Into Your Own – That Mask You Call Yourself
Into Your Own is:
Jay ““ guitar
Frank ““ guitar
Allen ““ drums
Paul ““ vocals
Six ““ DJ
Mario ““ bass
When I listen to new music for the first time, a lasting factor for me is when a band’s gritty and powerful sound and lyrics are personal and from the heart. Into Your Own is no exception to this. Many of the songs concocted by these Niagara Falls, NY hard rockers on the album That Mask You Call Yourself reflect the town that they grew up in, and the conditions they faced along the way. The town that they hail from has a high crime rate that overshadows the idyllic beauty that the Falls are known for having. This truth resonates strongly with the band. It makes the heavy and upbeat power of their music even more relevant and thought-provoking to us as listeners.
That Mask You Call Yourself opens up with the song “Now Or Never”. This is a good choice to open such a poignant and reverberating album because of how fluid yet thrashing it is instrumentally. The addition of turntables by DJ Six helps to give this song another dimension of awesome. I liked it because it stands out instead of getting lost in the background, as some DJs in other bands seem to do. Paul’s vocals also reminded me somewhat of Hellyeah’s Chad Gray — rough around the edges, yet at times clear and polished.
The second track, “Holding Us Back”, was another solid song albeit slightly toned down from “Now Or Never”. The song nonetheless brought, among other good things, some entertaining guitar riffs and turntable vibes into the mix. Paul Wanecski also gives a wider range of vocal expression as opposed to the guttural vocals in the previous song. Lyrically, the song focuses on the feelings of being in a relationship with a selfish partner.
“Falling Backwards” is aptly named because of the lyrics centering around drinking to drown one’s sorrows. This theme is bolstered well by a slightly slower yet deeper tone instrumentally. This makes for a powerful and sorrowful addition to the album.
“From Below” kicks off with a dark and ominous opening riff that gives way to a cutting and unforgiving song. Instrumentally and vocally, the song is thrashing and heavy like in “Now Or Never”. Lyrically, however, the song dwells on a “criminal” facing his demons. Considering the ominous theme and lyrical message of this song, perhaps a better choice for placement on the album would be to have it go hand-in-hand with the sixth track, “Bury The Secret”.
“In My Eyes” starts off with a trippy opening by DJ Six and gradually builds up tempo from there. After the chorus is repeated, the song launches into a storm of furious drum beats and some good guitar riffs. The stylish use of instrumentals in this song put this toward the top of my favorites list as far as That Mask You Call Yourself goes.
The sixth song, “Bury The Secret”, is probably my favorite on the whole album. The song overall is so satisfyingly aggressive that I couldn’t avoid the compulsive need to bang my head throughout it. The riffs and overall sound of this song can only be described as chugging, guttural, and thumping. But it is weaved together in such a way, that Into Your Own has managed to create something rivaling established and well known bands like Pantera. One of the things that I particularly enjoy about “Bury The Secret” is how it tells a personal story about the band’s hometown. The song talks about the controversial Love Canal Incident that took place in Niagara Falls, NY. This was the location where toxic waste was buried underground by a chemical company, and it later caused serious birth defects and health issues in local residents. The intense chorus reflects this truth in the band’s lyrics:
You can’t silence the villain now,
When you’re destined to fail,
Lies hidden underground.
They’ll never cure your disease,
When they bury the secret,
Buried all the lies and the tragedy.
This shows that the catastrophe impacted the band and resonated with them as strongly as it did the other residents of Niagara Falls. Overall, the satisfying choruses, brutally honest lyrics and heavy instrumentals make this a killer song to listen to for any and all looking to explore this band.
“-1″ is a song that is entirely instrumental. Here, DJ Six’s talents really comes to life and plays the largest role on the whole album, although the drums and bass do play a constant part in the interlude song as well. The trippy techno vibes throughout this track are refreshing to listen to and really makes this song stand apart from the rest of the album. Even with the absence of vocals, the pulsing energy of this song still fit in perfectly with the unique power of the album.
“Sara” is another deeply emotional and personal song due to the subject matter. Judging by the lyrics, the song tells the story of a girl named Sara who cuts herself to ease the loneliness that she feels. The ominous rhythm of the instrumentals, the chorus, lyrics, and the brief sounds of Sara weeping at the beginning and end of the song make me almost cringe while listening to it. That is truly the sign of good musicians in my opinion — emotionally impacting listeners both lyrically and instrumentally.
“How It Should Be” didn’t impact me as much as some of the other songs on the album, particularly lyric-wise. However, it is still entertaining to listen to nonetheless. What I noted about the song was how the chorus contrasts starkly from the rest of the song, becoming more aggressive while the other verses are slower and more gradual along the way. This contrast makes the song unique and interesting to listen to.
“The City Haunted” is a thrashing, fast-paced song that makes spectacular use of adrenaline-fueled drum beats and guitar riffs. The drums in this particular song are the most satisfying thus far. I’m really impressed by the thunderstorm of drum beats that are fired off throughout. Because of how energetic and unrelenting the song is, I suspect that it could make for good mosh pit material during Into Your Own’s live performances.
Finally, “Drag You Down” concludes the album on a powerful note. This is a thumping battle cry type of song that doubles as both an inspirational anthem and a spit-in-your-face call to arms not all that dissimilar from Five Finger Death Punch or Pantera. Paul’s vocals in this song are particularly guttural which goes along well with the aggressive and violent mentality of the song. The song, and thus the album, is tied off in a satisfying way by masterful, vivacious use of the band’s instrumentals and guttural vocals.
Into Your Own really establishes themselves as a unique and imposing band worthy of attention in the rock community. That Mask You Call Yourself is laced with songs that will get someone fired up, sad, angry, thought-provoked and many other things. Each song tells a different story and the lyrics throughout do a clever job at supporting this. Finally, the powerful and aggressive use of vocals and instrumentals along with the notable addition of a DJ, make this band unique and addictive to listen to for any and all rock fanatics out there.Into Your Own - That Mask You Call Yourself,