Review: Anthems - Consciousness

Anthems is a five-piece from Prage. The group are quintessentially post-hardcore, and with their debut album ‘Consciousness’ checking all the boxes for a dense hardcore record. It’s a potent emission of instinctive energy; a thundercloud of post-punk grit; with efficacious clamour and push-pull dynamics. 

After a short intro, ‘Consciousness’ kicks off with Empty Thoughts – a frenetic culmination of Matej Kludsky’s unclean screams, the siren of the guitar and the hook of a rock-hard chorus.

Without taking in a single breath Your World swiftly bursts in after Empty Thoughts; agitated and ridden with riotous tempo shifts. Hunting for Emotions is one of the album’s best moments. It’s a disorderly clobber that pummels the ears with fertile riffs and relentless drumming. It ends playfully—with a mischievous melody that melts into the psyched up next track, Nobody. Nobody is beautifully reckless in its delivery of a racing and neck-breaking composition.

The following Warned by a Ghost is frantic. Six songs into the highly-charged record and Anthems have somehow managed to move from 100% in energy to double that by this point. After an ambient introduction, the eager drumming leads the listener to a zealous riot. This song, and the succeeding tracks revel in that space between post-punk and hardcore, and delight with riffs that are stamped into your memory.

The conclusion to the album, Twisted Mind starts with an odd-timed insurrection and builds up to a monumental climax; with a decelerated breakdown hauntingly parting with the screams. The listener is left satisfied with the molten rage they’ve just encountered; yet remains with an inner desire for more—and it isn’t hard to hit repeat and listen to ‘Consciousness’ from beginning to end all over again.

Anthems has mastered the art of chaotic composure. While there isn’t anything ground-breaking or adding something new to the post-hardcore sound, it somehow manages to both obey and transgress the genre’s rules. It is eleven well-mastered tracks with composition that’s a fully-controlled mess. Every hectic moment is delivered with purpose. It bodes well for the band’s future.

‘Consciousness’ is available from Bandcamp here.

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