FOREST. – PARTS WORK (Album Review)

Release Date: July 31st 2023 - Independent


Forest, has a new release, Parts Work, which is album 3 for this Progressive Post-Hardcore act from Cairns, QLD. The 5 lads pride themselves on their do it themselves approach to everything and by the looks of it have been very successful in both recording and booking their own shows and tours. Their 2019 tour for their sophomore release, Exit/Eject is a testament to that as It’s not so easy for independent artists to break into the Japanese underground. Hats off to them for succeeding. Forest’s efforts have secured them some great support slots which include Northlane, Alpha Wolf, Polaris, Clowns, King Parrot and Hellions. Music Influences range from Closure in Moscow, Alexisonfire, The Mars Volta, Haken, Mastodon and The Dillinger Escape Plan.

There are a decent number of tracks on this album, 11 in all. The first is Rubble, a short but solid little opener. Some great vocal work is displaying a nice balance of aggressive and clean chops. The recording quality sounds quite good through my little Mackie studio monitors, a nice achievement for an independently recorded composition.

Without a Trace, it follows a similar groove, some nice growls and a hint of catchiness in a doom and gloom sort of way. I’m not entirely familiar with this style of music but I can imagine the circling, head-banging, kicking and shoving that’s inevitably enjoyed in the mosh pit at one of these high-energy performances.

Some nice little hooks throughout Sleep, some interesting guitar harmonics and a bit of interesting experimentation utilizing the vocalist’s higher end of range.

Commendatore….ooh we have some piano at the start which is really quite beautiful. I think this is a standout track so far. The contrast of emotional turmoil mingled with upbeat enthusiasm exudes a playfulness that escalates again with a bit of technical playing, a trippy little build-up towards the finish.

“The Things They Hide”, jazzy bass, feedback and slurry vocals capture Forest’s essence, adequately adding their own unique qualities, a modern take on Post-Hardcore Prog.

Majick Dimensions, I liked the panned guitar at the beginning. Again, it was quite catchy lyrically, it got my head bobbing while I was listening. A sign I’m actually enjoying myself and was a little disappointed when it ended, I was really getting into it.

Starfire, beautiful clean guitaring, an atmospheric and almost cinematic little music interlude, followed by Possession signalling the illusion of doom and gloom yet evolving into a funky masterpiece. I think this track tops what I initially thought to be the standout. Very quirky. ‘I’m losing my mind I know; this power is taking hold’.

Very hooky shit!

Fast-paced ‘The Astronaut’, blazing a trail for an exceptionally dark melancholic, Red Rot.

Parts Work, a melodic sendoff into the world of the Forest. Easily an album that grows on you with every listen and the more you listen, the more you discover those little cameos.

Forest.: Facebook

Release Year: 2023
Label: self-released
Category: Album
Country: Australia

Reviewed by GG Baf