Album Title: All is Calm
Record Label: Independent
Release Date: 7/30/13
- Rise Up
- Sooner or Later
- We Just Wanted Freedom
- Days Are Gone
- I Won’t Let You Go
- Unhappy Together, Unhappy Alone
- Somewhere To Call Home
- Give Me a Voice (Interlude)
- Move On
- Livin’ the Dream
- Time After Time
- Do You Believe Me Now?
Three years ago a band named Confide broke up. They played their last show after releasing 2 albums (debut album being re-released after acquiring drummer, Joel Piper) This band, with no label support, asked for help to fund a new album through Kickstarter in August, and here we are today with “All is Calm”.
This is one of the few albums that I would love to get down, dirty, and breakdown each and every song for you. I won’t because then we would have a novel. There are a few positives, however, more negatives that completely overwhelm this album to the point it isn’t listenable. Songs like “Rise Up”, the first track, has power, life, and momentum coursing through its veins up until the first breakdown hits. All of sudden the momentum dies and there you are, listening to an empty room of chugging guitar practice counting four measures. What began with a fist pumping, heavy handed introduction to “All is Calm”, was put to an end, and the realization of what the next forty minutes of your life kicks in.
Most of the issues with this album are based mostly on the writing of the music. Bad transitions, poorly written chorus’ and then add on the dry and redundant breakdowns make “All is Calm” a difficult album to listen through. Examples of these bad transitions would be: “We Just Wanted Freedom” from the verse too chorus and “Days Are Gone” from verse to chorus. Most of the songs have a poorly written chorus where the progressions are all the same, and the clean vocals are singing repeated vocal lines in the same melody that is heard throughout the album.
The appeal is the decent, yet vastly digital, production that will most likely carry the mediocre writing of this album on its back. The format of these songs is mostly standard. AABA type writing, with an occasional bridge here and there. Not that writing music in a standard form is boring, but when the music never changes, it is hard to keep listening. Most of the songs have the standard “scream through verses”, then “transition to a singing chorus”. Which is fine, however when the transitions are the same, it sounds like a different song is beginning there is an issue. When you start dismantling the cohesiveness of your songs, to add on parts that have no reason to be a part of them, the integrity of the album is dismantled as well.
As I said with the production, “All is Calm” is a heavily processed album. Everything is padded and processed, from the guitars, to the vocals, to the drums, and that is along with the synthesizers used. There is too much pitch-shifting going on with the clean vocals. The music doesn’t sound like it was recorded live or through real amps and the clean vocals have so many effects on them and it feels like a robot recorded them. Reason seems to be that the melodies are all very similar and need to sound as interesting as they can be made with the only physical effort being the click of a mouse. The clean vocals on this album are an irritant that takes away from the passion Ross puts into his screams. Some awesome screams were put down on this record by Ross Kenyon. Ross carries this album all by himself for the most part. He has carried this band since “Shout the Truth” and that is because the music has gone from interesting to more and more mediocre as they pro-longed this band
Overall: As a music listener, this album hurts to listen to. Lyrically, this album is positive yet not poetic by any means. When it comes to the albums production, it is good but vastly digital, and at times dry. The screams are great and passionate, while the clean vocals are below par and boring and don’t contain the same passion as the screams do. The music written on this album is at times as boring as the clean vocals. I still suggest giving this album a listen, even if it is through Spotify or MOG. Without your opinions, this review is meaningless.