Album Reviews

TBFM - Matt Haslam
I wanted to start this review off by saying that I read too many reviews that just compare one band to another or their influences. I’m not going to do that as I feel Resin have a truly unique style… Yes of course they may have hints of sounds that anyone could dig out and compare to top rock and grunge rock bands past and present, but I’ve decided to try and write this review without doing so.

I first heard of Resin on TBFM, I was hooked immediately! Resin may be described as a grunge rock band, and as a teenager of the 90′s I was and continue to be a massive fan of this genre, but listening to the album it’s clear that Resin have a sound that crosses multiple rock genre. So enough about genre and let’s get onto the band!

Resin are a 5 piece band from the Midlands, originally an acoustic band formed in 2006 consisting of Simon Yarwood (Guitar), Mark ‘Chez’ Roseby (Lead Guitar/Vocals) and James Botha (Vocals). David ‘Sev’ Seville (Bass) and Mark Abbott (Drums/Cello) joined around 2010. Their website contains a comprehensive biography.

The title of the album ‘Embrace The Fall‘ was the first thing that stood out for me; the notion of understanding life’s challenges, the tough times, but with an underlying determination, a will not to be defeated. This sentiment is portrayed masterfully throughout the album, with instrumental sounds that reflect the insightful lyrics.

I hope to guide you through each track on the album based on how I experience it, but this album has the potential for any listener to relate personally to it. ‘Embrace The Fall‘ is a truly personal journey, one I think everyone should take at least once in their lives.

Entropy introduces us to this hugely talented band. It opens with a beautifully melodic guitar part backed by cello (played by Mark Abbott) and bass. The drums ease the listener into the song before the distorted rhythm guitar sets up the mightily impressive vocals. The song is an excellent opener. The lyrical content is masterful in its imagery. The word ‘entropy‘ is intriguing and on good advice I believe the band used the definition of ‘a state of disorder‘.

The image of a difficult relationship springs to mind, whether with another person, an addiction or internal conflict. As the first song on the album, it is a huge statement of how much thought, experience and hard work goes into Resin‘s song writing. It’s edgy rock music with levels of meaning and understanding for the listener to uncover with each play! The flow from track to track in this album is exceptional.

Carpe Diem is a delicious mix of rock chord progression, subtle breakdowns and catchy hooks. The essence of the song (to seize the day) is demonstrated in the congruence between music and lyric, as James Botha soothes us with melancholy verses and uplifting chorus vocals, Chez rips the solo up over the top of crunching bass and rhythm guitar. The drum patterns are dynamic with emotional awareness. It’s also a pleasure to hear backing vocals that are extremely well placed, complimenting the main vocal, giving depth but not overshadowing. Lyrically the song demonstrates the band’s expertise in balancing emotional vulnerability and competence. By this point in the album you know this band are very special!

Fallen takes us back to a beautifully haunting place, the dual guitar, bass and cello intro is sublime. For me, this song epitomises the sentiment of the grunge rock genre, self deprecating to start with, but then Resin change it up a notch and bring a glorious hopefulness in the second half of the song. All I can say is Fallen is angelic! listen now!

The next song Fake is the anthem of the album for me. Harder sounding, harder hitting, rip roaring guitars, anguished vocals, driving bass and some awesome drum fills. Lyrically more simple than the previous songs, but in no ways less than. What impresses me is the fact that Fake could be related to your own person or another, you decide!

Fake is followed by Instinct which I can only describe as a heart wrenching story of broken love and the need for a soul mate. Musically accomplished, the vocal performance is simply stunning. Once again the musical prowess of all the band shines through on this track.

Beskadig is an acoustic track , guitar and vocals. Sung in Afrikaans, a hint of James Botha’s background. I’m not usually a fan of non English songs, but the melody is thoroughly engaging and grips you from the start. Beskadig highlights Resin’s musically immense range.

