ALBUM: Senses Fail – Renacer

Release Date: March 26th, 2013
Label: Staple Records


With March marking what’s bound to be for many years the most misty-eyed nostalgia attack, with Finch waving us farewell, the re-emergence of New Jersey quintet Senses Fail should perhaps aid in dulling the pain somewhat. Thirteen years into their oft times overlooked career, the release of ‘Renacer’, or more precisely the title itself, has seen much talk of a ‘rebirth’ (‘Renacer’ translates loosely as Spanish for “to be reborn”) and an anticipated overhaul of the band’s sound. Although the reality might not be as drastic as all that, what we’re met with is evidence of a breathtaking invigoration.

It’s abundantly apparent from the off that ‘Renacer’ is an undeniably more aggressive prospect from previous works. The opening title-track brings forth a monstrously thick drudge which will certainly see hardcore aficionados salivating, with ‘The Path’ following suit with its devastating stomp. There’s a rich vein of brutish violence which flows throughout, tapping a welcome wealth of energy from the more extreme end of the spectrum which is, not only remarkably bracing, but also wholly unexpected.

Yet, of course, Senses Fail place great store in marrying this new found fury with a melodic slant that proves often to be equally as affecting. Angelic choruses abound in the likes of ‘Holy Mountain’ and ‘Frost Flower’, delivering the traditional but expertly placed hooks. However, first prize in the majestic stakes surely goes to both ‘Between The Mountain And The Sea’ and a Deftones-y offering ‘Glass’. The track’s a brace of lessons in slow burning melancholia and towering song-craft.

Overall, it’s a sense of assuredness and an unflinching confidence which makes ‘Renacer’ such an impressive release. Dabbling at will in the unexplored whilst turning out material which matches their career best is certainly a laudable feat, and with a host of engaging songs and fresh ideas present, Senses Fail‘s bravery has provided something of an unforeseen gem.

Written by Tony Bliss