Light the Torch
Revival


2.5
average

Review

by Robert Garland CONTRIBUTOR (249 Reviews)
March 30th, 2018 | 60 replies


Release Date: 2018 | Tracklist

Review Summary: It’s A New Beginning, a Revival.

The back story about Light The Torch and Howard Jones surpasses the need to discuss new music under this moniker. Since quitting his position as Killswitch Engage’s frontman and vocalist things haven’t exactly been on the up and up for Howard in a group setting. A run of featured positions with other bands (Within Temptation just to mention one) and an unsuccessful approach to stepping out of the KsE shadow he made for himself have resulted in a series of consistent, yet unremarkable albums for his new band. For the band formerly known as Devil You Know and the changing of the band name due to ex-members name rights, Light The Torch marks another “new beginning” for Jones and co. without actually creating any steam for a group that should actually be hitting its stride.

Fairly, Devil You Know, I mean Light The Torch (oops) can actually write some pretty decent metalcore, suited to the commercial setting they produce and promote their art. Tracks like “Shut It Down” and “Seven Years Alone” (off the group’s debut) helped define these artists that were mostly known due to the success found with their previous projects. The hard-hitting, no frills approach to their new music helped (as well as the already noted success between Killswitch Engage and All Shall Perish) launch them directly into an international setting with tours and festivals shortly thereafter. Four years later and another full-length under the band’s belt (before the well publicised leaving of drummer John Sankey and name change) Light The Torch have conformed, releasing possibly the safest release of 2018. Unfortunately, for the band Revival is less the new beginning the band was looking for and more of a forgettable triage into more of the same.

The album’s leading single and opener, “Die Alone” continues in the same vein as the group’s previous records. Bombastic riffs on the back of some by the book instrumentation lead to some well-trodden metalcore. Add Howard’s unchanging vocal style and it’s clear that Light The Torch are running on autopilot. One thing is clear though, the lyrical content Jone’s employs hasn’t really evolved past the ideals of separation and loneliness leading into the realms faced by death fearing mortals. Considering what is to come after, “Die Alone” is actually an album highlight. Fillers of different levels pepper the new record, creating a need for new listeners and even fans to skip to their “favourite” or at least more preferred tracks. For better or worse Light The Torch have crafted some effortless tracks, natural to the way these guys ‘want’ to make music these days. Understandably the listener could be forgiven in requesting more effort where the new album’s tracks are concerned. The simple structuring and by the book soundscape are well-executed, but unfortunately forgettable by the record’s end.

Some tracks do make their way above the “filler” status they give themselves, but they’re definitely here and there rather than throughout the entirety of the new album. “The Sound Of Violence” marks itself as a clear highlight. Jones’ vocal power brings back the flair found in his Blood Has Been Shed days. Largely it’s the attention to lifted energy that helps push “The Sound Of Violence” into fist pumping, head banging territory. The record’s closing piece is also worth a mention. “Judas Convention” is an emotive vocal led power ballad in the style only Howard Jones could achieve. The track itself hardly distinguished itself from the rest of the band’s catalogue, slightly marring its chance to be a completely memorable track but when all things considered it does show the capabilities of the Light The Torch members in terms of writing simple, yet powerful songs.

Overall it’s hard to find fault with a band simply doing what they are surely capable of. Equally it’s just as difficult to praise a band’s efforts in writing same-y, unremarkable tracks with a tendency to whine through the same motifs. If Light The Torch are looking for “a new beginning” they need to push past the band’s comfort zones and attempt innovative songwriting within a used and abused genre soundscape. If you were indeed a fan of the music found within the group’s debut and sophomore there’s definitely something here that will tick enough boxes for you to listen repeatedly. For the rest of us, the search continues for something truly memorable.



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user ratings (38)
Chart.
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Comments:Add a Comment 
NocteDominum
Contributing Reviewer
March 30th 2018


8839 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

For Fripp’s Bi-weekly Review Comp (30-3-18)

Toondude10
March 30th 2018


13242 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I don't know, I think this is pretty darn good. Howard sounds so much better than he did the last two albums.

