Torche - Admission (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Admission (2019)


Torche has always been able to ride a solid line between heavy metal and poppy gloom yet fall on either side as they see fit. It’s been four years since Restarter, but it seems like very little has changed.

However, on a technical level that’s not true. Jon Nuñez switched from bass to guitar and produced Admission. This meant adding bassist Eric Hernandez to the mix. Usually adding a new member is downplayed but Hernandez was immediately thrust into the spotlight. Lead single “Shine” is credited to him and shows what the new guy brings to the table.

Admission benefits from its variant of styles, which can be said for much of Torche’s career. Opener “From Here” is a blast out of the gate. It is one of two songs in the first four that barely get to the minute-and-a-half mark. “What Was” is the other and it explodes in your face. Comparably, the next song, five-minute “Time’s Missing” uses Torche’s knack for jagged, repetitive riffs. While the song is slower than much of this album, the heaviness is felt. The same goes for “Reminder,” a more condensed version of the same repetitive sludginess. But it’s the title track where Torche do their best work. They know what a little melody injection can do for their sound, and the song’s shiny guitars soar above the heavy riffs and vocalist Steve Brooks’s voice. It is Admission’s best song and one of Torche’s most immediately memorable. The back half of Admission goes the more traditional route. While sure to please long-time fans, after such an exploratory top half, it feels slightly more weighted down. But don’t worry, “Infiero” rips out of that murkiness, dirtier and angrier than anything else on Admission.

Torche plays heavy rock and roll. By keeping this classification broad, they are able to borrow from all genres as they see fit yet know how to utilize all they have in their wheelhouse. Like-minded Baroness also falls into this category. Nuñez has said the core band is happier than ever and listening to Admission, that is clear. While thematically it can get dark and personal, there’s no doubt Torche are enjoying themselves on Admission.