Despite the roaring success that The Butterfly Effect has had over the years, they have tended to go in a bit of a softer rock direction (especially when it comes to their last album, Final Conversation of Kings) and some fans didn’t really get into where they were going.
Vocalist Clint Boge has embraced his heavier, rockier side in his new project Thousand Needles in Red, which has already released a self titled EP and racked up a few miles touring Australia in preparation for their debut full length release, Empires.
After a pulsating piano/electronica driven intro, “Fire in the Sky” leaps out and kicks the proceedings into gear with a hard rocking groove pumping along side Boge’s unmistakeable vocal stylings, from his in-your-face attack to the beautifully melodic clean vocals that make women melt at a click of his fingers. If I didn’t look around me, I could swear that it was the early 00s again but this time, thankfully, there is a scarcity of backwards baseball caps and baggy pants.
A good way to describe the material on Empires would be to compare it to the ocean: at times things sit calmly and gently with melodic tunes that have a bit of grunt in them like “Scars”, the infectious “Marble Arc”, “Dust to Dust” and the delicate pair of “Into Eternity” (produced by The Tea Party’s Jeff Martin) and acoustic ballad “Darkness into the Day” that has Boge delivering his trademark vocal croon in one of his finest hours as a vocalist. Then before you even notice it, the waves build and come crashing down with something a whole lot heavier with tracks like “Through the Looking Glass”, “When You Go” and “Hold the Line” with its chopping groove, powered by driving riffs courtesy of Tristan “Trizo” Bouillaut. Regardless, the tracks are all quite accessible without being cookie cutter and commercial. Yet all this diversity has a price, as several tracks sound similar and formulaic, though the casual listener probably won’t care.
Overall, Empires delivers plenty of rocking tunes that will surely satisfy the loyalists, maybe entice back some of those who have longed for something heavier from Boge and introduce new listeners to something that is exciting and enjoyable. I just hope that Empires has rubbed off on Boge so The Butterfly Effect inject some heaviness back into their sound.
2. Fire in the Sky
3. Hold the Line
4. Marble Arc
5. Through the Looking Glass
7. Misery Everything
8. When You Go
9. Dust to Dust
11. The Sentinel
12. Darkness Meets the Day
13. Into Eternity