Protest The Hero certainly built up some major hype this year. The super talented five-piece made news all over the place when they threw crowdfunding into the eyes of the metal community when their Indiegogo campaign smashed through its goal of $125,000 in a day, and finished with a huge sum of $341,146. Their success helped contribute to the recent metal band crowd funding trend in a big way.
In the absence of their drummer Moe Carlson, who left the band, Chris Adler (Lamb of God) filled in and brought his drum style that, according to PtH, added a much more metal vibe to the new record. Since then, they’ve found a new full-time replacement in Mike Ieradi of The Kindred aka Today I Caught The Plague.
All the events above (minus the very last) were the steps leading up to an absolute success. “Volition” is a triumph on all fronts. Everything about this album wreaks of true greatness, if not perfection. If any members of the band happen to be reading this, pat yourself on the back right fucking now.
Where to start? They take the best elements of “Fortress”, “Scurrilous”, and “Kezia”, blend them together with a few new ingredients, and serve directly to your ears. If that doesn’t sound like a good time, I can’t help you.
The instrumentation brought on “Volition” is eargasmic. The guitar work will make your jaw drop. The drumming will make your jaw drop again. And thanks to superior production / mixing, the bass might just make your jaw drop thrice. Put them all together and your jaw doesn’t stand a chance. The sheer amount of mind bending technical shred a found on this album is damn near overwhelming. Carefully crafted, intelligent composition lines every second of this musical juggernaut. With content aplenty, it’s a great album for willing ears to explore. Songs like “Skies”, “Without Prejudice”, “Clarity”, “Drumhead Trial”, “Mist” and so on are worth melting your brain onto.
And of course Rody Walker kills it. You may scoff, but he’s always kinda reminded me of Dio (especially with past songs like “C’est La Vie”). Rody’s voice carries undeniable power with every note released. You’ll find his sung melodies carved into your head throughout the day. And his lyrics are always great. The topics covered range from being serious (“Plato’s Tripartite” and “Tilting Against Windmills”) to lighthearted (Star Wars vs Star Trek in the single “Clarity”). There’s even a song about dogs (“A Life Embossed”). There’s never been doubt that Protest The Hero is a band with big time personality and it really shines through. There are also several vocal cameos from Jadea Kelly, Kayla Howran, Mark Iannelli, and many more.
The three singles released “Clarity”, “Drumhead Trial”, and “A Life Embossed” really helped carve the path up to this album’s release by giving a good, summarized idea of what to expect. But as usual, the summary doesn’t do the full story justice. Every single second of this record is worth your full attention. There is no filler content to be found as every track hits with the force of an atomic bomb. Press play at your own risk.
I honestly don’t have any real criticisms of this album. It’s just damn near perfect, if not perfect. You know what… I’m just gonna go ahead and give Protest The Hero a 10 out of 10. It’s an overall rock solid effort from a rock solid band (and the people who support them). Allow me to reiterate… “Volition” is a total triumph. And for those of you who missed it, it’s now streaming in it’s entirety. Look above and blast that! And if you enjoy the music half as much as we do, do yourself a favor and grab yourself a new CD here.