ALBUM REVIEW: MEMPHIS MAY FIRE “UNCONDITIONAL”

memphis album art

Words By: Dylan McAteer

Released: March 25 2014 via Rise Records

Unconditional is released just two years after Memphis May Fire’s breakthrough release in Challenger. No doubt the 2012 release strengthened the bands fan base to its highest level, but that opened the door to high expectations. It’s always interesting to see how a band follows up a massive album release.

The album kicks off like the title suggests with “No Ordinary Love”, which comes with some heavy hitting instrumentals. More specifically, I love the guitar work from lead guitarist Kellen McGregor and rhythm guitarist Anthony Sepe. The riffs they incorporated here just resonate with the ear. This is a very heavy start to the album, which is exactly what you want from these guys. They take no time hammering home their message and raw musical talent.

“The Answer” is another track that stands out immediately when listening to this album. Something you can just rock out hard too, with an upbeat consistent rhythm. What draws attention to this track is that it’s vocally impressive, as always from a band that invokes a lot of energy in all of their work.

Personally, my favourite track is “The Rose”, for an endless amount of reasons. First off vocalist Matty Mullins is incredible as it is, but finds an amazing new level in this tune. There are a healthy balance of screams and cleans that are guaranteed to make your emotions boil over. The message of the song is what gets me going, the whole idea of pushing on and working harder despite criticism is something special. Concrete symbolizes the limits that are set on people who need to break through those barriers to be the rose growing in the cracks. Being able to capture such a powerful message in such a short time is nothing short of brilliant. It’s simply amazing how they could take this much and coincide it so perfectly with incredible instrumentals.

Ultimately this is a fantastic release and the guys did a great job putting together some of their best stuff yet. After much thought, I believe that the only issue anyone could really have with it is that it might not be different enough from Challenger. In saying that, I mean that both albums are terrific, its just that some people want more change and less of the same. Personally, I see growth here and they are an elite force in the music scene. Unconditional not only proves their talent but actually shows how much potential they have. Expect them to keep growing and releasing fierce tracks like they’ve always done!

Track List:

  1.       No Ordinary Love
  2.       Beneath The Skin
  3.       Sleepless Nights
  4.       The Answer
  5.       Possibilities
  6.       Speechless
  7.       The Rose
  8.       Not Enough
  9.       Need To Be
  10.   Pharisees
  11.   Divinity

 

Watch the video for “No Ordinary Love” via YouTube here:

Listen to “The Rose” via YouTube here:

ALSO, CHECK OUT CLAUDIA’S PHOTOS FROM MEMPHIS MAY FIRE AT THE OPERA HOUSE

 

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