Review Summary: Miles ahead of their horrendous debut, and a polished improvement of their sophomore release, "A New Day" is an enjoyable enough metalcore record.
Four Letter Lie is a metalcore band, and in the metalcore scene they don't have a history of really standing out as being unique. A New Day
might actually change that fact. After a deplorable debut that sounded like a half-baked rehash of underOATH's They're Only Changing Safety
, and a follow up that sounded like every other mediocre metalcore album available, FLL have finally gotten their stuff together and put out an enjoyable album.
Where exactly has this album improved" In almost every aspect actually. The drumming here is fairly standard, but is certainly capable of holding the songs together. The guitars are nothing amazingly technical, but are at least more varied than ever before on a FLL album. The bass is essentially nonexistent, which is a genre standard, all things considered. The biggest improvement lies in the vocals. The screams were once monotonous and hollow sounding, but this time around they sound more visceral and powerful, and he actually manages to show some newfound range in his screaming, though they tend to stick around the standard mid pitch growl to high shriek.
This is definitely the heaviest FLL record to date, and the clean vocals have been trimmed down a lot. This is certainly not a bad thing, as most people won't miss the nasally crooning reminiscent of Mike Jagmin. (A Skylit Drive) What's left of the clean vocals are definitely improved though. The lyrics are aggressive and in your face, a welcome change from the terribly generic and often poorly written love drivel that comprised most of their older work.
A major contributing factor to how enjoyable of a listen this is, is that the songs are short. 5 clock in at about two and a half minutes, with the others treading three minute territory, but none reach the four minute mark. This makes for short, concise bursts of hard hitting metalcore that moves on to the next track before playing itself out and becoming tedious.
Album highlights include opener "Daymaker", which wastes no time in showing you that FLL ia heavier than ever, with all screamed vocals and lyrics pertaining to life on the road. The first single off the album, "Careless Lover" is another highlight thats shows some of the aforementioned vocal range that the vocalist has acquired. It also features some of the best guitar work by the band ever. Sadly, that's not saying much. "My Surrender" is another good track, and is the first appearance of clean vocals on the album, detailing the catchy-as-hell chorus. "Key To The World" sees the band dabbling with some electronics, and while contributing much, they are solid enough to provide a backdrop for some impressive vocal work in the song's introduction.
All in all, this album is generic and has been done before by other bands, and some do it better. But the fact remains that this is the first release where Four Letter Lie have made an album that is enjoyable instead of just bland. Give it a spin and judge for yourself.