EP Review: Down I Go – Mortals

Review from Ben Forrester

Down I Go have always gone about things differently. First up, they manage to remain a band whilst living in three very separate parts of the globe. For example, this new EP that we’re about to tuck into was written in a factory basement in Toronto, tracked in a barn in Illinois and then finished off in front-man Pete’s suburban house in Stockholm.

Another interesting fact about Down I Go (which dates back to when the band all lived in the same city), is that every release always seemed to follow a theme or story of sorts. With this new record ‘Mortals‘, the trio have delved further into Greek Mythology with what has been conceived as a sequel to their 2011 EP ‘Gods’.

Due to their transatlantic situation, we don’t hear from them as often as we’d like to, but as it’s only been two years since they dropped the stunning LP ‘You’re Lucky God, That I Cannot Reach You‘, Mortals comes as somewhat of a surprise release!

Mortals is another masterclass in Down I Go’s untouchable theatrical brand of hardcore. Each track hits you with thick walls of guitars, thunderous drums topped with throat shredding vocals that jump to an always brutal tour de force of noise. But what counteracts this is the melodic, clean vocals that are even more prominent here! Each track is smothered in rich harmony layered vocals that just sound brilliantly bonkers over these hard slices of post-hardcore.

Psyche‘ is a fun opener, with a bouncing riff that is coupled with these big choir like vocals that takes it to a totally different dimension, one that you can’t help but be engulfed by. ‘Pandora‘ is a similar affair that combines chunky riff driven grooves with these euphoric and almost transcendent vocal harmonies.

Palaemon‘ goes even deeper, with moments of overlaid and super delayed brass that takes you to a whole other universe, but brings you right back to earth for full throttle, head spinning breakdowns. It’s one of their more head fucking moments for sure. ‘Heracles‘ closes this brief yet perfectly formed set with another huge slab of thunder inducing heaviness, with other worldly vocals that will finish you off in the most delectable crescendo of jazzed up keyboards and snappy falsetto vocals. It’s the dramatic conclusion I was hungry for.

Mortals is Down I Go’s most powerful offering to date. It has all the off the way, earth crushing traits that made their earlier material so great but with a focus on more extravagant vocals and the knack for throwing us off guard into these ace little moments of weirdness. Mortals is a vital part of the band’s consistently strong discography.

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