As the band who put out my favorite album of 2014, A Breach of Silence not only had a lot of anticipation from me but their steadily growing fan base was the exact same as well. Being the pioneers of “powercore”, these Aussies had a lot to live up to following their phenomenal album of “The Darkest Road”. In my completely honest opinion as both a fan and a “critic”, these guys haven’t let us down, albeit not anywhere near “super awesome” in my eyes.
If you were to boil it all down, and I’m sure someone out there has already done this on their own time, A Breach of Silence is your basic metalcore band, but they’ve got a few more textures and layers (especially in the vocals) that really set them apart from the rest. That much stays true with “Secrets” in the entirety of its massive track list of 13 songs that have a pretty good variety about them. The only worry I had for all of “Secrets” was if the flow of the vocals were going to be the same as they were in the intro track, “Falling Away”, (video below) and that’s because I absolutely . . . detest that style mixed with any sort of metal. I think it’s overused, doesn’t work, and is just a whole bunch of no for my personal taste. Thankfully, “Secrets” had so much more to offer past that song. The other twelve tracks bring back the heaviness that ABOS has always been known for and the soul that can be heard in just about every single track. However, while “Secrets” has a ton more songs that would be easy to sing along to in a live set, it doesn’t allow for more tracks that really demonstrate the versatility in terms of musicianship and creativity that the band’s previous two records showed. Then there was less . . . power in “Secrets” that made ABOS so fucking enjoyable with “Dead or Alive” and “The Darkest Road”, and that really bummed me out a little bit because I always found that to be one of the best things about this band. While “Secrets” doesn’t skimp on power it just doesn’t seem to go the extra mile that its predecessors had. And while “Secrets” was by no means in any way a bad album in my eyes, it just falls ever so short of what ABOS has created in the past, and even though I try my best to deal with bands wanting to try new things from album to album, I just feel that this group didn’t do it quite so gracefully as others have but that doesn’t make them any less of a good band because of it. In the end, so long as they’re creating music that they want to make then more power to them.
Criticism aside, “Secrets” really is an album that I feel many fans of both the band and the style will be able to flock towards quite easily upon its release. It’s got catchy choruses, an approachable sound that isn’t afraid to kick things up a notch or two from time to time, and just enough variety so that every single song isn’t the same fucking thing over and over and over again. And like I said, this is quite a few steps behind my personal favorites A Breach of Silence material, but it’s still an extremely respectable piece no matter what angle I look at it from.
“Secrets” releases on February 24th!
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