1. NO ALLIES
|Since the Spring of 2002 theres been a couple of featured
tracks released from this album, namely No Allies and Bovine Calm
and the latter was reviewed by Downtuned. It attracted positive comments and showed great
potential, however the songs on the EP did seem to lack balance and it was hoped that the
longer format of an album might rectify that. Its nice when you can say that this is
certainly the case with The Mark and Fallen To
have produced what is overall an enjoyable album.
The album is made up of melodic Hard Rock with a metallic outline, which takes from the basics of traditional rock and brings it into the new millennium, applying a few sharp edges here and there and learning lessons from the more successful bands of the past. Its a nice mix of heaviness, melody and tune, but when they rock and they like to rock hard. They keep a fair symmetry between heavy and light and this is helped with a couple of the songs that have a much slower pace and concentrate entirely on the melodic slant. Conversely, the influence of some very heavy bands from the 80s and 90s can be heard, such as Machine Head and especially Metallica. Dark Wounds is a good example of this and although Cover Your Tracks slows things down, it still has that strong Metallica feel particularly the vocals, which sound very James Hetfield both on the melodies as well as the rougher parts. This isnt a bad thing but you cant help but notice the comparison, however what they do is temper this aggressive style with hard rock melody and this gives the whole thing its balance.
It seems they couldnt resist a tiny amount of rapping vocals. This can sound so passť in rock as every band is doing it these days, but is probably the nu-metal influence and certainly shouldnt overshadow the fact that theres some good rock tunes on this album. Overall, a good album that successfully mixes hard rock moments with melody and the results are nearly always pleasant. That doesnt happen very often, it has to be said!
Rigsby (5th January, 2003)