Aptly-titled and steeped in classic metal and punk, the First EP debut from Philly heavy bashers No Stayer is only about 12 minutes long, but that’s enough to give an indication of the sometimes bizarre range of influence from which they’re working. Solos rip in crisp, classic fashion and the central riff of A side “Undesired” is right out of the Judas Priest playbook of metallic swagger, but Pro-Pain-esque barks and gang vocals top the would-be hook of the chorus and as brash as they are, the trio have a pervasive sense of professionalism throughout both that track and “Forest by the Mountain,” which follows on side B.
That extends to the packaging of the 7″ as well, which comes in a high-quality matte cardboard sleeve with a thick-paper lyric sheet, also two-sided to mirror the vinyl itself. “Undesired” and “Forest by the Mountain” likewise show varied personalities — the latter’s speed-gallop riffing seems to come more from the early (of course) Metallica school of alcoholic frenzy, and while the vocals could very well wind up showing a Motörhead influence in the rhythm, they’re not quite there yet and so stay unipolar in their harsh throatiness. No Stayer claim a punk influence, and “Undesired” shows it more than “Forest by the Mountain,” but neither cut is out of place next to the other, and the B side culminates with a rushing solo and furious metallic drumming before returning to the verse/chorus progression.
As advertised, First EP is a first EP, but No Stayer have been around since 2009, and “Undesired” and “Forest by the Mountain” sound like they’ve been worked over and honed, either in a practice space or a live setting. The production value — tracks were recorded at Permanent Hearing Damage by Steve Roche this past summer — also greatly helps the sense of professionalism that comes through, and the packaging for the physical 7″ release only confirms it. They may just be starting out in terms of recording, but if Kvelertak were coming through, I’d go seeNo Stayeropen any night of the week, and likely spill some beer on myself in the process. Thrash on, gentlemen. Looking forward to more.
Here’s “Undesired” and “Forest by the Mountain” from the No Stayer Bandcamp page: