Darkest Before Dawn – Opening with some truly tasty guitar harmonies, it’s a pure instrumental, with a flavour of what’s to come. It’s a great hook and a nice intro.
Self Made Asylum – A crash of drums, combined with angry vocals and riffs, blended with backing harmonies, all clearly designed to rain down their particular brand of metal damnation. A gentler mid-section, containing a brief vocal acoustic part, before returning to the screaming, shouting lyrics and blasts of guitars and drums, ending on a final aggressive shout. Typically metalcore.
Baying For Blood – The title says it all. The drums open with real zeal here, just crashing into life, joined by an assault of thunderous riffs and murderous vocals. Continuing in much the same vein, whilst powerful in itself, it could do with an injection of individuality.
A Thousand Times – Battering the drums with aggressive passion and throwing considerable energy into the vocals, this one contains slightly more melody. Otherwise, though, not much here to mark it out from the previous track. Samey, but still holds a lot of energy. Ending on a gentler solo riff. Nice touch.
Another Day – Forgettable intro. Dark melody, with lots of angry emotions thrown into the vocals and a brief spoken section. You can definitely hear where the expression’s coming from. Ending on a volley of screams.
Undertow – A slightly different intro, consisting of a rather morose guitar solo, then backed up by heavy drum fills. Something about this track seems to sound like an endless intro, I’m afraid. I’m almost imagining a life-support machine being switched off. Not sure if that’s an intentional atmosphere, but if so, it’s succeeded.
Lessons – A drum solo opening, which does make a slight change. Quickly followed by screaming lyrics and some fitting guitar work. Other than a very brief even heavier drum fill and a little more guitar melody in the middle, I’m unable to find much of note. Predictable and lacklustre.
The Rising Tide – Now this one starts well in the sense of feeling more like a mid-section than an intro. Again, though, hard to add anything that hasn’t already been said. Except for briefly in the mid-section, where the riffs do get a bit more exciting, it’s much the same. There is a little bit of a decent melody going on there, but ultimately, it needs much more. I do like that closing riff.
Deprivation – Opening shouts and an accompanying barrage of instrumentals. There is imagery, to some extent, of machine-gun fire being shot, but there’s also a distinct feel of the vocalist throwing a tantrum. The technique creates an impression that the song’s ending, only to continue on and on.
Overall, unremarkable and dare I say it? Boring. Sorry guys, but though there’s undoubtedly a lot of good musicianship and naked emotion in here, it just lacks something and needs a lot more room to propel it upwards into something resembling a truly unique contribution. At present, nothing here makes it stand out from many other metalcore albums I’ve heard and it does itself an injustice in that respect. It starts off more promisingly, but then something happens towards the middle, making it seem lacking in vitality and originality. Okay for generic metalcore fans.