Artist: Sovereign Strength
Label: MediaSkare Records
Release Date: February 23, 2010
Review By: Steve
3. The Suffering
4. Half and Half
5. In The Mirror
7. Your Words Are Poison
8. The Outcome
9. War On This World
11. Revelation 22:21
Finally some BRUTAL hardcore! I was getting really bored with most of the melodic hardcore I was being force-fed. “Melodic—Schmelodic” just give me some friggin’ raw, brutal hardcore and lots of it, and I will be one happy person. I like some clean vocals every now and then, but give me a break with every band and their mother trying to throw in some clean vocals and still trying to be brutal at the same time. Clean vocals and brutal hardcore can and will never coexist on the same album in my opinion.
Sovereign Strength is a four-piece hardcore band out of Southern California, and another great pick up for MediaSkare Records. I almost want to say they are “un-melodic” hardcore because there are no clean vocals on this album nor does it need it. OK, I will get off my “melodic” soapbox now. Vocalist Jordan King has some excellent hardcore pipes and does not disappoint. The vocals on this album are brutal from start to finish. Lyrically, Sovereign Strength sings about many experiences that we as Christians encounter from fear in “Half & Half,” to overcoming your past in “In The Mirror,” and my personal favorite song “Consume” that deals with alcoholism. I like “Consume” because it is one of the hardest songs on Reflections and the choice words Sovereign Strength uses in it, “You tried the true American way, to drink out your senses, we wonder where the love went, the same place your drink did. The pisser.” Instead of beating around the bush or barely scratching the surface of Christianity, Sovereign Strength tackles today’s problems head on without remorse.
Musically, Sovereign Strength is heavy on the double bass pedal with lots of heavy breakdowns and your classic hardcore stop and break beats. This is the type of album that will definitely make you want to get up and starts doing some windmills like you are trying to pick some change up off the floor. I have never understood the hardcore dancers that punch and spin kick the air, but after listening to Sovereign Strength I kind of start to get the idea behind it. From bass, guitar, to drums; Sovereign Strength has it covered.
Overall: Sovereign Strength may be one of the better bands you have never heard of. Their music comes at you hard and with intensity, and they breathe some fresh air into a genre being taken over by melodic wannabes. This album is extremely brutal and will please hardcore fans. Do yourself a favor and go check these guys out on MySpace and support their music. The album is not flawless but is a very solid debut that you wont be disappointed in.