Rock music is alive and well. Armed with inspiration, influences and artistry, Black Map has officially cemented their place in rock with their new album In Droves. Consisting of 15 songs, well technically 12 if you don’t count the three interludes, In Droves breathes a much needed breath of fresh air to the rock world. Ben Flanagan (Bass/Vocals), Mark Engles (Guitar) and Chris Robyn (Drums) play off each other tremendously. They have the ability to be heavy without compromising melody.
Starting off the album is “Run Rabbit Run” this is a great start to the record. It’s rifftastic, heavy hitting and thumping with soaring vocals. From there the album takes a turn towards the melancholy with “Foxglove” then back to the rock with the melodically heavy “Ruin.” As the album continues with songs like “Heavy Waves,” Dead Ringer, “Octavia,” and “No Color” you can tell that Black Map has really dialed in their sound. By the time “Indoor Kid” kicks in, you can tell you that you’ve been experiencing an “ALBUM.” “White Fence” is drenched in atmosphere. While “Just My Luck” is a solid rocker. ” Cash For The Fears” is a solemn track that is full of depth and emotion. Closing out the album is the epic “Coma Phase,” which is a great summation of the album.
Black Map is a band for the times. Their sound is full of 90’s rock without being a copy. If I were asked to describe what Black Map sounds like I’d say Failure mixed with Helmet. The vocals and lyrics of Ben Flanagan are full of melody and deep. Mark Engles guitar work is showcased brilliantly. Bringing some of the ambience and atmosphere from Dredg, really helps to make the heavy riffs, their own. Chris Robyn is one of the most underrated drummers. His work in FAR alone deserves that nod, and his playing on this album is just as good. Black Map are the “X marks the spot” type of band if you are looking for the next great rock band.
Overall Rating: 9/10
Run Rabbit Run:
Just My Luck: