Friday, June 14, 2024

State of Ember smoulder on Broken Horizons

Redditch based trio State of Ember say that their music is an amalgam of metal, punk and prog rock… well having listened to their second EP Broken Horizons I can see what they mean to a certain extent. There is a definite metal, rock with a punk sensibility behind it all but the prog is a little harder to discern. Chris Tamburro (Vocals/Guitar), Mike Landreth (Bass) and Chelsea McCammon (Drums) channel a bit of the Shinedown/Alterbridge kind of approach and sound a bit like Alterbridge fronted by Michael Monroe or a massively rocked up Cheap Trick. The overriding thing you notice on first listen is the superb bass lines in every song… listen to the complexity and melody Landreth pulls out of the four string and marvel at his inventiveness. The drums and lead are good too, by the way.

Opening song, ‘Time and Time’ is a rapid-fire rocker with a punk edge and vocals with matching rawness. ‘Fear of Falling’ has a more rock base with thoughtful, quieter sections allowing the drums and bass to show their abilities. ‘Reasons’ is more of the same but at an even more frantic pace, showing again their punkish leanings… punkish but played with a lot of panache. ‘Wrong Turn’ is my favourite because of its staccato riff and the more melodic structure across the whole thing. The guitar is at its clearest and most demonstrative and the central section of clever drums and bass leading to a guitar solo that is fresh and, although too short, a definite highlight.

Give them their due, in six songs with a twenty-minute running time they have convinced me of their ability to play and play well. OK the overall timbre doesn’t vary that much but it shows so much promise and if they can combine this energy with more light and shade, they will become a force to be reckoned with in the crowded genre they have placed themselves in.

Tom Dixon
Tom Dixon
North East born, South West domiciled music lover - mainly heavy rock & blues but not averse to other genres. I'm fortunate to have retired early & I can now take full advantage of the 40+ years I have spent collecting, listening, watching & playing (badly) & have enjoyed researching how blues in particular has shaped the music we know & love today. Now if only I could get my Strat & Musicman to sound in reality how they do in my head!

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