No Bragging Rights


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Riverside, California's No Bragging Rights were "called up" to the indie label "not-quite major league" with the release of their fourth album, 2012's Cycles, by eOne Entertainment, and the big question is: are they ready for the (nearly) big time? Well, the band's deliberately moody first swing, "The Advent of Change," certainly appears to promise something more than your run-of-the-mill melodic metalcore experience, and while subsequent made-to-order samples of precisely that (see "Hope Theory," "Not My Salvation," and "The Prequel") largely bear false witness to said promise by indulging in the customary vocal torment, plaintive melodies, breakdowns galore, etc., it's obvious that the young band is at least trying to transcend everyday clich├ęs. These attempts are hardly head-turning, shock-the-world items, mind you, but a few, more involved compositions contained here (e.g. "Appraisals and Ommissions" and "Repeater") see the band inserting a greater number of dynamic twists and turns than usual -- anything to avoid sticking to utterly conventional metalcore arrangements. Realistically, they have quite a ways to go yet before they're likely to receive an invite to the metalcore big leagues (home of wily vets like As I Lay Dying, All That Remains, Killswitch Engage, etc.), and they just have to do something about those bothersome backing gang vocals in order to get there, but you can't fault No Bragging Rights' effort on Cycles.

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