Artdisorder – Fallen


When European bands begin to sing in English, hoping to get more attention from the US, I’m always confused as to what they are hoping to accomplish. If they are hoping to get radio play and become popular, their English had better be matched by a few grand in today’s pay-for-play music marketplace. I mean, maybe they can get themselves a spot on the Warped tour without bribing someone, but otherwise I don’t foresee the move to singing in English being very meaningful. In some ways, a metal band (which Artdisorder at times claims to be) is probably better off singing in a non-English language, since that is likely to make them stand out from what most Americans are used to hearing, and, as is the case with black metal, it might give them more credibility among listeners. Then again, since they are a “lovecore” group, they might want to make their message understood to a broader audience (although the way their songs are produced, it is difficult to make out the lyrics anyway). Artdisorder seem to suffer from a confusion as to how to present themselves and what their goal is in doing so.

“Fallen” is an example of a band that is trying to be all things to all people. The song begins with a fluid guitar motif that is repeated a few times over a warm bass line and percussion that borders on a disco beat. The feeling is calm and moody, with quiet bursts of synth, creating atmosphere. Just as the listener is lead to believe that this is going somewhere, it fizzles out and suddenly we are thrust into a world of throbbing double-bass kicks and crunchy power chords. This change is unexpected and almost unwelcome, especially as the vocals turn into a Pantera-influenced bark. As we approach the chorus, the chords become thicker and sheathed in a more palatable reverb, falling somewhere between Stompbox and Coldplay. The vocals are now sung as sweetly as possible while being filtered through a warbly studio effect, often heard in dance, music which creates a distance between the speaker and listener that is not fitting for the intimate lyrics. Artdisorder then do a sort of break-down, which leads into an attempt at bringing together the intro with the rest of the song by repeating the guitar line beneath a blanket of chords. The intro is simply too disparate though, and they never manage to bring the song full circle.

While Artdisorder seems muddled (and, well, disordered) about their approach at times, it is partly because they are talented and savvy enough to play a variety of styles. With time, they may learn to better integrate these techniques and styles into a meaningful whole.