Borne of scepticism and hope, metalcore trio We Are To Blame has quite an interesting story. It all began when Johan Karlsson placed an advertisement for a pop singer to join a metal project. Intrigued by the ad, but also a little wary, Alice Hartvig answered it. An established singer, Alice had experience, however, she had never performed with a metal band; hence, the scepticism. It was clear from her demo and a quick discussion that she was the ideal fit for We Are To Blame. Add guitarist Urban Granbacke and you have quite an outstanding force of nature.
Influenced by power metal, progressive metal and melodic metal, We Are To Blame lies somewhere between Evanescence, Nightwish and Within Temptation. Reminiscent of Amy Lee, Alice Hartvig’s vocals are able to sink into and send shivers along your skin. The pounding drums and heavy guitar add a harder metal feeling to the arrangement; however, Alice’s softer tones make the track far more melodic. Interestingly enough, while all of the elements have a prominent spot in the melody, a harmonic haze surrounds the band. For me, the interspersed piano also plays a role in softening the metal blow of ‘Breathe’.
I can go on and on about how the guitar riffs flow elegantly into heavy drumbeats with Alice’s vocals traversing the movements but ‘Breathe’ is so much more than a mere song with awesome instrumentation. Chilling, yet at the same time warm and calming, We Are To Blame has you up and twirling about with your eyes shut. Similar to their previous release ‘All I Want To Say’, there is a charm and elegance to ‘Breathe’ – the thing is, ‘Breathe’ is far heavier and harder-hitting. Either way, both tracks are breathtaking masterpieces.