Ice Nine Kills
The Predator Becomes the Prey


3.5
great

Review

by Gameofmetal EMERITUS
June 30th, 2014 | 33 replies


Release Date: 2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Ice Nine Kills releases an album entirely alien to their roots, but also their best yet.

Ice Nine Kills is one of those bands that evolves so much that you can’t recognize them as the same group you first stumbled across. The band’s first handful of albums and EPs dabbled in a mixture of alt rock, pop punk, and ska, while their next full length, Safe Is Just A Shadow turned into a fairly accessible post hardcore record, albeit with some decidedly more aggressive tones. Then came The Predator and another incarnation of Ice Nine Kills was born. Taking a few steps farther from their last benchmark, the band tackled a much heavier and more visceral metalcore sound, with their trademark catchiness still intact. Finally, The Predator Becomes The Prey continues the previous EPs theme into the heaviest form the band has explored. While it’s more or less a baby step compared to the jumps in sound previously exacted, it’s also the most complete and effective product the band has made yet.

The album kicks off with one of its stronger tracks, "The Power In Belief". While it’s a minor detail, it’s notably refreshing to see a post hardcore/metalcore release that doesn’t begin with an ineffective minute long intro full of samples or breakdowns. Instead, the opening riff exhibits both energy and technicality, and kicks the album off in powerful fashion. There is a solid interplay of harsh vocals between lead vocalist Spencer Charnas, who maintains a higher scream in addition to clean vocals, and guitarist JD, who adds a very good low growl for additional variety. Ice Nine Kills strictly structures their songs in the traditional rock format, and it works with their accessible sound. A refreshing guitar solo in the back half helps to keep it interesting beyond the tight structure.

The Predator Becomes The Prey’s concise runtime and balance of melody vs. aggression keeps the album entertaining throughout, without a hint of drag. The front half especially emphasizes the band’s heavy side with vicious cuts like “Let’s Bury The Hatchet…In Your Head” and “Connect The Cuts”. The latter is easily the heaviest thing to come from the band, at times verging dangerously close to deathcore. The back half by comparison features the band’s softer side in abundance. “Jonathan” is a standout with particularly touching lyrics about a blinded friend, and “What I Never Learned In Study Hall”, despite being a previously released song on The Predator EP, still has one of the best hooks Ice Nine Kills has come up with.

Charnas impresses with his vocal range and hook filled melodies, but the true standout is the riffwork found on the album. Shredding leads are littered throughout the record and fast paced riffs abound. Even the breakdowns are lifted to new levels with unpredictable patterns and leads that add much needed color to their potentially monotonous soundscapes.

It’s a little disappointing that three tracks were recycled from previous releases however. “The Coffin Is Moving” and “What I Never Learned In Study Hall” are both appropriated from The Predator and “The Product Of Hate” is a standalone single released in between. While they’re all fine songs on their own, it hints at a bit of laziness on the band’s part and many will wish they had just written a few more new tracks instead. However, what really holds the record down is that it’s still not breaking any new ground for the genre. Ice Nine Kills loves to jump around stylistically, but they fail to push any of these styles further. Regardless of this, The Predator Becomes The Prey is an excellent addition to both the genre and the band’s discography, and easily the best from Ice Nine Kills yet.



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user ratings (234)
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Gameofmetal
Emeritus
June 30th 2014


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Uh oh the tab button wouldn't work so I spaced over for paragraphs but it doesn't seem to have translated. Please forgive me.

BMDrummer
June 30th 2014


15158 Comments


Go to edit reviews under your profile and fix it then

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
June 30th 2014


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Thanks



Necrotica
June 30th 2014


10693 Comments


I like how the band's name is a reference to Cat's Cradle... great satirical book if you guys haven't read it yet. Band seems
alright too

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
June 30th 2014


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Actually nevermind. I tried spacing some more but it still looks the same. When I tab it goes to the next box instead of tabbing the review.

hogan900
June 30th 2014


3317 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

The burning is probably the best thing this band released, but good review. A true Bokononist would be proud.

Sharpyyy
July 1st 2014


109 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

album is grand

J3wFro69
September 2nd 2014


67 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Would love to see what their next release is like, this was great. Have a Pos for this review sir

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
September 3rd 2014


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Oh why thank you sir. Bit late but I will accept it nonetheless

nononsense
September 13th 2014


3542 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Band is trying to hide their generic sound behind decent dual screaming vocals and lead guitar lines taken straight from Periphery.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
September 13th 2014


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Periphery? Really? Wow I just don't see the connection.

nononsense
September 13th 2014


3542 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I'm not taking about the lead chugging stuff, I'm talking about the lead harmonizing pitch stuff.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
September 13th 2014


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Not really following tbh.

nononsense
September 13th 2014


3542 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Listen to the lead harmonizing licks in Bury The Hatchet and The Coffin then listen to any Periphery song that focuses on harmonizing licks and maybe you'll see the similarities. Maybe I'm just overthinking it. I don't know.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
September 13th 2014


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Idk I'm just not seeing it. I get a big old school The Word Alive vibe from the shreddy leads over chugging but that's about it.

nononsense
September 17th 2014


3542 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Went back and listened to the full album for the first time and I don't know where I got the Periohery comparison in the lead guitar parts. Part of "The Coffin Is Moving" sounds vaguely like them but I was wrong. The album itself is okay, I feel like if they had synth this is what Motionless In White would sound like if they reached full potential.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
September 17th 2014


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

I can sort of see that with this new darker horror vibe on this album. Sweet band. I have a soft spot for them from when I first found them.

Flugmorph
June 19th 2015


34648 Comments


INK NIN

Nine Inch Nails
Ice Nine Kills

hmmmm

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
June 19th 2015


11659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

lulz eagle in hat sees thing man does not

Flugmorph
June 19th 2015


34648 Comments


i thought that would be super obvious



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