Kicking off with the explosive blues-rock swagger of Killing Heroes, Initial Mass leave their mark pretty quickly on this latest album, fusing the raw rock energy of bands like The Black Keys with a more traditional, performance-based rock hook and rise-up to it.
Grunge-led verses and stunning distorted riffs pave the way towards the big-stage finish of the hook in a brilliant way, incorporating elements of Pearl Jam as much as Led Zeppelin, though with a notably indie-inspired vocal style and underlying concept. Initial Mass showcase a clear love for rock music in all of its forms, ultimately highlighting their own unique take on it throughout this nine-track collection. Killing Heroes is a great way to kick things off, nostalgic and fresh all at once, and things continue to impress as the album goes on.
The title track leans in something of an Incubus direction at first, contrasting delicate melodies with distortion and grit, building up intensely later on. Reason To Take then crashes on to the scene with yet another brilliant array of riffs, a power chord progression designed to get you moving, and a vocal that’s as passionate and powerful as it inherently connected to the flow of the surrounding music. Piece By Piece afterwards is another highlight, beautifully heartfelt, poetic and mellow yet still in keeping with that natural Initial Mass sound that makes up the album.
Resolution is a mighty and manic track that pours through with a huge sense of togetherness and possibility – undoubtedly one that would make waves at a live show. Silence No More then takes a gradual approach, building up slowly, enveloping the listener in this cinematic, mildly dramatic sense of rising anticipation. Another beauty, a huge anthem that again highlights unquestionable musicianship and writing abilities. The band utilize contrast really well, this track being a prime example.
Towards the end of the album, Alchemy is intensely chaotic and leads with some insanely impressive guitar work – another personal favourite. Short lines make for another anthemic moment, laying out the potential for Initial Mass to really build a name for themselves within today’s musical landscape. This level of weight and passion, not just volume but intention, and heart, has been all but missing from mainstream airwaves in recent years. Songs like this bring it back in full force. Again, a gig is where things would really come alive.
Years Past drives with a refreshing and fairly unusual riff and set-up, intriguing you from the offset, continuing to fascinate with deeply personal, intimate lyrics, and another fine example of masterful contrasting. Embers Within follows and sees the album to a rather epic, seventies-rock-style finish. A stunning song, feeling almost Pink Floyd-like in emotion and creative presentation, though still with that organic and now-familiar Initial Mass tone and delivery. A great way to end, and a fitting reminder to head back through the playlist fairly soon – these are songs you can spend time with again and again; as was once the way with the rock album as a concept. Well worth discovering.
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