Circles – The Stories We Are Afraid Of Vol: 1 (EP Review)

circles - The Stories We Are Afraid Of Vol.1 review

Circles – The Stories We Are Afraid Of Vol: 1 
Released: November 25th 2022


Ben Rechter // Vocals and Guitars
Ted Furuhashi // Guitars and backing vocals
Dave Hunter // Drums



These Melbourne stalwarts in Circles have been around for well over a decade now, and during that time they have remained remarkably consistent and strong in their output, despite going through that most difficult of lineup changes, replacing a frontman.

In many ways, the addition of such a rare talent on vocals, guitar and, most auspiciously, songwriting, in Ben Rechter (check out his output in previous band Glass Empire too) has elevated their sound even further, and this EP is another step in that ongoing evolution. The Stories We Are Afraid Of Vol: 1 is six tracks of pure adrenaline, 23 minutes of the purest, most fist-pumping of modern heavy music anthems.

There is no point singling out individual tracks for recognition here, since this EP, like their recorded career so far as a whole, is a picture of wall-to-wall consistency, a slickly produced and highly cohesive work, end to end. There are no weak tracks, nary ever a weak moment. Each and every song leaps out of the speakers at you and drags you in with its infectious energy and irresistible anthemic qualities.

The band has managed to create a heavily layered, almost symphonic quality to proceedings here with just guitars, bass, drums and a few effects here and there (especially on epic closer ‘Reckoning’), and with Rechter’s simultaneously smooth and powerful voice swooning, and soaring over the top like a graceful but deadly bird of prey, this is one exhilarating package.

Elsewhere, it sounds as if the band has been listening to and ingesting a band like Vola (check out ‘Sleepwalking’ for proof), and they make a damn fine fist of mirroring that sound while still putting their own twist on it.

My only gripe is that this is an EP, not a full-lengther, and it’s over way too quickly, leaving you salivating for more. However, this being ‘volume one’, one can hope that ‘volume two’ is on its way at some stage? The Stories We Are Afraid Of Vol: 1 is one of the best releases of the year, no question. Another massive bummer about this being an EP is that I won’t be able to put it in my ‘Best Albums of 2022’ list.

Guys, please bring us Volume two soon!

circles - The Stories We Are Afraid Of Vol.1 review

Circles – The Stories We Are Afraid Of Vol: 1 Tracklisting

1. Wonder
2. Bliss
3. Sleepwalking
4. Echo
5. Dig
6. Reckoning

Rating: 9.5/10
The Stories We Are Afraid Of Vol: 1 is out now via Wild Thing Records. Get it here
Review By: Rod_Whitfield

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