Monday, 28 March 2011

Help Has Arrived

    It's pretty apt that in the current foreign climate; of tragedy of epic proportions in Japan and political chaos in Libya just to name a couple; a new Rise Against album is released. A band so focused on creating awareness on the major issues happening in our planet and striving to make a difference and encouraging others to do so as well as touring relentlessly and putting on one of the craziest live shows your writer has witnessed, it is almost the perfect time to reacquaint ourselves with this mighty band.

    Endgame (not to be confused with the modern Megadeth classic) is another blast of politically and socially aware hardcore punk, not straying from the regular Rise Against formula we have come to know and love whatsoever, which fans will lap up with joy like a cat with milk. Once again songs are fully conscious of the worlds major events; first video for Help Is On The Way showing the struggle of hurricane victims in their long wait for help to arrive, Rise Against are experts at crowbarring opening eyes and generating awareness at these issues.

    Whilst this album is more or less the same as previous outings, it does not have the same immediacy as previous works such as the awesome Appeal To Reason. Album opener Architects is a great kick start, followed by the already anthemic Help Is On The Way. However much of the rest of this album just doesn't have quite the same punch. Whilst not bad by any means they just don't have the same force or lasting appeal as previous works. The two aforementioned songs should slot in to their already stellar live set easily but much of the rest of the album just isn't as memorable as they have been before.


Listen to: Architects, Help Is On The Way


Friday, 11 March 2011

Not Exactly A Bludgeoning By Feathers

Children of Bodom- Relentless Reckless Fever

    It has been three years since COB's last album, 2008's excellent Blooddrunk, an album that catapulted them further in to the limelight as one of contemporary metals major players. After much activity in those three years, including headlining last years Bloodstock Open Air, and yet many fans' lukewarm responses to Blooddrunk, (despite it being superior to previous releases...I will not understand some people) a new album is eagerly anticipated, and here it is.

    After the massive Blooddrunk I was expecting nothing more than a Relentless (see what I did there) assault of awesomeness, however this isn't quite the bludgeoning of anvils I was expecting, but its not exactly a bludgeoning  by feathers either. Because whilst undeniably heavy the album lacks the clinical punch that Blooddrunk sported.

    Opener Not My Funeral is a brilliant party starter and a message of intent to those critics of Alex Lahlio's wild lifestyle. The album's problem unfortunately is that most of the songs on here are not as memorable as could have hoped, whilst not bad at all, not by a long shot, many are just not the classic songs that a lot of us may have expected. There are some great highlights however, the aforementioned Not My Funeral, the title track and the excellent Pussyfoot Miss Suicide (also an early contender for the years best titled song).

    So not quite the classic album we may have expected to follow from the bands new found popularity at the top level, but a comfortable easy to handle album none the less.


Listen to: Not My Funeral, Pussyfoot Miss Suicide