The Fall of Troy, despite some breakout singles like the visceral F.C.P.R.E.M.I.X. in the early 2000s, eventually captured the imagination of other musicians rather more than the mainstream. They repeatedly flirted with prog, particularly on 2008’s conceptual, five-part Phantom On The Horizon, but ultimately stuck to an angular strain of post-hardcore characterised by experimental structure and longer running times. OK, their pay-what-you-want comeback album, and first in seven years, is deliberately less calculated. Fluid and raw, it’s intended to be the sound of the band in a room, free from overdubs or extra instrumentation.
For fans of frontman Thomas Erak’s guitar hero antics, the middle eight of Inside Out is a potent reminder of his technical proficiency, while A Single Word is a succinct showcase of compelling yet complex melodies. His voice has fared less well; while his clean vocal is strong as ever, his screams sound strained, and are sometimes a little lost in the mix. By eschewing complexity, and focusing on tight and eccentric riffs with a side order of heavy breakdowns, they’ve managed to capture something elusive; the unfiltered excitement they exuded as a young band. Refreshing to hear, it makes for an exhilarating listen.