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Album Review: Hostile Array by Hostile Array

Maryland post hardcore act Hostile Array release their debut, self-titled album, on 1st June. Blending tight melodic riffs, crunchy bass lines and harsh vocals, Hostile Array brings a heavy, yet catchy metal record to the table.

“This album really focuses on some of the political issues that frustrate me the most,” comments, vocalist Brendan Frey. “I don’t consider myself to be very liberal or conservative, but I am passionate about addressing issues of corruption on both sides of aisle. Our hope is to motivate others to question the status quo and never compromise when it comes to demanding justice in our system”.

The group, made up of Brendan Frey, Garrison Frey, Hector Fernandez, Fredy Menjivar, and Andrew Markle, released their first single, “Devoid”, in July of 2017 which focused on the tragedy of civilian casualties in the Middle East and US intervention policies. The band aims to continue the political and social dialogue with each new release. Pulling from a variety of influences such as Underoath, Norma Jean, Silent Planet, and Architects, the band delivers a diverse and unique blend of sounds, while maintaining a message that questions the status quo.

While it may be politically charged the music lacks an accompanying intensity. For this to be something to make you stand up and take notice it needs to have an impact and unfortunately, it’s a case that Hostile Array talk the talk but don’t walk the walk.

On the surface it isn’t a bad album. The band have a real knack for marrying crunching riffs with an immediacy that is missing from many politicized bands. However, scratch just beneath the surface and you’ll find that this sounds all a little too familiar. There’s nothing new here, search back through the metal archives of the last fifteen years and you’ll find tens of bands that have not only done something very similar but done it a lot better.

It is an indistinct and almost dull album. Before the first song is half done you’ll feel as if you’ve heard it a hundred times before. For something that’s apparently so impassioned you’d think there would be some impetus do break the mould and standout from the crowd. Hostile Array has seemingly chosen the easy option.

AD Rating 5/10

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