The Burden’s self-funded, debut full-length album is technically sound, intense and heavy

I am not gonna lie, I love this band.  The Burden blew me away with last year’s The Presence of Past Tense.  The Canadian post- hardcore band is ready to make a splash with their full-length debut, Sinking Feeling.  The album features everything I had hoped for – from heavy riffs to glowing guitar runs, heavy distorted vocals and crisp, clean melodies.  The album picks up where The Presence of Past Tense left off, but this time it is edgier and more raw while still being pointedly more polished.

The album starts off with “I Didn’t Want to Wake Up” which is a very fitting open.  This track is attention-grabbing and spends time highlighting everything this band does well from a technical, melodic guitar line that drives the song along to the intense, heavy vocals.  This song has a massive hook that is as intense as it is catchy and is sure to get stuck in your head.  The transition into “L’appel Du Vide” is one I am excited about; a seamless transition that rolls from one track to the next.  The tempo slows down for this track but the intensity magnifies.  Though it has another vivid, lively hook this track is markedly heavier than the first.

“This Feels Like Letting Go” is a track with a lot of star power.  It is a fitting song for a pre-release single and is one of the most over-the-top tracks on the album.  The harmonies shine in a chorus that is VERY easy to sing along with and I get goosebumps during the last chorus and can only imagine what it would be like to be in a pit when that opens up!  “Broken Compass” is another track I can see being a single from this album.  It is a deceptively heavy song.  It has a light and catchy, upbeat intro and chorus and at times contrasts into a very dark and chunky set of runs in the verse.

After a nice little pallet cleansing interlude in “Synesthesia,” the band comes back with “Lowercase & Capitals,” starting off with an in-your-face, intense sequence and opens up into a chorus with an extravagant guitar run that flows perfectly.  “Paler Shade” is definitely the heaviest song on the album, pushing along with a high level of intensity and opens up into some big vocals in the end.  The build to the song works to a lighter feel but concludes with a breakdown that, even in half time, has a feel as heavy as the track did to start.

“Static Sea” is memorable for its clashing dissonance in the chords to the chorus.  It doesn’t resolve and gave me a really emotional feeling that kept me on edge.  “Sinking Feeling” slows down without losing the edge the album possesses.  The dueling vocals in the breakdown give it a “Taking Back Sunday meets The Used” kind of feel to it.  It is intense for sure, which is a challenge to do at the tempo of this song.  Slow as it may be, the intensity does not let up throughout.  “Classic Disaster” displays some of the best top to bottom guitar work on the album.  From the clean riffs and tones to some really bold bass lines, it really shines for me.  The breakdown is also one of the best resolutions on the album.  “Vodka Soda Social Club” really shows off the clean vocals and range and works perfectly here to set up the tail end of the album.


“Something Borrowed, Something Blue” is my favorite track on the album.  From unique time and tempo changes to flawless drum work with insane fills, this song is an attention-grabber.  But, per usual, it’s the amazing bass runs that make this song stand out to me.  The bells and heavy breathing at the end is a unique way to end the track and is a great transition to the final track.  “13” is a stark contrast to the rest of the record. It is an acoustic vocal showcase and is almost like the lullaby to calm your nerves after listening to 12 of the most intense tracks I’ve heard in quite some time.

Spoiler Alert: After you listen to it, you shouldn’t be surprised to see it fall into the Metal Thoughts Top 10 Albums of 2019, much like the band’s EP did last year.  What will surprise you is that these dudes paid for this album out of their own pockets.   They aren’t signed to a fancy record label to give them financial backing and marketing.  They are busting their asses to make a technically sound, intense and heavy album for a love of music.  This record is something to be proud of. Make sure you support these guys and pick up a copy today!

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TAGS: The Burden

Jay Matthey

Twitter: @JBoneBass

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