THE WORLD WE LEFT BEHIND FOR OTHERS
Release: April 12, 2019
After gaining a lot of traction and critical acclaim with their debut album “Persistence of memory”, which was released in the summer of 2017, Final Coil have taken their blend of post-rock and progressive metal at the next level with their sophomore album “The world we left behind for others”, out on April 12 via WormHoleDeath Records. According to the band’s press release, this is ‘a breathtaking concept album that will see Final Coil’s star rise even higher in the musical firmament’. So, how good is this album?
It is more or less known that the second album is the real testament of any band. True enough this could be said about every album from a band’s catalogue, but the sophomore album shows how
creative and ingenious a band is, or, on the contrary, if they are stuck on a formula and as such they just repeat the debut effort. Talking about this album, frontman Phil Stiles stated the
following: “Heavier and darker than our debut, ‘The world we left behind for others’ was a challenging record to make. Perhaps it runs against the trend, as it is very much an album meant to
be heard in one sitting (and in the correct order), but I believe it to be the best thing I have ever written and I am very excited for people to hear it.''
The last battle
Take me for a walk
Convicted of the right
One more drink...
...And I’ll leave
The world we left behind for others
I am glad to see that Final Coil is not stuck in its ways, as “The world we left behind for others” is definitely different from “Persistence of memory” as the sound is grittier and more in your face than on their debut. The band is more certain of themselves as a unit and this shows in the composition, as they combine stoner rock and some doom influences with prog to create a broader sound. The reverb of the guitars and the intensity of the vocals drive most of the music, and create kind of an all-around bleak atmosphere, which can be heard from the start as the neither ominous nor overly atmospheric intro, “Ash’s” gets the ball rolling and sets the mood for the what is to follow. And what follows is a story that is both personal and universal, relevant and affecting about the consequences of a lack of communication be it within a families or within society as a whole.
Generally, the album is pretty linear and straightforward, but there are a few songs that stood out while listening to the album. If “The last battle” delivers what we are used to hearing from Final Coil, namely hefty riffs and preeminent bass lines, “Scattered dust” is a rather mellow and downbeat piece of music with some aggressive parts and moody riffs that seems to act like a bridge between the sound of “Persistence of memory” and the darker sound of this record, and it’s nice to see this transition. The emotional and haunting “Imaginary trip” is also worth mentioning here as the piano melody coupled with some sulky guitar lines and the general light and cinematic atmosphere make for a breezy yet sad song, while the closing title track is a mix of doom metal a la Paradise Lost with some Katatonia vibes and nifty riffs that is quite engaging. In between these songs we have the catchy and heavy Empty handed”, the melodic and grungy Keeping going and some interludes (“Take me for a walk” and “One more drink…”) that tie this album together neatly. If last time (see review) I had a minor problem with the vocal delivery, in the sense that it was kind of samey, this time around Phil Stiles stepped up his game a bit and delivered a diverse and angry vocal performance, that plays well with the theme of the album.
All in all, “The world we left behind for others” is a collection of moody songs that flow together smoothly creating a lot of depth and intensity, if you are patient enough to enjoy this album in one sitting. There are a lot of harmonies and melodies that give the album extra thickness and make the sound bulkier, from Phil Stiles and Richard Awdry’s guitar work to Jola Stile’s impressive bass lines. Even though is an album that requires multiple listening sessions to truly appreciate its complexity, it is a great addition not only to their discography but to the progressive metal catalogue as well.
Rating: 8.5 / 10
Phil Stiles – Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitar, Lead Guitar, Synths and Programming
Richard Awdry – Lead Guitar, Rhythm Guitar, Vocals and Programming
Jola Stiles – Bass Guitar and Flute
*Drums on the album recorded by Barry French