Review Summary: An amazing follow up to their last album
I've only known about Memphis May Fire since the release of their last album The Hollow last April. Since then they have quickly become one of my favorite bands. I'll admit though when I found out that Challenger was coming out only a little over a year after The Hollow, I was a bit nervous. Usually when a band releases an album only a year after their last it doesn't quite match up with their past album. But there are many exceptions to that such as other rise records bands like Of Mice & Men and Sleeping with Sirens. The question at hand though is does Challenger match up with Memphis May Fire's sophomore effort The Hollow? And the answer to that is F**K YEAH IT DOES.
Now personally I didn't enjoy this as much as The Hollow, but that doesn't mean that I think Challenger is worse than The Hollow by any means. In fact they've actually improved quite a bit on this album. The guitar work is more interesting and fun to listen to. For example the breakdowns actually fit and aren't overused unlike a lot of bands in the Metalcore genre.
Matty Mullins vocals are still pretty much the same, being able to get those high pitched notes and low growls. His vocals are very fitting. I have absolutely no complaints vocal wise.In fact the only real complaints I have about this album is that the lyrical content isn't quite as catchy as it was on The Hollow, and it doesn't end as good as The Hollow did. Don't get me wrong the album ends good and the lyrics are fantastic, just not as good as The Hollow.
Another thing I really liked about the album was that the song Jezebel felt very much like a follow up to the song The Deceiver, not sure if it is a real follow up but it very much feels like it.
Overall though Challenger is an amazing follow up to The Hollow. I highly recommend this to anyone that wants something new in the Metalcore genre and to anyone who is just starting to listen to heavier music. This beats Chelsea Grin's Evolve as my favorite release of the year so far. Definitely check it out.