Over a week ago, after a few years of my friends harping about how great their live shows are, I finally witnessed the relentless energy of Tokyo’s A Page of Punk in Manchester. The band’s performance was an unwavering spectacle to behold, going hand in hand with their anthemic, melodious and tenaciously fast punk. If you don’t believe me, then watch this footage of their performance in Newcastle on their recent UK tour. It testifies to the ever hopeful and fun, fist in the air antics, these Japanese punks are capable of. If you still are sceptical, go and see them next time they tour our shores and let me know what you think. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed!

The masters of vocal harmony are back with their first release from upcoming new album ‘Here’s to the Fatigue’. Jumping straight in with their signature moves, ‘If All Your Parts Don’t Make a Whole’ contains a variety of superb three-part harmonies, as well as big riffs and a massive chorus hook.

Press to Meco have a phenomenal talent for writing songs that get progressively more contagious and just like their debut album ‘Good Intent’, this track only gets better the more you listen to it. It’s going to be a long wait till November 17 for ‘Here’s to the Fatigue’ but on the strength of this track, it’s going to be well worth the wait.

California-based Dayseeker recently released their third full-length ‘Dreaming is Sinking /// Waking is Rising’, an intriguing concept record told from the perspective of a comatose man, made to reflect on the changing events in the world around him, while he lies helpless in a hospital bed. ‘Abandon’ focuses on one of those events: the dissolution of his relationship, with his partner choosing to move while he remains in a vegetative state. “So tell me how you sleep at night knowing you left before I was awake. Now I feel my heart divide knowing how quickly you cast me aside,” our narrator laments.

The emotion behind the lyrics is brought to live spectacularly by Rory Rodriguez, whose soulful vocals tug at the heartstrings with each inflection of the melody. Rodriguez’s range is something to behold, managing to pivot from soaring melody to aggressive screams and everything in between, which brings to life the almost djent-like riffs, providing a meaty bottom-end to the band’s sound. ‘Abandon’ is a representative sample of the quality throughout ‘Dreaming is Sinking /// Waking is Rising’ and though I’m a little late to the party with Dayseeker, this record is phenomenal entry point.

You don’t get too many chances to watch a band grow from the very start, so get on board early with melodic-hardcore act Galleries. When I say from the start, I mean just that: their Facebook page was created on July 12, they haven’t played a show yet and ‘Enough’ is the first track they’ve ever released. They may just be starting out, but they’re already showing major signs of promise.

In the video for ‘Enough’ you’ll spot members of the band in While She Sleeps and Being as an Ocean t-shirts and you can hear the influences in their sound as well. The screamed vocals have a George Petit of Alexisonfire vibe and these are broken up by some very well delivered clean vocals, all of which are accompanied by ambient guitars that provide excellent atmosphere. The band play their first show, supporting Loathe, on September 8 in their home town of Leeds and I’ll be there to report back on how their live show compares to this highly promising debut track.

Enter Shikari are the band that keeps on giving. ‘Live Outside’ is nothing like their other recent releases — the heavy ‘Hoodwinker’ and grime-influenced ‘Supercharge’ — so we’re no closer to understanding what new album ‘The Spark’ is going to sound like but, after all this time, they’re somehow more exciting than ever.

Rou Reynolds’ vocals are as varying as always, ranging from the deep and domineering to the frenzied and spoken. An energetic amalgamation of the electronic and rock elements we’re used to, we’re also thrown a racing ending and synthesizers a-plenty. It’s up to us to decide what meaning we’ll attach to the chorus of “I wanna live outside, live outside of all of this”, but the lyrics of the verse suggest stepping outside of and gaining respite from a never-ending internal monologue and a constant conversation with the world. That’s not in keeping with the video however, which is a warped Orwellian nightmare that takes a Black Mirror turn for the sinister.

Plenty have already complained about a watered down change in sound, but this is Enter Shikari. It’s different to what came before and it’ll be nothing like what comes next, but isn’t that part of the fun?

As Chester Bennington left this world, Linkin Park’s ‘Hybrid Theory’ and ‘Meteora’ blasted out from speakers across the world. For a moment, it seemed that nothing would dull the pain of such a huge loss other than sticking on the albums we all fell in love with – some of us as adults, some of us as kids – and singing along at the top of our voices.

