Album Review : August Burns Red – Found In Far Away Places
29th June 2015, 13:00
Posted by Tristan
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We see what our Metalcore chef’s have cooked up this year, will it be another auto pilot effort or a return to form for the band…

Tracklist:

1. The Wake

2. Martyr

3. Identity

4. Separating The Seas

5. Ghosts

6. Majoring In The Minors

7. Everlasting Ending

8. Broken Promises

9. Blackwood

10. Twenty-One Grams

11. Vanguard


Length: 52:00
Label: Fearless
Release date: June 29th 2015

Creativity can be a fickle mistress. Bursting onto the scene with their breakthrough record Messengers August Burns Red truly made their mark. Evolving drastically afterwards with Constellations, incorporating more intricate song structures and utilizing more dynamics, then came the days of Leveler and Rescue And Restore. Coasting, the band seemed happy to be able to not push the boundaries.

We now see the arrival of their brand new album Found In Far Away Places, their seventh chapter in the band’s history. Kicking things off with lead single “The Wake” we can see that August Burns Red decided to go for an in your face approach. Taking no prisoners the song is one of the heaviest on the record. However this seemed to infact be farce, with much of the album instead being more of a melodic affair. Take song “Everlasting Ending“, yet another August Burns Red song. Functioning at what it’s mean to, though it just doesn’t really go anywhere.

They say you can never have too many solo’s, which I agree with to a certain extent. However and make no mistake, this is not me saying JB Brubaker is bad guitarist, far from it. The leads simply lack context. Tracks like “Broken Promises” contain sections of noodling that are not necessary and detract from the initial momentum created by the band with their iconic fast paced riffs. Making listening to the record slightly more arduous than it should be.  Aiming to perhaps reinvent themselves “Ghosts” enlists A Day To Remember front man Jeremy McKinnon, who again is great at what he does but it should stay that way. It just doesn’t fit. Particularly with Jake’s ashen vocal delivery. Nevertheless this will surely put them in the spotlight of the more mainstream of metal.

Which is a lot to be said for the record as a whole, part of the original charm combined the bite of technicality with the brilliant song writing. Complicated breakdown’s are now forgone for easier rhythm’s on “Blackwood“, though slightly redeemed “Twenty One Grams” making a smart use of cello’s. Ignoring the GameBoy like introduction of “Vanguard” when the songs actually kicks in its one of the better examples of material on the record but again it’s short lived. Giving way to guitars playing with effects and a clean section creating an incredibly anti climactic feeling as opposed to the grand finale approach again far too long.

The first section of the album scores slightly higher. “Identity” contains some great riffing but then is mired by the out of nowhere Wild West approach adopted again with the polka styled “Separating The Seas”.  Sounding like it could have been used as the soundtrack in The Deer Hunter. Interesting as an idea but sadly the execution wasn’t as good. Everything leading up to it however works brilliantly!

With “Majoring In The Minor” being a fantastic highlight of the album showing that when the band do come together they work fantastically.  Now understanding what it is that the band are aiming to do makes you appreciate their decision to include slightly more jarring elements out of their comfort zone. From changing tempo’s to slightly slower and wandering guitar lines to different singing styles.

Perhaps I might have been too quick to judge the record, it might not be up there with the works that the band have createf previously but it shows an aim to try and and branch out from a very tried and tested formula. Which, whatever way you look at it is truly commendable. There are moments where the record can dwindle however your attention is shortly ripped back into place with the heavier sections. Perhaps a lesson on my part to not be so quick to judge.


Found In Far Away Places contains a different kind of spark. Different from their beginning the band aim to create a new sound which shouldn’t be overlooked. It might take a couple of listens until it clicks!  

If you like what you read / heard then you can pick up the new record here August Burns Red’s Found In Far Away Places it out now.