Mallory Knox
Asymmetry


4.5
superb

Review

by zmol USER (1 Reviews)
November 7th, 2014 | 18 replies


Release Date: 2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Mallory Knox have released a monster of an album.

British band Mallory Knox released their debut album Signals in 2013, and only a year later, have put out their second, Asymmetry, successfully avoiding the sophomore slump. They displayed serious potential on Signals, but didn’t quite deliver all they had to offer. Each song sounded relatively similar, such that to someone not overly familiar with their songs, they would have been hard to differentiate between. But my biggest gripe with Signals was hard to pinpoint. The recording just grated on my ears and I found it hard to enjoy.

No longer. Mallory Knox returned with a beast of an album: fourteen tracks, in the deluxe edition, clocking in at just under an hour . The opening track and lead single, “Ghost in the Mirror,” introduces the listener to the fast pace and energetic nature of Asymmetry that they can expect throughout the record. While nowhere near the strongest track on this collection of songs, it sets the mood and gets your blood pumping for the remainder of the album.

“Getaway” follows suit with an accessible alternative rock sound, but it’s on “Dying to Survive” that Mallory Knox finally rock up with some serious power. The song begins with a crunchy bass line and continues to be fun, albeit a little moody, for the first two thirds of the track, but after the second chorus, the band refuse to enter a bridge and yet another chorus. Instead, they opt to change the momentum of the song to something a little more aggressive. Vocalist Mikey Chapman belts out “London is burning down!” to great effect, and you can’t help but sit back and appreciate his raspy voice in its most raw form, backed by a delicious, hard rock influenced riff.

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end, and “Shout at the Moon” makes its way into your ears. Second single, and by far the weakest track on the record due to the uninspired nature of the song, this track was obviously written to bombard the radio. It would seem that this song has served its purpose though, as it has become a regular on the BBC Radio 1 A-list.

“She Took Him to the Lake” starts off with some morbid clean strumming that immediately begs your attention. Mikey’s beautiful voice softly sings over this tender strumming before part two of this seven minute epic kicks in. We hear gentle chanting of “She took him to the lake to watch him drown, tied up,” only for Mikey to interject, almost screaming, about his mistakes. It’s here that you realise this album is not just some release from a generic rock band, but in fact a leader in the British rock scene. The band kicks in again after this brief, but beautiful, pathway into the final third of the song. Here, the track almost falls back into the same style as the rest of the album, but they are luckily able to reign themselves in and deliver a cracking finale filled with plenty of back and forth vocal lines and harmonies, and a sound that is sufficiently different to really stand out in this album full of catchy tracks.

The standard edition of the album finishes strong with two amazing songs. “The Remedy,” the second last track, is one of the most fast paced and energetic songs on the album, and is surely going to be a crowd pleaser. Asymmetry then ends on “Dare You,” which starts relatively soft and subdued, like just another one of Mallory Knox’s slower songs, before exploding into a fitting finale, with a chorus that sounds like it could fill a stadium, ending with an uplifting tone.

However, we are not done yet as the deluxe version includes three extra songs, none of which feel like b-sides. “Glimmer” gives the album a much needed acoustic number, although it would have done a better job on the standard tracklist to break up the full band onslaught, similar to how “1949” did on Signals.

And there’s “QOD II”, the first taste any fan of Mallory Knox would have got from Asymmetry, and one of my personal favourite songs this year. From the opening ten seconds, you know it’s going to be intense. The verses are subdued and backed by simplistic but fitting instrumentation mostly consisting of the bass player in the first verse, before really kicking your teeth in when the chorus hits. The song only grows and after a brief moody guitar solo you hear Mikey crooning “Was it everything you wanted?” to end the album off in some serious style.

While the band members do not do anything overly original or complex, they each do their job well. One can really hear the bass throughout the album which helps create a lot of atmosphere and variety in the instrumentation, whereas similarly styled records often lack that bass sound that is so important. This album is not ground breaking, make no mistake about that, but it is a serious improvement over Signals, and if they continue in this trend of improvement, I’m super excited for album number three, especially if they continue creating songs this catchy. These young British chaps are going places in the world of alternative rock, and rightly so. For what it is, Asymmetry is absolutely fantastic.


user ratings (76)
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
ChoccyPhilly
November 7th 2014


11935 Comments


Good first review and glad this has a review.

