originally posted on Wednesday, 6 March 2013
If there is one point I have tried to bring across in my reviews is the importance of originality. It is the bands that are hard to compare to any other band out there that are the bands that are always most worth listening to, because there is simply nothing to compare them to. Such can definitely be said about Toronto rock outfit Fall and Divide.
With one self titled album under their belts, which was released in October of 2011, Fall and Dividealready have an arsenal of great songs to display exactly why the band is something more than just a Toronto bar band. Consisting of four of the most talented musicians you’ve never heard of, Drew Wright on vocals/guitar, Paul Fonseca on bass,Rickferd VanDyk on lead guitar and John Pacheco on drums.
The album opens with the slow and creepy To Be. This track consists of harmonized vocals that make the song sound like it could have been recorded by Alice In Chains. The songs consistent pace and heavy distorted music, along with Drew’s incredible vocal capabilities, make this a perfect opening track to give listeners a piece of what they are in for the rest of the album.
The track Pieces has an odd and original guitar rhythm track. Rickferd shows at many points of the album that he is just a original and talented as the likes of Mark Tremonti of Alter Bridge when it comes to writing guitar rhythms. Pieces is one of the slowest paced song on the album. It is by no means a ballad, as it carries a very dark and slightly angry tone throughout the song, with Drew concentrating more on the softer side of his voice throughout the song. The song also displays John’s incredible progressive abilities on drums.
Never The Case is one of the finer tracks on the album. It goes from soft and soothing to heavy, then back to soft, and has a bridge that can put you in a trance. What’s It Gonna Take is the albums ballad, and a fantastic one at that. The song maintains a bit of an angry feel to it, mostly because to the drums, but the slow paced acoustic guitars behind the sound of electric guitars and the soft vocals make this a highlight among modern rock ballads.
Flames gets the album back into a bit of a fast pace. This track specifically features one of the better guitar solos on the album. The middle section of the song is incredibly written, almost jazzy withRickferd playing a not so distorted, bluesy solo that turns into a balls out wailing of the six strings provided to him.
This Life is a true gem on the album. It’s a slower paced track, not totally heavy, but heavy enough to please any hard rock fan, and features the best melodies found throughout the whole album, both in terms of the vocals and guitar playing.
It is difficult to pinpoint two songs on this album that sound similar to one another. Adding to the many examples given to you is the track S.O.S. This is another softer track, only it isn’t quite a ballad like What’s It Gonne Take, but it’s not a progressive masterpiece like Pieces, it’s more or less a sweet and simple track to calm the albums listener down, getting them prepared for what’s next. What exactly is next?No Evil. This track is the heaviest song on the album, and the best one to get pumped up to. It features the heaviest guitars on the album, but slows into intermittent slow parts, as do so many songs on the album. The middle section, for the guitar solo, is just about as genius as Flames. The music slows into a slow and evil sound, with Rickferd just letting the guitars feedback take effect, before the background music starts to thump harder and harder, leading into an almost Rush-like break, before getting back into the songs chorus.
Face Me is another track on the album that is not so much a downbeat track, features heavy guitars and incredible vocals; similar to the likes of Never the Case. The Shelter gives the albums listener one last chance to hear a softer paced song. This song starts off with a great acoustic riff, which makes way for the heavier instruments to provide a great melodic song, with another great middle section; this time not so much a guitar solo but you definitely notice the guitar.
The last track on the album, Once And For All, ends the album the way it began. I don’t mean it sounds likeTo Be, but just like To Be it sounds like it a grunge song. You could almost picture Chris Cornell singing this track; only he wouldn’t do the justice that Drew has done throughout the whole album. This track features something I haven’t mentioned enough in terms of Drew’s vocal abilities, and that is his ability to sing at a nice soft tempo, and then he is able to turn that soft voice in to a scream that you didn’t know he was capable of.
Fall and Divide really do not sound like anyone else. They would fall under the alternative category, but also provide a fantastic style of progressive rock that is frankly unheard of. Most modern progressive rock needs to have heavily distorted instruments and seems to always have to maintain a fast paced rhythm throughout the album. Fall and Divide seem to be giving rebirth to the mid-days of progressive rock, when bands like Rush ruled the airwaves. I’m not saying that they sound like Rush of course. Fall and Divide show musicianship that is hard to match with any current band and that makes them probably the best band you’ve never heard of.
“Never the Case” – It was difficult to choose between this track and This Life, but here is why Never the Casegets the nod; having seen the band perform, I witnessed them play this song in its entirety for sound check a couple of hours before they played their show. I was worried that when they played the song during their actual set that I would tire of it because I had just heard it. That was not the case as when they performed it again just a couple of hours later, it was as if it got even better the more I listened to it. Like so many of the songs on the album it mixes the bands melodic capabilities with their heavy music capabilities. It also displays the progressive abilities that the band has. Any video for the song has unfortunately been taken off of YouTube.
8.5 (Out of 10)
|“Never the Case”||3:51|
|“What’s It Gonna Take”||3:52|
|“Once and For All”||5:45|