Black Map: And We Explode

And We Explode

(Black Map)
Release Date: 
Monday, October 27, 2014
Three guys from three different groups have come together to form a new group called, Black Map. These three guys are Ben Flanagan of Trophy Fire, Mark Engles of Dredg, and Chris Robyn of Far have produced a new album called, "And We Explode". If you want a good ol'fashion hard rock album to listen to then you will find this album right up your alley. Having only three members in the band has not slowed down these guys in creating some intense and rocking tunes. This is what rock and roll is all about, strong vocals, guitar riffs that make you want to play some air guitar, and a raw edge to the sound that makes you want to have your voice heard in this world. 
Don't be fooled into thinking that these guys are just wailing out some loud vocals and hard playing on the instruments because they're not. What Black Map is giving in their songs are vocals that can be understood while at the same time they are loud, they are intense, and have that yelling portion that's needed in some hard rock and slight metal sound. These vocals are done by Ben Flanagan and he does them quite well. He has a solid voice that has not moments where it cracks or gets off pitch, even though he is doing some decent yelling in the songs. His vocals work in unison with the instruments where if separated to be heard by themselves they would still be loud and intense but together they take the intensity and energy to another level, even another three levels. Through this whole album the energy levels being put into the songs are kept in every one of the songs. 
While listening to this album, I could only find one real flaw to "And We Explode", and that is how the songs have similar structures. It's really not too bad because the songs do change between each other, but there's still that similar structure to how the songs where built. Each of the songs have the strong guitar riffs being played by Mark Engles, while Ben Flanagan's vocals will be loud and intense then have moments of a more mellow side, and this structure is in every song. They switch it around some where the one song opens loud and intense then another will open with a calmer beat before going into the high energy levels, but in the end it's still using the same structure. However, these guys are skilled and talented enough that they make this work for them quite well because the songs still keep a high paced energy level and they are fun. Maybe the structure of the songs are similar but it's a sound that's been performed well and is entertaining to listen to.
Lee Roberts
Review by Lee Roberts
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