Alright people, after an inexcusably long delay, I'm back! I'm back! A couple of you are probably saying "good!" A few more are probably saying "Damn, this guy sucks!" But the vast majority of you are most likely saying, "Who are you and I didn't even know you were gone in the first place." Let's start my return with some European punk/metal.
No, don't roll your eyes! One of the main reasons that bands begin to combine punk and metal in the first place was to see what would result from the combination of two of the most volatile genres of music. It wasn't until a little later that the formula and resulting reaction began to become predictable. However, Tiny-y-Son, which have members from all across Europe, are doing their best to play with the formula on Embracing Uncertainty and no, I have no idea what their name means in English.
One of the most striking things about the album is the group's ability to jump from style to style of different metal throughout each track. "We Are the Valid" starts out with some high-pitched Iron Maiden riffs only to snap to a jagged Pantera-style rumble only to finish with a Metallica-style grandiose finale. Throughout the entire album the band continually changes these styles, sometimes returning to the roots of their heroes and sometimes combining various styles in hopes of making something new. While poorly executing this maneuver would make it seem like the group was just copping styles, the group does it with such erraticism that it seems they are more interested in combining styles and witnessing the reaction than just paying tribute.
On the punk side, the vocals varies between a Refused-style scream, a UK Subs-style chorus, and the dangerous choice of Avenged Sevenfold style melodic choruses. The latter choice draws a line in the sand more than any other choice on the album. The melodic chorus are bold and clean, but they almost seem out of place in grind of the rest of the album. Some people love this style and some hate it. Tiny-y-Son isn't going to change anyone's opinion on this topic, but if you like an almost U2-ish extension of vowels, you'll love this.
Although Tiny-y-Son certainly master various styles on Embracing Uncertainty, and they jump from style to style to keep a sometimes bland genre quite stimulating, they haven't quite been able to synthesize all their attributes into a cohesive unit. So, while we have interesting comparisons throughout the album, the band has some trouble linking the styles together to create an interesting collage instead of a bunch of cut-up pictures pasted on a board. Still, one could argue that pure randomness IS art and in this case, then we definitely have interesting, if not purposeful juxtapositions.
Embracing Uncertainty shows Tiny-y-Son bending styles together with daring disregard. I'm willing to bet that by their next album they'll have selected just what they like the best, affix their stamp to it and put their collage together in way that still might be random, but it'll be random with precision.