Let Me Leave is Saviour’s latest full-length release. Hailing from Perth, the Australian six-piece bring an album full of vocally focussed melody-leaning post-hardcore. But is it Perth-ection?
The cruellest month, it’s said, April, is also the most chilled start to an otherwise aggressive album, fidgety with impassioned vocals. The female vocals are really calming, the melody, subtle hints of Australian accent and tone works well against the angrier percussive shouts from the second vocal part. As well as keeping the ears engaged against the wailing guitar and bright synth chords, sounding like a heavily-produced Alexisonfire in their later stages, the lyrics reveal the album’s title, not in the manner of a cheesy film announcing itself and winking to the camera, but in a genuinely sensitive and fairly hard-hitting delivery. The album follows competently enough with The Quiet Calm, where the strutting rhythm to the guitar chords, accented with that distorted crunch you’d expect from the heavier end of rock, cement and make apparent the band’s appeal. It’s an appeal that’ll be slightly marred for some, since it’s arguably set in the over-reliance on proficient guitarwork, or the not-so-bad reality that more often than not, these reasonably good songs are being carried by Shontay Snow’s superb vocal.
Next we’re treated to some accomplished harmonies as keys on the offbeat and distant-sounding guitar noodling looms around the cloudy atmosphere of Pressure and Composure. The textural sensitivity of the band has been evident throughout, their ability to balance fragility and brutality without it sounding like a corny mash-up is commendable, and there’s plenty of depth to these songs, which can sound as empowering as well as appropriate to a moody wallowing-pit. The Cool Calm is a beautiful little electronica-inspired centrepiece where the treacle-layered harmonies trickle up into a wavy heaviness, sounding like a slightly metallic form of shoegaze when at the song’s peak. The simmer back down towards the intro’s feel is expected but nonetheless brilliant, satisfying stuff. Forget Me is similar fayre, but with a more intense vocal climax full of angst, and forgetting will not be an option for many listeners by this point.
Like This is the low point: it’s hard to know exactly why, but you may find the male vocals a bit intrusive here, overwrought, but the band’s trademark sound will carry fans through well enough. The momentum in Low In Hello recovers for this transgression nicely with its complex layering and rapid changes in energy. A powerful album closer alights in the form of Little Birds, a tune haunted by a failed relationship, carried by instrumental bite and optimistic strength.
The album does well to show that Saviour are hard to knock off their perch. Not only a sensitively crafted work, but a convincing attempt to reclaim the post-hardcore scene to rock’s forefront. The lilting refrain at the last track’s close, ringing alongside the album’s heavier moments, will remain in the ears for some time.