Review Summary: When I heard that they were adopting the 7-string drop A trend, I was mortified. 30 seconds into "Honor Guide Me!" changed that immediately.
I think it goes without saying that Conducting From The Grave is one of the most talented bands in the metalcore/deathcore scene. Their dual-guitar melodies, use of odd scales, their rare breakdown passages, and their never-ending ability to write well-crafted solos has made them stand out for awhile. However, when I heard that they were adopting the 7-string drop A trend, I was mortified. 30 seconds into "Honor Guide Me!" changed that immediately.
The music has taken a heavier turn for sure. While this is the first time they have implemented clean vocals, these songs contain more buildups and breakdowns than any of their previous albums. They have always had the ability to lead from one passage of a song to the next both swiftly and comfortably without throwing off the listener and they still do it well. An example of a rather nice breakdown would be the ending of Lycan.
This album definitely contains the best production quality in their discography. The bass isn't as audible as it was on When Legends Become Dust though. The drums are powerful and and very evenly mixed. The vocals sit on top of the mix well but aren't overbearing. The guitars, though. The guitars are just perfection. Every single note is heard perfectly but not overly-produced like Within The Ruins. It is truly a delight to be able to hear everything perfectly as opposed to many bands in this genre.
Every song is very well-written. "Signs" has their signature dual-guitar harmony build up similar to "The Skies are Blackened..." from When Legends Become Dust. Surprisingly, a new driving force on this album is the superior lyricism. The same song "Signs" seems to take an either religious or political turn with the lines: "Our world, this place engulfed in our bloodshed, ir our arrogant attempt at controlling what we are. So now, we take our shots in the dark to justify the reasons, but this is who we are...".
If metalcore/deathcore has always been a genre you could sleep through then let this album change your mind. Conducting From The Grave have outdone pretty much every great metalcore/deathcore album. Outdoing Born of Osiris' "The Discovery, The Contortionist's "Exoplanet", and The Faceless' "Planetary Duality".
Recommended Tracks: Signs, Into The Rabbit Hole, and Tyrant.