Release DetailsLABEL Dressed To Kill Records
RELEASED ON 6/28/2005
posted on 9/2005 By:
In spite of the fact I’m a huge metalcore fan, I am starting to finally ask myself “How many more of these recycled At The Gates, European inspired American thrash core bands can I stand?” The Black Dahlia Murder, damn their eyes seem responsible for opening the floodgates for any guitar wielding suburban teenager that heard Slaughter of the Soul then gather some hardcore friends, record an album and get a record deal with some overnight pop up label. That appears to be the mantra for Philadelphia’s The Divining.
Now don’t get me wrong, if you are into the likes of The Autumn Offering, The Black Dahlia Murder, Darkest Hour, Light This City, Neaera, The Red Death, Faust Again and the other hordes of like minded European based, neo thrash melodic death core, you might like this, when I got past the shoulder sagging realization of what genre it was, I actually kind of liked it too, but I still don’t think it's a necessary album. There’s lot of modern thrash riffage, a slight hardcore lean to the slower moments and a generally aggressive, high octane approach, but The Divining just don’t have that extra oomph or song writing panache to liven up the tired genre, especially when trying to compete stylistically with the likes of The Black Dahlia Murder and Darkest Hour.
The opening track actually sets their own bar at a decent height with the energetic title track, but then two slower, more melo-death type tracks, “Beyond the Point of Return” and “In Hiding” really put the brakes on the band’s solid opener and interest quickly wanes. An entire album of tracks like “Casualty”, “Thrown to the Wolves” and “Over Distant Shadowed Hills” and “Tongues of Flame” would have held my attention, although admittedly, “Final March” has a nice mid paced gait to it that breaks up the solid intensity whereas the earlier slow tracks serve to bog down the albums early stages. Things all being said though, The Divining seem to have enough ability to pull of their chosen style with gusto when they buckle down and thrash; their melodics and pacing is a little lacking though-two elements necessary to give character to this style of music. The vocals are the typical sort of hardcore meets Gothenburg scream, and the production is a little thin, but not every band has Metal Blade’s budget.
The Divining are a solid yet pretty run of the mill modern US metal act retreading many other elements and although retreading them with a decent results, they just don’t have enough of the intangibles to break from a strictly middle tier designation.
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