RIYL: WOE, IS ME, MEMPHIS MAY FIRE & THE COLOR MORALE
Much has been written about the modern post-hardcore “scene”, but for all the negatives, there is certainly a lot of quality bands that have emerged in the past five years, so fans of the genre have a plethora of groups to choose from. What differentiates one band from the other? THE WORD ALIVE features keyboards and technical riffing. CHIODOS and PIERCE THE VEIL employ progressive songwriting to add a unique energy to their songs. Where does new Rise Records signing SECRETS fit in the mold? Sadly they haven’t figured that out yet. For my money, their debut record, The Ascent, is more than competent post-hardcore. The melodies are there; vocalist Xander Bourgeois shares a kindred with MEMPHIS MAY FIRE’s singer Matty Mullins. His clean vocals are strong and melodic, and the harsh vocals have a certain meat behind them that is often lacking in younger bands. The problems lie with the music. There is little to nothing that helps them stand out from the crowd. There are breakdowns a plenty, and the songs seem tailor-made for maximum breakdown to hook ratio. In their favor, everything is done with a certain vigor that made me enjoy this more than I should have. I think maybe that is what SECRETS has going for them: passion. The problem is passion alone can’t captivate a listening audience for 36 minutes. For now, we are left with an enjoyably competent debut. Let’s wait and see if the band can improve with their sophomore release. – by Nicholas Senior
Recommended Listening: “Melodies” and “The Heartless Part”
Release Date: January 17th, 2012
Production Notes: Produced by Tom Denney
In Conclusion: The secret to this band’s success is something that is not evident with their debut. The group needs to do more to differentiate itself from the pack in future releases.
[Red Cord Records]
This summer, Red Cord hit gold with several bands (including A PAST UNKNOWN and PHINEHAS), but they then followed those releases up with some less-than-stellar groups. MERCY SCREAMS would be one of those bands that just doesn’t quite cut it. The best thing about Broken Mirrors is the guest vocals (members of THE COLOR MORALE, THE GREAT COMMISSION, and BEFORE THERE WAS ROSALYN make appearances). Otherwise, this album falls flat along the way. Instrumentally, MERCY SCREAMS do very little to stand out. Rarely did the arrangements strike me as entertaining. The screaming is also on the mediocre side, lacking true ferocity and energy to keep me interested. The overall formula heard during Broken Mirrors has been beaten to death over the years. I’m not one to normally bash a record, but there isn’t much I can say about this band that fans will appreciate probably (except that “White Flag” was actually pretty cool). So, in conclusion, I would only recommend this album to fans that already exist. – By Nathaniel Lay
>Recommended Tracks: “Most Dangerous Game”, “White Flag”
>Release Date: October 25, 2011
>Bottom Line: This one is for the fans. If you don’t already know the band, you probably should keep it that way. You aren’t missing much.
- Check out a Track By Track discussion of the new Color Morale album at Altpress
- May 14th will be the reunion show of Fairweather as they celebrate the 10 year anniversary of their first release. It will be held at the Black Cat in Washington DC.
- Balance And Composure will be releasing their full length, Separation, on May 10th.
- D.R.U.G.S. is one of the latest additions to this year’s Warped Tour lineup.
- Bad Brains have new material scheduled to release this summer via Megaforce Records.
- Rise Against will stream a live performance from London on March 16th. You can catch the video at 9:10 AM GMT via the band’s official website.
THE COLOR MORALE
My Devil In Your Eyes
Purchase this great album here > My Devil in Your Eyes
Stream “Be Longing Always”:
Anyone who was a fan of the band’s debut will likely love this one as well. My Devil In Your Eyes doesn’t make the mistake of changing THE COLOR MORALE sound, so you’ll know just what to expect from this new collection. There is, however, a more mature layer here that surely developed from the time the band was touring off their debut. It’s not necessarily obvious, but things do sound tighter and stronger than before. The vocals are smoother, the breakdowns crisper, and so on. “Be Longing Always” is probably one of the most well rounded tracks of the record, as it shows the band at their best lyrically and atmospherically. However, if you’re more in the mood for something extremely heavy, I’d have to suggest “Demon Teeth”. Wherever you go in this album, THE COLOR MORALE are doing something that is, at the least, entertaining. They may not always blow you away, but My Devil In Your Eyes is most definitely a successful follow up to their debut. Fans will surely be pleased with the sounds explored here. ~Nathaniel Lay