Review: “Liberosis” by I Fight Bears

Liberosis is a culmination of 2-3 years’ work, demoing, re-writing and re-tooling these 5 songs to a place we are all happy with. This EP for us is a step in a new and fresh direction, shifting the overall tuning and re-imagining what I Fight Bears means as a band moving forward” ~ Drew Hamley, clean vocalist and bassist

Blurring the lines between Metal and Metalcore, Drew Hamley (Bass & Clean Vocals), Chris Treharne (Lead Guitar), Scott Preece (Drums), Marc James (Guitar) and Dan Blackmore (Lead Vocals) received a lot of praise for their self titled debut album. Released back in 2018 that brought comparisons with the work of genre titans from around the Globe as well as landing them a coveted spot on a Metal Hammer Magazine cover CD before shows with everyone from Bleed From Within to InVisions caused their live reputation to surge. They even released a cover of the classic Spandau Ballet song, “Gold“. So four years on, where does 2022 find the Welsh Metal heavyweights?

The answer to that is leaner, meaner and fighting fit, ready for another ten rounds with Mike Tyson in his prime. Rooted in 2003 era Metalcore and laced with Groove Metal moments as well as the classic unclean verse, clean chorus style the later work of the genre was synonymous with, I Fight Bears follow in the footsteps of bands like Bury Tomorrow with “Liberosis“.  “Beacon” gets things off to a vicious start with Blackmore spitting pure venom, skilfully avoiding the slow down and loss of momentum that some bands in the genre have been plagued by when it comes time for the clean chorus. “Chainbreaker” then goes big on Hamley’s clean chorus which has an arena filling sing-a-long quality while embracing an introspective lyric that raises a middle finger salute to those that would drag them down, while keeping the edges jagged with the riffs which gives everything a certain grit and integrity. Soaked in groove, “Damaged World” ploughs another furrow with an inspiring lyric about finding your purpose in this life in amongst some tasteful vibrant leads, giving us another big song to salivate over that should see the band filling mosh pits once more alongside the likes of Bleed Again. “State” finds the band being slightly less inventive with riffs and patterns that are pretty much a genre staple at this point but they get away with that thanks to the fierce unclean vocal delivery. So while you may feel like you’ve heard parts of this cut before, it comes with with more than a healthy dose of nostalgia which in some ways adds to its charm as because it’s familiar, it’s easy to listen to with an instant hook an gratification. Finale “Believe In Me” turns on the style with epic grandeur and actually calls out for orchestration, thus securing the future of the band with a solid collection of anthemic Metalcore offerings that should find their way to a sound system near you [7.5/10]

Track Listing

  1. Beacon
  2. Chainbreaker
  3. Damaged World
  4. State
  5. Believe In Me

Liberosis” by I Fight Bears is out 24th June 2022

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