01. Explanation: Content 02. Distance 03. Change Today 04. Thirst for a Better End 05. My Life Back 06. To Fail... 07. Anomaly 08. Man. Moment. Machine. 09. At Least Understand 10. The Inspiration2007 Rise Records
On their debut record, Portland, Oregon metalcore act It Prevails very prominently display the one thing that they seem to be particularly good at: melodic leads. It's not particularly flashy or technical, but these riffs stand out in much the same way that Shai Hulud riffs used to. In fact, It Prevails seem to take quite a few of their cues from that band and it's definitely not a bad thing. Ian Fike's intense vocals might not really vary, but they also never falter. Dynamic tempo changes keep songs from becoming repetitive and those great guitar leads kept me listening. While a lot of the songs didn't offer a lot of depth on repeat listens, this is a debut that shows a certain amount of promise and isn't a bad listen in the meantime. Thanks to the slick production that seems to be synonymous with the name Rise Records, these songs end up sounding a little bit better than perhaps they rightfully should. A lot of the song structures and rhythm patterns are too simplistic for the band's good. In fact, the only thing about The Inspiration that seems particularly inspired is the guitar work. Danny Harbold and Brian Blade haven't done anything monumental by any means, but after only a few listens, I was already anticipating certain memorable riffs in most of the disc's eight songs. The two brief interludes are relative throwaways, but they don't really hurt the album's pacing or flow. Bottom Line: It's nice to hear a debut album from a young metalcore act that shows significant room for growth and an appreciation for one of my favorite eras of the genre. I can't get too excited about a record that relies so heavily on competence over substance, but I also can't fault the band too much for playing it safe this time around. It Prevails employ simple song structures and effective guitar lines on their debut album and I can only hope they'll build upon their established sound to create something great in the years to come.