Review Summary: Having released a very well received debut album, Bleed From Within have built on the momentum they obtained from "Humanity" and released and extremely solid and consistant album.
Bleed from Within are a Scottish Deathcore band from Glasgow.
(A bit of a ramble on how I got into this band, skip the following paragraph if you want to go straight to the review)
This band immediately grabbed my attention when I viewed the video clip for the song "Servants of Divinity", of their debut album. I was immediately attracted to non-generic song structure and excellent musicianship that was shown in this song. Upon hearing of a sophomore being album so soon after their first album, I was intrigued to hear what path this band would take.
The great fear with sophomore albums in the core scene is the tendancy for massive slumps and bands conforming to trends (see The Crimson Armada for best example). However with Bleed From Within's second album, "Empire", they have cemented themselves as a band to watch for the future.
Perhaps it is their lack of trend-following that is the reason for Bleed From Within's rather obscure status. You will not find whiny generic clean vocals, no generic riffs, not even any generic breakdowns in the course of listening to this album (I apologize for the overuse of the word "generic", but in the death/metalcore scene, generic tendancies are a major negative factor for many bands). The lack of these things, coupled with BFW's great songwriting ability and musical talent, makes for an album everyone can enjoy, but many scene worshippers may not like because of the lack of breakdowns etc.
Production on this album is a standout, whereas "Humanity" suffered from some unbalanced mixing (mainly vocals), "Empire" portrays a very clean sound and balanced instruments (even bass is audilbe D:). The guitars and drums are evenly mixed, which allows for the listener to truly appreciated the skill that is present in both instruments, and the vocals no longer sound too loud.
If this album could be summed up in one word, it would be "consistent". Whilst no songs truly standout as being obviously better than the others (other than "The Healing", which is the best song on the album), all songs are enjoyable and no filler is present. This helps to accent one of this album's major positives: variation. All of the songs on "Empire", whilst undeniably core, contain various elements of metal that help to add to the longevity of the album, in that the listener will not feel like the songs just blend together and sound the same. A prime example of this is the song "Vanity"; it starts off with a very Slayer-esque intro, then transitions into a black metal styled riff, then alternates between core and the aforementioned styles for the duration of the song. This well executed change of styles is what makes "Empire" such an enjoyable album.
This album is an instant recommend to any fan of extreme metal, be it scene kid or elitist. This is because "Empire" portrays one of the only generic-free examples of deathcore in existance, and shows what deathcore can really offer to metal. I would be very interested to see what reasons an elitist would have to hate on this album since it is devoid of deathcore stereotypes.
Overall very consistent
Vocals can be quite overly harsh at times
Very quite bass