After listening to the first song and lead single, I had A Breach Of Silence pegged as a much heavier Linkin Park, Beastie Boys cross; the next song, a mix Of Mice and Men and Gallows, the next Atreyu or even one of their Eclipse Records stablemates, Naberus. The sound of A Breach of Silence on this album is, at times, a mish-mash of a number of bands that makes them feel very familiar yet I can’t place exactly what. They have been described as powercore – a unique mix of both metalcore and power metal.
The band – hailing from Brisbane, Australia – are releasing their 3rd full album with Secrets. The band is: Mat Cosgrove (guitar), Blair Layt (bass/vocals), Rhys Flannery (vocals), Kerrod Dabelstein (guitar) and Michael Gee (drums). This new album is the follow up to the very successful The Darkest Road (Number 1 on debut on the iTunes Metal charts, number 20 on Australian Independent Record Label Association’s 100% Independent chart) and accompanying tours of North America (Drowning Pool and Like A Storm) and Australia (supporting Drowning Pool and Sevendust, as well as headlining a number of gigs).
The band, not wanting to change a winning formula on the production side, has once again called on the services of legendary Swedish producer, Fredrik Nordstrom (Bring Me The Horizon, In Flames and Arch Enemy) and mixing skills of Henrik Udd through Studio Fredman. “We wanted to have Henrik and Fredrick produce Secrets because (quite frankly) they’re the best in the business” said the band of Secrets’ recording process.
The album is a rollicking ride all the way through. It has all the big licks, range of riffs, and various breakdowns, yelled, growled and screamed vocals that are expected from this genre. A Breach of Silence albums stand out from their counterparts in one way though, as the chorus is often huge, featuring soaring, clean vocals akin to power metal that can be happily sung along to, leading to the defining of the term powercore. The band has indicated that Secrets still is different to previous offerings, with vocalist Rhys Flannery saying that “Blair and I are doing lots of vocal harmonies, (on this album) there’s a lot more stuff people can sing along with…”
The first released single of the album, Falling Away is typical of a metalcore song. The song itself is a statement on the music value gap occurring within the industry and addressing it front on. A Breach of Silence is asking punters to make a choice to select subscription based streaming as it gives musicians a chance to get paid for the work and effectively keeping them viable to deliver their goods (i.e. the music) back to those punters.
The songs are quite a diverse mix of very heavy, up tempo, in your face songs (Buzz Killington, Nightcrawler) and mid paced songs with still heavier beats (Fair Weather Friends, The Revelator). The band have not been afraid to try things out, with a bit of keyboard interspersed with the grinding heavy beats that can easily melt your face. Two surprises are, however, a cover of the Sugar and Spice (80’s metal) track Shameless (the weeknd) and a song named Sugar and Spice which seems to be a homage to the decadence of the 80’s hair metal complete with Rock of Ages (the stage show, not the crap movie with Tom Cruise) style lyrics.
Lyrically, the band touches on topics like ‘not giving up’ and ‘taking a stand’ (Ride or Die, Undefeated, Nightcrawler and the magnificent Buzz Killington), learning the lessons of being burnt running through the likes of the title track – Secrets and Fair Weather Friends.
I did find that it took me a couple of listens to get into the album, but am glad I persisted with it as one day, after a particularly tough day at work, it really clicked for me. After several listens more, I can now see myself taking a trip down the back catalogue of these guys through one of those subscription streaming services…
- Falling Away
- Ride or Die
- Fair Weather Friends
- Buzz Killington
- The Revelator
- A Better Place
- Shameless (the weeknd)
- Sugar and Spice
- Falling Away – Clean Version
- Fair Weather Friends – Clean Version
- Shameless (the weeknd) – Clean Version
Secrets, clocking in at 55 minutes across 16 songs, is due to be released worldwide through Eclipse Records on February 24.