|For Many Reasons
|Make Your Own
|Great Dane Records
Second try for For Many Reasons, now landed on Great Dane Records. The band from Lyon walks a hybrid and layered road, taking off from a death metal start, but following many complementary leads. Therefore, "Make Your Own" is an album with many aspects and faces, which cannot be properly filed under any category.
Definitely the band starts from death metal, but saying FMR is just a death metal combo would be way too reducing and unfair. Should a comparison help, I'd say the french four-piece could be similar to what italian Disarmonia Mundi were in the beginning (before they got rid of the guitars, let's say), but FMR never forgets to put something of its own. The very title of the record sounds like a declaration of intent, a way to say "we play our music, our way". The opener "Hell", for instance, is a clean and squared mid-tempo with slight prog hints: the tempo turns up and down, intricate drums and tangled but compact guitar riffs deploy on a keyboard pattern which is vaguely symphonic. All of this in a song of five minutes. "Hole", on the other hand, is a journey to lands closer to doom metal, colored in lights à la Novembers Doom and Isole, with the keyboard and the guitar complementary one to the other and a general "epic" mood. There is an interlude as well: "Sky" is a three-minute mixture of acoustic guitar and samples in which a voice is acting, more than singing. Follows "Colors" fast-paced riffing that would fit perfectly in a live set, a guitar wall lasting several minutes.
For Many Reason "Make Your Own" is, in fact, a good record. It suffers a bit during long verses: these songs are quite long for a vaguely epic melodeath (apart from the interlude, it's about forty-five minutes for seven tracks), and in the distance they lose a bit of their fascination. These French, though, are good at shuffling the deck once again, and whenever a song is about to become kind of boring, there it comes something unexpected: a clean, almost theatrical, singing ("Truth", which – in addition to reminding me of Dark Lunacy – shows the great potential of singer and guitarist David Boutarin), a blast-beat with screaming ("Hole") or a long, conclusive tail with female vocals in the air ("Funeral"). The sound of "Make Your Own", in general, is very clean and professional, just what the genre requires, with the delicate hand of Dan Swanö from his Unisound Studios helping a lot, and this does but good to the overall appeal.
Good ideas and unquestionable talent in this second release. To make a qualitative leap there are some redundancies to get rid of, going for something more "essential", but this is the right way.