Sertraline – Clouded Minds & Silver Lines

The recent release of their new EP has confirmed what many have been thinking and openly saying, metallers Sertraline are becoming one of the UK’s most compelling bands. Their new five track offering builds on all the potential and prowess of its acclaimed predecessor and then lays down its own plateau of craft and invention which simply demands attention.

Emerging from Stoke-On-Trent in 2014, Sertraline has increasingly tempted support and thick praise through releases and a striking live presence which has seen the band share stages with the likes of Voyager, Sumo Cyco, Forever Still, Butcher Babies, Kobra and the Lotus, Skarlett Riot, and VOLA over the years. Second EP, Guilty was a potent moment in their rise up the ranks with its release in 2017 but we expect to be richly outdone in success and plaudits by Clouded Minds & Silver Lines.

Already rich in enterprise and imagination, the band’s mix of progressive and melodic metal has simply grown between releases, its snarl is more intense, melodic radiance growing inescapably seductive while the craft and imagination behind each aural tapestry within the new outing as captivating as the sounds they cast as swiftly proven by EP opener, Inside Out.

The track beckons ears with a melodic weave initially, one soon cradling the warm melodic tones of Lizzie Parry. Suggestive and tempting, it opens up to an even more intriguing and inviting proposition with a more steely weave of grooves emerging. There is something of a Voyager like hue to the song which only adds to its temptation before the predatory instincts and traits of their sound fully erupt. As the track expands Lizzie soon shows her growing prowess of blending guttural and melodic vocals to echo the mix texturing of the sounds around her, they also an evolving adventure in ears as the rhythmic dexterity and predation of drummer Si and bassist Hendo align to the adept enterprise of guitarists Mike and Wilson.

Mean to Me II follows, rising in a sonic breeze to sweep through ears with a sinister breath and magnetic agility. As in the first, the song twists and turns as it fuses contrasts in voice and texture, never feeding expectations but creating a fertile landscape of familiar essences and greater fresh invention while its successor 2205, also emerging from a calm distance, unveils a mercurial landscape as forceful as it is contagious. The song is less volatile than the first pair of tracks but certainly bares its teeth and shares a rapacious trespass within its melodic adventure before Screaming For Sleep similarly crafts a tempestuousness confrontation as infectious as it is imposing on the way to taking favourite song honours.

Isolation completes the EP, its name apt for the times we currently are embracing and also a major highlight rivalling its predecessor with every breath from its drama soaked entrance and subsequent raptorial stalking of ears and devouring of the imagination to its capricious prowl and tempting. It is a superb end to a release which impressed straightaway and has only grown in temptation and stature much like Sertraline themselves.

Clouded Minds & Silver Lines is out now.

https://www.facebook.com/WeAreSertraline/   https://twitter.com/wearesertraline

RingMaster Review 16/06/2020

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Sertraline – Guilty

Sertraline

Sertraline

March sees the release of a new EP from British melodic metallers Sertraline, an encounter earning a fair amount of anticipation due to its well-received predecessor and the band’s increasing reputation. The Guilty EP offers five potent slices of rock and metal fronted by the quickly engaging tones of Lizzie, tracks which revel in the new growth of sound and imagination spawning them from within the band.

Formed in the Autumn of 2014, the Stoke-on-Trent hailing band quickly stirred up a loyal local fan base and close attention, their first single a couple of months in, Set The World Alight, luring strong radio play and support from BBC Introducing. Their well-received debut EP Bury The Ghosts pushed the band into national spotlights in 2015, its success more than backed by Sertraline’s dynamic live presence which has seen them shared stages with the likes of Butcher Babies, Toseland, Kobra and the Lotus, Skarlett Riot, and Normandie along the way. Last year saw a new line-up in place and the further honing of the band’s sound, Guilty showing the enjoyable results from the evolution.

The EP title track is first up, ears consumed by a wall of carnivorous riffs and intrusive rhythms. It is a striking appetite raising start soon relinquishing its threat as a wiry melody escapes the guitar. Any disappointment from losing that raw trespass dissipates as Lizzie’s tones dance on the emerging web of riffs and grooves from Mike and Wilson. With beats still swiping with fierce intent as the bass of Hendo enticingly grumbles, the song takes a firm grip of ears and imagination. Throat raw growls intermittently join the adventure, contrasting with the harmonic beauty of Lizzie but for personal tastes lacking the bite to be as successful as their certainly welcomed addition could have been. Nevertheless it only adds to the strong character and increasing potency of the excellent track.

sertraline-cover-artwork_RingMasterReviewSuccessor Snakes opens with a melodic coaxing, atmospherics gently kissing a lone melody before a weave of Periphery scented enterprise sparks song and imagination. As the first, the individual prowess of the band is a captivation, their combined adventure just as compelling if lacking the imposing impact of the first track. It is the subtlety of its twists and turns which predominantly make that difference resulting in the song taking longer to reach the same heights though with listens it surely does.

New video/single Change Of Heart is next, an even mellower proposal with a poppier catchiness to a harmonic stroll courted by cantankerous riffs, rhythmic punches, and that coarser expulsion of voice. It is obvious single material, melodies and Lizzie tantalising but does not quite live up to those around it for personal tastes though still adding to the EP’s success.

Nyeevise gets the appetite keenly back on track, its opening brooding presence carrying a whiff of Breed 77 to it before bolder sinews spin a glorious web of steely riffs and rapacious senses twisting grooves. Like a mix of Halestorm and Forever Still, the song growls and seduces; vocals and guitars providing an alluring blend of contrasting textures and creative drama.

Bringing the release to a highly satisfying close is I Admit The Blame, an emotive serenade with fire in its heart and melancholic beauty in its roar as well as creative attitude in its body. Another which grows with every listen rather than making a swift impact, it is a fine end to a thoroughly pleasing encounter. We are still not sure about the harsh side of the vocals, they missing the ‘savagery’ desired, but still an inventive part of the fresh blaze fuelling the Sertraline sound which will only take the band to higher plateaus.

The Guilty EP is out March 3rd @ http://www.wearesertraline.bigcartel.com/

https://www.facebook.com/WeAreSertraline/   https://twitter.com/wearesertraline

 Pete RingMaster 02/03/2017

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