|theFALLEN - 'Bury Your Demons' (Self Released)|
|Written by Ben Hughes|
|Wednesday, 02 May 2012 04:30|
At the beginning of last year I witnessed this band as support to Adler's Appetite, and only catching the last few songs was enough to grab my attention; the singer knew how to work a crowd, they showed an energy and professionalism greater than their years and I wanted to hear some more. So I purchased the 'Harbinger/Ghosts' EP that I favourably reviewed and have been waiting patiently for more material to get my teeth into. Citing their influences as Motley Crue, Avenged Sevenfold and Papa Roach I hope for a heady dose of sleazy edged metal.
Fast forward 12 months and theFALLEN have recorded their debut album and got some gigging under their belts, including two successful tours in Finland over the past few months. As we here at Uber Rock love to support new bands, and for me as they are a local band (York ain't exactly been a breeding ground for rock bands over the years), they should be encouraged and embraced, but of course they need to have the tunes to back it up.....and guess what? They sure do.
The atmospheric intro segues into first song proper 'Judgement Day', a solid opener that sets the scene with big, crunching stadium-sized riffs - there's good interplay from the off between guitarists James Langley and Richard Reilly. Funnily enough, after quite a few listens now, it is not as strong as some of the other material, but I can see why they open with it, it has opening song written all over it. Early highlight 'Face In The Dirt' has a definite LostProphets feel to it with nice melodies and a well thought out arrangement and it feels real classy and current, great stuff.
The first of two songs that showcase the softer side of theFALLEN, 'Distance', with its lush intro chord progression and harmonics, is well written and executed giving an almost road weary feel. With sweet vocal harmonies and a great solo it's a song I find myself revisiting again and again.
The familiar riff of 'The Harbinger' crunches its way in with urgent drums and impressive mid section arrangement, it still sounds fresh and vital, but it's the piano led 'Ghosts' that is a definite highlight for me - what an epic song! Melodic and heartfelt it will surely appeal to their growing female fanbase, the twin guitars here show the Avenged Sevenfold influence but there's more to it than just a sweet heartfelt ballad. Good songwriting is what makes the difference folks, it's what separates the boys from the men, and when it comes down to it this band know what they are doing. Add to that a decent production job and they have the full package.
It's also nice to hear a band with an actual singer who puts his voice to good use instead of resorting to the grunting and shouting that many current metal bands insist on (I'm showing my age now!). In Johnny Fallen they have a good singer, his voice compliments the music with good use of melody throughout, they have a sound that can compete and stand tall above the competition. The more I listen, the more I hear Skid Row, but heavier and darker.
Its not all perfect though; 'Cuts Like Glass' and 'Starting Over' teeter on the edge of being generic and not so memorable, only time will tell with these songs, but hey we can't expect perfection, can we?
They manage to stay heavy sounding while retaining the melody; it's an album that drips pure quality, from the opening atmospheric intro to the closing electro strains of the NIN influenced 'De Integro', there is plenty to digest, and it's diverse enough to keep it interesting and upbeat. It's short and sweet too; clocking in at under 40 minutes it leaves the listener wanting more, and that's the way it should be, much better than a bloated 60 minute effort.
In a sea of bands vying for your attention, theFALLEN manage to sound fresh and vital in a scene that needs bands to step up above the competition and say "here I fucking am, have some of this!"
Nikki Sixx recently asked where all the new rock stars are? It's a fair question, where's the new Van Halen, the new Guns 'n' Roses? We want our rock bands to be larger than life, not looking like builders or indie kids, staring at their shoes trying hard to look as miserable as possible. theFALLEN look like a rock band, they act like a rock band, they possess energy and that certain spark, and while 'Bury Your Demons' may not be perfect, it is a fine slab of modern UK metal and a surprisingly strong and consistent debut from a young rising band that deserve your attention.
We need more bands like theFALLEN and 'Bury Your Demons' goes a long way to satisfying the hunger. The future looks bright indeed.
To pick up a copy of 'Bury Your Demons' - CLICK HERE