01. Attentive; Continuum
05. Into The Sun
09. Delete The Sky
10. Attentive; Reverie
In the world of UK tech-metal in 2011, where Architects are making angsty pop-punk, SikTh have been gone for three years now, and djent has claimed sovereignty, you’d be forgiven for thinking that there wasn’t much to get excited about as far as furious riffing and Dillinger-esque time signatures go. We’ve always prided ourselves on this particular home-grown facet, but things have been slow for a few years.
Enter Visions. Although their pluralised alias may initially lead you to believe they are indeed one of these ‘djent’ bands, nothing could be farther from the truth. No, Visions have firmly taken up Architects’ ironically hollow crown and buffed it back to its former glory.
Let’s run with that a little, actually. Home, in essence, is not wholly dissimilar to Architects’ debut Nightmares in its execution; there are plenty of techy riffs and constantly shifting time signatures, but I think it’s even better executed, thanks in part to the expert production force of John Browne, Neema Askari and Paul Ortiz – all Basick Records boys themselves – and although not from the Nightmares era, vocalist Daniel Bareford sounds more than a little like Sam Carter at times.
Musically, there’s a lot going on to please a variety of people. Penultimate track “Delete the Sky” is a perfect example of everything Visions can do; the fingerwork is fast at times, but not overly wanky – these sections quite reminiscent of label-mates Aliases – and there are some great choppy riffs and use of Bareford’s cleans. The outro in particular is sublime; slowing things right down with some Donnie Darko-esque atmospherics and a serene piano section that serves to allow the listener pause before the final onslaught of “Attentive; Reverie“.
I’ll admit that a couple of overly-long, overly-slowed chuggy breakdowns mired my experience a little (notably the mid-section to “Machines“) and the ‘crappy-deathcore’ vein in my head began to twitch, but I only spotted one, maybe two, so I won’t hold it against them. This particular offender was brightened by some interesting crash and china drumming from Joe Large too, and they’re used sparsely, so it’s not long before all memory of them is shredded away – and unlike certain popular deathcore bands whom we shan’t name, Visions know how to write their intros, bridges and…well, lots of stuff that isn’t downtuned chuggy bollocks.
I’m not gonna tell you that Visions are particularly breaking any new ground with Home, but as this stage that’s not the point. They’re relatively new to the scene, but this is a bold statement of intent, and one that points firmly in the right direction. It’s a damn solid record, and I’m looking forward to where they go from here.
Visions – Home gets: