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Senses Fail



Buddy Nielson – Lead Vocals

Dan Trapp – Drums, Percussion

Zach Roach – Guitars, Backing Vocals

Matt Smith – Guitars, Backing Vocals

            The post-hardcore outfit from New Jersey should be known by most. Senses Fail formed in 2002. The band quickly released their debut EP, then two years later they released their debut full-length album Let It Enfold You. 2005 seen another line-up change then their next album, Still Searching, arrived in 2006. After some stints on the Taste of Chaos (US and International dates) and the Vans Warped Tour the band, after another line-up change, headed back to the studio. They came out with Life Is Not a Waiting Room in October 2008. After the ‘09 Warped Tour guitarist Heath Saraceno left the band. 2010 seen the guy’s next album Fire hit stores. A greatest hits plus was released half way through 2012 while they were writing and practicing for the 2012 Warped Tour. The newest release hit stores in February 2013. Renacer features 12 tracks that spread 42 minutes. They get the album going with the titled cut “Renacer.” The track really doesn’t offer much in the way for a melody. The drums slam around while the guitars whale. The vocals scream the entire time. This track is definitely for the hardcore crowd. I really didn’t get into it at all. “Holy Mountain” gives up a better pallet of music and even sprinkle in some clean vocals. The track is much better sounding than the first song, but it’s tolerable for the most part. There are multiple sections for the hardcore fans as well as lighter fans. It’s an up and down track. “Mi Amor” is a fast paced onslaught of growling vocals blended with clean vocals and a rampage of music. The guitars and drums get nasty while multiple vocals scream as each other. The lighter sections of the track offers those clean vocals I spoke of as well as awesome tunes. Those places really stand out and should be the entire track. “Closure/Rebirth” offers up some screaming vocals that are slightly reserved from the others. The track as a whole is the best thus far. Musically it’s the most sound and the easiest to listen to. It really sounds good. It still is hard and heavy, but it’s more controlled. I can handle the screaming in this track more than the others. “The Path” begins with what sounds like a distorted bass (that sounds cool) and screaming vocals. The vocals maintain that style for most of the track, but there are some clean vocals that will blow your mind. Musically this is stellar. The bass will drive you nuts and make your mouth water while the guitars tip through notes and the drums hammer. In the lighter section the drums sort of fall into the background, but they pick it back up. This is one rollercoaster ride that you will enjoy. It’s an all-star tune. “Canine” offers up much of the same that you have heard thus far. They offer up some screaming vocals and clean then alternate them. The music is heavy while the screaming vocals are in command then it lightens up for the clean vocals. “Glass” opens up slow with a nice little effect that throws you into India or something. The vocals also come in with some effects on them. There are multiple vocals that pop up together, but also show up individually. The track stays relatively slow and is a nice change of pace, however it is a bit weird sounds with a lot “F” bombs. “Ancient Tombs” heads back to the cookie-cutter tracks that the album has been offering up. They have the screaming hard places mixed in with the lighter clean spots. The transitions are a bit better and you can get into the lyrics better than the others. Although it’s like the others, I think it stands out above them. “Frost Flower” is a short 2 plus minute track that I really didn’t get into. It has its moments, but overall I didn’t dig it. “Snake Bite” offers up a nice sound, but again it fits in the same mold. They do change some things up in this one and it stands out, because of it. This is one bad track and that is bad in a good way. This is something that you can put on and really enjoy. The music is there as are the vocals. You can pick up and run with this tune. “Courage of the Knife” opens up with a killer intro that tunes into a full rampage when the vocals come in. They rip through line after line while music tries to keep pace. The vibe of the track is great and it really keeps you involved. It’s another top tier tune. “Between the Mountains and the Sea” wraps up the album by introducing a slow tune. It changes the pace in a major way and will have you engulfed in it. It actually shows some vulnerability in the vocals. This is an awesome tune that will have the masses attention for here on out. It was a great tune to end the track as it makes you want more.  Overall the album is a bit bland. There is sound flying all over the place, but there are too many tracks that do the same thing. They start out hard and heavy then transition to a clean tune for a few lines then back again. There are certainly a few tracks that are star worthy while the rest as at the bottom of tier two. There is a big difference between them and the highflyers. Those tracks change shit up and hold your attention well. The music is dynamic and the vocals are distinct. Shit isn't jumbled and jammed in a pile up on the freeway. There are tracks that the vocals do not sound the greatest. They scream and growl way too much which distracts you from everything else. Musically they seem to hit a rut in some of the tunes, but hit their stride in others. I think that this will be a love the song or hate the song album, which is about half and half. There are tracks that are worth the price of the admission though.

Rating: 6.5 out of 10

Tracks to Watch:

The Path, Snake Bit and Between the Mountain and the Sea


Track List:

  1. Renacer
  2. Holy Mountain
  3. Mi Amor
  4. Closure/Rebirth1
  5. The Path
  6. Canine
  7. Glass
  8. Ancient Tombs
  9. Frost Flower
  10. Snake Bite
  11. Courage of the Knife
  12. Between the Mountains and the Sea

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