Like Moths to Flames
The Cycles of Trying to Cope


4.5
superb

Review

by Matty CONTRIBUTOR (60 Reviews)
May 10th, 2024 | 96 replies


Release Date: 05/10/2024 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Drifting Apart Until We Fall

Growth is essential to longevity as we’ve seen with numerous successful bands in modern metalcore. Choosing a direction that both satisfies an existing fanbase and allows for genuine creativity for the musicians is a finicky balance that makes or breaks so many artists but in the case of Like Moths to Flames, they have seemingly moved into a creative space over their last few releases that hits the sweet spot. Formulating a beautiful union between fast, frantic, technical metalcore with immense melodic hooks without feeling shoehorned for the sake of accessibility. Following up the excellence of releases like ‘No Eternity in Gold’ and ‘Pure Like Porcelain’ is no easy task but LMTF have clearly fed off the challenge and have unleashed maybe their most captivating and well-rounded record to date.

The opening one-two punch of “Angels Weep” and “Paradigm Trigger” which happened to be our first exposure to this new era as they were released together as teasers, are no-nonsense bangers, highlighted by fast-paced technical drum work as well as some of lead vocalist Chirs Roetter’s most impressive growled vocals, summoning demonic lows and shrieking highs unlike we’ve heard from him prior. These singles feel like direct extensions of songs like “Fluorescent White” and “Preservation of Hate” off their last couple outings, really homing in on intensity and pace with elements of melody tossed into the fray occasionally. Also on display is lead guitarist Zach Pishney’s unique riff work leaning heavily on pinch harmonics and seamlessly weaving leadwork into rhythm patterns almost acting as two guitar players in one.

A given on any LMTF release is Roetter’s introspective lyricism which often focuses on struggle, depression, anxiety, anger and other emotions not unfamiliar to heavy music. On “Over the Garden Wall” Roetter explores an internal dialogue of depression and suicide leaning into visuals of vines and mold hindering his progress in life; “Overgrown like a vine, rooted into the hands of the clock, killing time, Am I just unwell these days, I’m not myself.” There’s no shortage of thought-provoking ideals splattered through the lyrics on this record with the track “To Know is To Die” exploring the frailty of life itself, the day-to-day dilemma of why do we survive? While not necessarily offering an answer to these inquiries, Roetter explores the darker liminal spaces of thought wondering what it would be like not to be here, to not encapsulate a physical space.

Transitioning back into the music side of this record, there’s a clear focus on diversity and decidedly investigating the many sides this band has dipped their toes in the past. A song like “Kintsugi” is a clear nod to a more ballady approach with mostly clean vocal melodies and swells of emotion impacting eardrums with less need for technicality. On the other, “The Shepherd’s Crown” is no frills heavy start-to-finish with little room to breathe, harnessing an overt desire to create something relentless that doesn’t need an expository chorus with a sharp contrasting melody to interrupt the flow of technicality. But also, this melding of heavy and melody is an integral part to their sound and success which is why a majority of tracks here can be seen utilizing this function of heavy verses, big riffs, sweaty breakdowns with big melodies nicely fitting into the tracks to over some space, some openness and room to breathe away from those crushing sections.

The most impressive part of this record is the consistency where dips in quality, dips in energy don’t seem to exist. It’s solid track after solid track with each melody and breakdown feeling essential to whole of this record. With eleven tracks at forty minutes, I feel like LMTF don’t overstay their welcome and offer us fans a nice concise slab of metalcore that we can enjoy over and over again. If I had to offer some sort of criticism, it might be that the formula that LMTF have established for themselves with this record isn’t new by any standard; it’s tried and true in many ways with many bands lurking into the heaviest and most technical sides of metalcore while still being able to establish a catchy tune but at the same time, my bias convinces me that LMTF are some of the best to do this style. They make it their own, they have a sort of niche following that is ravenous for this sound and are loyal to the core and I’m part of that. This is one of those releases that I have been anticipating for a long time and it did not disappoint!



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Comments:Add a Comment 
mkmusic1995
Contributing Reviewer
May 10th 2024


1788 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I have not had a lot of time for writing recently but with getting my wisdom teeth out aligning with the release of this album, I just wanted to write a little bit about my initial thoughts. An early contender for metalcore record of the year for me!

sspedding
May 10th 2024


5697 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is not bad at all

artificialbox
May 10th 2024


1733 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

hell yeah buddy, I knew you had to be cooking something up for this. will read when I get home from work.

El Olam
May 11th 2024


128 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Still can't believe the singer is Emarosa's original vocalist. He sounds completely different. Even on this band's ealrier albums

henryChinaski
May 11th 2024


5042 Comments


Started listening to their last two albums before this one a few weeks back and was pleasantly surprised. Kinda missed the point when they became good. Will check this out

outliers
May 11th 2024


5000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Still can't believe the singer is Emarosa's original vocalist. He sounds completely different. Even on this band's ealrier albums"



yeah his singing has improved dramatically, he was only 17ish when that was released



BallsToTheWall
May 11th 2024


51238 Comments


They sound really pissed off on here, good shit.

outliers
May 11th 2024


5000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

angels weep is such a sick opener

BallsToTheWall
May 11th 2024


51238 Comments


Agreed. The singer of this band really did not like it when I yelled harder daddy. But damn they rule live.

outliers
May 11th 2024


5000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

big shoutout to phisney for pulling these guys out of the depths of risecore hell

Beardog
May 11th 2024


5232 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Angels Weep is cool but I think very little else of this record properly sticks

bellovddd
May 11th 2024


6047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Damnnnn I gotta sus this. Very keen to see these dudes finally explode

artificialbox
May 11th 2024


1733 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Finally got around to reading this. Great job Matty, I would pos if you weren't contributor :P Now that I've listened to the record a few times and fully digested the non-singles I can really say this is a top tier release from them. Rating will probs go up to 4.5 after a few weeks.

mkmusic1995
Contributing Reviewer
May 12th 2024


1788 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Much appreciated @artificial! Glad you're digging it!

onionbubs
May 12th 2024


21109 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

i gotta jam this again and see if the stuff i wasnt digging has any room to grow on me but the fact i want to jam it again is a dub enough for these guys in my eyes lmao. never really been a fan but they kinda have something here in places, notably on the less clean centric songs like the opening duo

outliers
May 12th 2024


5000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

what do you think of dissociative being's chorus, bubs? i wasn't a big fan of these guys either pre-pure like porcelain largely due to their clean choruses, but i think they're finally showing improvement in that area. dissociative beings' melodies are so damn catchy lol, may end up being my SOTY so far

Beardog
May 12th 2024


5232 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

lol I thought the choruses here were a lot weaker than on previous records

onionbubs
May 12th 2024


21109 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

yeah i dont like the melodies here much at all lol it is the biggest thing holding this back

outliers
May 12th 2024


5000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ya there are some stinker melodies on this but imo the ones that do land (all 4 singles esp) are significantly better than their previous work. last LP's choruses are mostly all cookie cutter risecore, and chris sounds robotic at times due to how over-produced the vox are.

Durrzo
May 12th 2024


3303 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's a shame his melodies aren't better overall here, because I really enjoy his singing for the most part. This band is usually one of the few cases where I really don't mind having a clean chorus on most songs, but only of a few of these grabbed me. That's really my only nitpick though, this is a really strong release.



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