Review Summary: Depths, please return whence you came.
It's a sad sight to see when what started out as a pretty awesome idea digresses into a devolutionary pile of garbage. Take deathcore for example; I still hate to use the word, but what a combination. We obviously have to thank metalcore for this genre, but I definitely do hear a huge distinction between the two. While metalcore lives true to its name by having dominantly "metal" riffs with a young "hardcore" feel to it, deathcore hybrids the hateful sound of death metal and adds breakdowns to it. While it may be a cheap trick, I still give it credit for being at least somewhat intriguing.
This progression began with bands like All Shall Perish and Mortal Treason who utilized their influences of late 90's death metal (Suffocation/Cryptopsy) and took influence from bands who were making use of the breakdown at the time (Bleeding Through/Poison the Well.) It seemed to be a fantastic progression, but with any good idea comes mimickers. You should never be ashamed to like a band, but you should at least look at their
influences too. I think Oceano
decided to ignore that notion.
is a slapdash attempt at being able to tour the country with a halfassed formula based record. It's so blatantly obvious that these kids are simply Elysia fans who figured out how to program drums on their computer and crank out a drop-tuned disaster.
The record starts off with the typical "scaaaary" intro entitled Descent
that sounds like it was just taken from the deleted scenes from Saw. I suppose it sets the mood, but the mood is contrived and this is already telling me that much. I brace myself for what cliche is coming after this 58 seconds is up. Inhuman Affliction
kicks off. Oh whaddya know? Bass drum tom-tom flam intro! How absolutely original! Then I see a glimmer of hope; the vocals are pretty sweet. Over the annoying attack of gravity-blasts and guitar chug-ems shouts ex-backyard wrestling vocalist Adam Warren. While what he says is practically impossible to decipher, its entertaining at the very least. I'm only paying attention to his vocals rather than the lame attempts at "punishing" breakdowns and "balls-to-the-wall technicality." This is a pretty bad sign, given the fact that there actually is
music playing behind him. I don't even notice it, that's how overdone and boring this record already is.
trudges on with more and more formulaic dookie while their vocalist tries to save this shaky train from derailing even faster. There's the occasional moody part with delay guitar and pretty chords, to show that the band has been doing their Misery Signals homework. They try what works, I give them props for doing that at least. One thing that deters me from truly getting into the record is that I know that the drums are entirely programmed, and it is so blatantly obvious. Virtually every hit sounds identical, taking away any possible life this album could ever hope to have.
Still, I push on. Through the yawn-worthy Samael the Destroyer
and the "totally epic title track!!!" Depths
, I find myself getting closer and closer to just erasing the album from my iTunes existence. Then kicks off their most famous song, District of Misery
which actually turns out to be a pretty badass song. It starts off with a cute little drum fill, followed by your typical triplet progression over individual snare hits then motions quickly into an actually truly heavy breakdown. Captivating the best aspect of the band, the vocalist, and actually doing well with the sound they were trying to go for. This song sounds like they weren't trying too hard like all of the others, and in turn ends up sounding well executed. No over-the-top-drums, some pretty cool guitar riffing and a solid structure. Pretty much the only song on the album even worth giving a crap about.
Slaughtered Like Swine
is pretty cool too, but again it's only because of the vocalist. There's a pretty decent vocal cadence throughout the last minute and a half of the song. However, the first half of the song is equivalent to the rest of the malarky on this album.
Then there are about 1500 more breakdowns on the record.
This album would've been an easy 1.5 if it were not for those two songs. I couldn't necessarily give it a 1, because it is obvious that the guitarists/bassist can at least semi-play their instruments. They copy-cat every band who was copy-catting before them and it sounds so unbelievably watered down and dull that I know I'll never go back and listen to this record. I will say, this is not
the worst attempt at deathcore I've ever heard (see Underneath the Gun) and I do believe these kids enjoy what they're doing which counts for at least a little something. That being said, this regurgitated formula is getting gradually more irritating. The puppy is no longer cute guys, nice try though.
District of Misery
Slaughtered Like Swine