"HelloAgainGoodbye" (Rock Ridge; 2008)

Reviewed by Metal Mark

Maybe I'm just old, but twenty some years ago it seemed rather easy to tell what was metal and most people were in agreement as to what was and wasn't. Today, however, some people think the field of metal has expanded. You get a wide variety of acts who some may declare as being metal yet they actually are not. 

The debut from Atlanta's Echovalve had me thinking along those lines because, despite the volume and the drums, it's not quite metal in the traditional sense. It's sort of heavy melodic alternative music, although I can certainly see some metal fans liking it. 

This CD is decent enough because Echovalve keep things moving, but they don't have the kind of drive or punctuated hooks that are really going to grab you and pull you in. I think they lack some variety in their music and several songs are just content to float along with similar approaches. The band seems to be relying heavily on the vocals and the vocals are good, but the lack of hooks in the music gives the band somewhat of a one dimensional approach. 

There's talent here no doubt, but Echovalve to open a little and push the boundaries a little more. Whether they push in a metal direction or an alternative one isn't as important as the fact that they need take a few more chances and perhaps work on making the music more distinct. The melodies are strong here, but I think the band could get even further with a bit more fine tuning.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2008 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 17 Jul 2022 13:29:13 -0400.