Friday 24 November 2017

Recollection - Brandon (American Standards)

It's been a little while since I last posted one of these features. I put the word out last week to ask if people were interested in submitting their top-ten's and Brandon popped up. American Standards are still promoting the release of their latest album "Anti-Melody" and we've been speaking about a few bits & pieces, so don't expect this to be last post to feature Brandon or the band (spoiler alert!). For now though, I hope enjoy reading about the albums that have influenced him:-

Pantera - “Vulgar Display Of Power”
At this time in my life I was still heavily influenced by the musical tastes of my older brother. So while Beastie Boys And Rage Against The Machine were on constant rotation, Pantera was the band that first turned me on to more extreme metal.

Deftones - “Adrenaline” 
There was no escaping Nu Metal if you grew up in the 90s and early 2000s. It was the counter culture that somehow seeped its way into the mainstream and Deftones were possibly my first exposure to it. When getting into actually playing music, Adrenaline made me realize that you didn’t have to shred like Dimebag on guitar to write a good song.

System Of A Down - “Self-Titled”
Worm-holing deeper into Nu Metal, System Of A Down were possibly one of my favorite bands of that time. They made me realize that heavy music could still be fun and have an impactful message.

MewithoutYou - “A->B Life”
Much like Deftones did for guitar, MewithoutYou made me realize that a frontman could really carve out his own unique style in the scene. Both lyrically and in the delivery, MewithoutYou became a band that I felt always stood out on any show line up but was still respected by all.

Refused - “The Shape Of Punk To Come”
Refused is the band that planted the seeds for what was to become American Standards. They unabashedly made their message the forefront of the band and did so while taking chances musically by blending many elements. 

Alexisonfire - “Self-Titled”
I was a huge fan of Saetia, Orchid and Pg. 99, so naturally the “Self-Titled” Alexisonfire album felt like it carried that torch through the early 2000s. The album was raw, underproduced and wore it’s heart on its sleeve.

Poison The Well - “The Opposite Of December”
This was another album that was very emotionally driven. I think the dichotomy between the lyrics and music really struck a chord for me. I also had a PTW shirt that I probably wore 4 out of 5 days a week in high school.

Every Time I Die - “Hot Damn
I was a huge fan of lyrical content and hammer on riffs so naturally after hearing Hot Damn, Every Time I Die quickly become one of my favorite bands. The spastic song structures and tongue in cheek delivery were a big influence on American Standards. It was also that absence of the tough guy mentalities commonly seen in heavy music that won me over.

Norma Jean - “Bless The Martyr And Kiss The Child” 
Heavily distorted vocals and a sound that came  synonymous with diminished guitar chords; what more could you want? It was an added bonus that Aaron Weiss from MewithoutYou was also featured on this album.

Gallows - “Grey Britain”
“Grey Britain” by Gallows made me remember what I loved about Refused. It had the same urgency while also having a sharp pop sensibility for such a heavy album.

Amercian Standards' new album "Anti-Melody" is available now and you can buy it digitally and on cd via their bandcamp page below:-

I will have a review up next week, which will also include an interview, so keep checking back. Brandon has also sent me an end-of-year list, which I'll posting up in a couple of weeks time. Thanks once again to Brandon for taking the time to send this list in.

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