Compared to the past couple of years, Wales hasn’t been the same sort of force lately as it once was. Sure, bands like Skindred and Bullet For My Valentine are still doing the rounds, but with the number of bands who have met an untimely end in recent times – see The Blackout, Kids In Glass Houses, Funeral For A Friend – the Valleys have been fairly sparse in terms of mainstream talent.
Well, have no fear, because Breathe In The Silence are ready to change all that by…playing the exact same kind of post-hardcore as their predecessors. To be fair though, while what Breathe In The Silence do isn’t particularly novel, their former, more metallic guise has been traded in for preposterously massive alt-rock with aplomb and plenty of gusto. They definitely seem to be following the same path as Young Guns – massive, cinematic anthems that could do with a bit more nuance in the writing, but is ultimately as populist as they come. As overdone as the title track is with its borderline astonishing broadness, it at least has both the ambition and the talent to break well away from the toilet circuit.
And yes, Hold My Heart has clearly been buffed and polished to perfection, but Breathe In The Silence just about edge of the bracket of pop radio banality, thanks to the strident influence of late-2000s post-hardcore. The Blackout are a good reference point, still hugely accessible but with a bit more bite than their peers, and it translates well into tracks like I Believe I’m In Hell Therefore I Am and Devil’s Peak (which actually features ex-Blackout vocalist Sean Smith). Again, it’s not all emphatically original, but that this sort of sound is a solid jumping-off point for a new career is indisputable.
Rather than anything else, Hold My Heart should be viewed as just that. This is an EP that sees Breathe In The Silence wear their influences prominently on their sleeves, and for establishing their sound, that’s fine. But sooner rather than later, they’ll have to find their own sound, one that feels a bit more exciting than this. Nevertheless, if Hold My Heart is anything to go by, Breathe In The Silence have more than enough musical prowess to excel beyond this solid if slightly pedestrian effort. With a sound of their own, they could be something truly special.
For fans of: Young Guns, Mallory Knox, The Blackout
Words by Luke Nuttall
‘Hold My Heart’ by Breathe In The Silence is released on 2nd September on Crooked Noise Records.