Album Review: Elder Brother – ‘I Won’t Fade On You’

Posted: by The Editor

Elder Brother’s newest release, I Won’t Fade On You, is a pleasant wave but it washes over you pretty spotlessly. The band’s third LP as a whole is widely unremarkable, though not without its strengths. There are some groovy riffs in songs like “I Get So Tired of You,” and catchy late 90’s hooks in “If You Love Me (Like You Say).” Unfortunately those moments tend to overstay their welcome and by the end of the tracks I’m usually looking for some kind of dynamic change to break the song up.

A positive point to the record is that the band is very familiar with rhythm hypnosis, and the drums sit in the pocket perfectly to affect it. I think that gets utilized in every song to the point that it becomes hard to tell a bridge from a verse, especially when the music and the vocal melody of the verses are identical or similar to each other. In their previous release, Stay Inside, the rhythm is enticing, but there’s enough dynamism to feel like the songs are taking you somewhere. I Won’t Fade On You can be a nice gentle listen and the mood is consistent, but the lethargy of the music against the relative tension of the lyrical content leads to an underwhelming result. The addition of some instrumental breaks like the horns in “Washed” are cool, but start to feel looped like the guitar in the last chorus of “If You Love Me.”

My few stand outs in this album are “If You Love Me (Like You Say)” because of its poppy chorus and high energy, “Hair” as a meaty addition to an emo or rainy day playlist and “Washed” because of the mellow soul vibe. The whole album has a lot of soul and is worth a listen when you’ve got time for a contemplative full run-through, but can be easily zoned out if you’re not actively listening. I still dig the evolution of Elder Brother’s sound that’s gotten to this point, but I feel like I Won’t Fade On You isn’t the album I’m gonna use to try and turn my friends onto them.

Disappointing / Average / Good / Great / Phenomenal

Luciano Ferrara | @LucianoRFerrara

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