Obey The Brave – ‘Mad Season’ (Epitaph) Print
Written by Jonni D   
Tuesday, 22 August 2017 04:30

Obey The Brave artwork‘Mad Season’ marks the third full-length release from French-Canadian metalcore unit, Obey The Brave, and it’s a significant step up from prior offerings.  Formed by vocalist Alex Erian following the disbanding of Despised Icon (now reformed), the previous Obey The Brave records have been decent, but relatively run of the mill as far as modern metalcore goes.  With ‘Mad Season’, the band demonstrates a surprising level of experimentation as well as a greater emphasis on melody, propelling this collection forward with deft songwriting and a consistently brisk pace.

 

While previous albums found Obey The Brave sticking to a fairly one-dimensional version of the metalcore template, ‘Mad Season’ is surprisingly broad in scope.  The metallic chug of tracks such as ‘On Thin Ice’ and ‘This Is It’ is perfectly balanced by a gleeful bounce in the guitar hooks, accentuated by Alex’s more melodic phrasing.  Think Hatebreed meets A Day To Remember and you can get some semblance as to the overall aesthetic of the record.  And it works exceptionally well, largely due to the accessibility of the vocal hooks.  Although he still retains the hardcore bark utilized in Despised Icon, Alex’s delivery on ‘Drama’, ‘Way It Goes’ and the aforementioned ‘This Is It’ show a far more developed range in his ability as a vocalist.  In turn, this helps to prevent any sense of monotony throughout the album’s runtime.

 

The band successfully navigates the tropes of the genre on ‘Mad Season’, thus further distancing themselves from the pack.  Although metalcore is no stranger to a hearty breakdown, Obey The Brave even manages to eschew the increasingly tired mosh call/response formula by incorporating the breakdowns into the song structures rather inventively; case in point, ‘On Our Own’ with its syncopated rhythms integrated with the verses.  However, the greatest deviation from the genre comes with ‘RIP’, featuring fellow Canadian rap group, Loud Larry Ajust.  The stylistic shift is at first somewhat jarring, but the collaboration proves to be one of the album’s highlights with neither the rap nor the hardcore elements being in any way compromised.

 

 

It seems that Obey The Brave may have had a bit of a false start, creatively speaking, with their earlier material.  However, if ‘Mad Season’ is anything to go by, this band is capable of exciting and diverse future endeavours.  There have been countless bands of this ilk touted by the music press already this year, and no doubt there will be more to come. Despite the fact that there has been little in the way of fanfare behind this release, it stands out as one of the more standout releases of its kind in 2017.  Definitely worth a listen.

 

‘Mad Season’ is out now. You can get your copy HERE.

 

Obey The Brave play the following dates, with Stray From The Path, Capsize and Renounced:

 

Thursday 5 October – London, The Underworld

Friday 6 October – Leeds, Key Club

Saturday 7 October – Glasgow, The Garage

Sunday 8 October – Manchester, Rebellion

Monday 9 October – Cardiff, The Globe

Tuesday 10 October – Birimingham, Rainbow Complex

 

www.facebook.com/obeythebrave/

 

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