So after relaxing the listener with Beskadig, Embrace the Fall’s next track is Clouds. The track has a gorgeous guitar intro, the band at it’s most cohesive. The edgy story of a relationship. Half way through, the track breaks down into an acoustic guitar part then switches key , bringing a more optimistic tale of hope in true Resin style!

The last track in the running of the album is Poison, again the track starts with the by now expected musical excellence, a lovely quietened down intro. I love the bass in this intro. Poison is a story of addiction and how it affects the user and the people around them. The line in the chorus ‘Before I come back down I lose a friend’, sums up the sentiment of the song. Poison ebbs and flows from melodic acoustic and edgy distorted guitar. The solo from Chez is exquisite! Air guitar fully tuned each time I hear it! I have to give full mention to Mark Abbott’s drum part in this song, fulfilling, dynamic and accomplished is the best way to describe it!

The album contains a bonus acoustic version of Clouds, which highlights the bands diversity and how well written their songs are, their translation to an acoustic setting is faultless!

I’ll finish this review with: James, Mark, Simon, Sev and Chez, Thank you for producing such an engaging, thoughtful and master crafted album!

Release Date: 5th August 2013

This album has the potential for any listener to relate personally to it. ‘Embrace The Fall’ is a truly personal journey, one I think everyone should take at least once in their lives.

Matt Haslam – TBFM

The Midlands Rocks - Will Harris
Resin aren’t afraid to wear their influences plainly on their sleeves. From the very first track of Embrace The Fall there are strong overtones of Alice In Chains and Stone Temple Pilots, which is by no means a bad thing and, besides, the Leicestershire quintet do much more on their self-released debut than simply rely on well-executed pastiche.

Firstly, by the end of that song, ‘Entropy’, one thing that stands out is that they’ve got a brilliant ear for a good melody; James Botha’s vocal snakes away from and back to the distinctive eastern-sounding guitar riff through the verses, before crying out loudly over the chunky three-chord descent in the song’s chorus. These are songs with instantly memorable hooks; it’s testament to the power of Resin’s songwriting that by the second or third listen of acoustic ballad ‘Beskadig’ you start roughly singing along, despite the fact the lyrics are entirely in Afrikaans.

And it’s not just the melodies. In their structure and arrangement of songs they display far more maturity for an unsigned group than you might expect. The Tool-esque verses and tuneful choruses of ‘Fake’ form the basis of a pretty decent song, but it’s the tense breakdown leading to Botha’s huge wail in the middle eight that puts hairs on end. This is where you really have to give Resin their due: on creating those big moments that matter. Like when the mid-tempo pessimism of ‘Clouds’ gives way to the triumphant sunshine of bright acoustic guitar chords and hopeful lyrics, or when the lead guitar in the final chorus of ‘Entropy’ (which could easily be mistaken for Slash) comes in with just the right note at just the right time.

Botha is no doubt a talented and distinctive singer and Mark Roseby’s guitar work is commendable, but when the songs are constructed this well the individual performances become less relevant, as what’s important is through each track the band are always moving, fluidly, in the same direction. The only areas lacking spark across this collection are some of the lyrics: while lines like ‘I’ve gone too far to turn around’ aren’t terrible, they’re hardly inventive, and occasionally lessen the impact of some of these powerful songs.

Supporting Embrace The Fall is a really solid, sympathetic production which, though hardly polished, really gets a lot out of the music despite being self-funded. Arrangements outside the standard band structure, such a dark temptation to many unsigned bands given chance to record, are prudently limited, and where they appear they really work: some light electronic babble casually perturbs ‘Entropy’ towards its end, while cello accompanies the sombre acoustic guitar of ‘Fallen’, what might be considered Resin’s own ‘Creep’, ‘Nutshell’, or even ‘Something In The Way’. The bottom line is Resin do a fantastic job of making the most of what they’ve got; really, you’d just love to hear what this album would sound like with a big budget behind it. As it is, though, there’s already plenty to savour in this debut.

