The genre of metal is a normally straight forward thing; you can sound one way, and be classified as such. Nowadays, there are no shortages of different sub genres to get filed into, and normally, you would stay there unless you drastically changed everything about your band. But what happens when a band comes out, and sounds like everything? Enter Belgium’s Now, Voyager. “As far as styles go we incorporate anything from metalcore and posthardcore bits to more rock or ambient elements, along with some odd rhythms and time signatures here and there,” said Nabil Sanaullah, lead singer to the rock outfit. “We just try to make sure the music has a lot of feeling and atmosphere, so that the listener can take away more from the music than just key phrases, or guitar riffs.”
That’s no lie. Now, Voyager’s new project, entitled Seas, is a mixture of metalcore elements, post-hardcore lyrics, and even a bit artistic melancholy that can successfully turn the metal genre on its head. Oh, I almost forgot, this is just an five song EP.
From start to finish, Seas is an amazing EP, which is able to show two completely different sides of who Now, Voyager are The opening song, “The Surface” is a blistering intro, which takes no time at all to get into. Afterwards, it breaks down into the second track, “Seas,” a small – rather soft instrumental track which Nabil explains “was meant to have that feeling of experiencing a journey.” That escalates into “To Every Beginning,” which is filled with some incredible drumming work from Benoit Carlens. “Foundations” starts soft (and has those types of moments scattered throughout the song) but turns into another great song (the La Dispute-style monologue was awesome as well). The EP ends with “Tabula Rasa,” a post-hardcore style ballad that is both artful in its delivery and sincere in it’s lyrics. For a “metalcore” album, this is almost unheard of, but the band pulled it off perfectly.
Any complaints? Maybe that I wanted more than five songs, but hey, this is just an EP.
I asked the band what three words they would use to describe themselves to new listeners, and the answer I received was “Dare To Explore.” Isn’t that the truth. Any type of metal fan can get into Seas, and casual metal listeners who might not enjoy screaming vocals can definetly get behind the artistic direction and beautiful down-tempo songs. And this is only and EP; I can’t even imagine how awesome a Now, Voyager album would be. I’m definitely going to be keeping my eye on this band.
Final Grade: A-