Named to mark the 10 year span between The Veer Unions’ debut album Time To Break The Spell and their new proposal, Decade is a riveting incitement of fiery melodic rock from the Canadians that simply leaves ears ringing in rousing sound and satisfaction. It is also the first encounter with the band’s latest line-up, one which seems to have lit another emotive and creative fire in the band’s belly.
The successor to the band’s successful 2012 album Divide The Blackened Sky, a well-received offering pushing the band to greater attention, Decade is a collection of ten stirring songs; five new and five unreleased tracks which were written before The Veer Union began and have been ‘brought back to life’ for the band’s new concept album. It makes for a release which takes the listener into the heart of the Vancouver based band’s journey from first breath to now, through their struggles overcoming adversity and the intimacy of vocalist/songwriter Crispin Earl’s own personal battles.
Opener and latest single Defying Gravity, deals with that inner turbulence, being lyrically inspired by Earl’s struggle with depression over the years. It opens with a slightly haunted sonic tempting before unleashing its demons through a hardened rhythmic trespass and irritably grouchy riffs, Earl emotively roaring from the heart of it. It is a striking entrance with a carnivorous snarl but relaxes a touch as melodies unite with kinder intensity as the lyrical sharing begins. Rawer backing provocation from the throat of bassist Amal Wijayanayake intimidates as harmonic tones from the voice of lead guitarist Dan Sittler courts Earl’s swiftly impressive delivery and expression, it all adding to the Three Days Grace/ Sick Puppies like spice blessing the glorious arousal of ears and emotions.
Watch You Lose ensures there is no dip from the heavyweight persuasion of its predecessor, it too slipping into ears with a seductively sinister and elegant sonic caress before enticing grooves wind menacingly around the rapier swings of drummer Tyler Reimer. Rhythm guitarist Ryan Ramsdell simultaneously adds a great nagging essence to the ratty air and nature of the song, his lures matched in more primal kind by Wijayanayake’s bass but sublimely tempered by the sonic enterprise of keys and Sittler’s touch, not forgetting the increasingly impressing and anthemic mix of vocals.
With a mellower climate comes a tempestuous character to the following You Can’t Have It All whilst I Said is a melancholic reflection wrapped in siren-esque ambience around an introspective heart, both tracks providing a gripping infectiousness and emotive drama to get greedy over. The first of the two is another feisty rousing incitement with a Sick Puppies like growl whilst its successor offers a dark serenade leaning more to a Nine Inch Nails like atmospheric immersion.
A strong electronic essence also colours the impassioned blaze of Make Believe, its energetic tempting merging with the predatory teeth of the guitars and pungently forceful rhythms. It is a unity of varied and contrasting textures masterfully woven and matched by the rich strains of the vocals linking up with Earl’s potent lead; a perpetually successful collusion as shown quickly after by both the volatile heart cry of We All Will and the similarly dynamic sonic clamour of I Don’t Care. Each feeds ears with individual emotional bellows aligned to thunderous yet carefully uncaged sounds, calms and catchy twists skilfully linked to boisterous and imposing expulsions to impressive results.
The Unwanted is another galvanic encounter bringing thick emotive drama and contagious bait together whilst captivating and firing up the senses, a quality emulated by Heart Attack but with a stronger leaning to virulent melodic catchiness and tantalising caresses than the vigorous confrontation of other tracks, though it too is no lightweight in intensity and passion. The same can be applied to closing song The Underrate, a meaty slice of pop rock with an angst driven pulse and prickly attitude inciting body and vocal chords with an anthemic bawl.
The track is a mighty end summing up the album in heart and creative dexterity. The Veer Union does not have the most original of sounds even if the designs to it are as fresh and inventive as you might wish for, but the band creates an emotive ‘call to arms’ which simply grabs attention as strongly as their thrilling sound treats ears. Here is to the next ten years of such pleasure.
Decade is available from January 29th through Pavement Entertainment.
Upcoming Tour Dates With Bobaflex, Bridge to Grace, and Artifas
2/18 — San Diego, Calif. — Brick by Brick
2/19 — Phoenix, Ariz. — Last Exit Live
2/25 — Lubbock, Texas — Blue Light Live
2/26 — Abilene, Texas — Legends Rock House
2/27 — Tyler, Texas — Clicks Live
3/2 — Shreveport, La. — Hangar 21
3/3 — Crowley, La. — Sam’s Place
3/5 — Madison, Ala. — 11th Frame
3/6 — Destin, Fla. — Club LA
3/9 — Tallahassee, Fla. — Pugs Live
3/10 — Jacksonville, Fla. — Free Birds Live (Save the Arts)
3/11 — Wilmington, N.C. — Cardinal
3/12 — Charlotte, N.C. — Amos Southend
3/19 — Hagarstown, Md. — Hard Times Cafe
3/25 — Kent, Ohio — The Outpost
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Pete RingMaster 29/01/2016
Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright
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