Review- “Fell Like Bricks”- The Stormalongs

Reviewed by Michael

I am going to start out by saying that if you buy a copy of this 13-track, 66-minute album, you are getting your money’s worth. The previous few album I reviewed had 9, 7 and 8 tracks on them, respectively. There is of course nothing wrong with short albums by all means. But long albums are cool too.

Such is the case with Toronto atmospheric rockers the Stormalongs. Their performances have been described as “blistering” and “adrenaline-filled” and those descriptions could not be more true. Most of the songs on this album begin with heavy, high-energy guitar riffs which lead into fast-tempo drumming and fast songs.

It seems with every album I review that I always find something unique about each offering in some way. On this album it is the song titles. I’m positive that I have never heard of songs with the names “Kierkegaard” or “Kamala” or “Snow Eyes.” These titles intrigued me and while I didn’t always understand the references that they made I was still interested. It takes thought to name songs, and these song titles are more thought-provoking than titles like “Oops I Did it Again” (I’m very sorry and will never ever mention Britney Spears in this blog ever again).

One song that had a bit of a jarring effect on me was the song “Clowns”, which I believe had the scariest guitar riff probably on the whole album. It drove fear into me just as real clowns do.

“Snow Eyes” and “Clowns” are very high intensity songs, but the band does vary the pace with lighter songs like “Watersong” and “Xmas.” 

The one slight weakness the band has is in its song length. On a few songs there are extended instrumentals where the song could have just been ended. Of course huge guitar riffs and drum beats are a part of classic rock but they’re not always needed. That being said, “Days Alight,” while a little long, features a great crescendo a little more than halfway through the song.

The standout track on this album is definitely “Weakness,” ironically enough by the title. It is three minutes and ten seconds, featuring clean vocals by lead singer Colin James Gibson, and features a very catchy hook: “Try as you might you won’t hold us down.” I can imagine if this were to be played on the radio that would be the line that would stick in everyone’s heads.

This album manages to capture the intensity that this quartet no doubt brings to their shows, and seeing them live would probably make the longer songs seem a lot more entertaining. This debut album shows that these guys have some serious potential.

Top Tracks: “Weakness”, “Watersong”, “Snow Eyes”

3 Hoots (out of 4)

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