Release DetailsLABEL Roadrunner
RELEASED ON 8/9/2005
posted on 7/2005 By:
After completely turning the sophomore slump on its head and winning my most-improved band award of 2003, Ohio's Chimaira have returned for their 3rd Roadrunner release. They are back with more of the drum-heavy, half-thrash that characterized The Impossibility of Reason. this is a distinctly American sound, joining together Pantera's sense of groove, Fear Factory's unrelenting drumming, the speed of Slayer, and screamed vocals that represent today's metalcore scene. This blending comes off much the same as the sound of their labelmates Devildriver.
The band has progressed slightly in the past two years, which included an Ozzfest stint and a tour with In Flames. Matt and/or Rob's soloing is markedly improved, showing up in nearly every song. Good, classic metal solos, with lots of notes, string bends, and wah. Mark's vocals are as they always are - a scream that reminds me of Tim Williams of VOD, but Mark's intonations on certain sounds keeps him recognizable. The production gets the job done, although it isn't flashy.
Comparing Chimaira and TIoR is a matter of how you prefer your quality. While TIoR had a split of half adequate songs and half very good songs ("Pictures in the Gold Room", "Down Again", "Eyes of a Criminal"), this album is composed of exclusively solid songs with few standouts. It is a more consistent listen, but lacks those songs that you always skip forward to in anticipation. The ones that differ from the rest are worthy of a mention. "Lazarus" is certainly heavy, but the mood is far darker and haunting than its counterparts. And let's not forget "Salvation", where the backing vocalists do their best Jerry Cantrell impersonations.
Chimaira is a band that has truly reached their potential and hit their stride. They are surely as deserving of attention as many of the young groups getting press nowadays; especially to those of us who feel that a thrash riff trumps a breakdown any day. To fans of Lamb of God, Devildriver, and their last release, Chimaira will prove to be a worthy and satisfying acquisition.
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