Binary Number places itself under progressive metal and I think that distinction works out well. On Binary Codes With Lines, the band augment that genre with hardcore elements mixed with nu-metal. The five song EP is an interesting listen and could actually gather fans outside of the prescribed genre.
“Va1ha11a” is an instrumental introduction that reminds me a lot of synth-tinged nu-metal and hardcore music. The guitar riffs are tight with a mix of percussion samples mixed with live drums and keyboards that add a bit of accent. But as the introduction, I think this track might actually confuse the core sound of the band as it moves into the title track, “Eclipse.”
You can’t doubt the instrumental abilities of Binary Number’s members. It’s technical and each instrument is communicating together. The vocals at the beginning of “Eclipse” fit the tone of the track, but during the vocals, they sound a bit too clean and light. They are perfectly melodic and act as a counterpoint to the instrumentals, but lack some power that would elevate the song overall. Binary Number live in the same universe as Messgram, but there’s some growth to come.
“Irreversible Regret” was a single released in March 2020 before the EP drop in October. It’s another instrumental track that basically showcases the band without vocals. According to the Bugs page, lavndr came on as vocalist before the release of Binary Codes With Lines so she doesn’t make an appearance here. The track’s 4:22 length really lets you dwell in this audio landscape highlighting every instrument and giving each one a highlight. The band definitely has its foundations in place and need to integrate the vocals better.
The band continues with instrumentals on “Fireplace.” If I didn’t listen to the EP in order, I would have trouble distinguishing between songs. That’s one of the issues with instrumental music within a specific genre, the songs can sound very similar. Since Binary Number are using a lot of layered instrumentals, it can get confusing. “Fireplace” does contain a weird jazz/blues mid-track bridge before going back into prog rock, but that might be its only real defining feature.
Closing with “Constant Material,” it’s clear now that the vocalist may have joined late during the EP recording. With five songs and only one with vocals, there’s an imbalance to how the listener experience will be. Binary Number have the instrumental skills to compose dense and engaging music, but they may be falling into adding too much and bloating the songs. lavndr isn’t properly included in songs yet so while “Eclipse” is interesting, it feels the weakest among the tracks.
Binary Number With Codes does make a statement. But I don’t know how strong it is as of now. There’s a need to pull back and organically include the two melodic styles together to really find success.