Local Review: Acacia Ridge – Watch Your Monarchs Fall
Local Music Reviews
Watch Your Monarchs Fall
Acacia Ridge = Avenged Sevenfold + Shinedown
Acacia Ridge is a native Salt Lake band formed in late 2017. After taking the time to forge their group by finding the perfect members, they began writing their first album in 2018. Now, their debut album, Watch Your Monarchs Fall, is out, and the band is ready to impress listeners with their classic-yet-modern metal sound.
The album starts out with a short and enticing instrumental track. Listeners are greeted with clean harmonics on the guitar, followed by a calming melody. As it progresses, the solos get more intricate and interesting. The background sounds and drums make the intro seem dramatic, getting the listener excited for what’s to come on the album.
The second track, “Burn,” gets into the meat of the album. This track is also full of squealies—any song is better with squealing guitar tracks. The rhythms and techniques used by the group are reminiscent of the metal band Avenged Sevenfold. While Acacia Ridge isn’t as heavy, it sounds like A7X may be an influence of theirs. This track also features the first taste of singer Christain Mayfield’s strong vocals. He is able to project and sing with a classic rock/metal voice. This is evident later in the album on the track “Anarchist.” This song is heavier, featuring screaming vocals as well as deep spoken lyrics that make the song intense. The rhythms and solos in this song have more of the A7X sound, especially with the sweeping technique used while soloing.
While not utilizing screaming vocals, Mayfield sounds like other popular rock groups such as Shinedown. Acacia Ridge is able to take elements of both rock and metal and combine them into their own unique sound. “Another Day” is a stand-out track on the album for this reason. The heavy beginning features a strong bassline that goes into more creepy, intense spoken lyrics and screaming vocals from there. This song highlights the fluidity of the group and their ability to take elements from different genres and blend them into their own songs.
The album ends on a high note with the track “Alabaster Eyes,” which is also the longest, clocking in at just over seven minutes. It features more of the high energy sweeping solos, strong vocals and heavy rhythms that Acacia Ridge has been able to blend seamlessly. This track is incredibly energetic and makes you want to start the album over again.
Overall, this album is great, especially for fans of rock and metal. The group obviously meshes well together—it’s easy to hear this on the album. Hopefully the group is able to create more of this musical fusion in the future. –Emilee Atkinson