Yours To Defend
Best Before Records
21 October 2013
The thing I love about debut albums is that they give me hope. It’s a new band and, assuming I’m enjoying the album, it allows me to believe that Iron Maiden and Metallica aren’t going to headline every rock festival ’til the end of time. All I really need from a debut album is enough excellent songs to ensure that I can definitely recommend a song to someone, for instance. Acoda have definitely got enough excellent songs on Yours To Defend.
Being alumni of the 2011 Red Bull Bedroom Jam has ensured that they’ve had plenty of exposure at festivals such as Download and Hevy since then and their mathy melodic metalcore has certainly developed. The opening track, ‘The Future Is Yours To Defend’ sets the tone with contrasting vocals and well-thought out song structures but it still leaves more than enough quality remaining. More than enough.
From their self-titled 2012 EP, ‘The Ludovico Technique’ and ‘This Is Life’ continue to stand out on the album. From the soothing melodies of the former to the robustly swinging guitars on the latter, they have honed their technique and style brilliantly so that new songs such as the beautifully arranged ‘Two Of A Kind’ can wash over you in waves of gloriously mournful melody. In its five minutes, there is technical ability in abundance, seething anger, tempo changes and – most importantly – songs that you want to sing along to. Every box is ticked.
A gentler cut is included with ‘Daws Heath’ as Damon Tang looks to showcase his vocal talents more languidly. He’s certainly more at ease when putting more power into it, but the way that Acoda give themselves the scope to try something new with almost every song – and the variety shouldn’t be mistaken for a lack of focus – speaks volumes about what they think they can achieve.
With Yours To Defend we can celebrate an excellent new British band stepping up to the plate with their first album. The young Corby quartet have done that with aplomb. There’s more to come and I have no doubt that Acoda will do everything possible to achieve it. The future is safe.