Careering into view like a raging typhoon, female-fronted Leeds based Chasing Dragons released their new record, ‘Checkmate’ on 2nd June via Trash Unreal Management. Produced, mixed and mastered by Lee Batiuk (Deaf Havana); it’s a sprawling beast that incorporates frenetic post-hardcore burst of penetrating guitars, thunderous vocals and a titan-esque rhythm section; all which entwine with moments of alt-metal, hard rock with a defining punk undercurrent.
Unafraid to step outside their realms of metal riffery, the beautiful ‘Prelude’ opens with whispers and gently tip-toes showcasing vocalist Tank’s ability to lull you in, gain your trust and from there she softly directs you throughout the chaos that ensues around her. Thunder crashes, drums menacingly approach and the guitar marches along with an ill meaning intent before it launches you headlong into the full throttle rock of ‘Throw Down Your King’. It whips you on a journey fused with thick molten riffs dripping with an underlining harmony which then slips into a moment of soft melancholia – a blink of an eye and its gone and back into a juggernaut of ear-worming Avenged Sevenfold-esque hooks.
The arousing ‘That’s Not Love’ see’s Tanks rasping vocals spit with defiance and almost blues undertones as the shot-gun drumming, frantic bass lines and unrelenting guitar pushes it to the limit as ‘For the Sake of Murder’ swaggers in; Tank again with teasing sense of mischief is surrounded by a cacophony of rage, defiance and riffs so meaty it could move mountains. Proving they can sweep between pace and tone with effortless ease ‘The Last Defence’ is a haunting piano led epic of Hollywood proportions. It reaches deep inside, grabs your heart and soul and rouses you to stand up and be counted; do not be bound, do not be tied town – fight and fight to survive. You. Are. The. Last. Defence they roar. Final track ‘Broken Jaws’ shows what Chasing Dragons do best and that is unrelenting, rocket fuelled rock and roll that you can see Lemmy tipping his Stetson to in approval in the distance somewhere.
Drawing comparisons to Iron Maiden, Avenged Sevenfold, AFI and Aiden, Chasing Dragons are coming out of the traps making some noise and having already shared stages with Pendulum, InMe, Death Angel, The Sweet and Fearless Vampire Killers amongst others, ‘Checkmate’ is a real statement of intent. And they intend to grab you by the throat.
Chasing Dragons are: Laurie ‘Tank’ Carnan (Vocals) / Mitch Sadler (Guitar/Vocals) / Katie Bullock (Drums) and Ant Varenne (Bass/Vocals)
1. Prelude 2. Throw Down Your King 3. That’s Not Love 4. For the Sake of Murder
5. The Last Defence 6. Broken Jaws
June 26: Sheffield, Corporation
June 27 Rhyl (Wales), Pot & Kettle
July 9 London, The Macbeth
Aug 2 Leicester, The Shed
Aug 20 Leeds, The Cockpit supporting WILLIAM CONTROL
Aug 21 Liverpool, Lomax
Aug 22 Consett, The Club That Rocks
Sept 19 London, The Underworld