Review Summary: Better then your everyday Metalcore album.
Metalcore fits the shoes of many bands, some completely different from other bands labelled under the same style. Raging from melodic metalcore bands such as Killswitch Engage, to over the top heavy bands such as Converge. Zao have their own style to their name.
This album is nothing like the Zao you would have heard in their early albums, or "Liberate Te Ex Inferis." This album is something different. On the first listen to this album some of the songs just seem to be another metalcore song. But some of the songs are not just another metalcore song, they are something unique. The music on the album is what you would expect from a metalcore band. There is more of a hard-core sound on this album in most of the songs which is a good and bad thing. It’s a good thing because it sounds nice. The bad thing is some of the more hard-core riffs do not go good next to Daniel Weyandt vocals. The music could also be beautiful melodic at time (Listen to "Angel without wings.")
The drums on this album are good. But nothing breathtaking. Same with the bass, it’s just there. The guitars are the main point of the albums, playing a nice mix of metal and hard-core riffs. Even some blues/hard rock like sounding solo's. Overall in the music side this album is good. Not amazing, but good never the less.
The vocals on this album are heavy. That’s the only way I can explain his growls, which are used though the whole album. The cleans on the other hand are okay. Not amazing cleans but they still work with what’s been played. Overall in the Vocal side the album is great. His Growls too much of a good thing? Not on this album.
The experimental nurture of the band is shown in songs such as "Man in the Womb" and "The Ballad of Buddy Bigsby." The first of which is a great song, a refreshing change from heaviness. What makes it great is its only one song on the album like it, making it something unique. "The Ballad of Buddy Bigsby" Is nothing more than what it sounds like, filler.
Overall this is a great album with nothing clearly bad about it. Songs like "Angel without wings"; "Free the three" and "Suspend/Suspension" are the stand out tracks on the album to me.