Darkest Hour did something new with their latest album Undoing Ruin
. They made metalcore, only without the core. Iíd read many, many reviews on this prior to firing up my P2P program and downloading it, and believe me, I read them well. Some were biased (Iím looking at you, Kripes.: p) some were fair, and some sucked. So, against my better judgement, I got this piece of ďposer" metalcore.
All that said, itís still a great album. Catchy riffs, heavy-ass drums, and great barked vocals meld perfectly to make this baby. There are some really great tracks. As a matter of fact, they are all good, and yet very boring. But at the same time, interesting. Confused? Pick up the album. Thatís all I can really say for now. But on to the good and the bad:
Vocalist John Henry has a very Mikeal Stanne (Dark Tranquillity) like voice. Itís phlegmy, yet mot disgusting. It crafts a nice atmosphere, and itís a great metalcore voice. Then again, it does say the same throughout the entire album, and you may end up getting awfully sick of it.
The two guitarists Kris Norris and Mike Schleibaum arenít very technically proficient, but they craft some great melodies and some seriously brutal riffs. At times, the guitar parts become tedious and repetitive, albeit quite rarely.
Convalescence and Paradise
The single of the album, ďConvalescence" is a powerful mainstream metal song with some pop-punk influences. Pop-punk hater though I am, I still love the song endlessly. Its half-sung chorus of:
ďOh confinement binds you and nothing scares me nothing thrills me
I've fooled myself into believing that nothing ails me
nothing kills me"
is catchy as hell, and itís a damn good thing itís repeated. Even the poppy chords at the beginning of the song are lovable. If you are going to download on song off of this album, make it ďConvalescence."
The latter song, ďParadise", would be an exquisite choice for a second single. It is also somewhat mainstream, it involves power chords, and is overall one of the greatest songs I have ever heard by a NWOAHM band. As usual, John is at the top of his game vocally, the guitars are fairly simple and yet heavy. Overall, itís great.
I feel very, very sorry for Darkest Hourís bassist Paul Burnette. He is drowned out completely in every single song on this album. Thereís not much else I can say about the bass, as I canít hear a single note of it.
Hereís the problem with nearly every non-death metal band: bad drumming. Trivium, Carcass, In Flames, Unearth, and He Is Legend all suffer from this ailment. Being somewhat of a drummer myself, I really appreciate some crazy fills, blast beats or even double bass rolls. Oh no though, none of that for this band. Ryan Parrish seems perfectly content with his ďdo ca" (bass drum-snare) beat, as he utilizes it on each and every track.
With A Thousand Words To Say But One
Iíll be perfectly honest with all of you: I honestly hate this song. It tries to hard to be melodic death metal and fails nearly completely. It sounds like a crappy rip-off of a two-bit Dark Tranquillity song. A VERY crappy rip-off.
On Undoing Ruin
, every song sounds similar, if not exactly the same. The two guitarists put the same method of riffing in most songs, with the exception of the aforementioned ďConvalescence". Johnís vocals are indeed redundant in many of the songs, and the bass and drums are nearly always below the norm of this genre.
Well, after I listened to this for the first time, a 56% seemed very, very appropriate. The next time, 79% seemed just peachy. Well, now that Iíve written this review, and rid myself of a few opinions that were aching to escape, a
*Resubmitted after the crash*