The Soundcheck EP REVIEW: Eldur
Bearing the Nordic word for Fire as its titular inspiration, the upcoming EP from Auckland quartet Coridian brings a blazing blend of tight production and assured modern rock from a group maturing like a fine wine with each passing release.
Forming in 2015, Coridian have steadily sharpened their passionate stylings with two EPs already in their wake, plus a heap of live adventures with a mix of local and international acts including City of Souls, Written by Wolves, P.O.D, Fozzy and many, many more along the way. And while their upcoming EP Eldur may be the group's most focused release yet, it also places a third piece of the elemental puzzle as the group reflect their career in conjunction with the four elemental forces of water, earth, fire and wind (with 2015's Oceanic representing rougher waters, 2017's Caldera finding the band's foundation, Eldur rising up with fiery passion in 2020, and the future final EP Hava promising to find ascension and peace).
Paying an homage to the group's Raven Brothers and their Nordic heritage (Mike on guitar, Kris on drums and Nick on bass), Eldur doesn't rely on bombastic fire to explore its overarching theme - instead elegantly exposing significant songwriting prowess and flaming passion in a measured fashion.
Leaping out with potent intensity, Rite Of Passage fittingly kicks off the EP as it did kicking off the first taste of new music as Eldur's lead single. Soaked in genial distortion, Rite Of Passage showcases why the group have become such a hit on the live circuit, full of oscillating arrangements courtesy of the Raven Brothers amid the lush vocal stylings of frontman Dity Maharaj and a sing-along ready chorus that drives this tune to anthem territory.
From swooning ambience taking aim at social media falacies (Good For Nothing) to glimmering, graveled grooves (Seed Pt 2), the Coridian gents flex their stylistic muscles through an array of structured alternative rock that at times bears traces of the likes of Karnivool and A Perfect Circle with emotive blows and sonic palpitations that never overstay their welcome.
Following an ambient interlude smack dab in the middle of the EP (Define), Coridian continue with anthemic fervour on The Witness, a straightforward alt-rock jaunt reminiscent at times of the cleaner tones of Muse, while the tender ballad Lost Heroes strips back to simpler instrumentation and Maharaj's swooning vocals drizzling over a poignant ode to those forever in our souls. And while the EP thus far has already cemented the taut production flourished throughout, closing track Mantra seals the deal with a pristine and polished delivery that mixes melodics with a delicate heaviness - and a tantalising touch of nostalgic grunge kicking around beneath the surface.
It seems that the Kiwis are continually churning out modern rock with a brain, and Coridian are no exception with their brand of soaring and stirring anthems balancing strong writing with technical flair. There's something for every shade of the rock realm on Eldur, from the heavier blasts to the heartfelt reprieves. And while not ablaze with combustible ferocity like its name may initially suggest, Eldur is in fact a gracefully fervid endeavour full of passion and thoughtful embers that will stick with you long after the riffs have faded away.
A REVIEW BY TIANA SPETER