Impressive is the first word that came to mind as the debut EP from US metalcore band Forever In Promise infiltrates the ear. There has been a formidable collection of debuts in the genre and metal in general from new young and excellent bands so far this year to which the trio and their Into The Storm EP can be firmly added. Made up of five powerful slabs of metal the EP is a remarkable blend of vibrant and inventive sounds with direct and thunderous intensity. It is not the most brutal release you will come across but it is easily one of the most pleasing.
Forever In Promise is a trio coming from Texas and New York who came together in 2011. Consisting of vocalists Jordan Cordova and Matt Barlett who provide the clean and growls respectively and multi- instrumentalist Zach Norman who provides guitars, bass, drums & synth, the band has produced a release that as well as ticking all the boxes for the genre brings its own diverse and imaginative extras. The result is an EP that pulls one eagerly in for a very fulfilling experience and a compulsive towering ride. The post production on Into The Storm was handled by John Naclerio from Nada Recording Studio (Senses Fail, My Chemical Romance, The Ataris, Brand New) earlier this year and there is no doubt there is an understanding between him and the band that has added something extra to the songs they recorded. There is a clarity and depth that allows each component to breathe and flourish even when the intensity thickens.
The release opens with the brief piano led instrumental Drifting. The track brings an atmospheric calm and ambient elegance to envelope the ear before the following explosive tracks led by Communications Are Down take hold. With a flavour of As I Lay Dying the track roughs up the ear with probing riffs and barracking rhythms whilst the coarse growls of Barlett are as uncompromising as the sounds. Once the clean vocals of Cordova join the forage within the senses the song takes on another dimension, his tones the perfect mediator between senses and the blistered intrusive sounds. The rhythms offer a djent inspired attack whilst bass and guitars plunder the ear with an aggressive but distinct design. The song also has the added delight of vocalist Evelynn from polish post hardcore band Nurth bringing further variation to the vocals.
The title track and the remaining songs The Deepest Part Is You and Message From Home all offer equal quality sounds and imagination. The first of the three with a more defined electronic flow behind the tumultuous sounds lights up the ear with a surety and craft to keep things persistently engaging and unpredictable. The combination of clean and caustic vocals is impressive, with the band finding the perfect blend between them. The Deepest Part Is You reminds a little of I Am Abomination, the melodic craft of the track veining the slightly oppressive intensity in a song that is thoroughly compulsive and further proof that Norman is a skilled musician with an apparent flare on all instruments he brings to the project. The track demands like all the other songs full attention but needs not resort to battering the listener to do it. It may attack with a deliberate strength and feistiness but the influences from other genres and the vibrant nature of the sound sets the release and band apart from similar flavoured bands.
Closing on the brief and again atmospheric Message From Home which with the opener brings a book end like completion to the EP, Into The Storm is an excellent release and the cause of great anticipation and belief of even greater things ahead from Forever In Promise cons. The EP is available as a free download from the official band website @ http://www.foreverinpromise.com/ so there really is no reason not to discover the fresh breath in metalcore that is Forever in Promise.