Review Summary: After listening to this album you'll feel like you’re in a metaphorical room filled with broken furniture and empty whiskey bottles…oh and don’t forget to check for a tiger in the bathroom.
One thing to consider when reviewing an album is the elements other than the music. What could influence your review to one side or another? Artwork is one thing that matters when reviewing a particular album. Most of the time when you buy an album and look through the lyric booklet it’s nothing more than words. With this release however the already marvelous (no pun intended) album gets just that much better. Jordan Buckley steps up to the plate not only to shred but to craft some of the most brutal but stunning pieces of artwork for the band thus far. The mere thirty seven and a half minutes that composes New Junk Aesthetic is nothing to fret over since it’s easily the best thing by ETID since Hot Damn!
The short time doesn’t affect the album whatsoever. It’s better to have a short album and have your fans asking for more than have a long album that drains out and ruins the once good spectacle of your musical being (see the new Saosin album). “Roman Holiday” starts out with a squealing noise that breaks into a small distant riff. Keith’s voice isn’t so much original but one of the most intriguing of the metalcore genre. He also has the ability to write some astounding lyrics, compared than most bands today. Metalcore isn’t supposed to be about love and puppies. It’s meant to be brutal and with ETID that’s exactly where it’s at. Every song in the lyric booklet is accompanied by one of Jordan’s drawings. The drawings are so vibrant and explosive that they fit so perfectly with ETID’s style. “The Marvelous Slut” is one of the top songs of ’09. Although Greg Puciato’s guest spot was wasted being it was mostly indistinguishable, the song still rips the listener to shreds.
The third track “Who Invited The Russian Solider” complements Keith’s lyrical evolution. He matured over the past couple of albums especially with the semi-flop that was The Big Dirty. Don’t get me wrong TBD wasn’t terrible it was just nothing compared to Hot Damn! He can write songs that are just short, crushing metalcore tracks or he can write them like he is telling a story. “Wait until they send your son home in a box” is exactly what Keith should be writing. On this record most of the words seem to send the signal of self-destruction in his direction. The riffs and hooks from this album are as fresh as ever and will not be confused with any other ETID album by any means. The pseudo-chorus of this album can feel a bit anthem-y at first but after a few spins you’ll see the magic of the blend of hardcore, metalcore and southern rock that is Every Time I Die.
“Wanderlust” is quite the gem. It’s got the same formula just a few different factors. He uses more clean vocals which happen to be a pretty pleasant surprise after hearing his guttural, sore throat screams most of the time. Everything is so fast paced on this album that it just flies. 11 of the 13 (special edition bonus tracks) tracks are under three minutes and ten seconds, which in my opinion is fantastic. All of the songs on this album have the punch and capability to get the message across without putting anyone to sleep. There has always been something about ETID that set them apart from the rest of the metalcore genre. Was it their uncanny ability to mix southern rock with metalcore? Yes but not entirely. Being amongst other bands that already did that shows you it’s nothing special. It is their ability to make everything sound unsullied. Every song contains different tempos, chorus, verses, hooks, cuts and fills.
“The Sweet Life” is the anthem for anyone that has had something go wrong this year. This album has the ability to stimulate you and give you the feeling you can do anything. It’s going to rip your face off and motivate you all at the same time. Nothing slowed down ETID during the course of this album. They provide a disc full of hits that will either make you love them more or well let’s face it there isn’t much hate that can be had for this band. If after listening to this album or during the process that you don’t feel like breaking something or jumping around you just might not have a soul. Dirty, gritty, southern metalcore doesn’t come around very often but when it does, it’s sure done right by ETID.