That being said, it could do with some improvement.

British band Mallory Knox displayed serious potential on their debut Signals, but didn’t quite deliver all they had to offer.


You jumped straight in with this review. Maybe take a sentence or two to introduce the reader to the band them-self.

(I’m talking about the deluxe version)


Unnecessary; no need to talk about this in first person. Could have instead said "with fourteen tracks from the deluxe version clocking in at just under an hour"

You can hear vocalist Mikey Chapman belt out “London is burning down!” and you can’t help but sit back and appreciate his raspy voice in its most raw form backed by a delicious hard rock influenced riff


This doesn't quite flow as nicely as it could. Perhaps avoid using "you" too much in this.

catchy tunes.


*cringe*. Avoid "tunes" because it's as if you're talking to your mates here

Oh, and by the way, to answer the question in “QOD II”: Yes, Asymmetry was most definitely everything I wanted.


Totally unnecessary. You should have answered this within your review, rather than leaving it as a footnote.

Regardless, this is still a good review, especially considering that it's your first, so pos'd



Digging: Allelic - The Smoke of Atavistic Fires

zmol
November 7th 2014


39 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Cheers for the feedback! I'll make some changes when I get to a computer. There were definitely a few spots

I didn't like my wording but couldn't quite get it out.



EDIT: Have made a few changes (including album titles in italics--i figured out how to do it!). hopefully

it's a bit better now.

nononsense
November 7th 2014


3512 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I'm shocked at how no one ever seems to mention Sam's co-lead vocals on several of the tracks here. He's what makes this band for me.

ChoccyPhilly
November 7th 2014


11935 Comments


Yeah, back up vocals are quality

zmol
November 8th 2014


39 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah I wanted to mention how he pretty much writes everything as well but couldn't find a nice way to include it. He's really the mastermind.

DurzoBlint
November 8th 2014


1393 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Didnt dig this as much as the first album. Seeing them next week, mostly for moose blood though, still I wish this album was released AFTER I am seeing them. This is lacking compared to the first.

nononsense
November 8th 2014


3512 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

It's certainly more mainstream. They've gone for more of a straight forward alt rock sound.

kaparoni
November 13th 2014


347 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

One of the best this year . Found out about them via Deezer

LoLifant
November 29th 2014


1547 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Definitely a worthy follow up to their debut. Great band!

Observer
Staff Reviewer
February 16th 2015


7245 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

how about she took him to the lake, damn

Digging: Armchairpolitician - Seven Segment Decoder

DaveyBoy
Emeritus
March 3rd 2015


22486 Comments

Album Rating: 4.2

'Asymmetry' is the assured 2nd LP from promising English rockers Mallory Knox. Gil Norton's slick production means that the quintet display a grander sound here when compared to their excellent debut 'Signals'. While consistent and containing more catchy sing-along anthems, it's the improved songcraft & a number of satisfying build-ups that see the band step up. Epic 7 minute centrepiece 'She Took Him to the Lake' showcases the fantastic musical dynamic, as well as the passionate backing & lead vocals. Hell, even the 3 bonus tracks are excellent. Recommended Tracks: She Took Him to the Lake, Getaway, When Are We Waking Up? Lonely Hours.

LoLifant
May 17th 2015


1547 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Davey where is the cute girl gone? Did you two part ways?







Great album but I just now listened to one of their songs from the EP 'Pilots' (thanks to Deezer once again) and damn, this EP could be actually their best. 5 really great songs.

LoLifant
February 26th 2017


1547 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

New album coming March 10th and it's the only thing left this year known for release so far that I'm looking forward to.

Ecnalzen
June 9th 2018


8765 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This guy has a great voice. He is borderline channeling the Poets of the Fall vocalist at times. Good stuff.

Ecnalzen
December 18th 2018


8765 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Oh jeez, I sure do like She Took Him To The Lake.

LoLifant
December 19th 2018


1547 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Unfortunately guy with great voice is gone.

Ecnalzen
December 20th 2018


8765 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Damn. That was the main reason I started listening to them.

NorwichScene
September 9th 2019


2989 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

RIP Mallory Knox. I knew they would call it a day after that last album



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