July 13, 2018


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The Pitch: And the revivals continue with the first album from NC metalcore/post-hardcore classic Hopesfall in 11 years via Equal Vision Records.

What I Like: This is the feel good album of the summer. There's very little rock music that pleases me these days, but with Arbiter, Hopesfall have managed to capture the lightning in a bottle that was the early 2000's world of indie, post-rock, and post-hardcore. As such, Arbiter is perhaps best served alongside the likes of Taking Back Sunday and Brand New as opposed to Poison The Well and Killswitch Engage. That may turn away some, but with the right expectations and sense of nostalgia, these lush, spacey riffs will take you places. The reverb-laden layering of guitars, very intentional pacing, and Jay's carefree, drifting vocal delivery wash over me like a West Coast sunrise reflected from the mountains. It's very much in line with, but ultimately more mature and consistent than, A Types.

Critiques: If you come to this album hoping for the "heavier" side of the band from the debut through The Satellie Years, you'll probably be disappointed. I'm just a sucker for this style when it's done right, and sometimes I need an album to break up the brutality and darkness.

The Verdict: Arbiter probably won't get much attention from those only wanting to bang their head and throw up the horns, and the corpse-painted black metal fans in my audience (we love you too) will probably flee for fear of being infected with such docile tones. But for those of you who, like me, grew up in the peak of the metalcore era and quietly (or not so quietly) also appreciated some pop-punk and alternative sentiments, Hopesfall have made an album seemingly just for us. Get it today.

Flight's Fav's: Bradley Fighting Vehicle, C.S. Lucky-One, I Catapult

- Review by FlightOfIcarus

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