Eyes Set To Kill

Reach

Written by: AP on 22/02/2008 17:40:04

A screamo outfit with a female vocalist? I know what you're thinking, and that's precisely what the music scene was thinking when it systematically classified, stereotyped and rejected Eyes Set To Kill without so much as listening to the band's demo material. Curiously enough, once Alexia and Anissa decided to enlist some guys, the determined girls soon shared stages with the likes of Chiodos, Blessthefall, My American Heart and Greeley Estates and scored a record deal to unleash upon as their debut album, "Reach".

I must confess that it is programmed into my brain, too, that metal is a genre of testosterone and the fairer gender has no business upsetting the natural order of things there. Yet when Alexia's entrancing voice opens "Song 2", those prejudices instantly fade. She is in possession of an incredible vocal range that makes the poppy female vocal feel like the most natural thing ever for this type of music. But its her passionate delivery of lyrics stemming from personal thoughts, experiences and struggles that really steals the show. Add the agonizing screams of Brandon, some melodic guitars that swerve between in-your-face power chord riffage and jazzy discord, and raw production and you've got yourself a pretty satisfying serving of screamo.

While the effort's only disadvantage comes from a veritable lack of variety, there's plenty of neat stuff going on to keep your mind intrigued. Take the eerie guitar fiddling of "Liar in the Glass"; a prime example of a good part transitioning that juxtaposes feelings of nostalgia and despair to make one hell of a haunting song. Or the moshpit-inducing "Darling" that perhaps best demonstrates the band's screamo influences. Then there's the cunningly subtle synthesizers that occasionally busy one's thoughts in exactly the right places, to contrast the hysteria of Brandon's emotional screams.

What we have here is the only female-fronted band whose novelty I'm willing to recognize. There's of course room for improvement in variety, and I wouldn't miss the few balladic songs that steal from the album's density and flow if they were dropped, but at least those songs don't resort to being the mere acoustic interludes that are the arch enemy of this kind of music. "Reach" is a beautiful album that's been receiving consistent airplay in my headphones of late, and I suspect it'll stay that way. Check this band out now!

Download: Sketch in Black & White, Darling, Liar in the Glass

For the fans of: Blessthefall, Evanescence, The Fire Restart

Listen: Myspace

Buy: iTunes

Release date 17.03.2008

Suburban Noize

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