Flood of Red - Leaving Everything Behind
Release Date: October 19, 2009
Record Label: Dark City
Don't let the fact that the word "unsigned" isn't under the "Record Label:" section of this review's heading fool you. Flood of Red's Leaving Everything Behind is a 100% DIY album. The label Dark City is one that the band created themselves. After garnering a flood (yeah, pun intended) of attention overseas, the band was thrown a bushel of record labels. Wanting to keep control of the band's direction, the six-piece from Glasgow recruited well-known producer Brian McTernan (whose prior clients include the likes of Thrice, Cave In, and Converge) to self-release their sophomore effort. To make yet another statement about the band's disinterest in being signed to a larger label, the band offered a $1 presale purchase of the entire album up to the album's slated release date. Those who did so were pleasantly pleased with the one of 2009's most underrated releases.
After the album's somber prelude "The Edge of the World," the album officially kicks off with "The Harmony," a fast-paced kick start to the experience that is Leaving Everything Behind. The song is one of the harder on the album, and the quiet keys provided by Dale Gallacher help make the song stick in the listener's mind. Guitarists Calum Doris and Sean McGroarty pace the song with riffs that soar through the chorus and rarely let up. Bassist Jamie McGowan opens "A Place Before the End," a song that can easily be selected as a single for the band in the future. The guitars pace the chorus yet again in this song, as McGowan's bass line is prevalent throughout. "Like Elephants" opens slower than the two tracks before it, as the drums provided by Graham Griffiths dominate the first verse. Flood of Red have done their homework as far as writing choruses are concerned, and this song is excellent proof of that. Halfway through "Like Elephants," the song comes to a sudden halt, and the listener is given one of the many testaments to the fine instrumentals throughout Leaving Everything Behind.
The punch-in-the-gut opening riff in "The Heartless and Loving" is another chance for the band's guitarists to shine, and the rest of the song follows that same theme. Griffiths abuses his kit throughout the song as the guitars wail away, making the song one of the best on the album. "Little Lovers" is a slow starter, but picks up the pace to make for a sonic masterpiece by song's end. "Paper Lungs" follows, with another slow start that keeps that pace that is erased as soon as the chorus that features backing vocals that add a whole new dimension to the song.
While all of the instrumentals on Leaving Everything Behind are far from mediocre, the vocal effort from Jordan Speirs is one of the best in recent years. Throughout the album, Speirs uses a variety of deliveries to show off his outstanding range. At any point in the album, Speirs can move from a somber, quiet tone to a soaring effort that is necessary to compliment the efforts of Speirs's bandmates. This unpredictability throughout each song gives Leaving Everything behind a ton of replay value, as the listener will be drawn back to many songs to make sure they didn't miss something incredible in each song.
To say Leaving Everything Behind is a creative album is a vast, treacherous understatement. Each member of the band brings their own unique style to the band to create a sonic blend that simply isn't found often in today's music scene. While an argument can be made that the songs can become same-sounding, each song has its own depth and merit as it stands alone, and when placed together, the listener is presented with a sonic experience they are likely not to find anywhere else in 2009.
I did the 1 dollar deal and i got a shitload of extra songs and all of the music videos theyve brought out so far. Was pleasantly surprised by their music. Its a great listen and fully agree with the review.
I liked this album at first and I was very surprised at how good it was but then I grew weary of it and fell asleep listening to it over and over again then I grew to hate it and it got annoying to me...it's weird how something sounds amazing the first time but then I can't stand it
Been following these guys and i still feel uneasy with their transformation, i loved their earlier stuff like 'Oh yes, there will be blood' and 'Our house is a fishtank' i think they pull off heavy music a lot better than this Circa Survive copycat album.
If you like this, check out another british band called Survive Atlantica, one of the best debut albums i've heard for a while, their like a British Brand New.
Love this album, though each song sounds like the one that preceded it.
that's the one downfall of the album.. each track on its own is very artistic and unrelentingly aggressive, but as a whole, the album just kind of seems like one big collection of slight variations of the same formula.
still a great disc though. these guys need more attention.