Birmingham quartet A Promise to Forget play a style of melodic metalcore which, six years ago, was played by a multitude of young British bands who would often be touted by certain media platforms as ‘the future of British rock.’ Bold, built on anthemic structures, and a propensity for emotional impact in their lyrics, there’s enough substance for their take on the style to remain relevant in 2017, while those artists set to become ‘the future’ remain nothing more than a memory.
Like the groups before them, APTF craft a strong balance of melody and aggression, which gleams through the speaker’s thanks to Hacktivist guitarist Timfy James’ production work. Lead single, ‘Sylvia’, a farewell and tribute to a lost friend is built on massive rhythm sections that achieves a sense of grandeur provided by frontman Tim Castle’s gorgeous vocals. Elsewhere on the record, the title track opens with a fret pummeling breakdown that was made to start walls of death too.
While variation is key to the best songwriting, A Promise to Forget develop a problem of jumping too frequently between styles. Not introducing any screams until halfway through fifth track ‘Power’ is a strange choice, and makes one believe a guest vocalist is providing the vocals before they begin appearing throughout the rest of the record.
This makes ‘Dying to Live’ feel more like a collection of songs rather than a cohesive album. But the songs are solid nonetheless and makes the prospect of future releases from A Promise to Forget more exciting once they find a sound they can stick to. For now, they’re at least capable of writing enough bangers for a killer live set.
‘Dying to Live’ by A Promise to Forget is released on 11th August.
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Words by Andy Davidson (@AndyrfDavidson)