Prepared Like A Bride

Overcomer

Written by: MBC on 20/04/2014 14:20:23

Once in a while you come across an album that initially is so surprisingly excellent that you just have to listen to it countless times over to see if it can get even better with every listen. Such is the case with debut album “Overcomer” from Australian progressive metalcore band Prepared Like A Bride. The album is the follow-up to the EP “A Dangerous Journey” from 2012, which was a very decent effort, but is nothing compared to the greatness of “Overcomer”. Prepared Like A Bride gained a big following in their homeland in 2013 with relentless touring and 2014 will no doubt prove to be a huge year in the band’s career with this album out on Faction/Sony Music.

Prepared Like A Bride have managed to create an amazing work of art combining crunchy heaviness, groove, superb technique, emotion and haunting melodies all rolled into one. The album is catchy and melodic enough to initially grab the listener’s attention, while containing levels of detail which can be studied more thoroughly on multiple listens as well. It consists of 12 songs that are short, but sweet with most tracks lasting about 3½ minutes, except the interlude “9.11.12” and album closer “Liberty” which both are about a minute long. Thus “Overcomer” is a very concise and effective album without a lot of filler material. The songs are built around a combination of slow and heavy down-tuned chugs and more technical and melodic parts. This is not a ground-breaking formula, but Prepared Like A Bride are excellent songwriters who understand how to give balance to these elements to keep the listener interested.

Thematically this is an album that deals with faith, loss, anxieties and overcoming adversity delivered through the incredibly personal lyrics of front man Ryan Bowles. His vocal delivery is an astonishingly raw, powerful and emotional performance of various hardcore screams ranging from lows to highs and semi-clean shouts. He is assisted by bass player Connor Grant who sings clean vocals which are strategically well placed in the songs and never feel formulaic or annoying, similar to the great Chamberlain/Gillespie dual vocals of Underoath. On the title track “Overcomer”, one of the best songs on the album, a strong statement of standing firm in the midst of personal anguish is made: “I will carry the flag, I will stand in the storm, it's been a cold November one I'll always remember. It can't rain all the time, it won't hold us down. I am an overcomer.”. Throughout the song, the words “I am an overcomer” are repeated again and again between the two vocalists, and that one sentence brilliantly sums up the message of the album.

This theme of perseverance is revisited on “Through Hell”: “We must hold on, we must stay strong, in the end I know we'll make it out alive. Keep your chin up, keep your hopes high, I know someday we will see the sunshine”. Other highlights include “2 am”, a song dedicated to the loss of a close friend’s father and “Alone”, an elegy to Bowles’ own father.

These very personal lyrics should appeal to anybody who cares about lyrical depth with their -core. Fans of various forms of hardcore/metalcore in general should definitely check this excellent album out as well.

Download: Blood Red, 2 am, Overcomer, Through Hell, Alone
For the fans of: Oh Sleeper, Northlane, Architects, I The Breather
Listen: Facebook

Release date 07.02.2014
Faction/Sony Music

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