REVIEW: Braebrook – The Savagery of Time [EP/2015]


Artist: Braebrook
Album: The Savagery of Time – EP

The are very few unstoppable forces that exist on earth. Even the most cataclysmic weapons mankind can manage to construct have limitations, and human anger and aggression is still limited by the existence of men and women to bear it. However, of the few forces that are truly relentless, time reigns supreme above all else. It dominated before men, and it will dominate after. They say it heals all wounds, but only in the sense that it leaves fresh gashes and bruises to distract you from the ones already inflicted. Nothing can truly withstand time’s test–nor will any fan of heavy music be able to withstand Braebrook’s debut EP, The Savagery of Time. Braebrook batter at the listener with calculated aggression, brilliantly melding melody and murderous heaviness into a unique and unstoppable metalcore package. Whether it’s after one listen or one hundred, any metalcore maniac will invariably fall before Braebrook’s mastery.
The Savagery of Time utilizes an immense array of awe-inspiring music’s tactics to decimate the listener’s sanity. Braebrook are masters of technically-fluent, speedy songwriting just as they are capable of chugging and slamming along with the heaviest acts the genre has to offer. Percussionist Brandon French is furious, dominating “Eternity” with quick fills and a cracking, severe snare–while “Slander” sees his thick, meaty kick drum working in perfect tangent with bassist Stephen Thomson. French’s flashy hands and fleet feet serve as a beautiful, diverse canvas for Thomson to flesh out with his low, murmuring bass. “Slander” and “Mariana” see Thomson and French at their most dynamic, giving guitarists Etienne Antoine and Benjamin Glover support that the duo hardly need. Antoine and Glover are incredible guitarists, plain and simple. The introduction to “Slander” and the eerie fretwork throughout “Unbalanced” give fans of proggier, more technical metalcore ample material to feast upon. However, every track Braebrook offer the listener is home to at least one moment of spine snapping, sinister savagery that gives the band everything they need to properly brutalize the listener.
While Braebrook’s brutal musicianship is physically taxing, it is the vocal element of The Savagery of Time that sneaks into the listener’s head and melts their mind, devouring their sanity. Vocalist Jesse Nasielski is not only immensely talented, but incredibly captivating. “Mariana” sees him making the most of his incredible range, screeching and growling away like a possessed Rottweiler–but the track’s climax sees him opening himself up to the listener, passionately belting with every ounce of air in his lungs. Nasielski’s range is simply incredible, and it doesn’t ever cease in amazing the listener throughout Braebrook’s most current release. While the band’s debut single, “Anathema” hinted at Nasielski’s aptitude, it did his true range and relentless power nowhere near the amount of justice that the band’s debut EP does. “Unbalanced” and “Eternity” further detail Nasielski’s skill: where many vocalists have a similar range, few vocalists have his power.
With Nasielski at the helm and a full crew of furiously talented and masterful songwriters, Braebrook are what one might expect a love child between Make them Suffer and Volumes to sound like. The Savagery of Time has plenty of huge, booming toms, atypical polyrhythms and groove-tinted riffs to roll with progressive metalcore’s finest, but is also home to enormous moments of melody and ethereal, drifting atmosphere that give the band an emotional, touchy-feely side. However, when one listens to French’s hammering kick drum, Thomson’s thumping bass and Antoine/Glover’s diverse display of furiously fretted insanity–topped off by Nasielski’s harsh barks and belittling “bleghs,” The Savagery of Time is…well, true to its name. Braebrook whittle down the listener’s sanity to within an inch of its former glory, leaving them battered and bruised, bleeding their brain out from their ears.
Bouncy, brutal and beautiful, Braebrook’s debut effort is a prodigal effort from a band worth their weight in gold. The Savagery of Time is addicting and awe-inspiring–even as it annihilates the listener with calculated precision.

For Fans Of: Structures, Make Them Suffer, Like Moths to Flames, Volumes
By: Connor Welsh