Digging: Ice Nine Kills - The Silver Scream

DDDeftoneDDD
March 30th 2018


2078 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

ok. I got your point in the review. Don't know these guys, but enjoyed you used some references this time, so i can know what to expect. I missed more of those sensorial allegories, but i guess this didn't made you feel much lol A more Bio approach this time. Probably you have reviews where you mix the 2 concepts which didn't catch yet, but i like your work.



I will listen to this, cause i just loved the first 4 votes distribution though.

Digging: High on Fire - Electric Messiah

parksungjoon
March 30th 2018


8320 Comments


sounds like i'd hate it, good review

TheSpirit
Contributing Reviewer
March 30th 2018


24210 Comments


nice review rob... saw these guys live two years ago w/devildriver and they killed it. i the songs were only okay but howard is still a helluva performer. i'll probably skip this though, sounds...mediocre.

jmh886
March 30th 2018


2130 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

band name sucks. but i did not know howard was even doing anything. might check this.

parksungjoon
March 30th 2018


8320 Comments


hey i got a joke for ya

verb the noun

haha

MoosechriS
March 30th 2018


6348 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I was debating getting this when i was out today, i heard the single that was released and it was alright but didn’t exactly blow me away. Review sounds like the entire album carries that same sentiment. Kinda glad i swerved this and bought the new napalm death comp instead.



Cool review by the way dude.

parksungjoon
March 30th 2018


8320 Comments


dude you cant go wrong with napalm death lets be real here

MoosechriS
March 30th 2018


6348 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is true, new comp slay by the way.

MarsKid
March 30th 2018


7193 Comments


Good stuff my man. I actually didn't know Howard was still in the game tbh

Digging: Black Peaks - All That Divides

pjquinones747
March 30th 2018


2597 Comments


Based on the personnel and stylistic shift from sub-par melodeath influenced metalcore to radio butt metal this is a near lock to be 2/5 at best

EDIT: who am i kidding? i'm not going to listen to this just to verify the inevitable truth of my statement. i'll keep my shitty ratings to myself.

Digging: Hail the Sun - Mental Knife

parksungjoon
March 30th 2018


8320 Comments


agreed lets all jam napalm death instead

pjquinones747
March 30th 2018


2597 Comments


Sometimes listening to something that you know is gonna get a big fat 2 is more disappointing than listening to something only to realize halfway into the first song that it's a 1.

MarsKid
March 30th 2018


7193 Comments


To be fair, you are entering with negative expectations. You'll either have them confirmed which is what you wanted to happen anyways--your mind will influence you to think it's average or worse even when it may not--or you will give them an unnecessarily high reward for doing something only slightly noteworthy.

Or it's just bad and honestly why am I defending it somewhat lol

parksungjoon
March 30th 2018


8320 Comments


in terms of disappointment sure but man ive heard some 1s that were miserably painful to sit through i couldnt even laugh it was that bad

pjquinones747
March 30th 2018


2597 Comments


Yes, I do this to myself a lot. When it comes to the melodeath influenced metalcore (Trivium, Killswitch Engage, All That Remains, etc) I'm incredibly jaded at how these bands can't seem to keep up the pace and newer bands that try to keep the style alive almost always suck and/or eventually give up the melodeath dippings for shitty breakdowns and catchy choruses.

MarsKid
March 30th 2018


7193 Comments


Yeah, I totally get you. I was mostly talking out of my ass. I know I do the same things to different genres, or I at least set high expectations for them that looks down heavily upon thoaw that miss them.

Give In Dread Response - Heavenshore a spin. Melo-death/metalcore but done in a way definitely separate from the bands you listed. Might be in for a pleasant surprise.

pjquinones747
March 30th 2018


2597 Comments


Hell yeah. Last time I found a band who does that style exactly how I like it, it was Sylosis and now Josh Middleton has pushed Sylosis to the side for Architects because he knows the old style is fucking dying out.

bloc
March 30th 2018


52176 Comments


Wow I didn't know there was another band with Howard on vocals. Might have to check this out just for that.

Digging: Beyond Creation - Algorythm



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