REVIEW album Old Subbacultcha Old Subbacultcha

Will Canterbury’s ‘Dark Days’ pave the way for a brighter future?

Old Subbacultcha

Old Subbacultcha

Canterbury have been steadily building their fan base since the release of their first album ‘Thank You’ in 2009. While it had some solid ideas, it wasn’t until their second, ‘Heavy in the Day’, that the Surrey quartet really started to threaten what they were capable of.  Now, with extensive touring under their belts, playing to bigger and more varied audiences, they have taken these strengths and created something pretty special with the release of their latest album, ‘Dark Days’.


Canterbury – Dark Days Out now on Hassle Records

 Opener ‘Expensive Imitation’ is an immediate call to arms and an arena filler from the opening rumble of guitars and drums to the pounding chorus, to the brilliant bass heavy beats replete with strings that are tastefully smattered throughout the album. From the off, you know Canterbury have stepped up their game once again.


Keeping things moving, the aptly titled ‘Keep It Moving’ has dark overtones that you can’t help but get caught up in while 'All My Life’ immediately puts a smile on the listeners face with it’s imaginative lyrics, simple melody and huge sing-along chorus. Fourth track ‘Satellite’ is the first taster we got of ‘Dark Days’ when it was released last year and it still sounds just as gritty and impassioned in an album setting, bringing some heavy melodies back to the proceedings. ‘Hold Your Own’ is brooding and ominous throughout it’s verses until the chorus hits you out of nowhere and it’s another massive song that could easily hold it’s own (I’ve used too many of them now, haven’t I?) in the cavernous surroundings of an arena. Next, latest single ‘Think it Over’ slowly oozes it’s way into your pores, building slowly into a bridge that will bring out your snake hips before a crushing finish brings us home.

Taking it down a notch, ‘By The Trail’ is as moving as it is sublime and would definitely be a lighters in the air anthem in the live setting, but might have you curled up in a ball if you’re on your own. Vocalist/guitarist Mike Sparks’ voice is filled with emotion that drives all of the songs on ‘Dark Days’ to ethereal levels, subtle in the quieter moments and powerful over the pounding choruses of the louder songs like ‘Elephant’.

The only slight lull on the album is heard on ‘Run From A Gun’, which meanders along and doesn’t quite have the same glow as its counterparts. The confident swagger of ‘Out From The Cold’ quickly rectifies this however, with another big chorus and a well-placed guitar solo. Rounding things off on a soothing note, ‘Going Nowhere’ brings ‘Dark Days’ to a blissful end. Filled with strings, it’s a passionate closer to an album that takes the listener on quite an emotional rollercoaster. If there’s any justice in the realms of modern British rock music, ‘Dark Days’ will propel Canterbury into the stratosphere that’s currently only home to a select few. You Me At Six better watch out. 8/10