Written by Matt Seddon
For a band that have been taking the gigging circuit by force for the best part of 4 years now; it is great to finally see that Manchester based Rap Metal band, Arcadia have finally gone into the studio and recorded their debut EP entitled Hunting Season.
Although the age of the band shows that the guys in Arcadia were still wearing diapers during the heights of the Nu Metal movement, the songs on Hunting Season not only do justice to the oh so popular 90’s musical trend, but also show that the members of Arcadia are extremely talented musicians; capable of adding their own little special something to ensure that these four new tracks also resonate well with a modern metal crowd.
What makes Hunting Season such a hard-hitting release is the fact that Arcadia have riffs for days! With a powerful 7 string onslaught from guitarists Dave Armstrong and Sam Bowers, and a driving rhythm section courtesy of bassist Aiden Collins and drummer Ollie Eardley, the band delivers a high-energy performance from the moment debut single Reality kicks in to the insane outro riff of closing track My Own Machine. It’s just such a shame that the EP is over in a fleeting moment. Just under 14 minutes of pure awesomeness, and it ends suddenly; leaving the listener begging for a second helping.
They say never to judge a book by its cover, however the artwork for Hunting Season just screams Buy Me. If it was sat there on a shelf in a CD store you would be instantly drawn to it. Designed by independent graphic designer and artist CBLOXX of the Nomad Clan, the chosen artwork for Hunting Season is absolutely stunning. standing miles apart from the other releases of 2016. Whilst it gives nothing away about the bands style or sound, the deer holding the smoking gun is a captivating, unforgettable and somewhat mesmerising symbol that will forever be associated with Arcadia and this incredible EP.
Although the vocal bridge and breakdown in lead single Kingpin is a bit too similar to Limp Bizkit’s ‘Take A Look Around’ to be a mere coincidence, and the melodic chorus of Heavy Rain is just missing that extra spark to set it off. Hunting Season is a terrific debut effort for such a young band, drawing influence from NU Metal Legends P.O.D and Rage Against The Machine in Tom Holt’s aggressive spit-rap style vocals and hardcore elements from the likes of Madball and Biohazard to create a sound that is fresh, exciting and as relevant today as it was 15-20 years ago.
With a plethora of bands such as Hacktivist, DVSR, Fire From The Gods and The One Hundred leading the charge in the 90’s Nu Metal/Rap Metal resurgence that we have come to see over the past few years; it is the perfect time for a band like Arcadia to get their foot in the door and show the world what they are made of. With the raw talent that this band has offered up on this debut release, and talks of a new EP on the horizon, we could be seeing the making of one of the finest young metal bands in the country.
Listen to Reality below.