Album Review: Countless Goodbyes – Cycles

Genre: Metalcore/ Modern Metal

It’s no secret that Metalcore has been a figurehead sub-genre within Metal in recent years. With hugely popular, innovative and influential bands rising up and waving the Metalcore banner, its reputation as a ‘big’ genre is certainly deserving. Names such as Asking Alexandria, Norma Jean and Architects have helped shape the current scene, allowing young new talent like Countless Goodbyes to emerge. Showcasing their highly anticipated debut album, the Finnish Modern Metal outfit look to hit the ground running here and establish themselves as a noteworthy breakout group.

Opening ‘Cycles’ is ‘The Fallen’ with its Metalcore structure and consistently fiery undercurrent. A spacious modernised tone is the central focus of ‘The Fallen’, emphasising Countless Goodbyes’ progressive mentality. Increasing the presence of heavy hooks is ‘Butterfly Effect’ with its paced build-up to a captivating chorus. Tempo setting drum play thumps like a heartbeat for ‘Butterfly Effect’, allowing wider Metalcore influences to enter this lively record.      

Initially, the piano tinted vibe of ‘Faith in Me’ feels crowded, with a plethora of concepts battling for the spotlight. Thinning the competition, the track thankfully settles on a traditional Metalcore style, topped off admirably by harmonious chorus vocals and a crunching riff led breakdown. A priority on atmospheric Metal qualities was emphasised by ‘Faith in Me’ but, the immediately staggering ‘Memories Left Behind’ moves further still in this direction. Grasping your attention with a stern Modern Metal grip before leading into a softer, vocally varied song, ‘Memories Left Behind’ is definitely a key song in the albums development.

Melancholic vibes breeze through the softer delivery of ‘Enemy’. Orchestral elements merge with the predominant clean vocal presence to partly pacify the Metalcore storm. But, the splashes of shout vocals and a deafening conclusive breakdown keep the album fully rooted to its hard-hitting Metalcore spirit. Exploding into action with shades of Bury Tomorrow is the crushing, dominant single, ‘Hiding From Myself’. Adapting to the familiar structure of the album only partially allows Countless Goodbyes to spread their wings and rip down genre boundaries.

Darker, heavier and faster incentives were always going to prevail eventually, which is where ‘Are You With Me’ comes into play. Scarce reliance on clean vocals helps ‘Are You With Me’ to cannon some of the fastest guitar play on ‘Cycles’ into your head. ‘Who We Are’ also contributes immensely to the heavier tendencies while appeasing the depth of the record. As far as Metalcore goes, this is a refreshingly open-minded release.

Applying the final touches to this debut effort is the enthralling combination of ‘No Escape’ and ‘Hourglass’. Instead of gingerly hiding behind the momentum of previous songs, these final tracks rise up and produce two of the best performances on the entire record. The mood and genre eclipsing stance of ’No Escape’ conjures a brilliantly upbeat Metalcore image, highlighted by an excellent, original outlook. ‘Hourglass’ follows the convention challenging mindset of ‘No Escape’ by teetering on the edges of Alternative Metal  and feeding off an engaging modernised attitude.

Overall, Countless Goodbyes have confidently created what is a genuinely great debut album. From the lead single of awe of ‘Hiding From Myself’ to the unmissable allure of ‘No Escape’, ‘Cycles’ is a record you do not want to sleep on.

Review Rating: 8

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