Review Summary: From the depths of extinction comes a release with depth, flair without forgetting just what it takes to release a memorable album.
An album a while in the making, at least the wait was justified by some of the strongest musicianship this young melodic metal band could put together. Despite the band’s own internal struggles and the “We’re not actually fully reformed”, ‘Synchronicity’ presents the listener with a strong, albeit long awaited showcase highlighting again this group’s talent both instrumentally and in song creation. Mutiny Within has had a fair share of up’s and down’s over the length of their short career. Namely, being signed to one of the metal heavyweight labels (in Roadrunner Records), releasing their self-titled debut in 2010; only to be dropped by the label due to a severe lack of sales. At the time singer Chris Clancy took to Facebook and made a statement describing how illegal downloading had created this event, highlighting that on one particular download site had in excess of sixty thousand hits on the self-titled debut and that if this had of been a sales record the label would have gladly supported the band. Three years later and Mutiny Within graces the metal community and devoted fans with Mutiny Within 2,’Synchronicity’, self-produced, funded and stronger than ever. This American talent touches on a whole range of aspects to achieve the best sonic output so far in their careers.
When describing Mutiny Within’s sound it’s easy to fall into the ‘generic’ melodic death category, but there are indeed factors that prevent the band, and album from being slumped in the mediocre can. At the fore-front of the record come Chris Clancy’s vocal lines. Harsh screams, smooth cleans melodic groupings, well-placed phrasing and those pipes! It may please listeners’ to know that the man is operatically trained. In fact, the band actually found Mr Clancy online (Youtube) doing some impressive Pavarotti covers before hiring him for the part. But that’s enough talk about the past, as listeners’’ we skip three years to this year’s release ‘Synchronicity’. The album starts in a rather sedate manner with “Embers”, but it’s a great example of an album full of promise, depth and musical ingenuity. The track highlights what made them so likeable from their debut; cleans balanced with screams, highly melodic passages and a steady back bone found in the rhythm section. This track (and many others) stick to a rather ‘set in stone’ Mutiny Within pattern, which while a positive attribute in the way of consistency, doesn’t show the band exploring new ground, pushing out of the figurative box.
Clocking in at just under forty-six minutes full of enough creative hooks and well-presented instrumental passages, combined with an intelligent display of wankery and even vocal phrasings it’s easy to see just how ‘Synchronicity’ is a catchy and memorable release. The album’s highlights are commonplace and the biggest issue comes with tracks blending into each other. In retrospect, this is not so much of an issue as each track brings its own individual flavour and replay value for the record. Tracks like “Falls To Pieces” which have a slightly longer play time really stand out showcasing the band’s natural talent and intelligent construction when putting together songs. Everything is in the right place and has the right effect on the listener. For those looking for something a little ‘heavier’ without a even clean to screamed ratio, try “Machines”; growls, mid-range screams and heavier instrumentation (blast beats, low end guitar riffs et cetera) take centre stage here making it one of the albums heavier tracks.
As a whole, ‘Synchronicity’ is well worth the wait (if you had a choice). From operatic vocals that take the lime light to some incredibly strong musicianship the record is a complete package. Despite the ongoing line-up issues that are not really a problem and the know how to produce a record without a big labels support Mutiny Within make the most of what they have got – without stumbling or disappointing loyal fans. Be warned, the album does have a distinct level of “cheese” to it but like with the debut, it is very much welcome in Mutiny Within’s overall sound.