Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Fallujah: 'Dreamless' - Album Review

Metal and classical work so well together, it is no secret. Whilst you could write endless books and essays on the subject, I would personally describe the relationship as metal has the power whilst classical has the atmosphere but they're brothers, able to bring a sense of what their brother can do as well. So when these brothers meet they compliment each other so well. There is an atmosphere at work that given so powerfully to the listener. Over the years I have been surprised that there hasn't been more explorations of Death Metal with classical arrangements beyond basic introductions and instrumental tracks. Fleshgod Apocalypse are a good contender for this and another strong band to explore this is Fallujah. They have firmly rooted themselves in this idea of atmosphere to give their sound an even stronger power and yes it works. Fallujah have been around for a while now, since 2007, and with 'Dreamless' being their third album now under their belt they shouldn't be too new to the scene.

'Dreamless' begins by holding no punches, the band know their strength and confidently they set the tone with the opening track 'Face of Death', they guide this quickly into the next track 'Adrenaline' which is strong and gives a good amount of variation. 'The Void Alone' begins with probably one of the bands biggest weaknesses in that it doesn't commit to strong and powerful riffs in favour of a few guitar licks here and there that feel reminiscent to their roots in Deathcore. This track also features a guest vocalist, Tori Letzler, and it is when her vocals kick in that the track regains a lot of it's power. 'Abandon' has recently gotten a video and it's clear to see why it's a great track. The album kicks up enough power to keep each track brutal and the atmosphere lent to each track works well at kicking up atmosphere and letting the track get beneath your skin. 'Amber Gaze' and 'Lacuna' also being powerful metal tracks on the album. Towards the end of the album they throw in an instrumental track with 'Fidelio' and this track along with a later experimental track 'Les Silences' feel very much like something Ulver would do which was a welcome element whilst also being unexpected for this kind of album. I feel that the clean vocals on the track 'Wind of Wings' don't quite work and feel a bit of a cheesy element to bring to otherwise great track.

All in all this was a very strong album and is well worth a listen. Fallujah give a new powerful sound to Death Metal and bridge a gap that has been far too there that it might as well have cobwebs on it. Hopefully in the coming years these foundations will be explored a lot more completely and the brutality pushed even harder with something as atmospheric and powerful as this. 

Fuel Rock Club

Fuel Rock Club
Cardiff's Only Dedicated Rock & Metal Bar and Club