Resin – Embrace The Fall – 7.5 out of 10

Will Harris – The Midlands Rocks

Loud Stuff - Dave Nicholls
With influences such as Seether, A Perfect Circle and Alice In Chains, UK based alternative rockers Resin are described as ‘packing a formidable punch’ and being ‘blessed with thoughtful song –writing abilities and a range of musicianship and diversity that is rarely seen amongst today’s current glut of metal/metalcore bands’ – which is a fairly brazen statement! Due to release their new album, Embrace The Fall, on August 5th, Garry from SAN PR sent us through a copy to check out, so we figured that since these guys sound like an act to check out – who were we to refuse?

Kicking off with Entropy we’re led slowly into the beginning of the album, an acoustic guitar line leading the way whilst managing to build a sense of anticipation, combining the soft and melodic sound with a sense that what is to follow is not going to be this laid back. Soon kicking into things fully, the soft and smooth opening moments of the track soon give way to an Alice In Chains style track, the melodic vocals soaring over a chunky riff backing and forming into a sound that’s raw, heavy, groove orientated and the sort of thing that’s sure to get live crowds begging for more. Funky as well as heavy, there’s something about this track which makes you move, getting you involved with what you’re hearing and setting the album up very nicely indeed. This is an approach which continues into Carpe Diem, once again offering us a track which eases into being in an almost Alter Bridge style, before kicking in with that soaring guitar tone once again. Using all of the elements to bolster the sound into something deep and powerful, this is a track which continues the groove orientated approach of the album, showing once again why we should all be paying attention to Resin, and suggesting that there’s a seriously bright future laid out in front of these guys.

Continuing the progression of the album into Fallen, once again it’s clear how able a band we’re dealing with from the word go, using the intricate guitar work to lead the way into things whilst demonstrating their understanding of music through the addition of the cello work, a combination which, on paper, doesn’t necessarily sound like it should work, but does. Dark and haunting, this is a track which uses the softness of the elements to fully accentuate what’s going on, sounding like a hybrid of Stone Temple Pilots and Alice In Chains, and working to lure you in, keep you listening, and keep you begging for more. Pushing all thoughts of chilled out and acoustic style stuff to one side for Fake, we’re soon returned to the more ‘in your face’ and full on approach that got things going, this time leaning on the heavy riffery on offer from the guitars whilst allowing the bass and drums to build on the sound, strengthening it as it goes. Powerful, packed with hooks and the sort of track you find yourself singing along to after only a couple of listens, this is a serious high point on the record for sure, and a moment to make sure you check out.

Working through Instinct and Beskadig, the band continue to demonstrate their prowess at song writing as well as their understanding f their instruments, offering up tracks which are raw, heavy, soft and emotional, both seeming to ooze out of the speakers as they progress and showcasing what the band are capable of doing. It’s when Clouds is unleashed upon us through that a slightly different side is revealed, presenting us with a track that’s groove orientated once again, yet somehow manages to sound ‘off piste’, refusing to follow the conventions laid out by their peers and instead, offering up a style that from hence forth can be known as Resin. Powerful throughout, the raw edge to this track is what stands it out, presenting a track that packs a punch whilst still managing to throw hook after hook out for consideration, a track which holds single potential for sure.

Once again reaching another high for penultimate track Poison, the band have saved one last moment of pure genius for consideration, presenting the listener with a track that’s dark and haunting, yet emotional and catchy at the same time, demonstrating further their guile when it comes to song writing, as well as their ability to play their various instruments. It’s only then left for Clouds (acoustic) to finish the album, closing with a demonstration of how well their tracks work on different levels, and leaving you safe in the knowledge that what you’ve just heard has been something special.

I’ve been impressed by what Resin have put together here as it’s not straight forward, it doesn’t follow convention, and instead, offers up a unique take on post grunge mixed with alternative approaches from start to finish. The band clearly understand their instruments and songwriting, and the tracks on offer here demonstrate this throughout, constantly pushing the boundaries of their style and encouraging the listener to crank the volume, sit back and simply enjoy what they’re hearing – one to watch..

