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Protest the Hero

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

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Protest the Hero Scurrilous album cover
3.50 | 73 ratings | 3 reviews | 21% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 2011

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. C'est la Vie (3:32)
2. Hair-Trigger (4:49)
3. Tandem (5:15)
4. Moonlight (4:49)
5. Tapestry (4:34)
6. Dunsel (4:53)
7. The Reign of Unending Terror (3:23)
8. Termites (3:56)
9. Tongue-Splitter (4:34)
10. Sex Tapes (4:39)

Total Time: 44:24

Line-up / Musicians

- Rody Walker / lead vocals
- Tim Millar / guitar, vocals
- Luke Hoskin / guitar, vocals
- Arif Mirabdolbaghi / bass, vocals
- Moe Carlson / drums

Guest musicians:
- Julius Butty / vocals
- Chris Hannah / vocals
- Porter Hoskin / vocals
- Jadea Kelly / vocals

Releases information

Released: March 22, 2011
Label: Underground Operations

Thanks to peccatum for the addition
and to Rune2000 for the last updates
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PROTEST THE HERO Scurrilous ratings distribution

(73 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(21%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(47%)
Good, but non-essential (19%)
Collectors/fans only (8%)
Poor. Only for completionists (5%)

PROTEST THE HERO Scurrilous reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Rune2000
4 stars I began writing this review in a disappointing tone but soon realized that I really can't be hard on Protest The Hero for things that I could only relate to my personal feelings regarding their latest outing. I'm referring to the fact that Scurrilous is really not a big leap from the style that the quintet depicted on their break through release Fortress. The riffs are still rapid, sharp and hard hitting as ever, making up at least 70% of the band's song arrangements. That is unless you take into consideration the lyrical maturity with a clear shift from fantasy depictions to those of personal nature.

Unlike the two previous releases, Scurrilous is not a conceptual piece of music, instead the band takes the opportunity to reflect upon issues that are clearly of concern to them and I definitely support this shift. What I'm having more trouble with are the music arrangements which clearly haven't progressed much since Fortress. We still get that same distinct blend of Metalcore and Progressive Metal, which has unfortunately become less original over the course of the last few years with imitators like the band Treeburning becoming more of a rule than an exception as of lately.

I vividly recall the band stating, in a recent interview, that the new album was going to be even more progressive than their previous outings but I'm not sure that this is true. There's literally nothing here that we haven't already heard on Fortress, aside maybe from female lead vocals on Hair-Trigger and the previously mentioned lyrical shift. Another disappointment comes in the fact that the album doesn't start with a great opener like No Stars Over Bethlehem or Bloodmeat. C'est La Vie is not the great single that the band is trying to market it as, good but not among their best.

Having said all that, I still find it difficult not to enjoy this album. This is literally Fortress - part 2 and if you don't have a problem with that then definitely give this one a go!

***** star songs: Tandem (5:15) Tapestry (4:34)

**** star songs: C'est La Vie (3:32) Hair-Trigger (4:49) Moonlight (4:49) Dunsel (4:53) Termites (3:56) Tongue-Splitter (4:34) Sex Tapes (4:39)

*** star songs: The Reign of Unending Terror (3:23)

Review by Conor Fynes
3 stars 'Scurrilous' - Protest The Hero (5/10)

In the past, I have often used this band as an example of the flash-over-substance mentality that quite a bit of progressive metal has. Admittedly, I briefly liked what the band had to offer when I was first introduced to them, but it was not too long before I realized that they had a 'twinkie' mentality to their music; being that it looked it on the outside, but as soon as I dug a little deeper, it was clear that there wasn't all too much to hold my interest. I would never deny that the band are very skilled musicians, and with their third offering 'Scurrilous', they are still dragged down by some issues that have been stinging since their inception.

'Scurrilous' essentially picks up where the band's second album 'Fortress' left off and offers some more of the same, with few developments to speak of. For the most part, this is an improvement over Protest's generally sporadic and irritating sophomore, and while there are none of the same standout tracks that 'Fortress' was only partially redeemed by, 'Scurrilous' is a much more consistent record, and somewhat emphasizes what I liked about them beforehand. In terms of what I like about Protest The Hero, the list begins and ends with the guitars. Tim Miller and Luke Hoskin are phenomenal musicians, and 'Scurrilous' is a virtually unrelenting showcase of their skills, delivering riff upon impressive riff of distinct arpeggios and progginess aplenty. While I may not be nearly as enthusiastic about any other quality of the band, the guitars are essential enough to the sound of 'Scurrilous' that it becomes something of a decent listen, and could have even been a brilliant one, were it not for some painfully unpleasant aspects in their sound.

The lesser of the two main concerns I have with the sound of Protest The Hero is the songwriting. While there are plenty of awesome riffs and technically sound moments for listeners to be dazzled by, the way things are structured doesn't give any sense of drama or tension, or even a slight sense of build up. While the unrelenting technicality and speed of the album is not necessarily a bad thing in of itself, the is little dynamic here, and even within the context of a song itself, the ideas rarely compliment each other. The songwriting always feels rhapsodic and without direction. The songwriting is far from the worst aspect of Protest The Hero's sound however.

The thing that really kills Protest The Hero for me are the vocals of Rody Walker, whose adolescent howl has put me off virtually from square one. Although gifted with an admittedly impressive vocal range, the sound of his voice doesn't pass me as being much more than an angry whine, and his voice has an irritating sense of vibrato to it that I can only interpret as the vocal equivalent of television static. Walker's voice exemplifies why I cannot like this band; he warbles every note to the point of overindulgence, and when it comes to the actual sound of his voice, it is fairly shallow, despite his obvious ability to go wherever he wants with his delivery. Not to mention that the vocals are paired with some equally irritating lyrics; while Protest The Hero's lyrics here are somewhat better than they were with 'Fortress' and are at times even witty, it is ironic that the times when Rody enunciates the words most clearly are the times when he decides that swearing is the only way to express his youthful angst. Of course, like anything, so-called 'bad language' can be used appropriately and powerfully, but here, it almost feels like they are trying to force the words in, in order to get some sort of badass credibility they would otherwise be lacking. The result is fairly laughable.

As one can likely tell within one paragraph of this review, I do not like Protest The Hero. While they are all skilled and flashy, the technical wankery does not tend to work in their favour when they don't have much else to back it up with. Luckily however, 'Scurrilous' earns points for me, even if only because it is a great step up from 'Fortress'. There is also some brilliant guitar work here, and I could easily see 'Scurrilous' being a surefire winner for me if it were kept a purely instrumental album. As it stands though, the good elements here are only somewhat worth bearing with the negative.

Latest members reviews

2 stars Okay, so Protest The Hero has obviously found an awesome sound. But that doesn't mean EVERY album has to be the same. It's getting a little old. Start off fast and noodley, move into a somewhat cheesy interlude, back to fast and noodley, tons of time signature changes the whole time. Don't get ... (read more)

Report this review (#496736) | Posted by Slaughternalia | Wednesday, August 3, 2011 | Review Permanlink

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