Tattered Pages – Open Diary I (Sleaszy Rider Records)

Thursday, 8th March 2018
Rating: 8/10

Incorporating a modern combination of metallic sounds that includes both male and female clean vocals as well as harsher female screams, the immediate thought is most likely something along the lines of Amaranthe. To that end, it’s not a complete misjudge of character, but the Birmingham-based newcomers of Tattered Pages have more in their corner that reveals itself with repeated listens.

Tattered Pages can come off as a bit eccentric on the first listen. The songs, while cohesive enough for a full front-to-back listen, really can run the gamut as far as their influences go. From a more straight-laced melodic death metal number enhanced by electronics (“Worse than Reality”) to tribal beats and fretless bass rumbling (“I Am the Voice”) to upbeat and bouncy material that borders on electro-rock (“Open Your Eyes”), there’s a lot of variety to take in. Some may scoff at the more melodic and electronic infusions, but it does help to build the band up as wanting to try something different. This experimental nature also helps sprinkle some variation in their approach to the heavier tunes like “Can’t Take It” or “My Generation,” where crunchy, melodeath-friendly riffs and catchy leads feed off of modern metalcore moments and electronics without falling into the usual patterns that many move towards. Vocalists Aliki Katriou and Neal Romero also do a good job of avoiding more clichéd territory in their parts, with Katriou in particular having a vast range that comprises the entire ‘beauty and the beast’ spectrum all on her own.

When it comes to modern metal, the sky does seem to be the limit in regard to how influences and aspirations can be inserted into the format. Open Diary I isn’t afraid to step outside the norms and boundaries, providing the listener with a more unique approach that displays a range of both heaviness and melody. Thus, Tattered Pages are a new band to keep your eyes on as they progress.

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