The Detroit based quintet A War Within have slowly been rising through the musical ranks as of late. The band is currently getting ready to release their sophomore album Believe on March 8th all while touring across the country with heavy hitters Miss May I, blessthefall, Sirens & Sailors and The Plot In You on the “Drop The Gloves” tour. With this recent success for the band, it seems like the future is only getting bigger for these guys and with their latest effort, Believe is proof that hard work pays off.
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Believe is a vast improvement on their debut album Sons of Saturn. This time around they have opted for a heavier and fuller sound, including more electronics and bigger, catchier choruses. One of Believe‘s biggest strengths is in its variety. Each song seems to be able to stand out on its own without blending together with the others, which seems to be an increasingly common place in the genre. Songs such as “Promise” and “No Matter What” are some of the heavier songs that are accented by well crafted electronics. “Mirrors” and “Weight of the World” are the more pop driven songs on the album. “Weight of the World” has incredibly catchy hooks that are complimented nicely with background choral vocals. “We Are Legion” has some huge choruses along with some gang vocals thrown in. The variety of elements used on each song allows each song to maintain its own identity and stand out on its own.
On the vocal side, the cleans are great while the screams range from average to good. There are moments of incredibly catchy signing and choruses that will undoubtedly get the crowd rocking and singing along in a live environment, but some of the harsh vocals leave something to be desired. Some of the more mid range screams can be a little abrasive at times mostly because they are a little raspy, which can be polarizing to some listeners. The lows on the album are fantastic; offering up a fleshed out punishing side to compliment the bands heavier instrumentals quite well.
Overall Believe is an engaging and well put together album. Many bands seemingly have a sophomore slump as they continue progressing and evolving, overall failing to find their identity and sound. A War Within did the opposite of that with Believe. Filling the album with a wide compliment of breakdowns, catchy hooks, gang vocals, massive sing-a-long choruses and weaving electronic elements throughout, it’s clear that this is a huge step up for the band and their sound. Do yourself a favor and take a listen when it drops early next month.