As we start to look forward rather than back, and as we learn from the loss of someone that changed the lives of so many, it can be difficult to remain positive – to not lose yourself in the sadness. To be hopeful in the darkest hours, as Chester has proven, can sometimes be too much. Here’s where ‘Iridescent’ comes in.

Released on 2010’s ‘A Thousand Suns’ album and as part of the ‘Transformers: Dark Of The Moon’ soundtrack, the track slipped under the radar of many. It’s rarely mentioned as anyone’s favourite song by the band and you’re unlikely to search for it buried in the depths of a playlist when there are so many other songs you might choose first. That said, it’s a treasure.

Asking the listener to look within, Chester sings “Do you feel cold and lost in desperation? You build up hope, but failure’s all you know.” You’re not alone, he’s saying. Other people feel the same way. This is a song to remind everyone who feels alone that they most definitely are not; it’s a plea to find comfort in the small things rather than tearing yourself apart.

Nobody would judge if the melody brought a tear to your eye. The group vocals that build to a level of crescendo that 30 Seconds To Mars specialise in, would pull at the heartstrings of the most stoic and chip away at the façade of those with even a Cersei Lannister level of steeliness.

With one last chorus of “Remember all the sadness and frustration. And let it go. Let it go” there’s a sentiment to be found that we can find strength in. Even in a song made for a film franchise, designed for the widest of audiences, the message is deeply personal. Linkin Park wanted us to know there’s a light in the darkness for everyone and if we all stick together we just might be able to find it.

Ghost Atlas provides ERRA guitarist/vocalist Jesse Cash with a platform to celebrate a more melodic side to songwriting. He’s released two EPs so far under the project, ‘Gold Soul Coma’ and ‘Immortal Youth, which have gone from strength to strength and now with the release of ‘Cry Wolf’, Cash is maintaining his impressive trajectory.

Cash’s vocals are a joy to behold, with an ability to write soaring melodies every bit as impressive as his incredible tone. Wrapped around driving guitar chords and drums, Ghost Atlas’ sound will bring Saosin to mind, but with more intricate guitar work; the kind you’d expect from a guy used to churning out riffs in a progressive metalcore band. If ‘Cry Wolf’ whets your appetite, check out Ghost Atlas’ EPs on Bandcamp.

What better way to announce new music than with huge, crushing riffs and bags of groove? Kent-based COVE have been hidden away writing new material and ‘Solis’ proves that the time has been extremely well spent. 2016’s debut EP ‘We Were Once Lost’ hinted at what the band were capable of, but ‘Solis’ ups the ante with even more intensity and refinement.

The band describe themselves as alternative hardcore and it’s an appropriate classification. You get the aggression and adrenaline of hardcore, thanks to heavy guitars and Ben Shorten’s screamed vocals, but the riffs nod towards an underlying orientation for groove, which brings an alternative dimension. If this is a taster of what’s to come from COVE, we could be in for something special with their next release.

Aged around 25 years to perfection, Converge were the first ‘serious’ metal band I ever got into, at the ripe age of 13. Whilst some may argue their most recent efforts lacked the bite that albums like ‘Jane Doe’ and ‘Petitioning The Sky’ embarked on, I feel at this point they can do no wrong. Their live presence is a cathartic sight to behold: to this day, my tooth is still slightly chipped after catching them at a non-barrier show in Manchester when I was 19; stage diving at end of ‘Fault and Fracture.’ Tony Wolski’s video for ‘I Can Tell You About The Pain’ is a mini Lynchian horror flick of its own, as a man in his home is torn away by the cosmic powers of Milk. Yes, milk. I really admire Converge’s experimentation with dark imagery, and of course, this blockbuster venture is no exception. Musically it’s a throwback to the band’s ‘You Fail Me’ era and despite clocking in at 2 minutes and 32 seconds, there’s plenty of unsettling rhythmic changes to keep you coming back for more.

The B-side to this single, ‘Eve’ takes a far sludgier route, expanding into their signature cacophony as a 7-minute journey. It made me thankful that I got to watch their Blood Moon set last year in London. It wasn’t to everyone’s taste of course, but experiencing the neofolk elements of ‘Coral Blue’ and the slow burning ugliness of ‘Minnesota’ help me appreciate ‘Eve’ even more. Time will tell if this follow-up album will live up to the high standards of 2012’s ‘All We Love We Leave Behind’, but with 16 tracks yet to be heard, I’m stoked for their future.