To be completely honest, I have no clue what this is! I always find placing music in genres or categories can help with the definition of style and sound. Nowadays, the crossover of different musical styles in a single release has led to several sub-genres, such as alt-pop, country-rock and lots of others. Not only doesn’t Catercorner adhere to any label, I honestly cannot even place it in a sub-genre. To be honest, I don’t know what the hell this is, but it’s intriguing.
The solo project of veteran metalhead James Sherwin, the sole purpose of this London-based artist is “expression without limitations”. Drawing inspiration from metal bands like Nine Inch Nails and Meshuggah, James offers three nuclear blasts with raw vocals and guitar riffs. However, Catercorner refuses to stop at that traditional style of metal. Combining his powerful vocals with some synth-influenced undertones, Catercorner can confuse but still excite a listener.
Only a three-track EP, Catercorner covers themes of dissatisfaction, hatred, isolation and denial in a hefty 20 minutes. ‘Blossom’ and ‘Orchestral Grind’ are introspective representations of painful human relationships and how to deal with the dissatisfying results; however, it is ‘The Other Osmium’ that is most captivating with its concept of artistic expression as a journey rather than a destination.
If you are not a fan of hard-hitting vocals and instrumentation, then this may come as a shock, but it’s worth the 20 minutes. I really don’t know what James is attempting to achieve with his debut EP, but I truly am enjoying the journey without considering any destination. I agree with Catercorner when he paraphrases Plato in ‘The Other Osmium’ – “every object is an imperfect copy of a perfect idea.” If this is an imperfect copy then I’d love to know what the perfect idea is. In other words: I like it!