling everything together whist Gunn goes through any number of different vocal emotions.
Like I said earlier, States of Panic have matured a lot since their initial releases, and 'No World Order' can only strengthen their position and their reputation. I only hope that these songs transfer well to their live set and are welcomed by their fans and the wider Rock/Metal community because this band deserve everything they have achieved so far and If they continue with this trajectory then they are bound to be huge.
You can watch the official video for 'Gun To My Head' here:
No Master Above
One Of Us
Gun To My Head
States of Panic are:
Johnny Gunn – Vocals
Rusty Gill – Guitar
Dagan Wilkin – Guitar
Hex – Bass Guitar
Hammy – Drums
States of Panic Online:
Official Website: http://www.statesofpanic.com
Sign up here for your free MetalTalk Newsletter...