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Album Review: City of Ashes – Rise

Eastbourne rock band City of Ashes debuted their latest full length album, Rise. The quartet fuses a medley of genres, pulling in sounds similar to bands such as Circa Survive, 30 Seconds to Mars, and Thursday. Ever since their inception in 2009, members Daniel Frederick on bass, Orion Powell on vocals, Dan Russell on drums, and James Macdonald on guitar have been gaining and delighting fans by touring continuously throughout the UK.

Opening Rise is the short intro ‘Uprising’, a simple set of chords over a synth with vocalist Orion Powell joining in briefly. The following track ‘Vipers Nest’ is a straightforward rock song with Macdonald’s guitar melodies bringing most of the pizzazz.

‘Bittersweet’ demonstrates a different take on City of Ashes’ tried and true songwriting and composition formula. Frederick’s bass has somewhat of a stronger presence throughout the song, contrasting the bright guitar melodies and allowing for better balance. The drums seem to get lost against the rest of the band.

‘Iliad’ slows down the tempo to a crawl and focuses on Powell’s vocal abilities, the rest of the band is heard at a minimum. At a brief moment towards the middle, the song sounds very similar to the intro of Michael Jackson’s ‘Beat It’. The entire track feels more like an interlude.

The standout track in the album is ‘Bloodlust’. Both guitar and vocal harmonies were well synchronized and the tone throughout the track offered an entirely different arc from the rest of the album. The final three tracks were all similar in tempo, composition, and tone as with the rest of Rise. City of Ashes have to expand their horizons at the production level. Rise has the right idea with certain elements, but it falls a bit short. For the entirety of the album you can feel a crescendo building up, but it never fully reaches its arc and misses its potential.

To learn more about City of Ashes make sure to check them out at the links below:

City of Ashes on Facebook

City of Ashes on YouTube

Compositions
Breaking Ground
Engagement
Lyrical Voice
Production

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About Nadia Pulgar

Concert lover, music fanatic. If it sounds good to me, the rest doesn't matter.

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