Review Summary: The Great Commission is out to kick ass, take names, and then give you a nice lesson in the words of God.1 of 1 thought this review was well written
Christian music has evolved quite nicely while a decade ago most christian music was quite generic (not to mention the lyrics), but upon a new decade I noticed something strange was happening in the christian music community (it should be stated that I'm not a christian), bands started to develop their music in to well...music. Lyrics still had their christian faith in them, but where not as preachy and more subtle. Indeed these bands started to tour with big shots. As I Lay Dying was touring with The Black Dahlia Murder, and In Flames. Demon Hunter was on the road with Throwdown, and Killswitch Engage. Underoath joined The Taste of Chaos tour. Everything seemed to make a complete turn around and I even admittedly became a fan of a few of these fine bands such as Impending Doom, and A Plea for Purging. And then I discovered these fine chaps on tour with the latter mentioned band, and decided to listen to their album stream.
Well the lyrics are not subtle, and a lot of preaching. From the album opener you know your going to get christian served hardcore style lyrics in your face from beginning to end, which...yeah, I can tolerate it. The band seems to be heading in a metallic hardcore style (it should be noted that lead singer Justin was a short lived singer for christian straight edge hardcore group xDeathstarx). Justin's vocals give a hardcore growl throughout, and backup vocalist Angela gives a scream somewhat similar to Arch Enemy's own Angela (maybe it's in the name), throughout the entire album both of the singers pitches do not change, and I think they realized that their vocals will get dull after a few tracks, so they needed a way to switch things up in the vocal area, so they brought in a lot of guest vocalists....a lot, almost every song includes at least 1 guest vocalist laying down and giving that song a it's own feel, which help each song feel different. The guitars are entirely comprised of down tuned, simple, but effective riffs, sometimes giving it a doom metal feeling.
The title track shows the primary sound of this band, and if you look past the overly preachy lyrics ("This is our generation, we will show no fear, we are building an army, lord hear our prayers"), you'll find that the entire song, especially the guitars while aforementioned being simple none the less have some energy behind it. "I Dub City" opens up with an almost doom-ish sound, before going into a Liferuiner-esgue type riff. This song is one of the slower tracks on the album, but built for 2-stepin (not a dancer myself though), and Eric of xDeathstarx delivers a clean Randy Blythe vocal deilvery, which honestly wasn't bad. "A New Hope" has to feature the preachiest of lyrics I've heard in recent memory, it also tries to give off the tough guy vibe while at the same time being christian, completely counter acting itself. "Let Your Kingdom Come" is one of the finest songs on the entire album, it's quite brutal one might say. Vocal delivery of all 4 vocalists really drive this song home, as well as the guitars and drums. There's a ton of energy on this track, and it shows the potential in this band. "Iron Sharpens Iron" is again a step back and quite boring, nuff said. "The Road Less Traveled (Conviction)" is the best song on the entire album, a catchy as hell riff? CHECK! an awesome delivery of vocals, especially by Brook of Impending Doom? CHECK! full of energy? DOUBLE CHECK! "The Way, The Truth, The Life" is strictly a song for the live show, and fans. It's a punk song with nothing but gang vocals. "In A Time Where Hope is Lost" the opening riff sounds pretty cool, but the gang vocals are not this band's strong point. This song seems to taken up some influence from the song Davidian by Machine Head, it's the only one with a drum solo, nothing special, but it does offer a nice change of pace. "Dawning of a New Day" seems to offer something slower and mellower, and wouldn't be too hard to see on a Demon Hunter or As I Lay Dying album. It really caught me by surprise in a good way, a nice way to end the album.
This album doesn't break boundaries, it doesn't do anything new, in fact you've probably heard something like this all before, but that doesn't make it bad. Besides some overly preachy/cliche lyrics, and the guitars being overly-simple at times, the album has a lot of energy and spirit, which makes for a fun listen. The variety of guest vocals are also a nice touch, though some will complain that there's way too many. The production also adds some grit to it while still being clean enough for others.
Let Your Kingdom Come
The Road Less Traveled (Conviction)
In A Time Where Hope is Lost
Dawning of a New Day
Songs to Skip-
A New Hope
Iron Sharpens Iron
The Way, The Truth, The Life