Hailing from Texas; melodic death metal band Fall are a breath of fresh air in 2016, the year may have only just begun but this could be a top album. “The Insatiable Weakness” is the followup to their 2012 EP, it presents us with a mix of dynamic and tuneful songs that making for an enjoyable listen.
From the outset of “From Ashes” the harrowing harmonies that overlap the thundering drums create the atmosphere of this album. The mix of Jessie Santos’ clean and rough growling vocals are balanced brilliantly throughout, it really gives you something to get your teeth into. The song is infectiously catchy and has a memorable tune, which for an album opener is great. “Not of The Sky” and “Ever Hollow” both have a strong guitar presence throughout and take us along tuneful songs, that have an up lifting vibe. The chugging of the guitars against the drums is brutal, however it works with the flow of the songs. You can get lost in the screams at times, but the chorus comes back strong and gets it all back on track. There is an almost funk influence on the guitar and bass in the middle of “Ever Hollow”, which I feel really mixes it up before the first of many guitar solos by Daniel Benavides.
“Harvester” has guest vocals by Jessie Frye that add a different dynamic to the song, as they work well with Jessie Santos clean vocal style. It breaks down well into a melody and is the most multi textural track on the album. The guitar work is well put together, with its mix of rough and smooth sounds. “Cinis” is a good track with the strong guitars and the bass work of David Gutierrez opening out into beautiful harmonies and melodies.
The middle of the album is good but not as strong as the start, with tracks like “Desolation” bringing the tempo down and missing the heavy mix of guitars. It does add diversity to the album, however I personally love the heavier mix of songs. “Soul Ignition” is better as it goes straight back to the screams and heavy beats that grab you by the throat. The chorus sections work well, with their thunderous guitars and the keyboard midsection. There are moments that remind me of Killswitch Engage which is not a bad thing at all, it just shows how diverse a death metal band can be.
“….To Dust” has an oldskool feel intro with the intense blast beat drumming by session man Dirk Verbeuren (SOILWORK) bringing the energy level back up. Screams are intense and almost barbaric in nature, ripping through the tight guitar work that is masterful. At 2:44min “Empty” is the shortest track on the album, it is a slow burner with a middle of the road tune. This track is where the guitar skills are showed off well, allowing them to take center stage.
Closing the album we have firstly “Gods of Ruin”, which opens with almost haunting keyboards. It wraps the harmonies of Jessie with rugged guitars, that break (4:00min) into Devin Townsend’s Ocean Machine style of mystery and epicness. Countering that the opening of “You Were But a Shade”, with it’s simple guitar strings. Guitars a blazing; we are given one final opportunity to appreciate how much talent there is in this band. The harmonies and growls are toying with each other as this almost lullaby style sound kicks in, before being ripped apart by the screams.
Fall are described as a melodic death metal band, but I would say there is some progressive flickers and influences in there too. From start to finish; I have found this an enjoyable album with many highlights. The biggest thoughts I take away from it is how epic and textured it felt, not just musically but vocally too.
Review By Jo Twitter