Fallacies – Searching For Conviction
aaamusic | On 17, Oct 2010
“Hardcore” is a much-maligned genre, it has to be said. Stemming from a trailblazing pedigree of Fugazi and Minutemen, it has somehow become synonymous with angsty teenagers playing questionable metal very fast. However, from Wolverhampton come Fallacies, with a promising return to the basics in their five-track EP, ‘Searching From Conviction’.
Opener ‘Vacant’ blends melodic moments reminiscent of early Aiden with the rough edges of Fugazi and the, well, noise, of noise punk. The intro in itself is a sharp hook to draw in the listener, with a scuzzy guitar sound playing a bleak and ominous riff, before the rest of the band join, adding jangling overtones and a naked clear-cut drumkit. This then cuts out for a fierce stop-start moment before everything explodes into a truly devastating track that blends the dynamic and tempo variations of modern hardcore with the seismic decibel levels of old-style hardcore punk. The vocals are admittedly a bit lacking in impact, but the hoarse screams are kept up throughout, so thankfully no Bono chorus to sit through, even if the fadeout at the end feels unnecessary. The atmospheric intro strikes again in the pounding ‘Ahead Of Me’, before pummelling out a 4/4 rhythm then varying the song into about four different songs all glued together: the atmospheric melody on guitar and bass, a pounding slow burner of a rock track, a beltingly fast punk rock song and something else that borders on metal riffs.
‘Out Of This’ pulls no punches, being a savage yet melodic mosher of a track. Once again, the vocals feel somehow dwarfed by the magnitude of everything else happening, but the everything else on offer is by no means bad. Well-paced guitar chords smash against one another like colliding trains, occasionally breaking into slower atmospherics as the cymbals are given a good working over. Midway through, there is a bass break to build chugging momentum before everything once again bursts into breakneck riffs and cymbals.
Of course, modern hardcore always has that one instrumental or “strange” track, and here it is the title track ‘Searching For Conviction’, consisting of a mournful echoing drone that shifts notes ponderously, dropping a sombre moment of serenity into the works. This leads onto the final track: ‘Waking Up To Reality’, which throws an alt-rock chord progression into a noise-punk approach. This feels messy until midway through, where the riffs are solidified by bass and a tighter rhythm into a real ominous rocker of a track, seething with attitude and tension. The bridge and break are worthy contenders, bringing to the battle a real sense of shifting within the song structure, before the abrupt end.
I wouldn’t call ‘Searching For Conviction’ the finished article. The vocals are somehow muted in the mix, and Fallacies appear to have not yet found their own sound, instead switching erratically between several – often within one song – and this leaves a couple of tracks feeling a bit sloppy. However, that said, it is immensely cheering to hear a hardcore band that have eschewed the metalcore, the computer finery, and the general silliness of “hardcore” bands to bring us some raw and violent rock free of all the frills and fripperies. And above all, it has to be pointed out that the lack of clean Bono-esque stadium choruses makes this EP feel much more satisfying and genuine. Thank you.
Author: Katie H-Halinski