Swindonian bears Ursus (note that “ursus” means “bear” in Latin) are a progressive/djent metal newcomers with lots of melodic death metal influences that have come up with their debut EP titled “The Migration” this past summer. With their aggressive approach to progressive metal, the sextet is swimming in the waters of djent. Considering that this EP is their debut release, it turns out that it is also a perfect headstart for their career.
“The Migration” has seven tracks in total, and each of the tunes shows that melody and aggression transmitted through breakdowns and brutal vocals are very important for what Ursus do. There are lots of different influences in the band’s music ranging from Between the Buried and Me to Periphery, Intervals, Korn, etc. But although Ursus pay their tribute to influences, they still build their own sound and make it sound original. Almost half an hour long “The Migration” has very tasty melodies based on progressive metal, but the band threads it through melodic death metal, and on moments it comes close to doom metal domain.
The first track on the album is an intro “The Beginning,” which kind of gives you an idea of what can be expected throughout the EP. Starting with “Burn,” “The Migration” keeps the grooviness until the end. Most credits for the EP being melodic go to guitars (three in the band!), which although being distorted most the time make the Ursus sound tasty.
The last song on the record is “The Migration,” and it comes with a different structure comparing with other tracks. It is by far most progressive and more melodic song, and it features a guest vocalist Beth Humphries. Her voice is calming, and somewhat sets the pace in a different direction. Adding female vocals to this song is a nice touch, it brings variety to the EP in overall. Perhaps, there is a hint that next Ursus releases will emphasise this melodic death metal side of the band.
If you are a fan of progressive death metal, djent and melodic metal, don’t pass this great, young UK band without giving them a listen. They certainly have a bright future.