Friday, 3 June 2016

Album Review: Revenge Of The Fifth by Belvedere (by Dan Peters)

If you ask any Melodic Hardcore fan for a list of bands that constitute influences then Belvedere are inevitably in that list. The early 2000s band were pioneers of the blisteringly fast speed and super technical riffage that has come to define the genre. Along with fellow Canadians Propaghandi and Euorpean powerhosues Satantic Surfers they set a template that is still followed to this day because of how good it really is.

They were a band that relentlessly cranked out amazing album after amazing album and then with no warning disappeared in 2004. Later This Is A Standoff would emerge but the group that helped define the modern era of Melodic Hardcore had vanished.

Cut to now and Revenge Of The Fifth. The newest offering from the recently reformed Canadian speedsters, and look I’ll get down to brass tacks because there’s no point in staving off the inevitable: It’s amazing. I generally only write reviews on bands I like because objectivity is something only people I don’t associate with care about and this is very high on the list of bands I’m passionate about. Now that I think about the fact I’ve had to wait 12 years probably means I was a harsher critic than most. We’ll go with that and I’ll continue.

Revenge Of The Fifth has a lot to live up to. As I mentioned Belvedere set the tone for an entire generation of Melodic Hardcore bands and happily all their trademarks – now genre staples – are here for your audio fulfilment. The blisteringly fast pace, the extra technical riffs, the switching between clean and dirty vocals. It’s all present in spades although with a polish and depth of sound that catches the band up to 2016. Sometimes not having made any changes to your formula can feel a little stale but when you were the idols of a generation and not around for 12 years that familiarity is exactly what old fans are craving and for newcomers it allows an easy entrance to such an influential and wildely loved band without making their back catalog inaccessible.

Normally I would list out particular songs of note but I find it very hard to select any as standout or superior. The Title track Revenge Of The Fifth is an incredible display of everything that makes Belvedere great, Years is very Strung Out in its technical acumen and Achilles shows that not every song has to play at a pace that would make Barry Allen blush to still be incredible.

If you like your music fast, get this album. If you like your music technical, buy this album. If you want to own a serious contender for record of the year, buy this album. A real masterpiece by a band that haven’t lose their edge even after being out of the limelight for so long.

Stream and download Revenge Of The Fifth here:

Like Belvedere here: