Instead of shifting about and playing the moral crusader game, we are going to be professional about this. Know NOW that this album will be judged only on the merits of its music and not on any judgments on the character of Enabler themselves. So if you’re the kind of online sadist who looks for sensational news and opinions on incidents like these, you won’t find them here.
‘Fail to Feel Safe’ keeps things short and sweet throughout its runtime with every song (except “Isolation Sickness”, “Malady” and “Sabotage Within”) clocking in at an average of two-and-a-half to three minutes. Picking up from the wall of noise, double-bass drumming and groovy riffs of “Suffer to Survive”, the album presents a lot of dynamics.
Song like the title track and “Haunted” have that break-neck hardcore punk speed, while others like “By Demons Denied” and “Euphoric Revenge” slow down the sludgy riffage occasionally to make way for haunting leads and clean vocals. Songs like “Sinister Drifter” and “Drownage” even have some melodic guitar lines that’ll stay in your head after the album has ended.
However, this unfortunately is where the dynamics end. To my ears, the first half of the album shows off all these unique aspects of Enabler’s sound, leaving the second half to do nothing but repeat the same effect. I hate to say this, but ‘Fail to Feel Safe’ ironically starts to become repetitive by using all these elements again and again in the later songs.
Don’t get me wrong; a typical hardcore album doesn’t always bother itself with variation, but it at least has some memorable riffs and songs to back it up. Even the new breed of hardcore/metal bands like Cancer Bats have singles that fans can identify from one riff of theirs. But with regard to Enabler’s new album, many of its songs just have a hard time staying in your head after one run-through, even though they are pretty great songs.
In short, ‘Fail to Feel Safe’ is Enabler still playing to their strengths and delivering some raw, hardcore-tinged metal, with just a slight problem regarding its staying power. However, I’m more afraid that like in the case of bands like Lostprophets and As I Lay Dying in the recent past, its reputation might be damaged by the controversy surrounding Lohrber and the band. Since Enabler have more or less gone off the grid right now to deal with this, we can only wait and see how they and this album will weather the storm.