Album Review: These Colors Fade – Contemporary Tragedy (Self Released)

One-man melodic post-hardcore band These Colors Fade will release new album Contemporary Tragedy on January 29th 2021.

The brainchild of multi-instrumentalist Keelan Donahue, who handled everything from the music to the artwork, Contemporary Tragedy is the third release from These Colors Fade. The album follows the 2020 EP Pentamerous Laceration and the debut full-length The Attrition Complex (2018).

Keelan comments on the album:

‘Contemporary Tragedy’ is about loss and how it transforms people in different ways. It was originally intended to be a short story told in album form. Instead, it became a theme album touching on not only loss, but what a person can become after losing what they believe to be everything. A combination of progressive and posthardcore births interesting and unique musicianship while pushing genre boundaries. Over 800 hours were spent writing and recording this album.

There’s something quite fascinating about this album. Something that keeps you listening on even as it tumbles down the avant-garde rabbit hole.

That can’t be understated. The avant-garde nature of this album. It’s weird and something that is likely to polarise. The lack of rhythm, the clashing of rock and metal styles, the jumbled vocals that seem to run against every other instrument. Plenty of people are going to hate this even if it is quite fascinating. The work of a genius? Maybe but just as likely the madness of progressive music.

The theme of loss and how it transforms people is interesting and is realised surprisingly well. The obscure directions, the nonsensical twists and turns, the feeling of being adrift and more work as metaphors for what a person might be going through on a daily basis. On that front, These Colors Fade have delivered something very special.

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However, it’s hard to get past just how random the album as a whole sounds. It’s a difficult listen even by progressive and post-hardcore standards. There’s so many ideas and so much back and forth that it becomes a constant battle to keep up. Even after several listens but and it’s a big but, it’s undeniably addictive. There is no question that come the end, many will want to start it all over again just to try and understand what Keelan Donahue is all about.

Truth be told, few will be any the wiser come the end. Love it or hate it, These Colors Fade’s Contemporary Tragedy makes a mark.

These Colors Fade – Contemporary Tragedy Full Track Listing:

1. Contemporary Tragedy I: Our Final Breaths
2. Contemporary Tragedy II: Wax Reveries
3. Contemporary Tragedy III: Curtains Close
4. Clar(it)y
5. Beginning//End
6. A Cerulean Tomb
7. The Art Of Burning A Memory
8. Of Salvation And Damnation
9. Disappear
10. Contemporary Tragedy IV: Alternate Reveries


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  • Carl Fisher

    Owner/Administrator/Editor/Writer/Interviewer/YouTuber - you name it, I do it. I love gaming, horror movies, and all forms of heavy metal and rock. I'm also a Discworld super-fan and love talking all things Terry Pratchett. Do you wanna party? It's party time!

These Colors Fade - Contemporary Tragedy (Self Released)
  • The Final Score - 6/10
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