I wanted to start this review off by saying that I read too many reviews that just compare one band to another or their influences. I’m not going to do that as I feel Resin have a truly unique style… Yes of course they may have hints of sounds that anyone could dig out and compare to top rock and grunge rock bands past and present, but I’ve decided to try and write this review without doing so.
I first heard of Resin on TBFM, I was hooked immediately! Resin may be described as a grunge rock band, and as a teenager of the 90’s I was and continue to be a massive fan of this genre, but listening to the album it’s clear that Resin have a sound that crosses multiple rock genre. So enough about genre and let’s get onto the band!
Resin are a 5 piece band from the Midlands, originally an acoustic band formed in 2006 consisting of Simon Yarwood (Guitar), Mark ‘Chez’ Roseby (Lead Guitar/Vocals) and James Botha (Vocals). David ‘Sev’ Seville (Bass) and Mark Abbott (Drums/Cello) joined around 2010. Their website www.resinband.com contains a comprehensive biography.
The title of the album ‘Embrace The Fall‘ was the first thing that stood out for me; the notion of understanding life’s challenges, the tough times, but with an underlying determination, a will not to be defeated. This sentiment is portrayed masterfully throughout the album, with instrumental sounds that reflect the insightful lyrics.
I hope to guide you through each track on the album based on how I experience it, but this album has the potential for any listener to relate personally to it. ‘Embrace The Fall‘ is a truly personal journey, one I think everyone should take at least once in their lives.
Entropy introduces us to this hugely talented band. It opens with a beautifully melodic guitar part backed by cello (played by Mark Abbott) and bass. The drums ease the listener into the song before the distorted rhythm guitar sets up the mightily impressive vocals. The song is an excellent opener. The lyrical content is masterful in its imagery. The word ‘entropy‘ is intriguing and on good advice I believe the band used the definition of ‘a state of disorder‘.
The image of a difficult relationship springs to mind, whether with another person, an addiction or internal conflict. As the first song on the album, it is a huge statement of how much thought, experience and hard work goes into Resin‘s song writing. It’s edgy rock music with levels of meaning and understanding for the listener to uncover with each play! The flow from track to track in this album is exceptional.
Carpe Diem is a delicious mix of rock chord progression, subtle breakdowns and catchy hooks. The essence of the song (to seize the day) is demonstrated in the congruence between music and lyric, as James Botha soothes us with melancholy verses and uplifting chorus vocals, Chez rips the solo up over the top of crunching bass and rhythm guitar. The drum patterns are dynamic with emotional awareness. It’s also a pleasure to hear backing vocals that are extremely well placed, complimenting the main vocal, giving depth but not overshadowing. Lyrically the song demonstrates the band’s expertise in balancing emotional vulnerability and competence. By this point in the album you know this band are very special!
Fallen takes us back to a beautifully haunting place, the dual guitar, bass and cello intro is sublime. For me, this song epitomises the sentiment of the grunge rock genre, self deprecating to start with, but then Resin change it up a notch and bring a glorious hopefulness in the second half of the song. All I can say is Fallen is angelic! listen now!
The next song Fake is the anthem of the album for me. Harder sounding, harder hitting, rip roaring guitars, anguished vocals, driving bass and some awesome drum fills. Lyrically more simple than the previous songs, but in no ways less than. What impresses me is the fact that Fake could be related to your own person or another, you decide!
Fake is followed by Instinct which I can only describe as a heart wrenching story of broken love and the need for a soul mate. Musically accomplished, the vocal performance is simply stunning. Once again the musical prowess of all the band shines through on this track.
Beskadig is an acoustic track , guitar and vocals. Sung in Afrikaans, a hint of James Botha’s background. I’m not usually a fan of non English songs, but the melody is thoroughly engaging and grips you from the start. Beskadig highlights Resin’s musically immense range.
So after relaxing the listener with Beskadig, Embrace the Fall’s next track is Clouds. The track has a gorgeous guitar intro, the band at it’s most cohesive. The edgy story of a relationship. Half way through, the track breaks down into an acoustic guitar part then switches key , bringing a more optimistic tale of hope in true Resin style!
The last track in the running of the album is Poison, again the track starts with the by now expected musical excellence, a lovely quietened down intro. I love the bass in this intro. Poison is a story of addiction and how it affects the user and the people around them. The line in the chorus ‘Before I come back down I lose a friend’, sums up the sentiment of the song. Poison ebbs and flows from melodic acoustic and edgy distorted guitar. The solo from Chez is exquisite! Air guitar fully tuned each time I hear it! I have to give full mention to Mark Abbott’s drum part in this song, fulfilling, dynamic and accomplished is the best way to describe it!
The album contains a bonus acoustic version of Clouds, which highlights the bands diversity and how well written their songs are, their translation to an acoustic setting is faultless!
I’ll finish this review with: James, Mark, Simon, Sev and Chez, Thank you for producing such an engaging, thoughtful and master crafted album!