Dave Nicholls – Loud Stuff

Global Onslaught - Reagen Violet V

Resin might just be revolutionizing the way we see Metal /Grunge. Silver- tongued mixed with metal gloom is one way to describe this impressive 5 Piece band from Hinckley, Leicestershire.  Formed in 2006, members James Botha, Mark “Chez” Roseby and Simon Yarwood decided to combine their musical genius with their true love for grunge. Armed with acoustics and an arson of Alicein chains songs, James and Chez set out to concur the open mic circuit. Perfecting their vocal harmonies whilst at the same time the guitars found their own partnership and Resin was born. But with every new beginning comes another beginnings end. Saying farewell to the old they made room for the new and through trial and error they formed a concrete impeccable group of quality musicians, adding Mark Abott on drums and David “Sev” Seville long-time bassist to the line-up. Moving there status from an acoustic three piece band to a complete an unshakable force. Hence bringing to life a collection of long awaited songs that have been lingering in the dark crevasses of their minds, releasing their debut album “EMBRACE THE FALL”.

EMBRACE THE FALL – This album, instrumentally and vocally can only be described in one word utopian.  They have honed their craft and developed in my opinion a new breed of grunge a hybrid of 90’s nostalgia. Songs like “Entropy”  and “Carpe Diem’  are like an endless flows of energy rushing like a wave of ecstasy & melancholy .The guitar technique is precise with solid bass ,while the vocals are bursting with raw emotion. His screams are piercing but painless almost numbing to a senses. “Fake” offers a heavier side border lining on a “disturbed” vibe. The drums blast in first followed by chugging guitar mixed with sequel riffs and in your face distorted lyrical choruses. “Beskadig” is an acoustic escape. The change ups in the vocals are refreshing.  “Poison” is heartache that lingers, branded in to your soul. The drums are soft with vibrations of cymbal taps while finger picking soft chords lead you to the painful chorus. Representing the evil you have encountered the hate and pain sang not in anger but in truth understanding and Hines sight.

Like a smoggy cloud Resin shades you from the spot light of imperfection and judgement. It embraces your flaws it entertains your thoughts, fear and fantasies. It lets you project your anger while offers you realism and substance. Something the world has forgotten about. Grunge isn’t dead this is proof it has been transformed re born in to an era that desperately needs it most. Taking a page of wisdom from the veterans of grunge like Alicein Chains, Sound garden, Pearl Jam and Audio slave. It speaks of the darker side of life. The longing for the unattainable, the fear of never truly finding happiness. The swampy dark ocean of secrets we keep like waves of horror smashing us into suffocation.  The dependency on other people, alcohol, drugs, sex and the need to achieve a level of acceptance in society.  I suggest you go and purchase this album it’s an experience.

Reagen Violet V – Global Onslaught

Ring Master Reviews

Not to be confused with the excellent US alternative rock band of the same name (though they may not be going anymore), rockers Resin are stepping forward to find their place in UK rock with new album Embrace The Fall. Nine tracks of accomplished and adventurous grunge and alternative rock, the album is a strong and enjoyable piece of honest sounds and thoughtful invention though not flawless and at times not equipped with enough to have the passions firing on all cylinders compared to other bands and releases. The album nevertheless is overall an enjoyable slice of musicianship and imagination.

Formed in 2006 in Hinckley, Leicestershire, from the meeting of guitarists Mark ‘Chez’ Roseby and Sime Yarwood, Resin was soon a trio with the addition of vocalist James Botha, who had just relocated South Africa. After a search the line-up was completed by bassist Dave ‘Sev’ Seville and Mark Abbott who plays drums, cajon, and cello. 2010 formerly introduced the band to the public soon backed by a wealth of live shows and numerous festival appearances. Since then they have shared stages with bands such as Voodoo Six, Fearless Vampire, I am Giant, and Dr and the Medics, whilst honing their sound and craft. With inspirations worn proudly on its sleeve, the music of Resin has loud whispers of bands like Seether, A Perfect Circle, Alice In Chains and more to it, whilst coincidently also reminding of the other Resin mentioned previously and smaller US bands such as Damsel Down.

