Verah Falls is a new band that just released their debut All Our Yesterdays EP on June 7th. When I saw what genres they are on their Facebook (metal, hardcore, pop) I thought “oh boy, yet another generic poppy hardcore band.” Well, I am here to tell you I was wrong.
The first thing you will notice here is the vocals. They have a unique sound and don’t try to sound like any other vocalist out there today. The screamed vocals are surprisingly polished, the death growls don’t lack any ferocity, and the singing vocals really stand out and make a mark in the music scene. While listening more closely, you will start to notice that the actual music flows like water. Nothing sounds like it’s forced or overproduced, and none of the band members are trying to play outside of their ability.
In the opening track “Season Tickets To The Opera,” vocalist Craig Prater wastes no time screaming in your face with the dual guitars and drums jamming to his beat, shortly before heading into a breakdown that is a force on its own. His screamed vocals are also very easy to understand. I really admire this fact because I can’t think of many other hardcore bands that are like this. Usually I would have to pause the track and go look up the lyrics, then listen to the track over again. In this song he addresses his darkest hour, seemingly to a significant other that apparently didn’t work out. (How could I forget / The way you made me feel so alive … So young and so confused / where did we go wrong … I keep wondering / What if we never fell apart).
They are from Portland, Oregon, and they throw out some love in the title of the second song “Portland: Stay Golden.” The music starts as a metalcore-tinged train coming for your head, then slows down without sacrificing any of the heaviness into a verse. The guitars go back and forth while the singing and screaming trade off. I don’t think the lyrics are a throw to the city, and are most likely another personal story, as shown in the chorus: “How long will it take for you to come to terms with yourself / With yourself and what you’ve done / Your fall from grace was anything but graceful / You’re only fooling yourself.” Nonetheless, the song is full of catchy vocals and guitars that will please everyone.
“So I Hear You Start Riots” has a breakdown from the get go that will capture the attention of both the casual listener and someone who thinks they have heard everything in the genre (such as myself). Overall, it has an August Burns Red sort of influence without sounding too much like them. When they break off and start the fast-paced metal, you’re already hooked on the slight soloish guitars mixed with heavy, pounding drums that match the guitars and bass perfectly. The march of the snare drum partway through the song brings forth the mayhem of the next breakdown that isn’t too soft or too heavy, that is until the lows kick in and blow you away like “Whoa I wasn’t expecting that!”
I really like this album, and I know this band will be getting some attention in the next few months or so. This album shows that despite all the pain and hate you may face every day, the seeds of life are planted within you and through the pain, you will find the water needed to grow these seeds and bring forth a positive chapter. I heard that they will be on Warped Tour, but I don’t see them on the roster. :/ Hopefully that will change because these guys will bring the energy to their live set. This EP is only $3.99 on iTunes, so make sure you go grab it and show some love for Verah Falls.