The Safety Fire
Mouth Of Swords


4.0
excellent

Review

by rafalafa USER (1 Reviews)
October 2nd, 2013 | 24 replies | 5,652 views


Release Date: 09/03/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Less than two years since their debut, The Safety Fire deliver an album with arguably more force and emotion showcasing maturing songwriting and continuing promise for the future.

7 of 7 thought this review was well written

Less than two years between albums seems like a bad idea when dealing with music as technical as the UK-based band The Safety Fire produce. Certain assumptions can be made: primarily that the sounds, tones, and emotions could be far too similar to their debut, "Grind the Ocean." Luckily, the band has eluded the possible pitfalls and delivered an album with arguably more force and emotion than their last.

Insane polyrhythms, sweeps, and solos abound just as before, but now are not just limited to the guitarists; drummer Calvin Smith and bassist Lori Peri, make their presence known, together, especially in 'Yellowism.' This time, some different influences make their way into the new sound; most apparent are nods to Gojira and Between the Buried and Me. The seventh track, 'The Ghosts That Wait For Spring,' begins immediately reminiscent of the former band’s signature sludgy plodding. The latter band is featured more directly with a guest appearance from vocalist and keyboardist Tommy Giles Rogers, Jr. in a song that might not be out of place on a BtBaM album.

A common criticism of their first album stemmed from singer Sean McWeeney’s vocal performance. While many of the melodies and vocal patterns of "Grind the Ocean" return, McWeeney has made great strides in softening his cleans and rounding the edges of his harshes, making his vocal performance less abrasive and more enjoyable. There are even some rather surprising and welcome vocal harmonies throughout, best displayed in 'Beware The Leopard (Jagwar).'

"Mouth of Swords" is paced well over its 46 minutes. The twisting nethers of instrumentality found within, save for the lone breath, 'Wise Hands,' are balanced with jazzy moments and sonic builds that emphasize the punishing nature of the band and create a steady rise and fall, clench and release throughout. The songs are varied and no longer seem overly similar as they did in "Grind the Ocean," though there is certainly a case for centerpiece 'Red Hatchet' being mistaken for a lost B-side from that album.

Make no mistake, however, that though this album and level of production from The Safety Fire might at first seem hastily delivered, upon listening to "Mouth of Swords" you will discover that the band is already maturing mightily in songwriting and show even more promise for the future.


user ratings (120)
Chart.
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
rafalafa
October 1st 2013



6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I thought it was criminal that this album hadn't been reviewed, so I thought I'd finally quit lurking and contribute!

jacobybelgium
October 1st 2013



67 Comments


Nice review, everything was clear and made sense. IMO, this album didn't really hit it off first time I listened, though I did fall in love with Huge Hammers from the first one.

rafalafa
October 1st 2013



6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks! I love both albums, but I honestly think this one is superior simply because of the variety. Though Huge Hammers hits so hard it's difficult to resist.

OwMySnauze
October 2nd 2013



954 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Finally a review for this. Good job.

mursu
October 2nd 2013



254 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good review, pos'd. I liked their debut, so I need to get this album.

Drummerboy123
October 2nd 2013



2341 Comments


Album jams hard. Easily in my top 10 of the year.

Digging: Kimbra - The Golden Echo

mindleviticus
October 2nd 2013



8220 Comments


i was gonna check this out later it's been on my wishlist for a while

bloc
October 2nd 2013



34774 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Not bad, but I have no desire to listen to this after the first time.

Digging: Interpol - El Pintor

mindleviticus
October 2nd 2013



8220 Comments


I love the album cover

Calc
October 6th 2013



12136 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

dont lie, is this actually comparable to exotic animal petting zoo?

Digging: Jizue - Shiori

rafalafa
October 7th 2013



6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Comparable? Not directly, but I took the "recommended by reviewer" section to mean something more along the lines of, "if you dig this, you'll dig this other album/band too."

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
October 7th 2013



10064 Comments


Never before has Tommy Rogers sounded so bad as he does on his feature here. Holy hell, man. That production does him absolutely no favors.

Digging: The Contortionist - Language

linguist2011
Contributing Reviewer
October 14th 2013



1861 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Not a bad album, but the vocals for the most part put me off slightly. When the vocals are sung cleanly against quieter sounds they aren't too bad, but it's when the song gets heavier that they come across as rather weak to me. The same goes for harsh vocals, although the guest spot on 'Beware the leopard' is very suitable somehow. Musically this album is pretty nice to listen to, and makes the majority of the songs on here all the more consistent. The guitar work offers plenty of surprises, though at times the tone can wear a little 'thin'. All in all not a bad album at all.

Digging: Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden

jmh886
November 14th 2013



821 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Yea vocals bring it down a notch. Plus his name is McWeeney. That's just hilarious.

JamesLentil
November 19th 2013



59 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I normally don't listen to this style of music often but I'm currently enjoying this.

FearThyEvil
December 15th 2013



12480 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I like this a lot more than the debut

LunaticSoul
January 27th 2014



157 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Destroys the debut, which I never liked that much. Digging this one, though

mursu
January 28th 2014



254 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I still like their debut more, but this is starting to grow on me.

LunaticSoul
January 28th 2014



157 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Can't listen vocals on the debut. Here they're bearable, less auto-tune or editing work on them

Koffiiing
April 23rd 2014



1107 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

criminally underappreciated band



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