REVIEW: Fall City Fall – Victus


Artist: Fall City Fall
Album: Victus
Genre: Hardcore
Label: Victory Records

Another year, another slew of Victory Records freshman hoping they make it to see album two. The Chicago based label rose to prominence in the early 2000s following the breakout success of acts like Taking Back Sunday and Thursday, but slipped back into the grey of alternative music in recent years with a plethora of hit or miss releases and little-to-no signings of note. They have grown, sure, but the amount of great music produced has not increased along the way. If anything, there are more misfires and questionable names on the current Victory roster than any other time in the last decade, but even in the darkness there is hope, and for Victory that hope is Fall City Fall.

Hailing from Canada, a country known in many circles for their contributions to the world of hardcore over the last decade, Fall City Fall could very well be Tony Brummel’s new golden calf. Their sound is build on a foundation of hardcore essentials coupled with an honest outlook on existence and a determination that translates through each and every track. Their debut, Victus, starts with a shotgun blast of energy by way of “St. James” and rarely slows during the course of its twenty-eight-minute runtime. It’s loud, fast, angry, and above all, honest. There are no gimmicks, no radio singles, and virtually no commercial appeal at all, but it’s real music and to hear that hailing from a Victory band again is the kind of thing this label needs to survive.

The only true downside to Fall City Fall’s debut is the lack of an absolute standout track. As a whole the record works beautifully as an angsty ode to life in the modern era, but without a single that can be sold to passive hardcore listeners it may be difficult for the band to engrain themselves in the scene enough to stick. As much as the people hate to admit it, bands need a good hook/breakdown/highlight in order to be properly marketed on the national level the way a band in signed to a label like Victory needs to succeed. Victus is vicious enough to be a hit, but it’s triumph or failure is going to rest solely on the strength of the promotional push behind it. Without proper support Fall City Fall could quickly fade into the grey of mediocrity that has consumed countless bands with similar sounds in recent years, and in my opinion that would be a damn shame.

To borrow a line from Hatebreed’s Jamey Jasta, Fall City Fall’s Victus is “all pit, no shit” music with lyrics that carry more than enough heart to win over club and basement crowds from here to Alberta. Hardcore fans new and old deserve to have more bands like this to support, and I really hope the members of Fall City Fall can find the determination to push themselves as hard as they’ll have to in order to succeed. This is the kind of heavy music that not only can, but will change lives, and I hope we hear more of the same in years to come.

Score: 7.5/10
Review written by: James Shotwell

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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