We Came As Romans
Understanding What We've Grown to Be


2.0
poor

Review

by Dr. Luke Sarazine USER (3 Reviews)
September 14th, 2011 | 87 replies | 13,503 views


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: “Have you ever felt like you did everything right, but it still went all wrong?”

9 of 19 thought this review was well written

First off, if you were not a fan of We Came As Romans' previous effort “To Plant A Seed”, this CD will not do a single thing to change that. That being said, this is the second full-length release by this metalcore sextet from Troy, Michigan. “To Plant A Seed” featured a few standout tracks (the title-track and “Roads That Don't End and Views That Never Cease”) with some other noteworthy moments throughout the CD, but filler and overproduction killed any shot that record had at being too memorable. The overproduction and the filler return once again in “Understanding What We've Grown To Be”, but that is not the only problem that plagues this CD.

The first track and lead single “Mis//Understanding” fades into Dave Stephens improving scream. His vocals have made an obvious improvement from “To Plant A Seed” and is one thing that this band has going for them. However, incredibly obvious auto-tune on Kyle Pavone's vocals (more on that later) and the standard-fare metalcore chugging ruin this track along with the rest of the album.

The following four tracks are nothing but filler, a problem that haunted their previous work. Calling it generic would be just about right, with simple musicianship and lots of unnecessary breakdowns and synth keys. “The War Inside” comes to mind when thinking of unnecessary. Midway through the song, guitarists Brian “Lou” Cotton and Josh Moore decide to quit their bro-tastic breakdown and give way for Pavone’s auto-tuned vocals over a simple GarageBand instrumental. Some people think it is "cool" or "different" for metalcore acts to insert string sections into the bridges of songs. It may be "different", but that does not make it good by any means at all.

The second half of “Understanding What We’ve Grown To Be” follows the same dismal path as the first half, with the only semi-noteworthy track being “Understanding What We’ve Grown To Be”. Lyrically, the band is the same, sticking to clean lyrics with positive messages of perseverance, integrity, and hope. Here is some “inspiration” from the title track:

Tonight, when I look into the sky
I know this is why I am alive
So sing with me if you feel this feeling

I'm alive

Individually, each member has either grown or experienced no growth at all and it is unfortunately as simple as that. As aforementioned, Dave Stephens’ screams have improved and are somewhat of a highlight on this album. Guitarists Brian “Lou” Cotton and Josh Moore insist on keeping their musicianship as simple as possible, and it is almost impossible to determine if bassist Andrew Glass has improved at all as his bass in nearly inaudible as the case is in 90% of metalcore acts today. Drummer Eric Choi has not improved much from “To Plant a Seed”, but keeps things fresh with a few interesting fills here and there. This leaves us with clean vocalist Kyle Pavone.

Kyle Pavone’s vocals are more or less a staple for We Came As Romans. Without auto-tune he sounds like most of the vocalists in the metalcore vein (Jeremy DePoyster of The Devil Wears Prada comes to mind), high-pitched and at times irritating. To make matters worse, producer Joey Sturgis insists on overproducing the vocals by lacing them with obvious, obnoxious auto-tune. His vocals are pretty much the same as on their previous effort, and they are indeed irritating at times.

If you are a fan of this band or generic metalcore, than you will probably enjoy this very much. “To Plant A Seed” was loaded with potential, but unfortunately, that also means potential to fail as is the case with “Understanding What We’ve Grown To Be”. This leaves them with room only to improve.

Recommended Tracks:
Mis//Understanding
Understanding What We've Grown To Be


user ratings (409)
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other reviews of this album
Christian Davila (3)
We Came As Romans doin' what they do best....


Comments:Add a Comment 
sspedding
September 14th 2011



4752 Comments


without autotune the clean vocalist for these is easily one of the worst singers around. Youtube their live shows, absolutely hilarious. De Poynster can at least sing.

Recspecs
September 14th 2011



9829 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Only my second review, so any criticism will be well received.

But yeah this blows, I had to listen to Pendulum while writing this just to forget how bad this CD is

Digging: Borgore - #NewGoreOrder

Recspecs
September 14th 2011



9829 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

@sspedding I know he can sing, Pavone kinda remind me of him that's all I'm saying

lucasjcockcroft
September 14th 2011



3703 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

i get the comparison, but he is absolutely atrocious live.

Xplisit
September 14th 2011



1646 Comments


jeremy isnt very good live either but better than this guy yes

PistolPete
September 14th 2011



3579 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This is pretty weak, even for them, but I loved the song "Just Keep Breathing" off the first listen lol

Digging: Jolly - The Audio Guide to Happiness (Part 2)

InFiction
September 14th 2011



3645 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Nice review. I've been trying to write mine for a few days now but I just can't seem to put my thoughts into words, despite being clear on my contention.

Pharoh
September 14th 2011



3326 Comments


I Perfer these type of lyrics, better than generic anti-religion bs or heartbreak.

Pos'd

Pharoh
September 14th 2011



3326 Comments


"90% of metalcore acts today"


Woah where did you get this wild figure at?

fish.
Contributing Reviewer
September 14th 2011



21767 Comments


that video advert at the top just makes me want to punch them all in the face

xist
September 14th 2011



171 Comments


After the awful To Plant a Seed this just isn't likely to be any good..but just been reading some live reviews after seeing spedding's comment. Wow...people really hate Pavone a lot!

WheresChris
September 14th 2011



21 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I wrote my review right away just to get it out there but after more listens, this album is just terrible. Good review.

HenchmanOfSanta
September 14th 2011



1856 Comments


This awful band is from ~30 minutes from me and their stupid video ad is embarrassing for them and anyone with decent musical taste in Oakland County.

RosaParks
September 14th 2011



14836 Comments


lol lucas gave this a 3.5
what a surprise

decent musical taste in Oakland County.

most people in oakland county have shit taste idk

Recspecs
September 14th 2011



9829 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

@Pharoh Lol I was generalizing it probably is not that high of a number

sspedding
September 14th 2011



4752 Comments


good review btw, especially since you are still new to it. Have a pos.

Recspecs
September 14th 2011



9829 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Thanks guys

Crymsonblaze
September 14th 2011



7479 Comments


watching some of a live set on yt out of curiosity, they seem pretty bad

RosaParks
September 14th 2011



14836 Comments


they're sloppy as fuck

Acanthus
September 14th 2011



9537 Comments


Liked their debut, right album at the right time. Won't get this however, no desire to return to the genre.

Digging: The Cure - The Head on the Door



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