Sirens – Surge Review

Band: Sirens
Album: Surge
Label: N/A
Genre: Progressive Metal, Metalcore
Country: USA
Release Date: July 28, 2015


Sirens is a progressive metal act that combines Metalcore with ambience and “crushingly heavy dubstep”, according to their website. The word dubstep brings a lot of negative connotations (at least for me it does) but you have to look past that and give this album a listen. This album is complex, dark, heavy, beautiful, layered and very thought provoking. The best thing to do while listening to this album is to just close your eyes and let the music take you to wherever it may. Listening to this album is like taking a uncensored tour of the ocean, with all it’s beauty, life, gore and darkness. As soon as you think your safe and free of worry, the band comes in like a shark ripping your body to shreds. These ocean inspired images may have come from the jellyfish on the cover and in many ways the jellyfish embodies what this project is all about. Jellyfish are beautiful and complex looking creatures with a nasty sting. This light/dark dynamic helps the heavy moments to have more impact and allows the music to breath. It’s very spacious yet they don’t hesitate to be a in your face metal band. This marriage of electronic, glitchy dubstep with metal music works perfectly and excites me about the future of metal and the future of electronic music. Although this pairing isn’t always successful it’s good to see that someone could get it right and hopefully up and coming bands will follow in Siren’s footsteps.
Because this album works better as a whole I won’t be concentrating on songs as much as I normally do but there are a few songs that caught my attention that I think are worth mentioning. The first song “Surge” sets the tone for the album with a cool keyboard intro that smoothly translates into a metal song with some really interesting guitar work. The drums are great, the bass pumps along and the lyrics are nice and brutal. Personally the vocals didn’t bother me at all and I think most people who are into black/death metal shouldn’t mind them. That being said I have seen a few people complain about the vocals so maybe it isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. “Drift” is the second song on the album and I think the title is fitting considering the slow transition from mellow to dark and heavy. This is also the first song were the dubstep qualities become apparent but they’re in no way detrimental to the song at least not to me. The mellow guitar part towards the end of the song reminds me of something I might hear on a Have a Nice Life record. The song “Ephyra” starts out with some very uncharacteristic Asian inspired string work that quickly turns into a down tuned guitar part. These odd yet successful transitions are what this album so good. Not many people can do what this guys did with this level of success. “Macroscopic” shows some diversity with some cool sound effects and electronic pieces. It almost feels like a storm is passing over you while the rain violently drops to the sound of thunder above. Like your watching these things unfold from the prospective of a fish.There’s a fair amount of chaos going on and you can almost feel the waves tossing and turning around you with the occasional moment of beautiful clarity. This song transitions into “Cloudbreak” which is the longest song on the album clocking in at 7:54. Like all of the songs here it goes in a few different directions and is sure to keep the attention of the listener.
My only complaint about this album would be that sometimes the heavy moments get to be a little redundant, not to the point were it’s annoying though. You just start to realize after few listens that the chord progressions from song to song sound a bit similar. Other that it’s a great album. I judge albums based on a few criteria: whether or not it met it’s full potential, listenability, the performance itself and based on my personal level of enjoyment. In my opinion this album covered all of these but I know that may not be the same for all of you. Just listen to it with an open mind, that’s all I ask

Rating: 10/10

1. Surge
2. Drift
3. Drone
4. Pendulous
5. Ephyra
6. Macroscopic
7. Cloudbreak
8. Unstable and Floating
9. Swarm Dynamic
10. Medusae

Total Playing Time: 58:38

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