Fever 333 – Strength In Numb333rs
Released: January 18th, 2019
Jason Aalon Butler // Vocals
Aric Improta // Drums
Stephen Harrison // Guitar
It’s so refreshing hearing a band that defies everything that is normal. It challenges the listener. Sure, we’ve had Rage Against the Machine land punch after punch with their politically charged anthems before, so in reality it’s nothing we haven’t heard before. But whilst Fever 333 have no doubt some “Rage” tendencies, they are a different beast in their delivery. Where Zach of Rage combines his melody into a heavy crossover Morello riff, Fever 333 vocalist or chief antagoniser, Jason Aalon Butler simply screams his in a more hard-core version, sometimes utilising just drums or even electronica in the background. When Butler reverts to a more storytelling side, his subtle rapcore approach can quickly avalanche into either a Dillinger Escape Plan precipice or a Chester (RIP), Linkin Park’ish melodic chorus. It’s what makes Fever 333 an intriguing band to listen to on record, as sometimes the message can get distorted slightly in the bands often crazy live shows. A quick look on YouTube and you’ll see for yourself. Their stage antics side with the more, shall we say, psychotic of stage presences, so much so that even frontman, Jason Butler has eluded to seeing a therapist (during our interview) to make sense of it all. That’s not a negative either, as fuck knows we need to let loose every now and then and Fever 333 is the perfect soundtrack to achieve that energy.
In hindsight, debut EP, Made An America was more of a statement or introduction, but their debut full length album, Strength In Numb333rs is defiantly their soapbox moment. Not only for the band, but for the listener. The challenging aspects of their political driven fervour is in your face from start to finish and you can’t help but join in on the revolution along the way.
“I want them to know there’s a motherfucking fever coming”! It’s not long before Fever 333 get to work. After a brief political protest intro, the single, ‘Burn It’ slams into the speakers, Butler’s screams sending chills down the arms and though a little repetitive on the lyrics it’s a hard hitting foundation and the melodic chorus provides that subtle relief for the manic approach engulfing the rest of the track. Onto ‘Animal’ and the comparisons with Zack de la Rocha of RATM is undeniable when Butler heads into the rapcore zone, however quickly dissipating when that chorus kicks in with a little gang vocal.
‘Prey For Me’ continues in similar vein, with Butler rapping over some quirky drumming and bassy guitar tones from Stephen Harrison. The melodic chorus again a highlight, Butler almost daring everyone, “to pull the trigger, I am the one”, as if reloading his firearm to explode more diatribe against the system. ‘One Of Us’ is next with a bizarre intro, an almost Lorde sounding female vocal that leads us into Butler yelling and screaming on top of more Harrison riffage until we again meet that now patent Fever 333 rhythmic chorus. It works every time. Amongst the screams and rapping, Butler has a very decent vocal range, and something to look forward to with what Fever 333 may do down the track as they play to bigger and bigger crowds.
The first of two 7 minute tracks, something which in itself is a surprise, ‘Inglewood’ creeps up next. Butler in full storytelling mode now in an almost ballad moment for the band though Butler can’t help himself as the track leads to its conclusion as he screams to make his point in an almost, Korn, ‘Daddy’ plead, though the subject matter could not be more dissimilar. Its hard categorising Fever333, as they sway from melody to chaos from song to song, even occasionally from verse to verse within songs. However at the crux of every song is the message. Forever thought provoking, it’s a message 2019 needed to hear and more importantly get enough people to actually listen.
Strength in Numb333rs won’t change the landscape for music in 2019 but it may well shape a generation to make better decisions, and it’s a hell of a lot of fun listening to it happening via some music that you can headbang to! Fever 333 have certainly surprised on their debut. Their stocks will emphatically rise in the ensuing months ahead on the back of this stellar album. They will be the everywhere band of 2019. I’m calling it now.
Fever 333 – Strength In Numb333rs tracklisting
2. Burn It
4. Prey For Me/3
5. One Of Us
7. The Innocent
8. Out Of Control/3
9. Am I Here?
10. Coup D’Étalk
Revisit Fever 333 frontman Jason Aalon Butler co-hosting our Wall of Sound: Up Against The Wall podcast series here