Album Rating: 4.5
I'd like to start off by saying, I was just like all of you. I heard The Respect Issue, and I didn't really like it. I thought it was mediocre, that it was a boring version of the other two (superb albums) they put out. But then, at an Emmure show, I decided, fuck it, I'll buy it, they're nice dudes.
And I'm glad I did.
The more I listened, the more I started to like it, to hear interesting little nuances that I'd missed before. Granted, if you don't like Deathcore and especially Core heavy Deathcore, then this album is not for you. There ARE breakdowns aplenty, but they have a serious groove, and don't all sound the same. If a band using breakdowns alot made them shitty, then Meshugguh would be mindless crap. And they're not. And neither is Emmure. Songs like "Sound Wave Superior," while based almost completely on breakdowns, don't sound contrived, and don't get old.
The vocals on the album are superb. Let me tell you, people might say they're empty, generic, all that shit, but I actually know the singer, and I've talked to him long enough to know he's a genuine guy; this shit is real. I guess you can't argue with taste, but knowing that lyrics are real instantly makes me like them more. And I think they're just well written overall.
Emmure also shows off their more melodic side on a few tracks, the first of which is called "Chicago's Finest." It's got a painfully groovy beat that has serious potential to get in your head and stick there for days. The lyrics are well performed and inspiring. There's a really interesting, catchy guitar solo at the end, by a guest guitarist, which adds another cool layer to the song.
The next somewhat melodic track is "Rough Justice," another very inspiring song, that shows off some almost flat out metal riffs. The song goes into some brutal, dissonant breakdowns, so it's not melodic riff from to back at all.
The last melodic track is the very light instrumental, "Dry Ice." It has very interesting leads playing over the chords. Wait, non-power chords? In a deathcore band? Yep, this song has em. It has serious jazz elements in there, which are very interesting, and play with your expectations.
But don't get me wrong. This album is obscenely brutal. From "Sound Wave Superior's" superior chugtastic grooviness, to "You're More Like Friend without the 'R' 's" death-y descending layered riffs, this album is skullfuckingly brutal.
Yes, I'll admit, this is their least awesome effort out of the 3, but to be fair, those two discs were masterpieces.