Southampton, UK band The Faux introduce themselves with the bombastic “First Order Derivative,” a short sonic assault that puts them firmly in the footsteps of their punk forefathers. The band’s vocals are a shattering drone, reminiscent of early Davey Havok in front of some of the more dynamic melodic-punk music that always just escaped AFI’s grasp. The band’s technicality rivals some of punk’s best, but instead of beating technicality to death, the band infuses thrash heavily into their sound. Add shoutalong vocals to tracks like the cleverly titled “Tim Robbins Was Great in The Shawshank Redemption,” and you’ve got a recipe for huge growth. If The Faux manage to break out in the United States the way they will in the UK, you’ll be hearing a lot more of this band.
The breakout track on this record has got to be the one with the longest name, and the highest ratio of thrash to noodle, “We Tried to Plant a Seed in Matt Farmiloe’s Mind… And Succeeded.” This 5 ½ minute track appears to be the band’s magnum opus, rivaling in length both the half of the album before it and the half after. The track weaves through some interesting places, with some great technical guitar riffs, before finally breaking (beautifully) into a slow, angry, droning interlude track, before the assault continues on “Russ Hillier vs. The Abominable Snowman.” If I were to give The Faux any piece of advice, it would be to focus on crafting tracks similar to “We Tried to Plant a Seed…” to round out their thrashy sound and truly differentiate themselves from any of the sea of bands who wish to possess the talent that they do, but don’t.