WRITTEN BY: MEG
In 2018, As Time Fades dropped their debut EP “Growing Season,” and followed it up with the fantastic single “This Isn’t What I Paid For.” After three years, the band is back with their sophomore EP, “Trust Fall.”
The EP begins with its lead single, “Marionette,” which is such a strong choice for both a single and an opening track. The song consistently brings catchy instrumentals and melodies, and the lyrics convey someone leaving an unhappy relationship and bidding farewell to a partner who treated them poorly (“But now it's over, I lay here broken, I scream my lungs out with words unspoken / I wish I'd never met you and I miss the feeling of being happy / You weren't worth my time anyway, no longer trapped by your old mind games / You took me for granted and I'll never be your toy again”). Much like the opener, “Headway” is another upbeat track. The vocals on this one put on a really captivating performance, especially in the bridge, and the chorale of gang vocals and the pounding percussion prepare that section for the final chorus. This track also has some interesting lyrics that seemingly touch on mental health, recovery and self-improvement: “I’ve been making progress and I think I got it figured out / Good things always come to an end, it’s a thought that never lets me down” and “The story isn’t perfect but I’m filling out the pages of my book in different stages than yours.”
“Invisible,” which also features fellow Ohio band Elbow Room, is one of the most memorable tracks on the EP, delivering tons of good hooks from start to finish. The melodies in the chorus show off some impressive higher notes within the vocalist’s range, and the bass is highlighted a lot on this track, particularly in the second verse and especially during the bridge, before the screamed vocals come in to add some aggression to the track. “Circles” opens up with softer vocals and guitars, but the volume is amplified around fifty seconds in, where more instrumentals join in to help pick up the pace and bring a lot of energy to the track. “Hollow” brings some dynamic instrumentals in the verses, leading up to a huge chorus with another really strong vocal performance. The lyrics on this one spark another conversation about mental health and the feeling of being stuck in a bad headspace, trying to escape: “I need a change of pace to help myself from falling under / Sinking into the quicksand, this routine is getting boring” and “It’s not fine, it’s not fine, I’ll stare into this emptiness and live hollow / Trying to find the simple meaning / I’m desperate and I’m pleading / Tired of this feeling.”
“Meant To Be,” a personal favorite of mine on the EP, brings another relatable lyrical theme - wanting to pursue a passion of yours despite others doubting you or advising you to go down other paths. That doubt is portrayed in lyrics like “Slow down, this pipe dream of yours won’t take you far / Imagine, if you put those skills to better use,” while lines like “I’m not going to clear the air again for the hundredth time / I’ve found what I love, not giving it up, can’t change who I’m meant to be” show the song’s “protagonist” being determined to chase their dream, because they’re certain it’s what they’re meant to do with their life. “Counterweight” is the EP’s closing track, and while the instrumentation is a bit simpler, with mostly an acoustic guitar accompanying the vocals, it’s still another catchy track, and the vocals deliver an emotive performance.
With the seven tracks on “Trust Fall,” As Time Fades have crafted a brilliant sophomore EP filled with contemplative, heart-on-sleeve lyricism and melodious composition.