Listening to the album the qualities and skill of the members of Resin is undeniable each offering an intelligent and intriguing narrative Resin Cover Artworkwhich many bands could take note of. This makes each song a passage of emotive and personal discovery wrapped in sounds and imagination that strengthens the musical drama and lyrical potency. From the opener Entropy onwards you feel every song comes from the heart and every note and word is bred from reflective passion. The song opens up the release with an introduction of almost melancholic guitar paced by the excellent call of the cello from Abbott. There is warmth to the slowly emerging atmosphere being cast by the track, a heat accelerated by the joining vocal harmonies and tight guitar flames. Into its heart the track ambles nicely along with enterprise and infectiousness but also immediately shows the weak points of the album. Firstly as with the majority of the songs there is a too close a familiarity to others which influences have sprung from for the band, then there are the vocals of Botha. His voice and delivery is great it has to be confirmed but within the song and album, and primarily down to the third issue of the cloudy production, there is a missing snarl and depth to ignite the songs further. For all of that though the track makes a pleasing start to the album and ensures continued participation of its course.

The following pair of Carpe Diem and Fallen flounders a little in the wake of the opener but again do enough to keep attention firm, the first a Pearl Jam like blaze of sonic and melodic empathy with thoughts and the second an inventive breeze of strings alone caressing the delivery of Botha whilst adding their own emotional hues. Both though suffer from the production of the album which defuses their potency and impact. Their successor Fake does finds good company in the dulled sound, riffs and bass carving out a formidable presence veined by crisp beats, but equally the surface production tempers the success by blunting the cutting edge of vocals and guitars with a seeming lack of understanding. It is a shame as the song itself is full of promise.

After the fiery Instinct the album’s pinnacle opens up its declaration. Beskadig, meaning damage, injure, spoil, is sung in Afrikaans by Botha and in its acoustic delivery offers a charm and deep emotive presence that defies producer and mix to create a real gem of a song. Acoustic guitars and touches have a ready and welcome place on Embrace The Fall but nowhere else is it as impressive and thrilling as upon this enthralling song.

The highlight is followed by the Nirvana bred Clouds, a song which again has all the attributes to satisfy and leave the listener hungry for more but its close proximity to the Seattle band in sound ensures it fails a little flat especially when it opens up the burners. The raucous aspect of the song has no definition to its fire but with the smouldering croon which surrounds the expulsions offering strength and seductive temptation, the song is another showing the potential of the band and the wish with no disrespect to those recording the album that Resin finds understanding hands ahead on their releases.

Completed by the very decent and melodically vibrant Poison and an acoustic version of Clouds which fairs stronger than the full version to be honest, Embrace The Fall is a pleasing album but one which could have been much better, a lost opportunity in many ways. It does make for an encounter that marks the band as a rising proposition and one hopefully finding a studio able to exploit their certain talent.


Ring Master Reviews

Rock Regeneration - Elinor Day

“Embrace The Fall” is the debut album of Leicester-based grunge five-piece “Resin”, and given that the band were formed in 2006, it has certainly been a long time coming. Resin started out as a three-piece acoustic rock cover band, and only began composing their own songs after swelling to a five-man operation with the addition a full time bass player and drummer.

Resin have long been a popular live act on the underground UK rock scene, clocking up supporting gigs with bands as diverse as Voodoo Six and Fearless Vampire Killers, and playing a wide variety of festivals across the country. With this in mind then, can the album “Embrace the Fall” live up to the band’s excellent live reputation, and in doing so, justify its elephantine gestation period?

