All That Remains - Fall of Ideals
Labelled "Metalcore album of 2006" by Sputnik. I would personally say that there are lots of albums that would be tied for this title, but maybe not of 2006 that I can think of off the bat. I do believe that this is a well-deserved by All That Remains, as they have pretty much every element of Metal that you can think of, stretching from low-death metal screams (As displayed on “The Weak Willed”) to high pitch screams, and clean singing. Now lets get down to business:
All That Remains lineup:
Philip Labonte – Vocalist
Mike Martin – Guitars
Oli Herbert – Guitars
Shannon Lucas – Drums
Jeanne Sagan – Bass
Part 1: The Songs
Normally, I do a track by track, but with this album I’m going to try my best to stay away from doing so in the second part of my review as I will end up saying a lot of the same things for each track. Instead, I’d rather look at this album in whole, instead of individual bits. Although I would like to acknowledge some of the tracks here.
The layout was one of the things that were quite impressive, opening with one of the singles “This Calling”, which is an appropriate song to start off with, as it shows what All That Remains generally sounds like. Also, it is quite an impressive song, and by the end, you may find yourself going to switch it back to the beginning of this track on your ipod once it is finished. The clean vocals are some of the best of All That Remains, and the screams are quite understandable and defined. Now, back to the layout: Starting with
“This Calling” and ending on a strong note as well with “Indictment”. With Indictment as the closing, at first may not seem like a strong track, but after you take the time to listen to it closely, you’ll think to yourself “Wow, that’s better than I thought”.
Following “This Calling” comes a song with a similar format, “Not Alone”. This track also has a clean chorus, and quite a friendly one at that. “With the touch of your hand, I am whole again” sweetly sung over a few times.
“We Stand” comes around to be one of the strongest tracks on the album, with a great chorus, yet again following the same format as the previous 3 songs. Although, this does seem to be varied a bit from the previous tracks. More so like the previous track, “It Dwells Me In”.
Finally, along strolls “Whispers (I Hear You)”, one of the catchiest songs off the album, and will instantly be one of your favorites. Great breakdown in “Whispers (I Hear You)” I might add. The one thing I must point out about this song is that I seem to remember similar lyrics in most of the songs, which is one of the real downsides of the album in general; the lyrics are good, just not much variety. They all seem to say the same thing.
One of the strongest tracks on the album comes right after “Whispers (I Hear You)”, doing pretty much the exact opposite of the previous song, being (by far) the heaviest song on the album. The vocals are some of my favorite, as Phil Labonte’s low growl is great (if only he used it more). There is next to no clean singing in this song, which is a change from all the others.
Another extremely strong track is “Six”, which is by far one of my favorites off the album. The vocals are that of my favorite, and it does not have much clean singing at all, making it one of the heavier songs off the album. It is Catchy as well.
The weakest track on the album is defiantly “Empty Inside”, as the chorus is just plain and boring. This track still follows the same format as most do on the album, almost trying to play it safe.
Part 2: The instrumentation
Now that I have the tracks out of the way, its time to mention something that I haven’t mentioned at all through the review: the instruments. All That Remains are excellent guitarists, and it really shows on this album. Especially in songs like This Calling, Not Alone, and Six, where they play harmonized riffs for the most part.
When it comes to drums, All That Remains just proves that they can pull off every instrument extremely well. The double bass is fun to listen to, as is used quite well through the majority of the album. It is a little silent in “This Calling”, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, as you don’t want to have a booming Chimaira-style double bass come in randomly through a softly sung chorus.
The bass seems to be a little light through the album, so next time I hope they’ll just turn the volume up on his amp a bit more. Other than that, there are no real faults when it comes to the instruments. Simply put: Great.
Faults that get to you after a while…
Defiantly the similarity in lyrics. But that’s not that big a deal compared to the formatting of the songs. Once you hit “Whispers (I Hear Your)” , you kind of want to hear a change of format. Thank god for “The Weak Willed” and “Six”, although “Six” does follow the same style format, it does give you a break from the usual. But in songs like “This Calling”, “Not Alone”, “The Air That I Breathe”, “We Stand” and “It Dwells Me In”, the format is the exact same – intro – verse – bridge – cleanly sung chorus – repeat. For the next album, I just hope they mix it up a bit better. I don’t blame them for doing that, as they are all good songs, and All That Remains are playing it safe by doing so. The previous album didn’t do that, so I don’t understand why this album did. (The previous album was also heavier).
Well, now that I’ve got that off my chest, here’s a sum up of the pros and cons:
I’d like to finish by saying that this is an amazing album, and if you like Metalcore of the likes of Killswitch Engage, defiantly buy this album. Don’t even bother to listen to it before you buy it. Just get it. Anyways, thanks for reading my review.