FIFTH NOTE Album Review: “Here We Are”

“Here We Are”
Album Review by Iron Mathew


Fifth Note are a progressive rock band from India formed in 2019, releasing their debut album ‘Here We Are’ in 2023.

Two years ago, I didn’t know too much about the rock scene in India – the metal one yes – but not rock! And then in 2022, two Indian rock bands shook my world to its knees with sparkling album releases – Girish And The Chronicles released their third album ‘Hail To The Heroes’, and About Us emerged onto the scene with their debut ‘About Us’. And now a third band from the land of Bollywood, spicy food, and the Taj Mahal has come forth – Fifth Note, a progressive rock band hailing from Nagaland. The bands sound is a meld of hard rock and old school heavy metal with very strong progressive leanings – the album featuring eleven songs across a punchy fifty minutes. Opening salvo ‘Rider’, is an explosive opener full of energy and oomph, punching extremely hard across its three minute run time! To say Fifth Note have made an emphatic and immediate entrance into the world of rock, may be one of the biggest understatements in music! And after such a bombastic start, Fifth Note move swiftly on at pace, shuddering the ground with ‘Always Love You’, adopting the classic feel of good old fashioned hard rock. Yet the band weave an immense amount of AOR into ‘Always Love You’, straddling a number of rock genres in order to attract a wide array of listeners. And the chorus too – sing a long-able heaven!

At six and a half minutes in length, ‘Dreamer’ is the longest song on offer, featuring a bold, brash Southern rock swagger – the kinda swagger you’d associate with American legends Aerosmith. And with a touch of bluesy rock feeling its way right through ‘Dreamer’, Fifth Note really are exploring the rock spectrum, delivering a myriad of styles to keep every listener, fan and follower intently hooked. Across just the first three songs, there’s been so much variation I’m beginning to wonder where we’re off to next – power balladry if the first twenty seconds or so of ‘Fantasy’ is to be believed! But the band show their progressive rock leanings in a big way here, ‘Fantasy’ doing a one eighty to become a heavy hitting tempo changing slice of punchy hard rock – the bands musical horizon constantly on the move! The mellow strains of balladry make their presence felt once more, ‘I Won’t Give Up’ striding into power ballad territory with head held high, encouraging listeners to sway gently from side to side and raise lighters high in the air.

The title song ‘Here We Are’ is an AOR infused rocker with a sky high level of progressive punch, the band an unrelenting roller coaster of rock. The energy and oomph Fifth Note have oozed since the album began has been phenomenal, the five piece outfit from Nagaland emphatically making their mark, taking absolutely no prisoners in their quest to become rock royalty! And with progressive rock coming to the fore, ‘Misfortune’ mixes a little pop rock with AOR to bring many listeners teetering to the edge of an eargasm, the bands brand of music hitting the sweet spot time and time again! Just how accurate are Fifth Note? Very, is the resounding answer! And with a heavier, more deep sounding feel than anything heard so far, ‘Falling Apart’ shudders the ground as it stomps across the land, crumbling walls and reducing buildings to rumble – the immense force oozing from ‘Here We Are’ (the album) greater than gravity!

‘Confused Trauma’ maintains the previous songs ground shuddering nature, albeit at a faster pace, the band punching hard and kicking harder – every listener everywhere reeling backwards from the incredible intensity on show! Ever since the album began the band have kept their fingers firmly pressed down hard on the intensity button, not letting go for a single second – and just as I say that, Fifth Note rein in everything powerful, letting the mellow nature of balladry descend upon the album like an airplane descending to land, ‘Drifted’ encouraging every listener for a second time to hold lighters aloft and sway gently from side to side. And as the album comes to a close, I quickly reflect on just how wide the array of rock on offer has been – there’s definitely something here for everyone! ‘End Times’ ends the album with an incredible amount of punch, much more than any other song on offer, Fifth Note delivering the most bombastic finale to an album I’ve heard for some time.

Overall, a heavy hitting and highly infectious album, featuring a myriad of rock styles with an immense amount of energy and oomph.


Always Love You
I Won’t Give Up
Here We Are
Falling Apart
Confused Trauma
End Times

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