From Ashes Rise – Nightmares

From Ashes Rise
Nightmares

Jade Tree, better known for post-punk and emo, has released another good hardcore album hot on the heels of the new Paint it Black and Strike Anywhere records. When I say hardcore I mean it; no emo-metal crap on this record.
From Ashes Rise is a four-piece from Portland by way of Nashville. Brad Boatright and John Wilkerson share both guitar and vocal duties, while bassist Billy Davis and drummer David Atchison lay the rhythms. Honest vocals coupled with socially aware lyrics, intense guitars, pounding drums, and plodding bass lines has been done before, so FAR don’t break any new ground on Nightmares, but the band plays a tried and true genre quite well.
Opting for a more fluid sound, FAR rarely breaks down into choppy riffs, but rather relies on elegant grooves. More often than not, the guitars are fast and the yelling is brutal, except for a few slower segments that act as an oxygen tank on this wild ride. The lyrics displayed here are definitely hardcore-oriented without sounding over-done and cliche. I found the lyrics “We are the ones who tell the sun to shine, tell the rain to pour, to keep your broken mind on the fray,” on stand-out track “On the Fray,” particularly good.
For better or worse, the production on Nightmares is really clean. Don’t get me wrong, it sounds good, even great, but if it were up to me I would have gone for a more raw sound. Rawer production values really seem to add to the intensity of releases such as this one.
Despite a played-out genre, From Ashes Rise really dishes out some intense hardcore, and these guys are obviously very talented musicians. Nightmares hints at greatness here and there, but usually just stays in the “damn good” realm. I’m really interested to see where these boys have in store for our wanting ears in the future.