Review Summary: It's just not the same anymore.
I feel sorry for all of Gallows' fans. Like many, I felt that Frank was the heart and soul of Gallows and was the ultimate driving force behind them. With 'Grey Britain' proving to be one of the most angry and impressive hardcore albums I had ever heard, 'Death is Birth' was going to take some living up to on that reason alone. Also, when Gallows announced ex-Alexisonfire vocalist Wade Macneil as their new frontman, my skeptical state of mind was only increased. However, when I clasped my ears on the first release of this EP, 'True Colours', I was pleased to see it was sharp, brash and downright entertaining. It was a new style and new sound from Gallows that I had never heard before and it thoroughly impressed me....until I heard the EP in its entirety.
The reason why 'Death is Birth' ultimately fails is due to its repetitive and 'been-there-done-that' style. 'Mondo Chaos' begins promisingly enough, but then when the childish lyrics of ex-Alexisonfire front man Wade kick in, the song soon spirals into a world of boredom and predictability. That's not to say that Wade's vocals are unimpressive because they aren't, they are, in fact, the complete opposite. However, it is his overall lyrical approach which is rather unappealing. As mentioned earlier, the opening line of 'Mondo Chaos' "Hey, say *** the world" is definitely something I wouldn't have found myself singing in the Carter era of Gallows. This applies to the title track and also 'Hate!Hate!Hate!', there's just no 'wow' factor within them. Therefore, most of this EP screams the word 'unoriginal' and only gives Gallows fans more to groan about.
Though 'Death is Birth' is mostly a boring and infuriating affair, 'True Colours' is the true gem which saves this EP from being a complete waste of time. The song is a brilliant tour-de-force of emotion and Wade, especially, shows his worth. It's just a shame that 'Death is Birth' doesn't have more songs like 'True Colours' as it delivers on every level; not to mention the Every Time I Die-esque powerhouse riff which makes the song so enjoyable.
Ultimately, 'Death is Birth' is a failure and only supports the point further that Gallows is still searching for something in the absence of Frank. The potential is definitely there, but they seem to be caught in some sort of limbo with this EP. It's definitely not terrible, but it's definitely far from enjoyable.