Album Review: Protest the Hero’s ‘Volition’

Celeste Welshhons

Protest the Hero’s latest album, “Volition”, is full of surprises, quick change-ups and killer vocals. As if that was not enough, the album was actually funded through a website called Indiegogo and their goal of raising $125,000 for the album was met within only 30 hours.

This past June, Protest the Hero’s first line-up change occurred when drummer Moe Carlson decided to leave the band to pursue tool and die manufacturing. To fill the void, Chris Adler, drummer for Lamb of God, stepped up.

Adler was only with the band for the session recording of the album, and Mike Ieradi was announced to be the new permanent drummer in October.

Protest the Hero combines metal core, a vocalist that sounds like he came straight out of the eighties, and math core, a rhythmically complex form of metal core with unusual time signatures.

One of the most notable characteristics of this album are the quick change-ups. The song “Mist” is a prime example as it goes from an overall quick, hard hitting melody into a recording of a fiddle and violin and then brings in a piano as well as an acoustic guitar. The next song jumps right back into the metal core style without missing a beat.

Another example of a great change-up is “Plato’s Tripartite” which starts off sounding very much like something you would hear from Avenged Sevenfold and then transitioning into a softer melody, an intense guitar solo, and then ends with an acoustic guitar accompanying vocalist Rody Walker and Jadea Kelly, a fellow Canadian whom has been featured in three of the band’s four albums.

If you are looking for straight heavy hitting metal, “Animal Bones” and “A Life Embossed” are the tracks for you. They still feature Walker’s melodic eighties style voice, but the music is slightly heavier, and there are plenty of dirty vocals in “Animal Bones” to satisfy any core lover’s taste.

The only single from the album, “Clarity,” really exemplifies all of the techniques used in the album. There is an overall fast and heavy tone throughout, a few dirty vocals, amazing guitar work, beautiful vocal melodies by both Walker and Kelly, and a rather quick change between a harder sound and a softer one.

In the end, listening to the whole album is a must. Every song brings something different to the table, and it is pretty hard to not get into the very unusual vocals of Rody Walker as well as the insane guitar capabilities of Tim Millar and Luke Hoskin.