Artist: For The Fallen Dreams
Album: Back Burner
On their first album without founding member and principal composer Andrew Tkaczyk, Michigan’s For The Fallen Dreams waste no time proving they still have plenty to say. Back Burner comes packed with thunderous anthems, pounding drums, and a sense of rebirth that can’t be ignored. Out May 24, this album quickly proved to be something no one should ignore.
“Say What You Will” introduces us to the album, showcasing FTFD’s continue dedication to the heavier side of post-hardcore. Tom Denney’s production instantly makes the record attack the listener with surprising depth and enormity. For a band whose art has constantly carried the tone that something epic was happening (or about to), it’s great to finally hearing an album that carries a similar level of production.
If you aren’t completely sold by the time the hook of “Complicate The Situation” begins, you may need to check your pulse. This is the kind of song that excites people for the live show, featuring a blistering riff, giant chorus, and extra heavy breakdown. Similarly, I think “My Anthem-Like Symphony,” and “Fist Fight” may actually contain subliminal messaging programming everyone on how to properly two step and mosh. They’re tracks so heavy that those of the weaker variety may want to abandon the pit for because bodies will hit the floor.
Back Burner isn’t just about skull-crushing jams and breakdowns meant to incite metal riots though, there’s also lot of heart and evolved songwriting. “Only Unopened Arms,” “Dont Give Up, Don’t Give In,” and “Yellow” bring a much welcomed, slightly more mainstream feel to the band (think The Curse era Atreyu), but still stays well within their realm of sound. However, “Bottom Feeders” may be the track to catch the most off guard. Buried in the middle of the album, this is possibly the softest track the band has ever released. That’s not to say it’s bad, in fact it’s quite good, but don’t be surprised if it takes a few spins to settle with you.
Let me be honest, I’ve never been a huge For The Fallen Dreams fan, but Back Burner is something else. It may not be the most original record I’ve heard this year, but it is definitely one I couldn’t put down. If you want a record that finds that inexplicably perfect balance of heavy and heart, Back Burner is the album for you. The hooks are huge, the riffs may be even bigger, and the breakdowns will crush you. Don’t expect your life to be changed and you won’t be disappointed.
Review written by: James Shotwell