French alternative metal band The Milton Incident has built a strong following and reputation in their homeland with their resourcefully potent and rigorously impacting sound whilst also making initial inroads further afield and with the release of their debut album Innocence Lost, it is not too adventurous to suspect that they will be making a similar mark on the attention and passions of the rest of the melodic metal world. Consisting of eleven tracks which are as dramatically contagious as they are skilfully crafted with a fusion of groove and alternative metal with plenty more spicery involved, the album is a thrillingly imaginative proposition. It is not exactly ground-breaking, songs holding a familiarity at times to previously trodden exploits, but with an incendiary passion and distinctly inventive sculpting to the individual premises, it is a release to capture emotions and spark greedy appetites.
Hailing from Paris, The Milton Incident since forming in 2010 has laid down a more than solid presence with a similar strong fanbase through their sound and live performances. Shows with the likes of Kreator, Moonspell, Dagoba, Vulcain, Mass Hysteria, KlogR, and Eyes Set To Kill has only increased the spotlight upon them whilst their music has been played on numerous radio shows worldwide. Recorded with Steeves Hostin (Beyond the Dust) and mixed/mastered by Shawn Zuzek (Daughters of Mara), the Dooweet Records released Innocence Lost makes a stirring full introduction to the band, one destined to leave a lingering mark on the widest attention.
From the opening title track, a short disturbing intro of intimidating sound clips and melodic intrigue, the album launches into a fiery and muscular persuasion with Deadset. Its initial coaxing is a menacing almost predatory incitement but it is not long before strong vocal harmonies and melodic entwining wraps engagingly around the ears. That heavier threat is never far from the surface though; expelling bursts of cantankerous grooves and rhythmic antagonism throughout, stalking and gnawing the senses alternatively with the melody rich embrace of the track. It is a striking encounter soon exceeded by the riveting Torn Down, grooves and rhythms again bordering on carnivorous but the perfect complement to the expressive vocals and sonic endeavour which soaks the imagination as rewardingly as the melodic flames. There is a Stone Sour essence to the track in many ways though the song ventures in areas which could be compared to others like Three Days Grace and Tool as well as later Mudvayne too, yet the result is definitely particular to The Milton Incident.
The snarling Deus Ex Machina featuring Shawn Zuzek, rampages across the senses next, again the band merging dark rapacious elements within its elegant and exploratory melodic adventure. It is a magnetic slice of metal which evolves and explores before the ear, an invigorating provocation as contagious as it is intense. Its fluid drama is succeeded by the absorbing Dearest Enemy. From a cyber, almost starkly harsh ambience, the song immerses thoughts in an emotive reflection musically and lyrically whilst aligning them with more cryptically savage elements to its suasion. Like its successor Split Second, the song does not ignite the same heat of passion as other tracks but still leaves thoughts impressed and hungry for more, both tracks skilfully crafted and enjoyably presented with the second of the two holding a Poets Of The Fall like potency before its incendiary climax.
The thrills are turned right up yet again with Dopamine, a virulently infectious confrontation of bruising rhythms, rigidly barbed riffing, and passion drenched vocals. It is a masterful storm of uncompromising aggression and respectful melodic enticement ensnared and driven by ridiculously addictive grooves and unbridled enterprise. A major moment on the continuing to impress release, it is soon matched after the enjoyable emotive breather Irukandji, by Pyromaniac, another growl of senses stripping riffs and inflammatory rhythms courted by a deliciously acidic and caustic groove. With a range and depth of vocals to match the fire and intensity of its intent, the song prowls and sways with primal seduction and thoughtfully lit rapaciousness; like the sinewed assault of an American Head Charge fused with the emotional melodic waltz of an Alter Bridge.
The lofty heights are continued with the outstanding and voracious Conspiracy of Silence, the track an almost pestilential provocation with synapse spearing riffery and sonically drenched bait which infects ears through to passions. Its tremendous outpouring leaves a slight shadow over the following Memento, though the song only adds further coals to the pleasing fire and power of the album, whilst the closing 10-56 provides a classically seeded canvas for the imagination, one coloured by thick melodic hues and epically dramatic emotion. It is an imposing and compelling encounter from The Milton Incident concluding an equally bruising and irrepressibly seducing experience.
Innocence Lost is an excellent full debut from a band you can expect to be hearing much more of. The Milton Incident has the potential to be a major instigator in melodic metal as their sound explores its brewing individuality for greater uniqueness and impact, something to eagerly anticipate.
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