Fathoms haven’t had the easiest of times this past year. Hurdle after hurdle seems to have stunted them when it has come to releasing their sophomore full-length. The good news is that finally ‘Counter Culture’ is out and available for consumption from all those who have been craving it. The bad news is that the record leaves more of a bitter aftertaste than the band may have wanted.
On the surface, post-hardcore is a pretty difficult genre to get wrong. Even at its most basic you just bring some chugs, throw in some melody and you create something that someone can bang their head but also point their finger passionately to. The issue with ‘Counter Culture’ is that Fathoms want to be so much more than that but don’t really know how to do it.
They throw everything they have at the 9 tracks that make up this album and just end up with something that sounds rushed and sloppy. Too many ideas and influences get crammed in without due care and consideration for whether they are necessary, and the result is a record that isn’t sure exactly what it wants to be.
You can tell that Fathoms mean well, and their enthusiasm for wanting to dip their toes into so many different pools is something to be commended, but when there isn’t a sign of quality control in sight it becomes a pretty difficult and confusing listen.
It’s clear to see how passionate Fathoms are about the music that they make, but passion doesn’t always deliver positive results. Taking a step back and considering what direction they truly want to head in may work wonders for the future, but for now ‘Counter Culture’ can unfortunately only be chalked up as a disappointment.
‘Counter Culture’ by Fathoms is out now.
Words by Jack Rogers (@JackMRog)