OK so put your feet in my shoes. I'm sitting in my house, enjoying another Discord call with some AOTY Buddies. It was going pretty well, some jokes were told, some memes were said and I was pretty happy just chilling out with my friends. At some point when talking about our favorite releases from the year, fellow user @CLJesse pointed out this album as their favorite. And so, I decided to chuck this album on in the call to see what it was like.
Cut to me 10 minutes in, I actually threw the headphones on the floor as I was hit in the face with a wall of guitars.
Hailing from Liverpool, England, this band is one of the funnest metalcore groups i've heard in a good long while, combining ambient and shoegaze music with brutal heavy riffs that border on Black Metal at times, with shrieks and screams that blast me to the third dimension and back again.
That being said, heed my warning when I say that I have not been impressed by an album this good in a good long while. The first time I heard this, I was literally acceNding/running around my room destroying things. When I first heard this, I thought either I was going to die or someone else was going to die on my behalf. To put it eloquently, this was some of the best alt-metal I had heard in a good long while. To put it bluntly, this shit was bananas.
Everything about this record just slams you in the face in the best way possible. As soon as this album starts with 'Aggressive Evolution', you know your in for a ride, from the gutural growls, to the heavy and blistering riffs, and the absolutely insane drum work (seriously, this drummer is insane). This thing is an attack to the senses with nothing stopping its impact, each breakdown breaking my soul and each riff killing me in the est way. And this vibe is all over the record, from the ever changing and destructive 'Broken Vision Rhythm', the genuinely scary 'Red Room', the in your face and absorbing 'Gored' to the fun as hell 'New Faces in the Dark'.
But that's not the only trick this band have up their sleeves, as that shoegaze element I talked about before is in full effect here, sounding like Deaftones if Deaftones decided one day they would try and kill a man. The more slow and absorbing tracks like 'Two-Way Mirror', 'Is It Really You? and 'A Sad Cartoon' are beautiful in construction and annihilate the floor with it's sheer beauty. There is a good reason why I put this album in my 'Peak Music' list, as I ascend nearly every-time I spin this damn thing. Hell, this even has moments of ambient music, with 'Theme', '451 Days' and 'A Sad Cartoon (Reprise)' being genuinely soaked with these lush soundscapes that feel like i'm being drowned in a lake of sheer and utter a m b i e n c e, making me feel like these guys could make an amazing soundtrack to a film.
And the production on this album? It's absolutely insane! Every guitar hit sounds like a plunge to the skull, while every snare hit feels like i'm about to enter the shadow realm of pure, unbridled chaos, and I love it! The album is textured like a motherfucker as well, with it being extremely easy to slip into the back of this record and enjoy those blissful synths that feel like it's a wave crashing onto my brain. But with the music being so dense and full, it never feels like it's overblown in anyway. The mixing is exceptional, everything falling into place like a Jigsaw puzzle of pure chaos. Hell, in moments, the production almost feels like it could be influenced from the early records of Daughters.
The consistency of how good these tracks are is frankly astonishing. There is never a moment here that feels boring, or repetitive, or tired. It always keeps you on your toes, such as the almost pop tinged 'Screaming' and 'Two-Way Mirror' sounding like they could make it as alt-metal classics, and 'Gored', 'Red Room' and 'Aggressive Evolution' feel like capitalistic bombs of terror that I truly cannot get enough of. It's one of those albums the more I listen to it, the better and more fun it becomes.
...Look, I got nothing, fucking listen to this project already! Now!
Favorite Jams: Is It Really You?, Red Room, Gored
Lest Favorite: Uh...fucking...uh...Jesus Christ.