Release Date: 24th Feb 2014
Edinburgh’s Fatalists have spent the past few years carving out somewhat of a niche for themselves with their music which takes in alternative, metal and punk afflictions. Their first album ‘Between The Aisles’ received good press with an 8 out of 10 review from Rocksound and gained them a Radio 1 Session but now for their second full length the band have added more depth and complexity to their sound. With 10 new tracks, nearly all of which hitting the 5 or 6 minute mark, this is an album clearly made to be listened to in full completely taking in the layers of sounds.
The album starts with ‘The Old Hag’ the band’s current single which sees ebbing and flowing bass, fuzzy guitar and a plodding drum. The vocals are a strong presence here amongst the music which meanders along through the most part but turns into a slightly chaotic version of its earlier self during the choruses, where a hint of their prog influences comes through in the melodies and fast riffs.
With a vocal style that mimics the chugging bass and drums , it makes the short, electric guitar chords the real standout of ‘No Compromise Just Good Times’ while futuristic guitar chords that sound like they are falling to Earth and metal influences through the heavier tone and the longer track sums up ‘Stubborn Weeds’.
It’s usually endings of tracks that are chaotic but ‘Seppuku’ crashes into life with frantic and fast intricate guitar riffs. Vocals are strained and shouted and blends perfectly into the strong bass line and pounding drums. This album is very different to anything I’ve listened to in a long time but that’s not a bad thing because it is very good. The tracks particularly ‘Seppuku’ remind me of bands such as The Mirimar Disaster who created more complicated and complex metal/rocks tracks with an array of influences thrown in.
The mainly instrumental ‘Whispers In The Yard’ is probably the weakest track on the album with it’s all too repetitive sounds that features a yo-yoing guitar line with fuzzy guitars backing it up, slower but still heavy hitting drums, lethargic drawls and muffled occasional screams. Murky chugging bass and screaming vocals make up the choruses of the commanding ‘Hold The Gates’ alongside crashing drums and charging riffs while ‘Peer to Peer’ has a bass line riddled with a funk fuelled edge creating the main sound for this one. Shouted yet muffled vocals and fast riotous drums clash with the upbeat, happier tone coming from the bass.
Scuzzy guitar lines, fast paced drums and screaming vocals in the chorus all create a fast pace on ‘Iron Boots’ while a prominent yo-yoing bass line and drawn out vocals in the verses gives a slightly lethargic nature to this. The album ends on a quiet and softer note with ‘The Gentleman’, this is the first real moment of calm of vocals that are barely heard and a gentle guitar. Just over halfway through a rock tinged guitar riff comes in for a short while adding some volume to the track but it still remain slow and flowing track to the very end.
A lot of this album is very good and it’s quite refreshing to hear firstly so many different influences working well together and secondly music and creativity being given room to breathe over long tracks. That being said however there are some parts of this album where I thought it got a little repetitive or songs lost their way but in the main a very good listen and an album the band should be very proud of.
Check out the video for the band’s single ‘The Old Hag’ below: