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Album Review: Falcifer - Pain (EP)

Artist: Falcifer

Album: Pain EP

Genre: Heavy/Hardcore

Review by Ash Wallace

Falcifer have just released their debut EP “Pain” on March 6th after recently signing with Greyscale Records and by god has it been a long time coming. Last EP, “Theta” was released back in 2016 and for fans of the band, it almost seems like a lifetime ago. Hailing from Adelaide-or should I say Rad-elaide, this hardcore/metalcore four piece are helping boost the Adelaide scene and having played with the likes of Cursed Earth, Harm's Way, Parkway Drive and Make Them Suffer, also appearing on lineups from Invasion Fest to Unify, all we can say is that they are definitely paving their way through the scene and up the ladder. And in the wise words of the band itself, we welcome the Pain era.

The EP opens with Hostile, harboring harrowing and sinister opening riffs and authoritative lyrics. It kind of feels like a slap in the face‒good one, a metaphorical good slap in the face. Sonically, directing this tone of fury outwardly and layering it on top of these menacing guitar riffs, it’s clear that this band has a message to get across. Carrying the sinister tone of Hostile, the next track Burning continues this slow burn kind of sentiment. It stands a super strong track filled to the brim with bass heavy riffs. It’s also rhythmic with emphasis on drum work. Lyrically for me, Burning, as the title suggests, feels like the protagonist is itching or burning to get up and move or get away, fueled with impatience and resentment. It's easy to empathise with these lyrics backed with just as intense instrumental work.

Easing slightly slower into the next track with low tuned guitars and snare kicks, Impurity packs a punch once the vocals are introduced and beaut guitar and bass work from Kym and Jarrad which lead the song.

No news here, we know Falcifer draw inspirations from bands like Kublai Khan and Justice For The Damned and title track Pain really emulates those inspirations, whilst at the same time holding to their own sound and nature. With brutal riffs and abrasive vocals Pain captures the harsh environment surrounding pain, guilt and oppression. Have you ever felt like you’re in limbo, like your skin is crawling and your falling, sinking lower and lower into the dirt? Pain instils fear and uncovers tough truths, confronting yet vital. As the song goes; “It’s all fear”, we can question this. Is it really all fear? Everything is temporary.

Coming to a close, Demise is the final track of the EP. It is a conjuring of left over and pent up emotion, angst and derailment which translates through this track as a final release.

Despite the title for the EP, the themes explored within are far from the negative connotation of the word pain. Masking the emotional inside core with harsh outer layer is another way to look at duality and the contrast between light and dark. “Pain” is really a sensitive and emotional release with all tracks providing heavy backbone of self-awareness and strength to overcome whatever inner demons may be following you. Vocalist and frontwoman Stephanie Marlow says;

“The term is about coming to realise that sometimes you can be your own worst enemy. Self doubt, regret, and bitterness come from pain; but pain is only temporary. By becoming self aware, pain can turn into growth, a development of self worth, and forgiveness.”

I was having similar thoughts to others who have listened to “Pain”, sharing that where it falls short was its duration of the record, knowing it's an EP I was still left wanting more. Having delivered two solid EPs now, all we can do is wait and hope we get a full album release in the near future, but until then, you can stream “Pain” on all good streaming services now.

Purchase a digital copy here: https://falcifer.bandcamp.com/album/pain

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