Senator – X:XVI

The hardcore punk scene is a music genre that has seemingly risen to new heights in recent years and has never looked so appealing. Attempting to get in on this action is SENATOR, a Portsmouth 5-piece who have a taste for screaming and an eye for brutality. With new EP ‘X:XVI’ ready and poised for release, the only question left to ask is; will this be their big break?

Starting off with an instrumental number ‘Infinite’, it’s clear that these boys know how to make noise and lots of it. Second track ‘Terrier’ highlights this even better, with its boisterous drum smashes and blistering guitars. However, as much as the hardcore genre is akin to the ‘louder the better’ catchphrase, there does still need to be an element of tune and rhythm somewhere, something that ‘Terrier’ unfortunately lacks. ‘Red Hell’ however brings the momentum back and strikes more than just a good beat or two whilst ‘Serpents’ hosts some impressive drum beats and a great deal of aggression, without just sounding like a wall of sound. Ending track ‘Thick Skinned’ is definitely the best song out of the five that combines melody with a dollop of intensity and impressive vocal work.

‘X:XVI’ is for the most part a challenging yet enjoyable EP. However, in order to get that big break and leap into the hearts of a generation, they will need to cut out songs such as ‘Terrier’ and bring more constancy to the table. Nonetheless, this is a good attempt by the Portsmouth lads but as ever, only time will tell if ‘X:XVI’ will be their golden ticket and transform them from an un-hatched egg, into the beautiful butterfly they have the potential to be.

Original article first appeared on Punktastic website on 03/02/11