At least on the surface, it appears that the answer to this question may be “no”. Embrace The Fall has attracted some harsh criticism for borrowing from its influences (in particular “Alice In Chains”) a little too liberally and failing to establish the band’s own musical identity. Opening number “Entropy” does nothing to dispel these concerns. It’s not unpleasant to listen to, but is somewhat lacking in originality and bite, and feels a bit like musical comfort food for grunge fans.

However, as the album progresses, it becomes clear that to criticise Embrace The Fall as being generic, sub-Alice In Chains-grunge is rather unfair. Resin are clearly a talented set of musicians and their acoustic background has given them a real understanding of melody and how to create a certain mood with their music. The acoustic intro to “Fallen” is one moment that really stands out. It’s evocative, absolutely stunning, and makes excellent use of drummer Mark Abbott’s cello playing skills to suggest a menacing, melancholy atmosphere. “Beskadig” provides another standout moment of the album; it’s a slower song sung in Afrikaans and is truly haunting.

Resin’s music does not have the rich, hypnotic quality many of their influences possess, but in many ways, this is no bad thing. They are not trying to be a copy, or a tribute band, but instead are bringing their own melodic, acoustic angle to the signature grunge sound, without the radio rock choruses of many post grunge bands such as Seether, and they’re not doing a bad job of it at all. Yes, the production on Embrace The Fall often deadens the vocals, but this is a problem common to many new, unsigned bands and not something Resin should be criticised for.

Overall, Embrace The Fall is a slow burning gem of an album that gradually works its way into your brain the more you listen to it, with its bleak and haunting melodies and deeply personal lyrical themes. It’s not a perfect and unflawed masterpiece, but as a debut album and an introduction to Resin’s sound it’s certainly a promising start.

Elinor Day – Rock Regeneration

Metal As Fuck

Amongst all the latest new waves of metal in Britain, Resin are in an ocean of their own, riding a grunge fuelled wave with the winds of nineties Metallica behind it. Embrace The Fall is best described as mixing pot of Alice in Chains, Load/ReLoad era Metallica with hints of Seether, it ticks all the post grunge boxes and conservatively adds a little extra. The album’s opening two tracks establish a modern day equivalent to the classic AiC album Dirt. With strong harmonies, set to a backdrop of ever flowing grunge talent. Resin take the best Seether ever had to offer and slot it in perfectly to their sound, Many of their slower songs hold a heavy Rooster (Alice in Chains) vibe and can transcend simply into some hard rock.

A couple of tracks can get a little bit repetitive, but to expect all killer at such an early point in this bands career is too much. The stand out tracks include the opener Entropy which begins with an instrumental that sounds like something half way through a Metallica instrumental, the follow up Carpe Diem, which epitomises the best grunge has to offer, and steering clear of the obvious mistakes. A beautiful curve ball however has to be Beskadig, written in vocalist James Botha’s native Afrikaans which depicts language barrier-breaking homage to his native South African routes. A fine acoustic piece which really closes the best the album has to offer, with Clouds a generically disappointing piece, and the closing track Poison, whilst talented and catchy, acts as an extended outro before some attempts at powerful choruses which seem to collapse on themselves with the lack of power in Botha’s voice. Disappointing considering some of the talent he had shown, the chorus also holds little for the guitars and drums which had also shown heavy talent throughout. The song holds true for a pretty absentee bass appearance however, bassist Dave Seville certainly does his duties, but could do with a little more input to give the album that final piece of atmosphere it sometimes struggles to find.

A fantastic start, to the latest attempted revival that has to be respected but almost pitied at the same time. Embrace the Fall can be it’s own worst enemy, silencing any sceptics with songs such as Entropy and Carpe Diem, but unfortunately will fuel any other criticism with songs such as Clouds. Should Resin continue in this fashion than Leicestershire’s grunge scene may only be second to the classic Seattle scene.

Metal As Fuck