Release Date: July 22, 2022
Label: Hopeless Records
The West Palm Beach, Florida-based quartet Fame On Fire is a genre-defying four-piece powerhouse who is -like many other bands in the last couple of years- pushing the boundaries of rock, hip-hop, pop, and metal on their debut album, LEVELS (2020). The band -consisting of vocalist Bryan Kuznitz, guitarist Blake Saul, drummer Alex Roman, and bassist Paul Spirou- is back with their sophomore album Welcome To The Chaos. Once again, the band redefines what it is to be a rock band on Welcome To The Chaos. The band's music has quite the resemblance to many popular genres on the radio today, but with a heavier spin to it. Having the entire pandemic to write new music, Fame On Fire penned well over two hundred tracks, which were inspired by artists like The Kid LAROI, Machine Gun Kelly, Blink-182, and Linkin Park's Hybrid Theory. Fame On Fire had to strategically navigate through all of those tracks to narrow it down to the thirteen songs you hear on Welcome To The Chaos. Multiple of the album's songs were written and recorded alongside their longtime collaborator Arcaeus. In addition -and unlike their debut album- Fame On Fire didn't produce their album by themselves. They co-produced the album with the masterful Canadian music producer Brain Howes. Who has worked with a plethora of star-studded bands that include Nickelback, Skillet, Daughtry, and Simple Plan- to name a select few. Welcome To The Chaos begins with an intro, which is a cluster of sounds of a carnival that lead to a sonic detonation of electronic squalls. It plays out and goes directly into the blistering and infectious title track, "Welcome To The Chaos." The album's title track is a wild ride and features Ice Nine Kill vocalist Spencer Charnas. Something that nearly happened to come to fruition. When the band eventually got on tour with Ice Nine Kills, they asked Spencer to feature on the track. He said, "The song is super dope! I'd love to be a feature on it!" Bryan confesses. The title track is post-hardcore at its heart and is built around this pulsing synthy bass line. However, there are a lot of pop and hip-hop elements in it. It's unapologetically Fame On Fire. "Welcome To The Chaos" concludes with a heart-racing breakdown that has vocalists Bryan Kuznitz and Spencer Charnas screaming their lungs out.
The following track, "Ketamine," details Kuznitz's mental health and how he requires the drug for his mental illness. "Ketamine" is a fast-paced track, and it speeds by fast. Originally, Fame On Fire had the intent to feature Zero 9:36 on "Ketamine." Bryan explains, "We asked Zero to be on 'Ketamine,' but he didn't want to do it...The lyrical content is not part of his cup of tea. I understand that." "Ketamine" is very much a hip-hop/pop hybrid, with the gush of heavy instruments to give it that Fame On Fire flare. "Cut Throat" comes in swinging like a wrecking ball to the side of an old derelict building. It's one of the album's heaviest tracks. Featuring heavy instruments, backed by Kuznitz screams and growls, the track turns into a full-blown post-hardcore track as it proceeds. While "Cut Throat" is such a heavier piece, you can't have a Fame On Fire album without something like the tune "Emo Shit." Featuring the rising emo rapper Kody Lavigne, you get the dose of if Post Malone went back to his roots of metal and incorporated it into the music Post is making these days. It's a very poppy number, and Kody brings a very different style to the track during his verse. "Emo Shit" features hip-hop beats and again, tons of heavy instruments spaced throughout its run length. "He brought a whole new life to 'Emo Shit,' and I was like, 'This is really good,'" Bryan shares about Kody Lavigne being on the track. The following number is an emotional and straight-from-the-heart song, "Lost In Doubt," which takes the band into a slightly new environment with a completely pop rock track. Quite reminiscent of something Machine Gun Kelly is putting out these days.
The next track, "Robbery," is another whirlwind song and fits perfectly among the many of the album's catchiest tunes. Furthermore, "Robbery" is one of Kuznitz's favourite tracks on Welcome To The Chaos. "'Robbery' is one of the coolest fucking songs we've ever written!" Bryan proclaims with vigour. "It's got this Quentin Tarantino lead to it in the beginning. It feels like Quentin Tarantino but western. It's very cool, the chorus is very catchy, and it's just darker and in a harmonic minor key too." "Robbery" also features a standup bass in the tracks bridge. Further displaying how the band can be unpredictable and how they hope to have their music transcends all genres.
The album's lead single, "Plastic Heart," is a musical wonderland. "Plastic Heart" showcases Fame On Fire's very eclectic songwriting with such ease. "Plastic Heart" commences being an entire hip-hop number, where Kuznitz raps a full verse all over top of a powerful hip-hop beat -and all while spilling out his guts into song. Then "Plastic Heart" swerves off course and becomes a hard rock tune. As it continues, the track takes another turn with a section of the track being full-fledged post-hardcore. It's chock full of screaming and even features heavier guitar riffs. "Plastic Heart" closes out with one more go at its insatiable chorus, and Kuznitz belts the words the hardest he can on the insanely personal tune about his ex-girlfriend who changed everything about her as soon as she stepped foot in Los Angeles.
The contagious track "Rotting Away" is on the growing list of the most catchy tracks on Welcome To The Chaos, and I believe "Rotting Away" will be a surefire sensation with Fame On Fire listeners alike. Frontman Bryan Kuznitz believes just the same, "I think people will really enjoy 'Rotting Away,'" he asserts. The band also plans to shoot a music video for "Rotting Away" in the near future. As the album continues with its final three tracks -which all sound similar in nature- they can all still be easily pinpointed down as their own per certain aspects in each song. "Aside from the singles, I feel like there's a song for every walk of life on the album," Kuznitz continues.
Welcome To The Chaos is an absolute live wire. From front to back, you don't know what Fame On Fire will do track to track, as they propel themselves as songwriters with each one of their releases. The album has some of their craziest and most outlandish ideas to date -and they execute them without fail. The band has had strong momentum since the release of LEVELS two years ago, and now Welcome To The Chaos will give the quartet a further push. There are only big things coming their way. Be sure to witness the rise of Fame On Fire firsthand this fall as the band packs their bags and hits the road through North America in September and October with alternative rock bands One Ok Rock and You Me at Six. Welcome To The Chaos is available for pre-order and pre-save here.
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