Forged in North London in 2021, SECREUM has spent the last nine years building a loyal following in their local scene. In that time, the band suffered from common pitfalls of all young bands from line-up changes to conflict of interest. These factors led to the band taking a brief hiatus in 2014. Luckily, three years later the band decided to reignite the fire. After fine-tuning, some material old and new SECREUM are now back and ready to release their debut EP, Embrace.
Embrace is a gem to behold and is filled with meaty riffs, colossal vocals, and machine-gun drums that all collide together to create a metallic sound that would make any metalhead jump for joy. The EP starts with an instrumental piece, Perception, which borders on the lines of symphonic metal before launching into a cataclysm of metal with Trapped From Within. The album’s introduction is an insightful track giving listeners a taste of the band’s complex sound as it leverages a mix of thrash, groove, and progressive metal.
Contrarian Mind follows on nicely from its predecessor and is built upon ear-crushing riffs and solid breakdowns. You can hear from the guitar work that SECREUM is not the new kid on the block as they shred effortlessly. The shredding trend continues with the belting title track, a perfect example of how the band is able to blend melody with vicious riffs. The production quality also shines through on the title track which makes the entire EP just that bit more enjoyable as you’re really able to hear all the extra details.
Embrace ends with the epically progressive Behind the Mirror. This is perhaps the most MASTODON-esque track on the record with an epic chorus that’s reminiscent of The Motherload. While the band borrows largely from progressive giants MASTODON, they’ve added their own heavy touch to the track, making it a perfect ending to an epic EP.
With their first EP behind their belt, I can see SECREUM entering the wider landscape outside of the comfort of North London. While this is their first studio album, it’s clear that the band is no stranger to playing music. They’ve got the added bonus of years of touring and perfecting their sound that young bands don’t, and it clearly shows. The production is also on-point which is a welcome surprise. Given the band’s sound, it could have been very easy for the final product to turn out sludgy and unprofessional, but instead, the EP is clean and elaborate.
Ultimately, SECREUM is a band for those who love the heavier side of metal and if you’re looking for some new tracks to add to your daily rotation, I highly recommend giving Embrace ago.
Words: Megan Taylor
Embrace is out now.