Review Summary: Silent Planet's finest; metalcore's finest.
Metalcore has been a pretty saturated genre. Rarely venturing into any sort of experimentation, band after band has attempted to create something new, but ultimately fall into the same generic sounding metalcore structure and overall sound. Suddenly, from the pits of the despair, Silent Planet arises. Everything Was Sound
explores new territory, mixing in technical drumming, off-beat tempo beats, and aggressively quite moments. What Silent Planet really shows is their ability to stand out in a genre that is often so monotonous, utilizing an amalgamation of brutal instrumentation and ferocious vocals topped with clean guitars and groovy drums in moments of quiet verses.
What sets this record apart from others of the genre is the atmosphere of which it produces. Throughout the duration of the album, Everything Was Sound
sounds almost full to the brim with sound, with instrumentation and ambiance constantly fulfilling the background. This is mainly accomplished by the guitars, both clean and distorted, as they strum their way through the record. Often times, the guitars are full of gritty aggression, utilizing power chords and scaled riffs that invoke a sense of chaos as the strings jump from slow chugging to speedy fretboard action. “Psychescape” and “No Place to Breathe” both apply this odd use of dissonant chord progression and solo-like note picking, making way for some of the band’s best guitar work out there. When not bestowing the use of distortion, the guitars are filled with clean reverb and delay, allowing for an ambiance of mellowness in the midst of destruction. “Tout Comprendre” and “C’est tout pardonner” both implement a feeling of ‘calm in the storm’ as they rely on clean guitar volume swells, garnished with effects before erupting into cathartic messes in the songs following. Sadly, following the guitar patterns is a bass that is almost completely inaudible. With the potential to create an even heavier, deeper sound of riffing and chugging for the band, it fails to elicit a booming tone for the band. However, this doesn’t drag down the sound of the album immensely as it still remains heavy, atmospheric, and interesting overall.
Accompanying the melody inducers is a drum performance of technicality and originality. Even though the grooves often comply to the same metalcore rhythm of double-bass reliant beats, the drums still manage to set themselves apart from other performances among contemporaries. Often mixing in ghost notes, the drums contain an aspect of extra power that is ultimately unrecognizable in the industry, elevating the performance to a higher level of impressiveness for what it is. The intro of “Panic Room” and the middle of “REDIVIDER” showcase the ability to perform outside of the boundaries of metalcore limitations as it incorporates grooves not often found in this style of music. In fact, Silent Planet’s whole performance is just that: limit pushing.
Although the instrumentation is phenomenal for what it is, the vocal performance is the true standout here. Mainly focusing upon harsh vocals, Everything Was Sound
mixes intense guttural screams, yells, and shouts throughout. Applying the general metalcore expectations, some clean vocals are implemented throughout, but they happen to add a new level to the music, almost allowing for a break from the constant harsh vocals persistent throughout. Interestingly enough, Silent Plant also incorporates an almost rap-like flow within their vocals. In “Nervosa” and “No Place to Breathe”, the harsh vocals flow over borderline rapped verses that don’t sound forced and add a new sense of chaos and speed to the album. The lyrics uttered from these performances are truly breathtaking. Severing ties with the stereotypical depressing lyrics regarding self-esteem or anger, Silent Planet actually take the time to write though-provoking phrases. ”I learned to live as you learned to die”
and ”Words lose sound with every fathom/Further down, torn between two worlds
are just a few of the intellectual words declared throughout Everything Was Sound
as they take influence from works of modern art and ancient philosophy, something that isn’t really thought much of in this industry.
Overall, Silent Planet’s sophomore record emphasizes their standings in the metalcore genre; nearly at the top of the ladder. There is no ‘sophomore slump’ here, nor is there ‘boring genericore.’ Instead, Everything Was Sound
is truly one of the best records of modern metalcore, shining above and beyond the albums of their contemporaries. This is only the beginning of Silent Planet’s successful future. This is metalcore at its finest.