Review Summary: Senses Fail put out "Follow Your Bliss," full of effort and passion when they could have easily released a filler EP.
Love them or hate them, Senses Fail are a consistent band. Starting out as a pop-punk band, SF rose to prominence with their debut EP, 'From The Depths Of Dreams.' Their debut earned them a spot on the label Vagrant Records, while their second release, 'Let It Enfold You' (released on Vagrant) earned them a spot on the Taste of Chaos tour with the likes of The Used and My Chemical Romance. Over the last few years, the band has gone through several line up changes with the likes of Heath Saraceno and Jason Black of Midtown and Hot Water Music among others. Never the less, the band continued to put out three releases that had a lot of success and slowly Senses Fail found themselves at the top of the post-hardcore genre.
With the current line up, SF released a four song EP to keep their fans happy as they toured and wrote their fifth album, 'Renacer,' due out in March. Vocalist Buddy Nielsen has vastly improved over the course of his career and has finally found himself as a vocalist and it shows with the release of this EP. The album starts out with the crushing "War Paint," which is one of the heaviest songs the band has released. Buddy easily transitions between his brutal screams and nasally, yet beautiful cleans as new guitarists Zach Roach and Matt Smith chug and trade off harmonies effortlessly. The following track "Vines" has some of the best lyrics that Buddy has ever written. This song proves that Senses Fail still have the knack for catchy choruses that the band have become known for. "Early Graves" truly shows the band at their absolute best with a certain amount of urgency in their sound that is so enjoyable. Closer "Waves" showcases the bands pounding rhythm section of bassist Jason Black and drummer Dan Trapp underneath Roach and Smith's dueling guitar work. Roach and Smith sound so much like former guitarists Garrett and Heath you cant tell that they are no longer with the band. It may come off as a negative to some, but in my opinion it doesn't really bother me.
Senses Fail could have easily released this EP as a filler without any effort, but it is cool to see that Buddy and co have no problem putting all their heart and effort into such a small offering. Senses Fail really are true professionals and they prove it with this stellar EP release.