COPE are a band who bridge the gap between political anger and an optimistic energy. Since forming in 2015, they’ve carved out a reputation around London and beyond, through playing Camden Rocks and touring with bands such as The Hell and Create to Inspire. Their debut EP Challenge Oppression, Pursue Equality was released last year. It showed a band angry at the political climate; a band who wanted to do something about it. The record channelled everything from While She Sleeps to Every Time I Die, adding a new bite to an already raging hardcore scene. They’re back with a new EP, Tooth and Nail, which is due out on October 13th, and the intensity has been ramped up with even meatier riffs which will take them to the big time in the future.
This step-up in aggression is evident from the opening track, ‘Stray Bullets’, and doesn’t let up at all over the next twenty minutes. ‘Stray Bullets’ itself is an energetic sub-two minute banger. what is immediately noticeable is the gnarly bass tone, which is raised in the mix to create a furious impact. ‘Tooth and Nail’ incorporates gang vocals in the chorus, providing a positive injection of energy. There’s a hint of Stray From the Path in the intro and verse, but the melodic chorus and a big breakdown are the stand-out features of this track because it shows a band who have grown in confidence, pushing themselves to the limit.
Rich Guy’s drumming stands out on ‘Many Faces’. He goes full throttle, hitting the snare like he means it, synchronising perfectly with Tom Walker’s rough screams. The production is raw, yet sounds absolutely massive as the chemistry between guitarists Josh Bowles and Ed Thompson provides an invigorated energy. This has helped them become a much tighter unit, demonstrated perfectly in ‘Populism’ and ‘The Great Divide’, where the gang vocals give off a fresh melodic edge.
COPE’s reputation is increasing at a staggering rate. Tooth & Nail is an EP that shows a band whose songwriting has only got stronger, and surely it’s not long before we see them on magazine covers in the future.
Words by Ermis Madikopoulos