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Since October
Life, Scars, Apologies
Tooth And Nail Records
www.sinceoctober.com


Life, Scars, Apologies, the sophomore release from rock quartet Since October expresses exactly what their songs are about and the issues that matter most to them. Linking '80s heavy metal charged tunage with the dark, billowy riffs of the '90s and 2000's thunder-bolted thrusts, Since October display the staggering conflagrations synonymous with 30 Seconds To Mars cinched by shearing blazes reflective of Tokio Hotel and raftered in whip-slashing shreds relatable to Papa Roach. Since October are a model of standard hardcore webbed in haunting Goth-rock blusters.

The album is a scorcher with a few fissures of folksy rock hooks and orchestral toned ethers, like in "Sober Love" steep in cliffs of soaring crescendos, and in "Don't Follow" which features sleepy harmonica whirls grazing the mounds of acoustic guitar strums. The willowy phraseology in guitarist Luke Graham's lines slinking across "My Only" is besieged by butting flourishes as the album rages with the gavel-edged blades of bassist Josh Johnson and drummer Audie Grantham propelled by the raw fervor emitted from vocalist Ben Graham. Alternating the dynamics between shallow chord progressions and towering flusters, Since October shape their tracks from standard hardcore models.

Like the title of the album suggests, the lyrics talk about life and the scars that life inflicts on the human spirit, and the moments of regret which people wish to apologize for, but by then the damage is done. In "Believe," Graham pleads, "So what do I need to do for one more chance to love you," showing a romantic-bent in the songs. Other words seem fostered from the stimulation of hormones like in "The Way You Move" as Graham enthuses, "Something about you girl / Something about the way you move / That makes me want to believe." These are samples of some of the band's more upbeat images, but the lyrics also take on the bruises that life inflict like in "Made Up My Mind" with words that resound, "I'm forced to divide / Do I lay down and die / Or continue to try / I've made up my mind."

Smoldering guitar burns spiked by hearty drum kicks are the basis for Life, Scars, Apologies' content. The rock quartet from Florida breed a hardcore sound in their tracks garnishing their songs with whipping build ups and cooling melt downs. It's an album that has heavy metal traction and cultivates a burgeoning generation of thunder-hardened rock to thrive.

-Susan Frances

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