Review Summary: Something to be proud of.
Despite their lack of exposure, InMe are a band that have musically gone from strength to strength over the years. Their debut album Overgrown Eden
was a catchy, if perhaps immature effort, which nonetheless managed to set them apart from other rock groups of the time. From there, they have proven themselves able to consistently produce solid albums and maintain their loyal fanbase. Once again on display is the usual strong song writing, uplifting choruses, and excellent production. So does that mean that The Pride
is a predicable affair with nothing new to offer? Well thankfully, not in the slightest.
For many, vocalist Dave McPherson’s ‘unique’ voice has previously let the band down considerably. Fortunately, McPherson has left behind the cringe-worthy screams that featured too often on Herald Moth
, instead opting to showcase his surprisingly impressive singing range. Although this seems like a risky move when acknowledging that his voice is far from brilliant, his trend of improving with each album continues – tracks such as opener ‘Reverie Shores’ and first single ‘A Great Man’ show McPherson hitting the high notes well, adding another interesting element to InMe’s sound. With the vocal department no longer holding back the music in any way, the listener feels much less awkward singing along to the songs on offer. The harmonies in the chorus of opening song are wonderful, and immediately show progression in the band.
Alongside this, The Pride
sees InMe exploring a slightly new sound. This time round there is a much greater focus on the bass, adding groove and depth to the music. In particular, ‘Beautiful Sky Gardens’ and ‘Pantheon’ are brought to life in this way. Taking one more step away from Herald Moth
, there is an introduction of experimentation with electronics. The results of this are mixed – when used sparsely, the added layer brings an exciting new element to the music. For example, they seem perfectly at home in tracks like the aforementioned ‘Pantheon’. However, the abrasive breakdown on ‘Moonlit Seabed’ ends up sounding awkward and ultimately out of place.
also finally address the issue of length. The great tracks from Daydream Anonymous
and Herald Moth
ended up suffering, as both albums were simply watered down by too much filler and forgettable moments. With only ten tracks and clocking in at forty-five minutes, around ten minutes shorter than their last two efforts, The Pride
manages to maintain the atmosphere created early on in the album, without overstaying its welcome.
The album is however let down once again by, in this writers opinion, InMe’s inability to write a ballad. With the exception of the title-track from Daydream Anonymous
, the band’s softer songs in the past have not lent themselves well to Dave’s voice, and suffer from lyrics which lack any depth. The Pride has two ballads on offer – the first, ‘Escape To Mysteriopa’ is surprising solid, although hampered slightly by the awkward transition into the instrumental towards the end. However this time round, ‘Legacy’ proves itself to be the let-down. Despite being heavier, it fails to leave any real impact, and is only made more disappointing in its place as the album closer.
Nevertheless, fans of InMe will find plenty here to enjoy – a mixture of the anthems of White Butterfly
with the maturity of Daydream Anonymous
. On the other hand, those new to InMe will find some of the bands greatest and most accessible work to date. This is what makes The Pride
so exciting – it’s finally a realisation of the potential that InMe have shown throughout their careers. With McPherson beginning to shift his focus onto his solo career, there is a good chance that The Pride
will be the bands last album; if this is to be the case, then at least they have finished with something to be proud of.
A Great Man
Beautiful Sky Gardens