Album Review: Aiden - 'Aiden'

5 November 2015 | 1:44 pm | Alex Sievers
Originally Appeared In

One final trip through Hell.

Aiden were a hard-working band that went from left-of-centre gothic-punk/post-hardcore to a more straight up alternative punk rock hybrid in their later years. By far one of the more underrated bands on Victory Records back in the noughties, these guys have quite a few albums under their belts, however that extra bit of success that would've elevated them from being just “big” into a household name always escaped their grasp. When members started to leave and frontman Wil Francis’s other project, William Control, gained more traction than his first love, well, you can’t blame the band for basically going on hold for a time in 2011. But now, Francis is back for one last hurrah to lay this band to rest, and in some ironic twist of fate, it’s actually one of the better releases Aiden have to their name. More so than ‘Disguises’ and ‘Some Kind of Hate’ could ever hope to be, anyway.

This self-titled album features plenty of quintessential Aiden riffs, the punk rock drumming, and those massive, catchy choruses that helped made their breakthrough album, ‘Nightmare Anatomy’, such a hit all those years ago. It features all of the faster, shorter and more aggressive moments that ‘Knives’ (easily one of their better releases) offered up in droves. It’s also as dark, as macabre, as anti-religious, and as angsty as the band’s previous material ever was (like that artwork for instance) and there are even some brief touching, melodic moments that feel like they could have existed perfectly on ‘Conviction’. So basically, they’ve borrowed the best bits of their career and mixed it all into one superbly solid album, one that sends them off in grand style.

Aiden really knows how to rip out those huge guitar and vocal hooks that just sink into your skin immediately. The mix of the record is so huge and very, very clean, thus only serving to enhance their blended mix of alternative and punk rock in the best way possible. Francis’s vocals are just as good as they ever were, whether he’s screaming or singing, it’s always golden. Oh, and speaking of vocals, for this final release, Chris Motionless (Motionless In White), Ash Costello (New Year’s Day) and Crilly Ashes (Ashestoangels – yeah, I don’t know who they are either) all step in to lend their voices to the effort, which marks a strong sense of friendship and love for Aiden from their peers and friends.

With 13 songs and about 40 minutes all up, you've got a great record, with no filler to be found. Sure, it's not original music and doesn't break any boundaries, but sometimes, the best music doesn't have to invent something new. Whether you're a fan or you never heard of them until reading this, make sure you give this one a listen.

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Aiden's career is a great (or terrible, depends on how you look at it) example of an all too often issue in the music industry – the honest and underrated bands remain relatively unknown and rarely get the recognition that they deserve. Such was the case for the aforementioned. This self-titled effort is a fantastic swan song for frontman William Francis and for Aiden as a collective, and what a way to go out. This is one of the most consistent records from the band, it's just sad that it'll be the last. If you never heard Aiden, or maybe it’s been along time between drinks for you, then maybe go pick up the album for free from the official site and you'll see what could have been. Cheers Aiden, it's been real.


1. Crawling Up From Hell

2. Violence and Devotion

3. New Grave

4. Standing Alone

5. Eternal Halloween

6. Animals

7. No Gods

8. Incinerate

9. Pure Horror

10. Sins Of A Father

11. The Ceremony

12. Love Like A Cemetery

13. Bring The Knives