People know Skindred best for many different things. Perhaps it’s their incredible live presence ft. the Newport helicopter. For others, it might be being tormented by Benji at Download Festival with spiders (never quite moved on from that…). But more often than not, it’s their cool, enjoyable blend deemed ragga metal, a blend that new album Kill The Power has to the bone.
Opener Kill The Power is almost misleading in the album’s direction; for one, it’s just fucking huge, but it’s one of the most reminiscent of their older work, but the chorus gradually building itself each time, ending in an electronic vocal twist. It could just be an extension of their past work, by this point.
But as you progress onto Ruling Force, the vibe changes, and it encompasses the album. The electronic nuances sound a bit like Mario-on-crack, the heavier vocals are actually some of their darkest, and the chorus is set to soar over their adoring festival crowds, but this has a more live feel. The intro alone typifies this, and this could bridge the disparity between the band’s live success, and that on disc.
Put capture that prowess, and the band have that craziness to replay. Worlds On Fire is a colourful work, deceptively feeling understated – and more importantly, working well – before gradually adding odds and sods until they’re aiming a bazooka right at your eardrums.
And though this time the Welsh lot are leaning more towards electronics, they seem to be going for a balancing act; if we’re going more electronic here, we go heavier there. Proceed With Caution is one of their heaviest works, with Benji’s distinctive vocals still catchily carrying themselves across this deep anarchy; if that bazooka missed you on the first run, it’ll clip you on the penultimate track.
They’ve spread their styles across songs, with some being almost devoid of their counterpart genre to blend with. And what does that mean? Well, the joy of knowing if you don’t like one song, you’ll more than likely find another. Skindred have done some fine work here, and here’s to many more spins.