A Tragedy In Progress – Mechanical Weather (2012)

Several years ago, a band by the name of Across Five Aprils released an album entitled A Tragedy In Progress. Two more full-length albums and a few years later, they had disbanded, however, they’re back and going by the name of their first full-length album. A Tragedy In Progress’ new album, Mechanical Weather, is set to release on August 28th via Indianola Records.The album opens with “Radio Revolt” which is primarily used as an intro track with a soundclip from The Great Dictator. You hear a man (Charlie Chaplin) saying “Our knowledge has made us cynical; our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery, we need humanity. More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness…”, then the instruments slowly start to fade in.Instrumentally, A Tragedy In Progress seems to draw influences from metalcore (ex: As I Lay Dying) and melodic hardcore (ex: Evergreen Terrace) bands while the vocals are more influenced by post-hardcore. The majority of the album is sang with spectacular clean vocals, but there are times when screaming takes over the reins. The screaming isn’t as impressive as the singing, but it is more than passable.

From start to finish, Mechanical Weather is a masterpiece. There are slower songs that some may expect to act like filler tracks, but none of them do that on this release. While the two or three slower tracks are slightly weaker than the rest of the album, they are by no means filler tracks. On the other hand, there are a few tracks that stand out more than the others. In my opinion, “Unwilling To Settle”, “Touching Down”, “Better Left Alone”, and “SRP” are the strongest tracks on Mechanical Weather.

Lyrically, the third track entitled “Unwilling To Settle” is my favourite track. The lyrics of the first chorus is “Ten people in the audience screaming for them/One for each week of practice they put in/Wishing so bad that they could skip this step and just have it all, but you can’t survive the fight unless you’re ready to take the fall”. After an incredible upbeat and melodic verse, the second chorus is heard. This time, the lyrics are “Ten thousand people in the audience screaming for them/One for each day of life they put in/And now they’re always telling everyone to enjoy the ride because you can’t learn lessons you need watching from the side”. It’s clear that A Tragedy In Progress is giving advice to fans and up-and-coming musicians by telling them it takes a long time to get “popular” and not to give up because you have drawn a small crowd for your first show.The fifth track, “Turbulence” is one of the previously mentioned slower songs. It serves as a nice break while still acting as an excellent song, and it flows into “Touching Down” very smoothly. At times, “Touching Down” has a melodic/progressive hardcore vibe to it and it’s one of the heavier songs on the album even though the screaming is fairly minimal on it as well. The second half of “Touching Down” is fairly soft, but it sets up the next song, “Better Left Alone”, quite nicely. “Better Left Alone” is one of the heavier tracks on the album, but it still features a few extremely catchy clean vocal passages.

The ninth track, “SRP”, is my personal favourite on Mechanical Weather because of the soaring guitar leads, spine-chilling solo, and extremely catchy vocals. A few tracks after “SRP”, the album comes to a close with another extremely impressive song in the title track which features guest vocals by Josh Gilbert of As I Lay Dying. “Mechanical Weather” is a solid song instrumentally, but it is also the catchiest, making it a perfect end to a near perfect album.

If you were a fan of Across Five Aprils/A Tragedy In Progress’ previous releases, I can guarantee that you will like Mechanical Weather very much. The new album sounds very similar to their previous releases, however, the new songs seem to have more song structure and show a lot of maturity. Taking those things alone into consideration, Mechanical Weather is the band’s strongest album and it is bound to draw in more fans.

Links: Facebook

By Steven Pongrac ~ Me Gusta Reviews