Earlier this year, we had the privilege to bring attention to the world a fabulous single by Southern post hardcore rock band Acres: ‘Lonely World’. This raw, emotionally charged piece was quite simply stunning, with its mighty, professional sound and thought-provoking lyrics. If this was the story of things to come for the band, then this was a very exciting appetiser indeed. Fast forward five months, and the release of Acres’ debut album, also titled: ‘Lonely World’ has now been unleashed upon the world and quite simply, it is a triumphant piece to behold.
It’s no secret that emotions and personal experience are heavily drawn upon when it comes to song writing, but almost everyone who loves music knows that this makes for some incredible pieces of music that resonate with you in a deep, almost inexplicable way. ‘Lonely World’ takes this very ideal, and pours heartache, pain, loss, depression into every word penned and note played, creating the most tragic, heartfelt and empathetic songs you could ever imagine, and this is what makes you stand up and take notice with this record. Listen to the lyrics carefully, maybe a few times over, and somewhere along the way, you might feel a little hole tear open in your heart.
Opening with a powerful instrumental: “Deathbed”, an eerie sense of optimism builds into an imposing sound, overpowering all the senses and hooking you in deep and true into this record. ‘Medicine’ cures all woes with a heavy rock delight, filled with melodic vocals dancing alongside supremely polished riffs. The jagged screams in the bridge in particular offset the piece perfectly.
What must be noted in this entire record is the sheer professionalism and refined sound that Acres have created. The power within each instrument is astonishing and can be appreciated in their own glory. But when they all come together, it’s magic. Ben Lumber’s vocals soar in ‘Be Alone’ and carry above and beyond such intense music, it is truly remarkable.
The eponymous single follows with an understated introduction that builds into an almighty chorus. If you’re not belting out this chorus with absolute gusto, then you’re not doing it right. The haunting plucking of guitar strings gives this track just a hint of an unnerving quality, which seems to mirror their subject matter perfectly. Lumber’s gritty vocals towards the end give an unexpected erratic sensation, which is inspired.
‘Hurt’, ‘You Are Not’ and ‘Talking in Your Sleep’ follow in similar fashion, with heavy hard rock songs shining a light of hope on some difficult subjects. It’s almost as if they took your deepest, darkest fears and scripted them into ten extraordinarily heart-pounding, head-banging tracks to tell you exactly one thing: you are not alone.
Strangely, ‘Lullaby’ hits your ears with a more subdued tone in comparison to the rest of the record, but it fits exceptionally well. It’s wonderful to hear Lumber’s silky vocals against the gentle guitar and soft percussion, it makes for a wonderfully evocative piece and proves they are more than just a one trick pony.
By the time you reach climactic tracks ‘Sharpen Your Teeth’ and ‘Skin Over Mine’, it’s almost impossible to believe that this is a debut album. Their craft has been honed with such precision, and their voice is so assured in what they do, and what they want to sound like, it’s mesmerising. It could take years for some to find a comfortable place in the music world, and discover who they would like to be, but Acres have done this and more with their very first album. They have stepped out into the world with a confidence that radiates with every passing track. Who knows what more could be done with the privilege of more time and experience, but we are very excited to find out.