30th March 2015 - Best Before: Records
01. Make It Up As You Go
02. Whispers Like Roars
03. Talk It Out
04. Won’t Go Running
05. A Fast Way To Slow Down
06. ‘Round The Sun
07. Just Another Day
08. Sleep On It
09. Face Everything
10. Still Complaining
Since the 2013 release of Acoda‘s debut album Yours To Defend, the Corby quartet can hardly be accused of resting on their laurels. As well as breaking in a new drummer, the band have worked hard to raise their profile and expand their fanbase. The net result of these efforts have manifested in a successful crowdfunding campaign to finance the production of album number two, Truth Seeker.
The band have also been honing their sound. Acoda cruise along the borders of alt-metal and post-hardcore, and their uplifting, melody-driven tracks are given more of a bite with the occasional spot of palm-muting and screaming, following in the footsteps of Brit-rock luminaries such as Hundred Reasons, Funeral For A Friend and Reuben.
However Acoda really come into their own in the vocal department. With at least three of the bands members contributing in some form or other, Truth Seeker features a wide variety of vocal techniques and textures over its eleven tracks. There are wails and screams aplenty, but the real tours de force are the harmonies, which have been thoughtfully constructed and flawlessly executed throughout.
Truth Seeker hits the ground running with opening tracks “Make It Up As You Go” and “Whispers Like Roars“. The former packs a pleasingly spiky riff and the latter is potentially the strongest track of the album – full of hooks and a genuinely inspired chorus. Elsewhere, “Round the Sun” is another highlight, with some great dynamic control, and a big, lurching guitar line.
However, in the recording process, the tracks seem to have lost some of the weight that has made their live performances so compelling, which is a pity, and whilst Truth Seeker is a very clear display of competence, it is unfortunately not particularly exciting. Acoda don’t really seem to take any real risks, and rarely stray far from their template. What’s more, when the tempo drops, as it does on “Won’t Go Running” and album closer “Hymnyin“, the band sound ploddy and ponderous.
So whilst there are some undeniably strong songs to be found on Truth Seeker, there’s not much to draw the listener back for repeated spins of the whole album. Unless, of course, they are looking for some particularly fine examples of the use of multiple vocalists, where Acoda unquestionably excel.
With Truth Seeker, Acoda have consolidated their sound and proved that they have some considerable talents at their disposal, but unfortunately the album lacks that critical spark of vitality that would make it a truly essential listen.