ALBUM REVIEW: Decay – Staring At The Sun

Release Date: July 10th 2020
Label: Fox Records
Website: None available


Following up on the promise of their ‘Modern Conversation’ EP, Liverpudlian post-hardcore quintet Decay deliver their debut full-length album, ‘Staring At The Sun’.

Filled with bursting melodies and an honest narrative, the record serves a strong representation of a group that is willing to expand and grow at an alarming rate.

Opening with the title track, vocalist Daniel Reposar delivers a weaving vocal performance against shimmering guitars and crashing drums. Not wasting any time, the group flies through punctuated backing vocals, stabbing guitars, and half time codas that give an impressive snapshot of the record, and, in turn, themselves.

After showcasing their knack for radio-friendly bursts of melodic distortion, ‘September 27th’ plays with dynamics, moving from thick walls of sound to sparse and lingering guitars. The track touches on multiple techniques, but doesn’t overshadow Reposar‘s passionate performance. Amongst the unexpected thrash inspired left turn of its bridge, it’s the conviction of the vocals and the fevered energy of the performances that shine through the record.

The same can be said for both ‘Ache’ and ‘Feel Better’, and whilst the former focuses on post-hardcore tropes and thick riffs, it’s the ambient driven and intimate spoken word bridge that pulls together the sprawling concepts on display. Still, this isn’t to say that it’s just the conviction of Decay that keeps ‘Staring At The Sun’ intriguing.

As later highlight ‘Misery’ shows, when the quintet lean into their punk influences they’re arguably at their strongest. Brimming with breakneck drums and bouncing guitars, ‘Misery’ flits between full bodied screams, call and response vocals, and jagged riffs to create a fevered and breathless track.

The same can be said for ‘Comfortable’, sitting on a foundation of urgent drums, sliding guitars peel away to unfurl twisting melodies. Playing with structure, staccato guitars navigate a melodically rich chorus before crafting a cinematically influenced bridge. Whilst the concept of the track seems messy and shoehorned in, Decay manage to deliver smooth transitions throughout their genre spanning array of influences.

With ‘Staring At The Sun’, Decay have created a record that is passionate and unafraid to uncover new soundscapes whilst retaining the post-hardcore centre of the group. Streamlined and not outstaying its welcome, ‘Staring At The Sun’ is a snapshot of a group that has many avenues to pursue.